Wednesday, June 8, 2016

WilMar:: letting the light in again

The WilMar House on Southwest Marine Drive is one lucky oldie to have escaped the demolition crunch. It had been occupied by three successive generations of the same family since it was built in 1925 by Willard and Mary Kitchen, and the last one and only granddaughter died here alone in 2006. She had bequeathed her whole estate to the Vancouver Foundation which has since sold the property to someone who is willing to save the mansion by modifying it into two separate units and adding a few more houses on the two acre site.

Having the opportunity to visit it on a recent Vancouver Heritage Foundation House Tour, it was an unexpected surprise to find this large Tudor Revival style house left mostly intact in its original state. It has been unoccupied for almost 10 years now but maintained in good condition. Windows were uncovered of their plywood boarding, the rooms aired out and light flooded in once again to welcome strangers into the reclusive spaces on this sunny spring morning...

The separate coach house with its unfinished interior and barn-like atmosphere... James would not have been happy living here, even if he could drive some fancy cars!

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