Houses of the Gatineau Hills

The following article first appeared in "The Low Down to Hull and Back News" in the August 31, 2011 issue. Reprinted with permission.

Log home worthy even of eas(l)ing painter's minds

by James Farr

The featured house in this edition of House of the Hills is a particularly beautiful example of a log home. Located in Chelsea, the house sits on a waterfront property located on a bend of the Gatineau River.

Houses of the Gatineau Hills
This beautiful log house in Chelsea comes complete with river view, old stone well, and beautiful rustic construction. Photo courtesy John MacIntyre.

As you approach the front door, a charming old stone well, complete with an antique brass bell, greets. The closer you get, the more magnificent the structure of the house appears. Huge logs combine with a massive stone chimney to dazzle any with an eye for the impressive. This is what farmhouses would look like if farmers were kings.

Moving around to the back of the house, you are struck by a spacious backyard, made private by a large growth of tall flowers and bushes. The only view that is not obscured by verdure is that of the river, which you get to contemefplate at a closer distance via an inviting set of small stone steps.

Houses of the Gatineau Hills
This Chelsea house's view looks out over the bend in the Gatineau River.

The inside of the house does not disappoint the expectations established by the exterior. As many grand houses do, this Chelsea home begins with an inviting staircase wrapped around a foyer. Taking a right, you enter a modern-looking kitchen with plenty of counter space that forms a nice juxtaposition with the rustic logs.

The real 'piece de resistance,' however, is the living room just left off the entrance foyer. Tall ceilings with beautiful wooden beams and a massive fireplace built by an Italian stonemason (to match the giant chimney, of course) make the room the house's definite centerpiece.

7th century table from a monastery, and several jaw- dropping antique pieces of wood furniture from Iraq (Evelyn Weynerowski, the home owner, spent some years in that country when her late husband, Witold, was the Canadian ambassador).

Houses of the Gatineau Hills
The master bedroom o is simple yet elegant, with a beautiful four-poster occupying the place of honour.

A trip up the stairs leads to a series of bedrooms, including the master which is simple yet elegant with a wood four-poster bed occupying the prominent position.

Houses of the Gatineau Hills
The giant stone chimney in this Chelsea log home was handbuilt by an Italian stonemason. The source of the stones: Morrison's Quarry.

Another particularly beautiful bedroom features its own fire grate, as it connects to the chimney and the fireplace below. There is also a simple study with a lovely view and closets for storage.

As you exit (perhaps regretfully) the property, there is a garage on the left with what looks like another floor above it. If you take the small flight of stairs at the side it leads up to an art studio complete with easel and even a small bed for those long nights of feverish creative inspiration.

Exiting the property, the words of its realtor John MacIntyre come to mind: "You used to go outside on weekends and people would be out there painting the house." Truly picturesque.

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