Design Specialist: Iván Meade
Photographer: Joshua Lawrence

Mike Miller falls back on the old real estate expression “location, location, location” when describing the perks of living in his home in Fairfield. Its perch next to Moss Rocks Park allows for incomparable vistas. Unbelievable views of the ocean and city are visible from the rooftop deck, the second floor and the living room, while views of the park are spectacular from the kitchen and main-floor deck. Located within the aptly named Vue development, the house is within walking distance of Cook Street Village and Dallas Road; and while it’s surrounded by parkland, it’s only a five minute drive from downtown.


The double-sided fireplace, which divides the main floor into more intimate spaces, sits in a dramatic brushed pewter facing. A wooden drop down defines the dining area, adding an element of warmth. A signature element of Sandy Nygaard’s design can be found in the flush baseboard with its sleek shadow line.

Miller is owner of award-winning Abstract Developments, the residential building firm behind Vue, an in-progress seven-house development that aims to complement the existing architectural landscape of the neighbourhood, but add a stunning contemporary esthetic. Miller loved this particular house so much, he decided to live there himself, creating an inviting home for his family.


Miller’s furniture, such as the chairs inspired by the Swan chair by Arne Jacobsen, and the Flos lamp, give the space a mid-century vibe. The millwork of the built-in shelves around the fireplace may appear simple but is actually very complex due to the home’s curved walls. The window treatments add softness to the space. Recessing the television into the pewter panel means the fireplace remains the focal point in the room.

The Vue’s house designer Keith Baker and its interior designer Sandy Nygaard wanted each home in the development to be contemporary yet still have a warm appeal. In Miller’s home, they achieved this by incorporating a complement of earthiness and achieving a balance between modern and rustic. Baker took a different approach to open-concept design by using the large double-sided fireplace on the main floor to break the area down into smaller, more intimate spaces that still feel airy and connected.

Given the home’s elevated position, it gets light from all directions, adding to its luminosity. Doussie, a sustainably grown exotic hardwood that has a natural iridescent quality, is used for the flooring throughout the main level, imparting a gorgeous glow.

Miller’s favourite areas of the house are the open kitchen and living area where he likes to hang out with his family, and where they can all spill out onto the main-floor deck in the summer.

The kitchen itself has wonderful flow, due mainly to the island. The deconstructed element acts as a sculptural piece in the middle of the open space, and its geometry mimics the architectural shape of the house. The deep stainless steel counter of the island and its built-in range adds much functionality, while the setup encourages gathering.


The green elements inject nature-inspired colour and play off the moss and bamboo that can be seen outside the window. The cowhide stools add an unexpectedly fun touch to the space.


A secondary sink, used as a bar sink, sits in the island near the wine fridge.

The area of the kitchen nearest to the living room contains a wine bar, and a drop-down in the island serves as the perfect place to open and serve a bottle of wine.

What stands out about the home is the way it invites one to settle in and linger, which is not always the case with contemporary design. Infused with warmth and light, and full of intimate, livable spaces, the house truly defines the concept of livable luxe.


Tempered glass panels create beautiful clean lines, ensure an open, airy feel to the staircase and allow natural light from the windows to fill the space. Lush, live plants, such as these orchids, can be found throughout the home and add an earthy, grounding element.


An inlay in the floor tile follows the shape of the tub, which sits in a windowed alcove off the master bedroom. A chandelier by Kuzco Lighting is playful yet sophisticated. The shadow line in the cornice moulding covering the drop-down blinds mimics the shadow line in the baseboard.


A free-standing sink by Blu in the main-floor powder room gives the room a clean, minimal feel, while the use of wood on the walls adds warmth.


Designer: Keith Baker, KB Design
Interiors: Sandy Nygaard, Nygaard Interior Design
Landscape: Duane Ensing Landscape Solutions
Structural Engineer: David Anidjar-Romain, SPAR Consultants
Appliances: Coast Wholesale Appliances
Millwork/Cabinetry: Swiftsure Woodworkers
Windows: Westeck Windows & Doors
Floors: Installed by Boardwalk Flooring, supplied by The Finishing Store
Glass Railings: Colonial Railings
Plumbing Fixtures: The Ensuite Bath & Kitchen Centre (installed by RTR Plumbing)