When the Canadian Home Builders Association of B.C. announced at the 1997 Georgie Awards that Goldmark Construction Co. Ltd. had won a gold medal, builder and designer Victor Lo was ecstatic.
“It was amazing,” says Lo. “I’m normally very conservative, but when I heard I won, I was so excited that I rushed to the phone to call my parents and friends to share the happiness with them.”
The awards, which recognize excellence in residential construction, honour home builders, developers, renovators and marketers.
The Best Single Family Detached Home
Lo’s gold medal award was for a $2.3 million home he built in Vancouver. The home won in the category of Best Single Family Detached Home, 3500-4999 Square Feet.
“People love the house,” says Lo. “It doesn’t matter if they are Canadian, Chinese or any other nationality. Everybody loves it.” Everybody-including the judges.
The Tudor style home is hard to miss. Located on a corner lot, it is huge and beautiful. People often stop their cars and come up for a closer look.
What is remarkable about the home is that although it has six bedrooms, six bathrooms, two kitchens, an in-house movie theater, a game room and a steam room, it is not grotesquely large. Lo made sure the house would blend in with the rest of the neighbourhood instead of being an eyesore.
“Many people complain about the monster houses going up in their areas,” says Lo, “but people here love the look of this house. The more you look at it, the more you like it.”
A Meticulous Attention To Detail
Lo is proud of the home that took him a year to build. His attention to detail was meticulous. The wood siding on the exterior of the house had to be perfect. A lot of workmanship went into cutting the knot-free wood to size-the flawless wood cost him three times as much as wood with knots. Lo also paid close attention to the landscape. Every tree and bush had to match the house.
Inside the home, everything that Lo added was impeccable. There are ten-foot-high ceilings, glass doors with copper piping, granite countertops, cherrywood cabinets, marble ledges, five-foot windows, state-of-the-art appliances, and bathrooms so luxurious you could live in them. All of the windows and skylights in the house are strategically placed to let in the perfect amount of light throughout the day.
It took Lo and his wife Angela two weeks to find light fixtures for the master bedroom. The woodworkers worked for months hand-crafting the detailing in the cherrywood walls of the den.
On To His Next Project: Building A Taiwanese Canadian Cultural Centre
Currently, Lo is starting another project. As vice-chair of the Taiwanese Canadian Cultural Society, he is looking for property in the Lower Mainland to build a Taiwanese cultural centre.
The purpose of the centre will be to help new immigrants settle in Canada so they can become responsible and contributing members of society. It will also help promote Taiwanese culture in Canada.
The centre will consist of a hall, classroom, office area, small kitchen and a seniors area. The new centre will not be as grand as the $2.3 million home that won him the Georgie Award, but Lo is excited. “I want to give something back to the people of the city.”