St. Clements Church Lofts
Leslieville. Locals love it, and people who don’t live there wish they did. It’s a hip, friendly neighbourhood that’s experienced a dramatic resurgence in the last few years, becoming one of city’s most popular destinations for buyers looking for still-affordable homes with a bit of history.
Leslieville’s charming small-town vibe stems from its history as an actual village. In the 1850s, the community grew up around Toronto Nurseries, a business owned by George Leslie and his sons. It was a working class neighbourhood, with residents employed as gardeners and labourers in nearby brick-making factories.
In later years, much of the area was taken up by metal processing and tanning factories. Today, those factories have been replaced by film studios, so don’t be surprised if you spot a movie star picking up a coffee on Queen.
Leslieville’s most famous resident was Alexander Muir, who wrote The Maple Leaf Forever. He was the first principal at Leslieville Public School, one of the initial buildings to go up in the village. The maple tree that inspired his famous song still stands at the corner of Laing Street and Memory Lane.
These days, Leslieville is home to a wonderful mix of stroller-pushing mommies, creative professionals and hip downtown dwellers. Quirky vintage shops, coffee spots and cafes, local boutiques, must-try restaurants and mom and pop businesses line the main Queen East drag. Beautiful old homes line the leafy streets, and gentrification has become the word of the day.
We’re pleased to say that this great old neighbourhood has a new lease on life – and The St. Clements church loft conversion is the perfect example of that remarkable reinvention.
St. Clement’s has been a well-loved Leslieville landmark for generations. Designed by the Toronto architectural partnership of Sharp and Brown in the early 1900s, the church served the spiritual needs of its parishioners and the social needs of the neighbourhood for almost a century.
Construction on the church began in 1913, and despite the financial difficulties and personal sacrifices brought by the war, all of the furnishings were in place by 1917 and in 1921 the final elaborate stained glass window was installed.
St. Clement’s is a great example of the Victorian Gothic Revival style favoured by Anglican congregations in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The pitched roof with belfry, characteristic pointed-arch window openings, lancet windows and decorative detailing all add up to a beautiful space that was once the centre of a spiritual and social community.
That community has moved on, and the building that housed them is now entering a new incarnation; inspired multi-level hard loft conversions carved from the beautiful frame of this former house of worship.
The church will hold 17 converted lofts, and a newly constructed 4-storey addition will contain an additional 22 new soft lofts. All of the church lofts are designed to provide an appealing interplay between heritage and modern elements. Imagine it… a stained glass window in your living room. A gorgeous arched door leading into your ultra-modern kitchen. Glancing out your bedroom window and seeing a 100-year-old bell tower.
St. Clements Church Lofts has brought new life to a historic building – and reinvented luxury living in the heart of the city.
Contact the Jeffrey Team for more information – 416−388−1960
Laurin & Natalie Jeffrey are Toronto Realtors with Century 21 Regal Realty.
They did not write these articles, they just reproduce them here for people
who are interested in Toronto real estate. They do not work for any builders.
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