Where The Other Half Lives

What a difference a decade makes. The last time Vanmag assembled a list of Greater Vancouver’s most expensive homes, in the late 1990s, Shaughnessy mansions crowded the list; West Vancouver properties ran a distant second. The so-called view premium has changed all that, dramatically driving up the value of homes with panoramic vistas and waterfront access. Just ask socialite Jacqui Cohen. Her waterfront estate on Point Grey Road placed eighth in our 1999 ranking, assessed at a respectable $6.33 million. Today it’s assessed at $18,006,000-the rise attributed to the unsurpassed 150 feet of beachfront in an area where 30 to 50 feet is the norm-and probably worth $25 million on the market. Then there are the new additions to the list: the recently built palaces on Radcliffe Avenue in West Vancouver and Drummond Drive in West Point Grey. Here, buying adjoining lots to ensure privacy and unspoiled views isn’t just recommended, it’s standard practice. And if you have to ask what that adds to the cost of such an estate, you can’t afford it.

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