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Scott McGillivray Breathes Life into a Kawartha Coastal Cabin


After putting in the time to learn Scott’s Vacation House Rules, Kelly and Paul purchased their own rental cabin. Taking such a big step is daunting, but thankfully Scott McGillivray and Debra Salmoni were there to help. Despite the cottage’s rough state, they saw the potential in its sandy turquoise waters. Together the team took on everything from pests in flooring covered walls to dated sixties designs, all to take this problem property to Coastal Cabin.


Watch new episodes of Scott’s Vacation House Rules Sundays at 10 p.m. ET/PT on HGTV Canada, also available on the Global TV App and on STACKTV with Amazon Prime Video Channels, fuboTV, Rogers Ignite TV, and Ignite SmartStream.


An outdated cottage living room with walls covered with flooring
HGTV Canada

A Festival of Flooring

Walking into the cabin, Scott immediately found himself surrounded by flooring, not just on the floors but the walls. A previous owner had decided to decorate the walls with an assortment of different hardwood scraps. Under all of that he found an odd vapor barrier, and with a little help from an electric turkey carver, discovered that the cottage had no insulation. With that discovery the demo began.

Related: Scott and Debra Reimagine a Cliffside Cabin in Kawartha Lakes


A blue and teal screened-in porch on the Coastal Cabin
HGTV Canada

Screen Time

For Debra, the goal of her designs was to emphasize the gorgeous turquoise waters of the lake. Wanting to get the most of those views she incorporated teals and blues into the screened in porch, making it feel like an island getaway no matter the weather. Not only did this expand the usable footprint, but by properly insulating that space, helped make it a four-season rental.

Related: Enter For a Chance to Win a Scott’s Vacation House Rules Season 4 Giveaway



Coastal Cabin with flagstone back patio
HGTV Canada

Gathering Around the Fire

However, making a cottage all season isn’t just about the interior. After the interior’s coastal cabin vibes were finished, Scott and the team tackled that yard. They added a large flagstone patio, complete with fire pit. Now guests can come together in nature to enjoy s’mores and stories as they enjoy nature even into the cooler months.

Related: Scott McGillivray Designs a Limitless Lake House Retreat in Tiny


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