Rowan and his family were looking for an investment property and an eventual retirement spot when they came across a relic of a Muskoka cottage, straight from the 1970s. So they snatched it up with big intentions of transforming it into a rental, but they still needed a bit of help with the overall design and renos. Enter Scott McGillivray, designer Debra Salmoni and the Vacation House Rules team. See how they transformed this boring and outdated space into a playful vacation spot for those who love big motors, sports and games.
A New Exterior
Before, this cottage was barely noticeable with its faded façade and lack of designated entry. Now, thanks to some fresh paint, reconfigured deck spaces, landscaping, and a bright orange front door that’s fun and playful, renters know where to go when they arrive at this property.
A Bright Interior
Inside, Scott and Debra worked with a bold black, white and orange colour scheme to transform the old finishes and wood interior. They painted the existing brick white for a bright look that reflects light throughout the space, and added bold black finishes on the trim for a touch of sophistication.
Although this rental appeals to anyone who loves games and sports, the inside is meant to feel like the ultimate “man cave”, or like you’re hanging out in a bar. That’s the feeling in this sunken living room, with the oversized sectional for lounging, games that are hidden around the room, and decor that matches the sporty theme.
Creating Cottage Vibes
Before, this area featured a natural brick fireplace with a giant arch. It was a cool feature, but it felt out of place in this small room and it sucked out a ton of light. Scott fixed that problem by installing an electric fireplace that’s easy for renters to use, but that still feels like a real fireplace thanks to the new feature wall and stained mantel.
Finding More Light
Across from the fireplace, Scott installed a brand new window to let even more light into the space so that it feels less like your grandparents’ rec room and more like the open, cottage space it is. Now you can see the trees and even the lake, making this a desirable space the entire family or crew will want to hang out in.
A Bold New Kitchen
To keep with the sporty but sophisticated theme, Debra and Scott went with dark countertops and grey cabinets in this new, posh kitchen. To add light and contrast they then added a white backsplash and floating shelves along one wall. The result is a modern kitchen that adds to the sporty vibe but still feels luxe.
Dining For Days
Even man caves and bars need a designated space to grab a bite to eat and this playful paradise is no exception. Scott and Debra created a dining room space with a round table (perfect for poker nights) and five oversized club chairs that are comfy but still fit in with the sporty and sophisticated theme.
A Hotel-Like Vibe
In the primary bedroom, Scott and Debra created a rich look with black and white features throughout. The hanging lamps create a hotel-like feel, while the art is purposeful and on-theme. Add in some throw pillows, and this is a comfy but themed room that renters will definitely appreciate.
In this bedroom, Scott and Debra saved a bit of money by painting the feature wall and adding trim. The result feels like a headboard but without the cost or bulk of an actual headboard. Some appropriate art and practical night tables complete the cottage look.
A New Bathroom
There’s only one bathroom in this rental, so Scott and Debra wanted to make it count. They created a luxe, walk-in shower and added a double vanity complete with modern mirrors to go with the rest of the playful paradise. Now, Rowan can charge up to $450 per night for this rental during the high season, giving this family a solid investment for the years to come.