“We don’t see a house as a box. We see it as a living space where a person will live for years to come.”
- Bob Zamani
For over two decades, Zamani Homes has been building custom residences in Toronto’s most exclusive neighbourhoods, building a reputation of uncompromising quality that turned the Zamani name into a trademark among the city’s boutique custom builders. Today, the second generation of the Zamani family is taking the attributes of uncompromising quality to the mainstream customer, creating comfortable, custom-built, and modern townhomes for urban professionals.
At the height of the company’s single custom home focus, the company was building up to 14 homes per year, ranging between 6,000 and 27,000 square feet, with cost between $12million to $23 million. Today, the company continues to build up to four single luxury homes per year, but the custom townhomes are becoming more prevalent in its portfolio.
The Canadian Business Journal spoke to Bob Zamani, Vice-President and the second generation behind the Zamani quality design, discussing the luxury home market in the GTA and the new approach that fuses the high-end luxury with a more affordable format.
“Zamani Homes is one the largest builders of custom homes in the Bayview, York Mills area and the Bridal Path areas of Toronto, building unique, exceptional mansions. When I joined the company, we started to refocus on a multi-unit custom homes division. We want to bring this custom quality to townhouse units, making the high-end more affordable to wider public. We are bringing our custom approach to subdivisions,” says Zamani.
Lorraine Park in North York and Eagle Heights in Newmarket represent the flagship luxury subdivisions for Zamani Homes. These smaller infill communities offer the exclusive luxury living for a fraction of the cost to the buyers. This especially applies to the Eagle Heights subdivision located outside the GTA, where the cost of these more than 1,700 square foot luxury townhomes arrives between $550,000 and $600,000.
“Eagle Heights is an interesting project. Historically we have been building in North York, but my family lived in Newmarket for about 12 years. That’s why we chose this market. We built our first executive style townhouses gearing towards purchasers who were looking for quality not quantity, people seeking smaller units with high-end finish. Townhouses’ prices in Newmarket are set at about $300,000 to $400,000 mark, so we took a big risk with our pricing but it worked, so we broke a huge price ceiling in Newmarket,” says Zamani.
With Zamani Homes, it’s always about the quality and custom work available to meet the most demanding client. This simple philosophy always lies behind Zamani Homes’ success: helping clients to imagine and create the luxury of living in a space that’s exactly what they want it to be — living space that reflect clients’ personalities and lifestyles all embraced by impeccable attention to detail.
Zamani gives the purchasers the ability to customize their home according to their needs, and that’s not just moldings and tiles, the company always works with the buyers to adjust the living space according to their desires. “Because we choose to build smaller projects (in terms of unit numbers), our designers work with the clients on a one-on-one basis to determine what they want, and we always strive to accommodate that. People usually spend an additional $100,000 on upgrades to make their home what they want it to be. For example, our clients in Eagle Heights had the opportunity to decide whether they would prefer to have laundry upstairs, where the bedrooms are, make cosmetic changes, move walls … we will do virtually anything. We give many more options compared to other builders who only have limited options for their clients and will not go to these lengths to satisfy buyers,” says Zamani.
In terms of design style, the company focuses on classical design but modern style. While the look generally follows the “French Chateau” style, the interiors and designs are always fresh and modern. “We don’t want to go fully classical in our designs. We like to mix the classical with the modern. The challenge is the transition between the classical and the modern. My father is very involved in both exterior and interior transitions as well as the architectural layout of the homes, while my mom Flora is involved heavily with the designs and décor, but it’s always about the balance of classic and modern,” says Zamani.
Canada had been witnessing an ongoing influx of high-net worth individuals from across the world relocating to the Canadian urban centres, and Zamani Homes has been there for them to create the quality high-end living to which they are accustomed. “The high-net worth individuals come to Toronto to invest, and when they do, they require the high standard of living they are accustomed to, whether they are coming from Russia, the Middle East or China, and we are here for them. Here we deal with different cultures and therefore different tastes that we have to accommodate and we apply certain cultural house building ideologies that come from these cultures,” says Zamani.
While Zamani Homes will continue to build custom mansions for the affluent Canadians, Zamani plans to continue to steer the company focus on modern luxury townhomes for urban professionals as the way of the future for the company. Zamani also plans to push the boundary of luxury living with a high rise project in the future, but the focus will remain on quality rather than quantity, building smaller, luxury projects. “High-end, infill projects are our forte. We are not interested in large, cookie cutter subdivisions. We want to offer a higher-end luxury product that is affordable to the broader public to purchase. We are bringing our experience of working for the very, very wealthy to the mainstream, giving people the opportunity to live with finishes similar to those of the highest quality, at an affordable price point,” concluded Zamani.
Eagle Heights Townhomes