Penthouse Condo Overlooks Kempenfelt Bay

May 16, 2018

Entrepreneur asks a designer to furnish every inch of this downtown Barrie condo.

A version of this article originally appeared in the Spring 2018 issue of  OUR HOMES Barrie Orillia Midland Innisfil, p.52. Find local businesses in our Barrie directory. 

Entrepreneur Pete Pancel spends most of the colder Canadian months in sunny Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. Summering in Ontario, with a penthouse condo overlooking downtown Barrie and Kempenfelt Bay, Pancel lives the best of both worlds and encourages others looking for a new cold weather destination to do the same. He runs Cabo VIP Rentals, booking family vacations, boys’ golf adventure or girls’ long weekend getaways with a dedicated concierge that plans everything from deep sea water fishing, whale watching, sunset cruises, golf, sightseeing and hikes to spa and infinity pool relaxation. Perhaps because Pancel is so familiar with the perfect assistance a concierge provides, he chose a similar approach to his newly-built condo when he asked Catherine Staples, of Catherine Staples Interiors, to take care of the design.
Pancel left nearly all of the design decisions to Staples, since, as he puts it, “She’s a professional.” They discussed his preferences, she spoke with his two teens about what they wanted and, once a theme for the décor was decided, he flew off to Cabo for three months to let the team do its work. When he returned, Staples had selected everything Pancel needed, from the toaster and fridge to dishes and cutlery; literally, an elegant turnkey service at its finest.
The penthouse condo has full-length windows along two sides with blinds for night privacy as well as three balconies. The living room showcases a fireplace and a simple custom sectional and a swivel chair strategically placed to enjoy the incredible waterfront view and sunshine from any angle. In the kitchen, an extra set of cabinets were mounted flush to the ceiling.
Besides the master bedroom, there are two bedrooms for his children. Staples chose low platform beds to maximize space and enhance the visual appeal of the 10-foot ceilings. All closets come with multi-level organizers to best utilize the space, which is usually at a premium in condos. 
The condo’s location in downtown Barrie means it’s close to everything – stores, pubs, restaurants, waterfront – yet it’s also just a few minutes from a main highway that leads to the international airport in Toronto less than an hour away. The penthouse is roomy, at just over 1,800 square feet, and the building has 24-hour security for peace of mind, especially for a frequent traveller. The view is spectacular. “I felt I was in really good hands and the work speaks for itself,” says Pancel.