You've reached a time in your life when a traditional house just doesn't meet your needs anymore. Without the kids around, there are empty, unused bedrooms going to waste, and you find yourself with more space to maintain than you want or need. The perfect solution for this situation is to create a home customized to suit your individual needs and desires. Your home should reflect your interests, with no wasted space or unnecessary maintenance required.
We're experienced with this kind of individualized home construction and can help you create and customize the perfect bungalow or villa, one that reflects your unique personality. This is your time to enjoy life and devote time to your passions, be it musical instruments, an art collection, fine wines or other opportunities that excite you. For the wine lover especially, this can be a chance to merge the desire to downsize with all the comforts of owning a complete wine cellar.
Determine the Location
Your first step in creating your dream wine room will be to choose the optimal location in your new home. If you have decided to downsize to a custom bungalow or villa, good news - many modern and classic wine cellar designs are cleverly constructed to take up minimum space (that is, of course, if you want to restrict your wine intake).
There are also a few questions you’ll want to ask yourself ahead of time in terms of functionality and placement. Other questions to consider are:
- Do I want to incorporate my wine cellar into an entertainment area?
- How accessible does it need to be?
These are important factors in determining the size and functionality of your custom wine room.
Another factor to take into consideration for placement is the temperature and humidity - which must be consistently maintained. This is easiest with a basement wine cellar, but it's definitely an option aboveground as well. First, incorporate your cellar in an area of the home that won't be exposed to direct sunlight. If you are going to frequently access your wine room, positioning it in an easy-to-use location makes sense. One clever option is underneath the stairs, an area that is often under-utilized.
What's Your Style?
Contemporary Wine Cellars
Whether you opt for a contemporary or traditional style, you can customize your wine cellar to any size. Contemporary wine rooms are often smaller and "lighter" by nature; featuring glass, aluminum or steel wine racks, and lighter colours. There are designs that will preserve and showcase your unique vintages compactly while giving plenty of room for extra storage. This leaves you with more square footage for relaxing and entertaining in your new villa or bungalow. For example, a walk-in closet space of only six square feet can house a surprisingly extensive display of fine wines.
A larger contemporary design could combine a bar or gathering area with the wine storage feature. You can incorporate glass walls to separate your vintages from the main room while still showcasing them. You could even add a table and chairs as part of the wine cellar itself, creating an inviting room for tasting and entertaining!
Traditional Wine Cellars
If you prefer a traditional wine cellar (think heavier, vintage woods, brick, and darker flooring), one option is to build it below the garage, with steps leading down to a hidden, climate-controlled storage area. You can opt for full size if you have an extensive wine collection, with racks upon racks of storage, along with extra room for supplies.
Adjacent to the kitchen and dining area is also a popular placement option for an attention-grabbing traditional cellar. This convenient location makes wine easily accessible for cooking and entertaining and can also create a glamorous focal point for your guests. You can also build your wine cellar directly into a wall, reaching the bottles of wine through glass doors that face the room.
Temperature and Humidity
Whether you opt for a contemporary or traditional architectural style for your home cellar, temperature and humidity control will be the key to keeping your wine collection in peak condition at all times. This is why the optimum wine cellar will not receive any direct sunlight and will be in a location suitable for maintaining a constant temperature. The right balance of humidity will keep your wine corks from drying out but won't encourage mould on corks or labels.
Fortunately, cutting-edge electronic humidity and temperature control options are available to help maintain your prized collections. You can even monitor the conditions with a cell phone app! Some wine aficionados also include an air purifier in their cellars to ensure that fine wines don't absorb odours through the corks. In dry areas of the country (especially Alberta), an ultrasonic humidifier is best to ensure adequate levels of humidity.
A custom home provides the perfect opportunity to incorporate the features you've always dreamed of - including that show-stopping wine cellar. Whether you prefer red or white, old vintage or new, with a custom home build, the sky is the limit.