Spend a quiet afternoon meandering through these absolutely unbelievably beautiful gardens.
1. This 20th century Edwardian style castle, designed by architect Samuel Maclure and set upon 565 oceanfront acres was the retirement home of James and Laura Dunsmuir. Inside, a blend of Elizabethan, Art Nouveau and Greek and Tudor Revival style reveal an understated yet opulent family home later used as the base for Royal Roads Military College. Today, the Italian, Rose and Japanese gardens at Hatley Park Castle and Gardens are impeccably upkept, with surprises around every turn including a protected migratory bird sanctuary; a historic First Nations’ site; and a spectacular view of the Juan de Fuca Strait.
2. Long known as one of the world’s premier floral show gardens, Butchart Gardens began as a home to Robert Pim Butchart and Jennie Butchart, pioneers in the cement industry. The couple built their family home close to the quarry, where Jennie first began pursuing something of beauty in an exhausted limestome pit. This beautification eventually became the centerpiece at Butchart Gardens, The Sunken Garden. Today, there are several additional awe inspiring gardens and a lawn walk to explore, each with thousands of colourful plants and flowers to admire, year round.
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This original article first appeared in the Winter 2016 issue of City Style and Living Magazine.