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Over the last decade, we’ve renovated multiple respites in Muskoka and Haliburton, and shared our adventures via TV shows such as Cabin Pressure and Great Canadian Cottages. So we know there’s a huge – and growing – appetite for all things rural.
When Escapology – our Globe and Mail bestseller – published (concurrent with the pandemic’s arrival) we witnessed a vertiginous spike in country listings and sales. Many people dreamed of jettisoning themselves into what they deemed a safer world at the highway’s end, and our cottage bible tapped into that zeitgeist.
And so today, more than ever – as the world rebalances – Country continues to delight and reward, the secret being shared with rural aspirants everywhere. This year sees us kicking off the reno at our Haliburton forever cottage: a plan that will witness the complete reversion of a currently down-at-the-heels cabin on Drag Lake. We’ll share that journey as the plan gathers momentum.
For us, being here is all about the pursuit of peace. To that end, tucking away in a cosy corner, to enjoy quiet time, is part of our routine. Which is where Kabin comes into its own: it’s the ideal companion with which to flick in a hammock or easy chair. And hey: if you’re a digital space inhabitant, you can enjoy it here at KabinMagazine.ca. However you choose to enjoy content, we’ve got you covered.
In this issue, we serve style inspo via the Lake Joseph escape of the Metrick family, owners of Toronto’s Elte store empire. It’s a breathtaking affair and we hope you enjoy reading about it as much as we did preparing the feature.
And we meet brothers Andy and Ben, brains behind Pure Muskoka, an iconic family business which navigated the pandemic’s perilous assault, and indeed grew, during those dreadfully compromised times.
Haliburton enjoys a long-standing love of the arts, with galleries and artisans toiling to create a wonderfully creative community. Following this trail, we catch up with musician and vinyl aficionado Dan Manley to learn of his plans to help fund a permanent home for the county’s performing arts sector. It’s a story of gritty determination and unstinting community spirit.
Kabin's journey of discovery continuing apace, we explore why Oxtongue Lake inspired Group of Seven member A.J. Casson and discover how the celebrated artist left his mark on the local people. ‘Tis a fascinating and heartwarming narrative, one which will surely capture your imagination. And oh, those beautiful landscapes...
Talking of landscapes, advice sprouts from celebrated horticulturalists Mark and Ben Cullen, who reveal how to prepare the cottage garden by planning now, so you can sit back and relax later. Further outdoor inspiration comes at the behest of Vicky Sanderson, who harvests spring’s best crop of garden gear, and from Andrew Cruickshank who encourages everyone to embrace the weed by letting lawns go au naturale.
With a foolproof guide to the perfect guest room, cocktail suggestions from the Kabin team, and a trip to Nova Scotia, Canada’s ocean playground, our new magazine should keep you entertained until the second issue lands in July. And so, without further ado, here’s to a year of good health, true happiness and endless decompression for one and all. Your escape starts now.
Colin + Justin