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Designer/TV Host Transforms Urban Balcony Into Outdoor Oasis

Cheryl with cameramanIt all started with a feeling that her home, even though it is right in the heart of downtown Toronto, should give her a little respite from the city.

And because Cheryl Torrenueva spends her waking hours immersed in interior design for other people, she couldn’t help but visualize ideas for her own balcony

“The biggest thing was that all the materials surrounding me still felt like the city. I was still staring at brick and concrete. Even with plants I just didn’t feel like I had a good space to myself.”

Cheryl travels a lot, both for work and pleasure. Her three favourite places are Columbia, Peru and Bali… all places where she feels calm and surrounded by exotic woods. She started dreaming about ways to create the same feelings at home on her condo balcony, and looking for things that would work in her urban Toronto setting and with the four-season climate here.

That search started two years ago.

“The first thing we started off with was plants.  Its quite a big space, so starting small made sense for budget purposes. I shopped for weeks to get planters that fit the space, but nothing worked. I ended up getting them custom-made out of cedar.”

So with new planters built specifically for her balcony, and plants added, Cheryl still wasn’t “wowed” with her results.

“I got the planters…fine. Got the plants…. fine. I ended up getting an outdoor carpet…fine. I thought it would be soft on my feet but after two years my expensive outdoor carpet wasn’t as durable as they said, I couldn’t get the spills out and it trapped dirt underneath. I realized something was missing, and it was the Ipe outdoor flooring.”

It’s the kind of thinking Cheryl does for her clients – whether they are restaurant owners, residential homeowners, or the myriad TV shows (like CTV’s Marilyn Denis Show) she appears on demonstrating her latest designs.

Her favourite design work at the moment are the restaurant projects and television shows, because in both cases her creations are viewed by many, not just a few. Hundreds of restaurant patrons, and millions of television viewers across Canada.

So this summer it was time to go back to the drawing board and re-Table on KANDY Flooringimagine her own balcony.

She found KANDY Outdoor Flooring’s website, and she liked what she saw. And because she was planning to incorporate her own balcony project into a segment on a nationally-broadcast TV show, KANDY worked well because of its presence in Vancouver, Toronto and Ottawa and its nation-wide franchise expansion.

“The floor is really the base of any design project. This time I started there.”

“The exotic richness of the wood from South America just instantly transformed the space. I knew it would.  Even the floor pattern creates this energy.”

Cheryl chose the South American Ipe (pronounced EE’-pay) in the 12″x12″ four-slat parallel deck tile format.

She engaged a gardener who added new plants. She created a unique wall hanging that adds to the exotic feel, and she refreshed her furniture.

The furniture works really well, Ipe (exotic hardwood flooring) has the greys and browns and yellow tones too. It’s layered, which gives me flexibility for other choices.”

She has added textures and patterns in the fabrics, glassware and other accessories – even the accent lighting.

Beautiful DeckCheryl introduced the results of her own balcony transformation on the Thursday June 26 Marilyn Denis Show, giving freely the little tips and tricks that produced the results she had dreamed of for so long.

All of her choices combined have given Cheryl just what she was looking for.

A little slice of heaven on her downtown Toronto condo balcony!

“The minute I even look out the patio door, it feels like I am in another place. I have a mini vacation on the terrace.”

And as for the small but important part KANDY Outdoor Flooring played in the transformation, and the televised segment?

“This product increases the value of our home, and has extended our home. KANDY exceeded all of my expectations. You guys are amazing to work with. So easy, so precise, so professional. I rarely have those opportunities where the experience is good! It was pain free.”

Do you have a patio or balcony transformation project using KANDY Outdoor Flooring you’d like to share?

We’d love to hear from you!

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