Saturday, October 28, 2006

Things I Love about Nelson # 2 - Heritage Buildings

Nelson has more heritage building per ca pita than any other city in British Columbia and about 350 of them have been officially preserved. But one of the favorites in the area that captivates many is the famous Blaylock estates.

Obviously this isn't your average heritage building. This Tudor style mansion was designed by the same Montreal architects that designed the Banff Springs Hotels and other famous CP hotels across Canada. It was originally a summer home for Selwyn Blaylock. "Now who was Selwyn Blaylock?" I suppose you're asking. Well I don't know too much about him other than he was originally from eastern Canada and came out to the Kootenays in the late 1800's for a job opportunity to manage a smelter plant in the small town of Trail. This is the smelter that later became known as Cominco and still is to this day.

This is the driveway that leads up to the wrought iron gates that mark the entrance to the 13 acres of Blaylock estate. I think it looks especially lovely at this time of year with the blanket of colourful maple leaves.

The grounds, in many respects, are the real attraction at the estate. I love the variety of trees and bushes set against the chiseled granite walls. I have had a chance to visit the interior of the mansion, and although it is beautiful and grand, parts of it are quite dated. A family that owned the estate in the 70's redid some of the rooms with a very "Dynasty" feel.

All the ground are in pretty much their original state, with the exception of a few trees that have unfortunately been removed in recent year. But I suppose on the plus side, it gives us a clearer view of the house that could very easily be the setting of any fairytale story.

From the moment you round the bend in the road and catch your first glimpse of the grounds, I am sure that Blaylock will capture your heart and fire your imagination as well.


Cheryl said...

Love the shot through the gates! I don't think I've ever walked around the Blaylock grounds.

Carla said...

Thanks Cheryl. If you ever get a chance to walk the grounds, you should. They're quite beautiful.

Alistair B Fraser said...

I haved enjoyed your images and comments for some time, starting with the shot of the (juvenile Sharp-shinned) Hawk. You keep taking shots around the same area where I take them. I wondered if you were aware of my site devoted to Kootenay Lake. It is found at



BurdockBoy said...

Ohh. I love Nelson. I used to live near Bonners Ferry just across the BC border, But I tried to get up to Nelson or the Slocan Valley at every chance. I think I have drove by the Blaylock mansion. Is it north of Nelson on the way to the ferry?

Carla said...

Alistair, thanks for sharing your website. The pictures are fabulous and the comments most informative. I will definitely be going back to take a closer look.

Carla said...

Burdock boy, I think you have it. Blaylock mansion is about 3 or 4 miles from Nelson on the North shore across the orange bridge.