Barrie, Ontario

With roots in Finland, Aalto Development has successfully integrated real estate development and construction . Through their shared belief that customer value is created by combining unique properties with elevated design principles and efficient execution, the partners of Aalto Development combined their skills, experience and expertise to create an organization dedicated to building beautiful residential and commercial real estate projects that improve the way people live and work.

What we did

  • Capital partner for developer with limited Canadian exposure
  • Construction financing of nearly $100m
  • Turned financing package around in 3 months

Lākhouse is a contemporary, 10-storey resort-inspired condominium on the shores of Lake Simcoe in Barrie, Ontario. The project is developed by Aalto Development Inc., owned by Aalto Development Oy – a Finnish private real estate development company established in 1992 with a proven track record of successful residential projects – and Alatalot Oy, with experience in the construction business since the 1970’s.

Being a seasoned international real estate developer but with limited Canadian experience poses some significant challenges. These challenges can impact a company’s ability to raise the capital types they need, deploy that capital when and where needed, and help keep projects on time.

MarshallZehr’s more flexible and dynamic approach to real estate lending enabled us to see opportunity where others could not.

Barrie has become among Ontario’s most sought-after real estate markets according to RE/MAX, a trend driven by downsizers, retirees, and family homebuyers migrating from larger urban centres. The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated this trend as telecommuting and a renewed focus on outdoor recreation have led to many seeking smaller cities and towns. Lākhouse is well-positioned to address this growing need for housing, with a blend of Scandinavian design, easy access to local amenities, and a unique waterfront downtown location.

Starting in late 2020, MarshallZehr collaborated with Aalto Development to create a construction financing solution of nearly $100 million. This capital solution would fold in new capital sources from MarshallZehr, together with their 1st mortgage lender, providing the necessary financing for the entire construction of the condominium building.

MarshallZehr was able to turn this financing package around within three months – a significant achievement during the height of the pandemic and with a borrower as a relatively new to Canada as Aalto Development.

In December 2020, Aalto Development and MarshallZehr celebrated the ground breaking at the Lākhouse site and construction has been moving quickly. As of May 2021, the Lākhouse is over 90% sold out – representing nearly 160 units – and construction continues to move forward.

When completed as scheduled in 2023, Lākhouse’s Scandinavian-inspired design will feature beautifully designed suites, stunning indoor spaces, and an expansive terrace just steps to the lake – making it a unique feature on Lake Simcoe’s waterfront.