Description of Historic Place
The Pasadena Apartments is a high three-storey concrete residential structure in the south Winnipeg district of Fort Rouge. The City of Winnipeg designation applies to the building on its footprint.
The remarkable Pasadena Apartments, developed in 1912 in a fashionable neighbourhood at a time when Winnipeg's rapidly growing population was embracing the concept of luxurious apartment living, embodies something distinctive in its marketplace: spacious premises of California Mission styling and fire-resistant concrete tile construction. From its name to its fine exterior details, such as a red clay tile roof, smooth stucco on upper walls and two graduated colours of finish brick, the block displays a southern aesthetic that is still rare locally. Its imaginative design by Hooper and Hooper, in partnership with contractor and three-time Winnipeg mayor Thomas Sharpe, targeted upscale tenants, offering abundant natural light and ventilation and an interior layout that emphasizes privacy, including large suites with second entrances, three-season sun porches and hardwood millwork. This exceptional residential facility retains much of its design integrity and is a prominent fixture in its neighbourhood.
Source: City of Winnipeg Committee on Planning and Community Services Minutes, December 12, 1988
Key elements that define the heritage character of the Pasadena Apartments site include:
- the corner location at northwest Hugo Street North and McMillan Avenue in a graceful, well-treed area occupied by houses and apartment blocks of mostly similar vintage
- the building's setting, bordered on two sides by public sidewalks and grass boulevards dotted with large elm trees, and with its own deep east courtyard
Key elements that define the block's subdued California Mission style and residential function include:
- the substantial form of concrete tile construction, composed of three distinct rectangular sections joined in a U-shape, each with a communal main entrance and one or more secondary entrances
- the three-storey height and raised basement containing an additional level of usable living space
- the red clay tile roof with hipped ends overhanging exposed decorative wooden rafters
- the uniform facade finishes, including the basement's dark brown glazed brick, the first floor's light brown brick, the smooth stucco upper-storey walls with tile accents in stylized Mission motifs and the progressively narrower cement belt courses that delineate each storey
- the glazed sun porches facing the courtyard in groups of two and featuring internal glass block windows that transmit light into the main staircases
- the abundant fenestration throughout, symmetrically organized, of various vertical and horizontal rectangular shapes underscored by plain cement sills, including double-hung windows with multi-paned upper sashes set in threes in the sun porches and in vertically aligned pairs or singles elsewhere
- the main entrances off the courtyard, each containing a wood and glass door with a sidelight, including the shallow squared concrete portals of sections `A' and `C' and the more elaborate `B' entrance with the name 'PASADENA' and street number '220' in its stepped pediment, along with twin crests and lights
- the exit doors centred in the east facades of sections `A' and `C' and the partially enclosed wooden staircases to secondary suite entrances on the north, south and west sides
Key elements that define the block's well-appointed interior include:
- the layout of the spacious apartments around minimal common stairwell-hallway space
- the basement suites, slightly below grade, and service, laundry and locker areas
- the three main entrance lobbies lined in grey marble
- the fine finishes and details, including the natural hardwood staircases, doors and millwork, the skylight over each of the main staircases, the quality millwork, hardwood floors, the stained- and leaded-glass window in each courtyard-facing suite, etc.