If you’ve ever imagined living in your own life-size Polly Pocket cottage (it can’t just be me, can it?), a newly listed Grimsby, Ontario property could be just what your bubble gum and cotton candy dreams are made of.

And that’s no exaggeration.

For those in the market for a weekend retreat, one of the famous Painted Ladies of Grimsby has just hit the market – and at a relatively attainable price point. Located just steps from the photo-worthy (but pebbly) Grimsby Beach, the Painted Ladies of Grimsby are a collection of quaint and colourful Victorian-style cottages that have a gingerbread house-meets-Barbie-meets-Candyland aesthetic.

Think: bubble gum-pink, bright purple, and piercing teal exteriors; whimsical and conversation-worthy trinkets both inside and outdoors; charming gingerbread trim; and colourful wood-carved embellishments.

If this sounds up your alley (and you better be sure; there are rules about painting some of these properties, and they're designated heritage homes, making them tricky to legally renovate), a cottage with a “cotton candy” exterior could be yours for just $674,900. With a pink, purple, and teal facade, white gingerbread trim, and quaint front veranda, the 1876-built, 932-sq.-ft property offers a distinct dollhouse feel.

Inside, a sensible design facilitates a sense of homeyness that starts upon entry. The interior continues the colour scheme of the exterior – something that punctuates some of the walls, floors, and cabinetry. Exposed wood also makes a strong appearance, bringing a chalet-like aesthetic to some areas, with floor, wall, and ceiling paneling. This natural, exposed wood is juxtaposed with the bold and colourful detailing.


A foyer leads to a sitting area, which leads to an open concept living room/dining room with the original pine flooring. The most colourful room in the house, the kitchen features a bubble gum-pink floor, cotton candy-pink ceiling, and bright teal cabinetry and walls. While simple, appreciated features of the kitchen include no shortage of cabinetry and a new(ish) fridge and stove.

Upstairs, a cozy loft-style primary bedroom offers what looks like a peaceful sanctuary, with an exposed wood beams that open up to vaulted ceilings. Here, the star of the show is an authentic clawfoot soaker tub, which sits exposed and on an elevated platform and is part of a four-piece bathroom behind it.

Despite its character-rich aesthetic, simplicity is the name of the game inside this home – look no further than the wood-burning stove in the living room, or the tin that roof that also enhances the cottage feel (especially when it rains). With that said, simplicity doesn’t mean “roughing it:’ the main floor features a washer and dryer, which are discretely tucked away under the staircase.

Our Favourite Thing

Our favourite thing about this property (aside from the countless talking points and the unique factor, that is), is the primary bedroom. The sloped ceilings, ample wood, and dollhouse-like detailing offer a cozy vibe that juxtaposes the colourful chaos of the collection of cottages (and the photo-snapping tourists) outside the front door. We can imagine clocking countless hours in that classic soaker tub, with a glass of wine or cup of tea in hand.

With just one bedroom, this isn’t exactly a family cottage – unless air mattresses are part of the equation. It does, however, make for an uplifting retreat for a creative individual or couple. Not only will you be able to live in your own little candy coloured community, the historic Grimsby Beach community sits just five minutes from the town of Grimsby, which is known for its historical landmarks, eclectic shops, and nearby beaches.

Word of advice: if you’re not a “people person,” this spot definitely isn’t for you. The secret is out about these colourful cottages; The Painted Ladies of Grimsby attracts Grimsby Beach visitors year-round, who come to adore (and photograph) the cottages. Can you really blame them?

“It amazes me to look at these homes and think they are 100+ years old," says the property's realtor, Robert James. "The work, care, and love these owners have put into maintaining the character of the home and preserving the rich history of Grimsby Beach for all to explore and enjoy is truly selfless. It is a true gem of the town of Grimsby."