About this listing
Just north of the downtown core, the ESPA ArtHaus' BBR is perfect for artists, free-thinkers & urban naturalists who appreciate a laid-back, earthy atmosphere, beautiful eye-candy, and plenty of warm & diverse living spaces to relax & socialize.
The Blue Bohemian Room is spacious & cozy with a queen-size bed, a coffee table, 2 dressers for your belongings, a TV/DVD/VCR* and lots of great artwork! (*No cable, but tons of great films.)
Please read the following info in full before sending booking inquiries, as it contains many FAQs & may help to avoid any confusion about the space. Please also see our "Other Listings" (on my profile page) as we have more than one room available.
ESPA is a multiple award-winning non-profit activist-arts organization incorporated in 1998. The ESPA ArtHaus is our new downtown location which hosts an 'underground' Library & Archive (over 14,000 items), and houses our permanent art collection. Renting out our spare rooms subsidizes the maintenance of our library/archive and other non-profit activities.
The Blue Bohemian Room is a spacious & cozy furnished room in the basement, with a queen-size bed, a clothes rack & dressers to store your personal belongings, a coffee table/desk & chair, and TV/DVD (click through the photos section for more). The window looks out onto the west-facing back yard so still gets a fair bit of light through the afternoon/evening. This room has lower ceilings (though very tall people have stayed in it and still like it!) and it's cooler (extra quilts provided!). This room also offers more privacy than the upstairs room, including a separate/secure side-door entrance which leads down to your room & directly up to the kitchen, and a separate 2-pc washroom right outside the bedroom door. Great for 2 people but big enough for another if using foamies or a cot (we can provide, but note we don't recommend more than 2 people for longer-term stays, as I think it'd feel too cramped after a few days).
In addition to your private bedroom, the space includes:
• Shared kitchen facilities & dining areas
• Shared upper 4-pc bath/shower & a 2-pc basement washroom
• Free Wi-Fi internet connection
• Plenty of free, on-site vehicle & bike parking
• On-site laundry facilities ($5 charge per wash/dry load)
• Shared casual 'living' space in the main floor Library/Archive, or chilling out on a hot day on the lovely, umbrella'd side-deck or in the huge yard (seasonal usage), which includes 2 firepits, several lawn chairs, canopies, chemical-free lawn & flower gardens, and plenty of extra yard space for camping out & more. We also have a furnished backyard tipi with firepit which we use year-round (unsupervised usage by guests is conditional). We also use the yard for outdoor art/refinishing projects so expect to see lots of tools & other supplies in process!
In addition to the ArtHaus, guests also have access to:
• Walking distance to Kingsway Mall, Chinatown, Little Italy, NAIT, Royal Alex & Glenrose hospitals, City Hall/Churchill Square, Downtown Arts District, Alberta Avenue Arts District, City Centre Mall, supermarkets, and all other amenities
• On good bus & LRT routes for quick & easy access to the River Valley, Old Strathcona, Fringe Festival, Folk Festival (Edmonton Ski Club) & University of Alberta. Also close to major sports & recreation facilities.
• Brand new children's playground 2 blocks from back-alley (at Spruce Avenue School & Community League)
Interaction with Guests
Your live-in caretakers are ESPA's Artistic Director (an easy-going but somewhat introverted freelance artist/graphic designer who works from home) and her 7th grade bookish son, but we are very accommodating hosts, so expect a tour of the facilities and otherwise free-reign to enjoy what our very unique space has to offer. The 'dining room' contains a pool table (so is rarely used for dining) & is often used as a common laptop & social area (note we allow smoking in this room, which is separated by curtains so the rest of the house isn't affected). Actual dining is usually done at the kitchen table, and guests are welcome to hang out in the library as well. If you see the outside fires burnin' we're definitely up for chatting, music & socializing; otherwise feel free to make yourself at home without our interference!
We're only one block west and 10 blocks north of City Hall, technically "north central" in the Spruce Avenue neighbourhood, which is a mature neighbourhood currently undergoing a fair bit of revitalization (new infill housing & some road repairs), especially towards the downtown core, where a new museum, huge hockey arena & more are currently under construction. Note that 101 Street becomes pretty ugly/industrial the closer you get to the core, and that as you pass 105-106 Avenues there are social services/shelters on either side of 101 Street (their clients may look 'scary' but are harmless). We are far enough up 101 Street to not be affected by 'all of the above', but just FYI anyway!
Very easily-accessible location just north of the downtown core, only a short bus or cab ride from the Greyhound Bus Terminal & Airport shuttle stops (Sutton Place Hotel is 10 blocks south) - visit Edmonton Sky Shuttle for shuttle info from the International Airport ($20/person, but much easier than coming by bus or LRT, which is our subway/metro system).
The #151, #134 and #12 buses stop right out front of the house (Buslink #1369), and Buslinks #1348 and #1434 are also within our block. Visit Edmonton Transit's "ETS Trip Planner" on the web for bus schedules & route plans.
The new NAIT LRT line is finally operational (board at the Kingsway Transit Station on 111 Ave & 105 Street), making it much quicker/easier to get to the University/Whyte Ave area, Southgate & Clareview (north).
As of Sept 2015 we also have BIKE RENTALS! (Flat fee of $10/day, $35/week, or $80/month, paid in advance.) Our bikes are available on a FCFS basis, so be sure to notify us in advance if you'd like one for running errands, grocery shopping, etc. *Users are expected to ALWAYS LOCK BIKES (a combination lock will be provided), or risk losing your security deposit. If you prefer to build or buy your own, Edmonton Bicycle Commuters' (EBC) BikeWorks North is also within walking distance - visit their website for details!
Other Things to Note
• When inquiring about booking, please provide us with some info about yourselves, and your reason for visiting/seeking accommodation. We will not approve bookings by individuals without completed profile info or I.D. verifications, for general security purposes.
• A house key will be provided to all primary/booking guests upon arrival. We no longer require a key deposit, but note: lost keys will result in a $50 claim on your security deposit (so don't lose your key). ;)
• Food for cooking & personal toiletries (e.g. shampoo & laundry detergent) are the responsibility of the guest(s). However, we provide kitchen basics like coffee/tea, sugar/cream, cooking oil, spices & condiments as an extra convenience and to cut down on kitchen clutter.
• We are a vegetarian household but are happy to accommodate moderate meat-eaters (if you must cook meat multiple times per day, especially high-temperature frying with lots of grease, we are probably not the best fit).
• Pets are negotiable (we have one friendly/elderly cat on-site). See the "Rants for Rulebreakers" section of my profile for conditions & updates.
• Our rooms will accommodate more than 2 people if using an extra cot (which can be provided), however, you may not be able to enter more than 2 guests per room when booking, so feel free to send us a note/special request with more info and we can adjust the fees accordingly.
• Likewise, we're willing to consider reduced rates for students & newcomers who are still hunting for a permanent place, or if we have a block to fill in our calendar, so send us a note with more info and we can discuss further. (Note our monthly rates are already significantly reduced below our weekly rates, but we can usually go a bit lower to accommodate those on limited budgets.)
Any additional questions, please feel free to ask!
*ESPA is recipient of the Edmonton Social Planning Council's 2010 "Award of Merit for Advocacy of Social Justice"; a 2011 "Award of Excellence" by the Edmonton Urban Design Awards; and a Medal in the 2012 National Urban Design Awards (Royal Architectural Institute of Canada).
ESPA ArtHaus Rules are pretty basic, so don't let the length of this section scare you: respect others, keep common areas clean & tidy (especially kitchen & washrooms), and replace anything you use where you found it (in Library, in kitchen, etc.). Buy your own groceries. We are a vegetarian household but will accommodate carnivores, with some restrictions (e.g. use meat-dedicated containers & cutting-mat, which are provided; if you eat a LOT of meat we suggest you buy cold-cuts or pre-cooked options that require little energy or time to re-heat in the microwave). We compost & recycle, and (reasonably) expect our guests to as well. We're energy-conscious enviros, and ask guests to be mindful of reasonable energy & utilities usage (for example, please re-heat meals in the toaster-oven or microwave, instead of the full-size oven; don't leave windows wide open in cold weather; keep showers under 10 minutes, especially if others are waiting to use the facilities [no baths, sorry]). Eating in your room is fine, but never leave food/take-out containers lying around. Absolutely no BitTorrenting via our wifi network. Supply your own personal toiletries like shampoo & laundry detergent. Cold water laundry only. No unregistered overnight guests (visitors are fine, but please introduce/notify us as a common courtesy). Please remember to LOCK DOORS & close/lock gates. Guests using the firepits are expected to adhere to general fire safety rules & late-night respect for neighbours; we can usually provide firewood, but in the event we're out, guests can buy firewood at the gas station up the street or even scavenge good wood from neighbourhood construction sites. Responsible drinking is permitted (BYOB and clean up after yourself). Smoking in permitted areas only (pool-room or outside only, and never in bedrooms!). Unsupervised tipi usage is conditional (ask me for more info). We are intersectional social-justice activists & artists fostering an inclusive, diverse & multi-cultural atmosphere. We are easy-going, open-minded, a little eccentric, and will do our best to accommodate a great stay for our equally-interesting guests here. NOTE we have a strict cancellation policy, and please also READ MY PROFILE in full (much easier for me to add house-updates there - a.k.a. "rants for rule-breakers" - than on our several individual listings). Thanks for your interest in our space! :)
A wider shot of the room (dresser & large shelving unit with more knick-knacks on the opposite side of the room not pictured).