All is well on Namaste Farm, the sun is com­ing up and the air is lilac fresh and quiet. Morn­ing birds stir the day with song.  The Gulf Island Peirce res­i­dence, a stun­ning round Man­dala Home, sits proudly at the top of the prop­erty over­look­ing the fields and gar­dens, just beyond the far gar­dens the early morn­ing sea dances softly.

John and Nancy Peirce are liv­ing in their dream home. Each morn­ing the Pierce’s  have the unique oppor­tu­nity to wake with the deeply con­tented feel­ing of hav­ing suc­cess­fully cre­ated a home that rep­re­sents Liv­ing Art.


In 2008, The Pierce’s saw a photo ad for Man­dala Homes and instantly fell in love with the sus­tain­able aspects, the flow­ing round design, the sig­na­ture 5 foot cen­tre sky­light, the 20% greater energy effi­ciency of the round shape, the increased seis­mic strength of an inter­lock­ing build­ing sys­tem and the ease­ful way that strong coastal winds move past a round build­ing. They also felt a res­o­nance with Mandala’s phi­los­o­phy to increase aware­ness, under­stand­ing and com­pas­sion for the nat­ural world by build­ing a home that is beau­ti­ful, healthy and sustainable.


After an easy and cre­ative col­lab­o­ra­tive design process, the Man­dala was sched­uled to be shipped in a kit from Nel­son, BC. The Peirces would need a trusted designer/contractor to help them set-up and fin­ish their unique home. They asked Adam Velsen of Gabri­ola Island’s Velsen Homes. “We needed some­one who was local, who was flex­i­ble enough to work with some of our dif­fer­ent ideas, and some­one we could trust since much of the work would be done while we were off­site. We had worked with Adam build­ing our garage/shop and had a very good expe­ri­ence there, so that con­firmed the choice. Adam would man­age the project from start to com­ple­tion. It was par­tic­u­larly impor­tant to con­nect with some­one who had a good work­ing rela­tion­ship with local sub-trades, both to choose the best peo­ple for sub-trades, but also to have them show up on time!” Fam­ily and friends are impor­tant to the Pierces as well. “Dur­ing the sum­mer months we wanted to have friends come to join the crew and con­tribute. This required flex­i­bil­ity and patience on the part of the con­trac­tor and par­tic­u­larly on the part of the foreman.”


Namaste Farms has geot­her­mal heat which heats the home, lap pool and hot water. Peirce says the home is run­ning at 500% effi­ciency. The pas­sive solar also warms the home even on a cool win­ter day.  This is partly due to the use of ICF (insu­lated con­crete forms) giv­ing the lower floor of the home an R-value of 40. The pas­sive solar also warms the home even on a cool win­ter day.

The prop­erty has a great deal of nat­ural spring water in the win­ter and is piped into a large metal cis­tern, of 30,000 gal­lons, this helps take the load of the well in the sum­mer months for the gar­den and house. The water is also col­lected from the roof of the car­port. The house has a bat­tery back up sys­tem that is kept charged through the main elec­tri­cal. When the power goes out, it kicks in and the Peirces have power for a cou­ple of days to run the basics. This sys­tem is also solar ready if they decided to put pan­els on the roof in the future. As of now if the power is out for longer than the time that bat­ter­ies can keep up they have a gen­er­a­tor that when run will charge the bat­ter­ies. There are many Eco-green fea­tures in the home . Man­dala Homes and Velsen Homes have been in the green build­ing indus­try for 10 years and have an exten­sive knowl­edge about green, sus­tain­able build­ing tech­niques. They focus on a high qual­ity prod­uct that increases the qual­ity of life for the occu­pants and the sur­round­ing prop­erty. A good home should bring joy to the life of the occu­pants with­out sac­ri­fic­ing the health of the earth.


This home has a won­der­ful feel to it. It wel­comes all vis­i­tors with open arms through the notched beam entry and under the cop­per gut­ter. When you arrive inside you are embraced by both the curve of the home and the beau­ti­ful view of the field and the ocean. It is a soul nour­ish­ing place to sit and enjoy a warm cup of tea. This home truly is a Namaste experience.