Buying a Home in A Calgary Lake Community

What do you do when you live in a city with no lakes…well you dig a massive hole, fill it with water and build beautiful homes around it. That’s what Vee Keith founder of Keith Construction did in southeast Calgary in 1967 when he created the first master planned lake community in Calgary called Lake Bonavista.

Now several decades later Calgary home buyers have several lake communities to choose from that offer residents private access to all the water fun they want.

Calgary’s Lake Communities

  1. Lake Bonavista
  2. Mahogany Lake
  3. Auburn Bay
  4. Lake Chaparral
  5. Lake Midnapore
  6. Lake Sundance
  7. McKenzie Lake
  8. Arbour Lake
  9. Coral Springs

1. Lake Bonavista

The community of Lake Bonavista has the distinction of being the first master planned community built around man-made lakes. Keith Construction, in the late 1960’s, create two lakes, Lake Bonavista and Lake Bonaventure.

Lake Bonavista

What's it like living in Lake Bonavista?

Lake Bonavista has so much to offer home buyers looking to live in a mature Calgary lake community. The neighbourhood is centered around Lake Bonavista, the larger of the two lakes in the community.

Lake Bonavista is a 52-acre lake with a 25-acre park including a 65-foot hill with a waterfall. This man-made lake was the first of its kind in Calgary.

In addition to the lake, the Lake Bonavista community is attractive to home buyers not only because of the beautiful homes and lakeside location, but because the community has a reputation for being safe, clean and tight-knit. Amenities include neighbourhood schools, parks, Lake Bonavista Community Association and shopping at Lake Bonavista Promenade.

Lake Bonavista is an easy drive for home buyers looking to commute to downtown Calgary. You have several major roads you can access including Deerfoot Trail, MacLeod Trail, Deerfoot Trail and Southland Drive.

Who has access to the lake in Lake Bonavista?

There are 3,261 homes that are included in the Lake Bonavista Homeowners Association. Each of these homes have an encumbrance on the property, and that encumbrance enables the association to collect a mandatory annual fee. These residents then receive lake privileges in the community.

Residents who are part of the Lake Bonavista Homeowners Association are allowed to bring 10 guests per household per day. This makes Lake Bonavista a great community for families and friends. Not every homeowner in Lake Bonavista has lake access, so discuss this with your Realtor before purchasing.

Who has access to Lake Bonaventure?

Lake Bonaventure is unique in Calgary because it is the only lake community where access is restricted to those residents bordering the lake and the fenced access areas. Only those residents of Lake Bonavista Estates get exclusive and private access to the 35 acre man-made Lake Bonaventure where they can enjoy all the benefits of lake living.  The exclusivity of this pocket of Lake Bonavista make these beautiful luxury estate homes truly sought after.

More about Lake Bonavista real estate.

Lake Bonavista real estate includes luxury lake front properties, 2 storey single family homes, bungalows, and condominium. The majority of the community consists of single family homes. More and more homes in the community are being renovated as Lake Bonavista is a desirable community for home buyers.

If buying a home in the original Calgary lake community is appealing to you browse Lake Bonavista Homes For Sale.

2. Mahogany

Calgary’s newest lake community is Mahogany located deep in the southeast. Mahogany has twice received "Calgary's Community of the Year" award and is anticipated to accommodate over 25,000 future residents.

Mahogany Calgary lake community | Calgary lake homes in Mahogany

What's it like living in Mahogany?

Mahogany offers the ultimate in lake living, with a 63-acre lake, a beach with playground, a 22,000 square foot community clubhouse, 265 acres of park and green space, and an urban village complete with quaint shops and restaurants.

Home buyers with families are particularly attracted to living in the popular community of Mahogany. There are neighbourhood school options including Divine Mercy Elementary School and Mahogany Elementary School. Families also like all the programs offered at the Mahogany Beach Clubhouse including summer camps and drop-in programs.

Even though Mahogany is located in deep SE Calgary, when you live in Mahogany you are less than 10 minutes from the South Health Campus. The state-of-the-art hospital includes a 24-hour emergency department, an intensive care unit (ICU), as well as day surgery units.

There are numerous amenities near Mahogany including Mahogany Village Market and Seton Shopping District.

Who has access to the lake in Mahogany?

Mahogany residents pay a mandatory Homeowner's Association Fee (HOA fee) to the Mahogany Homeowners Association which gives them lake privileges. The HOA fee ranges from $300-$1,200 per year depending on the property.

If living in a Mahogany home with lake access is important to you, ensure the property has lake access and discuss the HOA fee with your Realtor.

Does Mahogany have a private island?

Yes, the community of Mahogany has a gated private island with 22 luxury residential homes. Home buyers looking for exclusive lake living will find their home here. You'll love living in a large luxury custom home built by award-winning builders, and having your own private dock backing onto the tranquil waters of Mahogany Lake.

What is Westman Village in Mahogany?

Westman Village is unique in that it offers multi-generational lifestyle options with resort style living. Westman Village was developed by Jay Westman, from Jayman Built (formally formed Jayman Homes), one of Calgary's leading home builders. In addition to having full lake privileges, all residents have full use of the Village Centre, a 3 storey amenity building with a pool, library, fitness area, gymnasium, theatre, arts and crafts studio, and kitchen.

Westman Village has no single-family homes but rather is made up of a cluster of low-rise multi-family building. There is mix of housing types — from owner-occupied to rentals. Westman Village homes for sale include smaller 600 sq ft units right up to 1,600 sq ft luxury penthouses.

More about Mahogany real estate.

Mahogany offers a variety of real estate price points and options. From exclusive island living, to lakefront and lakeside estates, to condos and townhomes. The homes for sale in Mahogany will give you room to move, whether you are a first-time home buyer, up-sizing or down-sizing.

With four distinct home collections and a mixture of classic and contemporary architecture styles, the homes for sale in Mahogany cater to the “must have” features on your list. From coastal inspired designs with big windows to enjoy your view, to styles that feature French-country, and arts and crafts style charm.

If buying a home in a newer award winning Calgary lake community is appealing to you browse Mahogany Homes For Sale.

3. Auburn Bay

Auburn Bay is one of Calgary's newer lake communities located just south of Seton in SE Calgary. Built on 900 acres and home to over 20,000 residents, the centre piece of Auburn Bay is the 43 acres lake and 13 acre park.

When Brookfield was planning a community with a freshwater lake, it drew on thoughts of cottage country to come up with Auburn Bay.

Auburn Bay | Calgary Lake Community

What's it like living in Auburn Bay?

Auburn House, a 13,390 square foot year round facility which can be used for community events, wedding and parties. Best of all, residents can enjoy year round activities by playing tennis, fishing, boating, shooting hoops or skating on the pond.

Auburn Bay even has a spray park to enjoy with the littler children, although you’ll may see adults getting in on the fun as well!

Who has access to the lake in Auburn Bay?

Auburn Bay residents pay a mandatory Homeowner's Association Fee (HOA fee) to the Auburn Bay Residents Association which gives them lake privileges. The HOA fee ranges from $400-$1,000 per year depending on the property.

More about Auburn Bay real estate.

Home buyers will love the idyllic lake cottage lifestyle that Auburn Bay evokes. The architectural detailing of homes in Auburn Bay reflect the cottage theme with warm exterior colours, shutters, dormers and decorative gable ends. Auburn Bay real estate includes everything from stunning luxury lakefront homes with magnificent views, to two-storey homes with front attached garages,  and affordable condos and townhomes.

If buying a home in a cottage inspired Calgary lake community is appealing to you browse Auburn Bay Homes For Sale.

4. Chaparral

The community of Chaparral is located in Calgary's SE quadrant, south of Stoney Trail and east of Macleod Trail. Established in the mid 1990's, this family friendly community is home to roughly 14,000 residents and has a lot to offer a home buyer.

Lake Chaparral is a 33 acre lake and includes a beautiful 22 acre landscaped park. Families spend summer days at the sandy beach, swimming, fishing, boating, playing tennis basketball or beach volleyball. Scuba enthusiasts will love the underwater obstacle course. In the winter, fun lake activities include tobogganing, and skating.

Lake Chaparral, Calgary, Alberta

What's it like living in Chaparral?

Chaparral offers home buyers an opportunity to enjoy an outdoor lifestyle with easy access to the Bow River pathway and Fish Creek Provincial Park. Kids will enjoy the parks, playgrounds and outdoor rink. Neighbourhood schools allow kids to walk or bike to school.

Home buyers looking in Chaparral will love having easy access to Stoney Trail and Macleod Trail. Walden Shopping District and Shawnessy Shopping Centre are minutes away.

Who has access to the lake in Chaparral?

Chaparral residents pay a mandatory Homeowner's Association Fee (HOA fee) to the Lake Chaparral Residents Association which gives them lake privileges. The HOA fee typically ranges from $200-$500 per year depending on the property.

There are pockets of Chaparral homes that do not have lake access, so discuss this with your Realtor before you purchase.

More about Chaparral real estate.

Chaparral is unofficially divided into Lake Chaparral, Chaparral Ridge, Chaparral Ravine and Chaparral Valley.

Lake Chaparral homeowners enjoy living closest to Chaparral lake, Chaparral School and Saint Sebastian School. Families love having neighbourhood schools, playgrounds and parks. Of course, the lake is the biggest draw providing four seasons of family fun. There are 65 luxury lakefront homes in Lake Chaparral with lake views and private docks. In addition, there are a number of homes with shared semi-private access to the lake.

Chaparral Ridge is a pocket of homes on the east side of Chaparral Blvd. A few lucky Chaparral Ridge homeowners enjoy wonderful views of Fish Creek Park, Blue Devil Golf Club and the Bow River. This section includes detached homes, row / townhomes and apartment condos.

Home buyers that choose Chaparral Ravine can enjoy baking onto a natural ravine. This small section consists mainly of large 2 storey homes and bungalows. Chaparral Valley is the newest section of Chaparral and is tucked near the Blue Devil Golf Club and the Bow River. A number of homes have walk-out lower levels and views of the golf course.

If buying a home in a family friendly Calgary lake community is appealing to you browse Chaparral Homes For Sale.

5. Midnapore

Midnapore is a Calgary community located in the south end of the city, bounded by Fish Creek Provincial Park, Macleod Trail and Sun Valley Blvd. In 1969, prior to development in the late 1970's and 1980's, Midnapore was a small community with a population of only 519. The City of Calgary annexed Midnapore in 1961 and in 1976, Lake Midnapore was dredged to create a private 30-acre lake.

What's it like living in Midnapore?

Today, Midnapore is a beautiful mature community home buyers love. Roughly 7,000 residents enjoy living in Midnapore with winding tree-lined streets, proximity to Fish Creek Provincial Park and private access to Midnapore Lake.

Lake Midnapore offers residents endless summer and winter fun from swimming, canoeing to skating and sitting around a bonfire. Other activities include tennis, basketball, fitness classes and seniors programs.

Who has access to the lake in Midnapore?

Midnapore residents pay a mandatory Homeowner's Association Fee (HOA fee) to the Midnapore Lake Residents Association which gives them lake privileges. The HOA fee ranges from $200-$300 per year depending on the property.

More about Midnapore real estate.

Home buyers will find a variety of real estate options in Midnapore. Homes styles include 2 storey, bungalow, bi-level or split-level designs.

Midnapore includes 34 lake front luxury homes with private docks. These spacious luxury properties have unobstructed views of the lake. In addition to lake front property, Midnapore offers home buyers the opportunity to live along side Fish Creek Provincial Park.

If buying a home in a cottage inspired Calgary lake community is appealing to you browse Auburn Bay Homes For Sale.

Lake Activities to Enjoy

The lake is a great place to cool off during the hot dry weeks of Calgary’s summer. Spread your towel out on the sandy beach, don't forget your sun screen, a great book, a set of sand toys and a picnic lunch. The greatest part about these lake communities is that they’re not just great in the summer. All year round Calgary’s lake communities promote community involvement and activities.

Some communities like Arbour Lake and Auburn Bay stock their lakes with fish (trout mostly) and you’re able to fish in the designated fishing zones. You can often rent a boat (manually operated, no gas boats permitted) to row to the middle of the lake and try your luck (and patience!). If you are an avid fisherman, ice fishing is also usually permitted in the winter months, after the ice has been tested and deemed safe to go on.

During the colder winter months most Calgary lakes communities turn their lake into skating rinks and ice hockey areas that residents can enjoy and bring friends to. Not only are most lakes converted with a path cleared around for easy skating (being pulled around on a sled on the ice is also a great time) but some lake communities also have a manufactured ice rink that has smoother ice which is easier to skate on, and if you’re just learning to skate, this is where you want to start! 

Buying a Calgary Lake Community Home

One thing to remember when looking at buying a home in a Calgary lake community is that there are membership fees that are mandatory regardless of whether you use the lake amenities or not. These fees are due each year and must be paid to the residents association directly to continue to get access. If you don’t pay these fees, access will be denied and outstanding fees and interest owed will be collected when you decide to sell your home in the future


Finding the perfect lake home for you and your family to come home to is important. If you’re not sure which Calgary lake community to buy a home in reach out to your trusted Realtor.

Explore Calgary’s lake communities and find the neighbourhood that’s calling to you.


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Posted by Marnie Campbell on


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