Recap – Bendas 4,3,2,1 Architecture Presentation at Windrush

On Sunday, October 30, 2022, wine and architecture enthusiasts alike gathered at Chateau Windrush to sample all five of Windrush Estate Winery’s international award-winning wines and hear from world-acclaimed architects, Jan and Ivana Benda, both with PhD degrees. They compellingly presented their life stories of people and architecture as ‘4 Countries, 3 Continents, 2 Individuals, 1 Dream’ .

Ivana and Jan began their presentation as young architects, growing up and educated in Czechoslovakia. They designed their first family house there and participated in a unique research project regarding the “The Image of the City”. This research was based on the study of MIT professor, Kevin Lynch. It was the 1970s. They immigrated to Canada in 1987 and, soon after, participated in the design for the Toronto bid for the 1996 Olympics: the main Olympic Stadium and Olympic Village!   It was designed for the firm Crang & Boake as an invited competition.  Both projects were awarded First Prize!  Sadly, Toronto didn’t get the games.  The Bendas also privately took part in other competitions. One was the arboretum for UCLA Davis.  Another was the new German government complex in Berlin.

Next in their presentation, as mature professionals over two decades, the Bendas took the audience through an immersive experience with projects for Chinese clients. These enormous developments – notably massive urban design projects as well as several luxury hotels –  were located all over China.  These tested Ivana’s and Jan’s abilities to their limits – as per their size, speed and design quality.  Such projects require not only superb professional skills but also an understanding of the clients, including the very meaning of life and luxury.  According to Jan “… Luxury is not a state of possession but rather a state of mind”.

Ivana and Jan are now living in Mulmur where they recently built their own house called Bluepine. This project for their “prime time” was recently featured in the ‘In The Hills’ magazine.  They are certainly “flowering where they are planted” as they focus on fulfilling Ivana’s lifelong dream of creating a Park.

Windrush owners, JC Pennie, and Marilyn Field, are honoured to host such Sundays at the Chateau as we fulfill our dream of Windrush being a cultural hub in the Hockley area. We are bringing into our acclaimed Music Hall accomplished musicians, writers, architects and other artists to share their experience intimately with an audience of only 50 persons.

By popular request, Sundays at the Chateau as cultural traditions will continue into the next year!   Upcoming are:

Sun., Nov. 13 – All That Jazz with award-winning rising stars, guitarist Andrew Marzotto & singer Laura Anglade

Sat., Dec. 3 – Holiday Cheer with classical stars, Romulo Delgado & Sara Papini

Sun., Jan. 15 – Living in China with Jan and Ivana Benda

Sun., Feb. 19 – TBC acclaimed jazz trio

Sun. Mar. 19 – Manet and the Lion Hunter with historical writer, Simone Pertuiset

To reserve, please call Marilyn directly at 905-729-0011 or email  or visit   Beyond these events, you are always welcome at Windrush Estate Winery.  Hours are 12-4, Friday to Sunday.

Marilyn Field, MSM, with Jan & Ivana  Benda and Kira Dorward, and photos by Peter Dušek Photography
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