Michael and Tristan Ziegler celebrate 50 years of the family selling real estate in Oak Bay. (Keri Coles/Oak Bay News)

Michael and Tristan Ziegler celebrate 50 years of the family selling real estate in Oak Bay. (Keri Coles/Oak Bay News)

A work of art for real estate golden anniversary

Three generations of Zieglers and 50 years of real estate

As you drive along Beach Drive and pass McNeill Bay, it is easy for your eyes to gravitate towards the ocean and to miss the cedar shake house set back on one of the ocean-view lots. But step through the door of this immaculate home and you find a sanctuary: of art, of work, and of family.

This home has witnessed the growth and change of a family and business, as three generations of Zieglers worked together to carve out a unique reputation in the real estate business. For this bloodline, this year marks the 50-year milestone of building relationships and selling homes in Oak Bay. In proper Ziegler fashion, they are doing something unique to celebrate.

Thirty years ago, the Oak Bay Star interviewed Michael Ziegler in this Beach Drive home that he and his wife Vicki purchased in 1976. At that time, he was working with his mother and father, Lorraine and Eric Ziegler, who had begun the family tradition of selling real estate, and his son Tristan was just four years old.

Michael began working with his mother and father in real estate as “a mistake” after graduating from UVic with an honours degree in political science and economics, but failing his LSAT exams – he needed to find a job for the summer and his mother Lorraine asked if he wanted to work with her in real estate. Michael took her up on the offer and ended up working with her for years until he eventually “fired” her when she was 84 and ready to retire. Michael has been heavily involved in the industry since, taking positions as president of the Canadian Real Estate Association and chair of the Real Estate Council.

Woven throughout Michael’s real estate career, discussed in the article years ago and still prevalent today, is his love and dedication to the arts – both as an artist and an arts supporter. It is in fact what distinguished the Ziegler family business from others in real estate.

With a background in art, Michael saw a way to help the family business stand out.

“In the beginning, the primary way to promote properties was by photographing them. Black and white photos that were flat on the page,” said Michael. “I wanted something that would have a little kick to it. So I started doing line drawings with all the properties we sold. That became a very recognizable feature of our advertising.”

He has drawn hundreds of them over the years, and while he doesn’t do many anymore, art still plays a large part in his life and business. Michael is always thinking about how to add art to a business environment.

Today, Michael’s son Tristan, who is around the same age Michael was in the article 30 years ago, is now his business partner.

“I realized what a beautiful opportunity it would be to work with my dad and continue the legacy that my grandma started,” said Tristan. “Grandma was a legend and my dad is my mentor.”

“I don’t think I ever thought I’d be as privileged as to have such a great relationship with my son and actually work with him on a daily basis,” said Michael. “After my mom and dad passed away there was a big vacuum there. It has been absolutely fabulous to put the Zieglers back on track as a family team. My greatest joy is going to work with my son every day.”

As art has been such a thread throughout the business over the years, and in celebration of the 50th anniversary, the Zieglers invite their clients, many of whom have done business with all three generations of Zieglers, to choose a print from the Ziegler collection.

“We decided to provide every one of our clients old and new the opportunity to have a framed piece of original art. It’s an opportunity to say thank you to all the people we have been working with over the years,” said Michael.

As for retiring, Michael doesn’t plan on doing it anytime soon, joking that he is on Freedom 95.

“If you can actually work at something that you enjoy so much that it doesn’t feel like you’re working, I think you’ve been truly blessed,” said Michael. “This profession, real estate, has given me that opportunity.”


 

keri.coles@oakbaynews.com

Follow us on Instagram
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

keri.coles@oakbaynews.com

Artsoak bayReal estate

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Michael Ziegler then and now. (Submitted)

Michael Ziegler then and now. (Submitted)

Ziegler featured in a 1988 Oak Bay Star article. (Submitted)

Ziegler featured in a 1988 Oak Bay Star article. (Submitted)

Just Posted

Sergeant Francis Dion with the box containing HMCS Calgary’s new secret mascot costume. (HMCSNCSMCalgary/Facebook)
Cory Mills, Eric Blackmore and A.J. Jensen, all 20, drown in the Sooke River in February 2020. (Contributed photos)
Coroner’s report confirms cause of death of three men at Sooke River in 2020

Cory Mills, Eric Blackmore and A.J. Jensen drown while ‘puddle-jumping’ in pickup truck

The Pacheedaht First Nation is planning a $1-million expansion to its campground in Port Renfrew. (Pixabay photo)
Expanded camping announced for Pacheedaht Campground

$1-million project is part of the B.C. Rural Economic Recovery program

Victoria Royals dress for Pink in the Rink as they play the Kelowna Rockets 4–3 in a shootout on Feb. 22, 2020. (James Mackenzie/News Staff)
Victoria Royals netminder Adam Evanoff joins AHL’s Heat on amateur tryout

Evanoff has split his 101 WHL games between Victoria and Moose Jaw

Soloman and Zev Nagler enjoy time on the beach at Witty’s Lagoon Regional Park on a summer day. The Capital Regional District is in the process of determining whether to institute parking fees at this and eight other CRD parks. (Black Press Media file photo)
CRD parks committee rejects new Greater Victoria parking fees – again

More arguments against fee hikes, pay parking at nine parks, brought forward by committee members

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature. (B.C. government)
B.C. reports 10 additional deaths, 395 new COVID-19 cases

The majority of new coronavirus infections were in the Fraser Health region

Anyone with information on any of these individuals is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or visit the website victoriacrimestoppers.ca for more information.
Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Feb. 23

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

(Black Press Media File Photo)
POLL: Are you struggling with Greater Victoria’s cost of housing?

While Victoria remains one of the most expensive cities in the country… Continue reading

Migrant farm workers transplant jalapeno sprouts from trucks into the tilted soil at a farm. (Marcus Yam/Los Angeles Times)
‘They’re afraid’: Coalition sounds alarm over COVID vaccines for B.C.’s migrant workers

Though health ministry says anyone can get vaccinated, critics say barriers are keeping migrants from their dose

Nanaimo-raised singer Allison Crowe with director Zack Snyder on the set of ‘Man of Steel’ in 2011. Crowe performs a cover of Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah in the upcoming director’s cut of ‘Justice League.’ (Photo courtesy Clay Enos)
Island-raised musician records song for upcoming ‘Justice League’ film

Allison Crowe’s rendition of Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah closes out the movie

A 50-year-old man was stabbed in an altercation that started with a disagreement about physical distancing. (File photo)
Argument about physical distancing escalates to stabbing in Nanaimo

Victim, struck with coffee cup and then stabbed, suffers minor injuries; suspect arrested

A battery electric-hybrid ferry, pictured here, is expected to make its way to Vancouver Island in late 2021, says B.C. Ferries. (Submitted photo)
Hybrid ferry for Gabriola-Nanaimo route launches in shipyard in Europe

Two hybrid vessels to replace MV Quinsam by early 2022, says B.C. Ferries

NDP leader Jagmeet Singh holds a press conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
NDP will not trigger election as long as pandemic continues: Singh

‘“We will vote to keep the government going’

The Port of Nanaimo has signed a 50-year-agreement with DP World around short-sea shipping operations at Duke Point Terminal. (News Bulletin file photo)
Lease ‘important first step’ in $105-million Nanaimo port expansion project

Port of Nanaimo and DP World sign 50-year shipping operations agreement for Duke Point

Most Read