Modern Tranquility in the Woods
Our client recently purchased this home and property in Deephaven. It is situated on a wooded lot at the end of a cul-du-sac. The home was built in the 1980’s. The new owners had a much different vision for their new property.
This project had two main landscape design challenges. First, the front entrance to the home was recessed leaving only the three garage doors and driveway as a lackluster entry experience. Second, the backyard had a very nice pool and spa that was situated at a garden view elevation and surrounded by a failing wood deck.
In our first design meeting, we suggested that the front entrance needed to become more prominent. Our suggestion was to move the garage doors to the side of the garage so they were not visible from the street. This architectural change allowed for two things to happen with the landscape. The home’s entrance was now able to have a formal front walk and larger, more gracious stoop that was not crowded by the driveway. It also allowed for the property to have a circular driveway, which are prominent in properties in the area. The circulation as well as the overall entry experience was greatly enhanced.
The client wanted a modern, contemporary look and feel for the home. We worked with them to select landscape materials that worked well with the materials on the home. Additionally, as the new circular drive was added it was necessary to build limestone retaining walls to help slice through the topography. The sizes and colors of the landscape materials lend themselves well to the look of the property. Plantings beds which are full of color and have different bloom cycles including winter interest compliment the aesthetic. Landscape lighting was added for wayfinding and to compliment the areas without soffit lights.
The second design challenge was whether or not to use or remove the existing pool and spa. After much discussion it was determined that we were able to provide a strong design solution which took advantage of the odd elevation of the pool area. Concrete walls were poured in place and capped with black colored caps. The simplicity of these materials worked well with the colors and aesthetic of the home. Some of the walls are as tall as fourteen feet and require black cable rail for safety. Similar railings are found on the deck and inside of the home. The color harkens back to the cladding of the windows and metal roof color.
Simple large format paving tiles were used to accentuate and reconcile the juxtaposition of the odd pool angles with the right angles of the walls and home. One of the pool angles was repeated in a custom built metal fire feature that operates remotely via a phone app. The large pool deck accommodates the multi use of a sunning area, lounging area and the fire feature area. The custom wood and metal bench that is the backdrop to the fire feature was made by the homeowner and is a testament to his skills. A large deck connects the main level of the home to the pool deck. The cooking and dining area are on the deck which has close proximity to the kitchen.
The lower level of the home is connected to the pool deck via a set of concrete stairs that walks between the plain concrete walls. This is a main thoroughfare for young guests to go between the outdoor spaces and the indoor game and entertainment area.
The backyard space features landscape lighting for wayfinding as well as ambiance. All green space is irrigated and the containers have xerigation. An outdoor sound system is integrated into the whole space and is controlled by a phone app. Plantings support yet soften the lines in the hardscape as well as lines of the home. The feeling is as being in a private, modern resort.