WHEN Julie and David C. first met with Gasper Sales Designer Mary Anna Okin, they had been in their home a few years and knew that it was time to start making some needed changes to their backyard. For one, it was time to stain their large, multi-level, cedar deck again, and after doing it once, they knew that they never wanted to do it again. The existing vegetation was overgrown and getting out of hand. They entertained a lot and needed more areas for their daughter, Samantha and their friends’ kids to hang out. They wanted more shade in order to keep out of the sun. There was an old hot tub that was never used and just taking up space, so they were pretty sure it should go. What they were not sure of was exactly how to pull all of those elements together into one comprehensive plan. This is where Gasper came in.
Details About the Project
Julie and David had previously worked with another landscape company and they were actively bidding the project out to multiple companies including Gasper. They really liked what Gasper was showing them. Julie remembers David thinking that the Gasper design ideas were just fresher and that the Gasper proposal was competitive and fair. “The biggest reason we went with Gasper was because Gasper could do all the work in-house. The other companies had to sub-contract out the work to others so it made sense to go with someone who could do it all, put it all together and manage their time well. I wanted to be able to yell at one person and one person only if anything went wrong,” laughs Julie. As an aside she adds, “Mary Anna was so good to work with, we actually did not have to yell about anything.”
For Julie and David, the construction process was very smooth and because Mary Anna made the permit process easier, the permits were processed quickly, and Gasper was able to start the project sooner than expected. “It was a pleasure having them work at the house. The crews were friendly and worked great with my dogs. They explained things when I had questions and everyday everything was picked up and put away. I really enjoyed having them work on the property,” recollects Julie. Mary Anna was also on-site throughout the construction process, making sure that any questions or concerns Julie or David had were quickly addressed or communicated. “I never had to ask ‘When are you coming back?’ ” Julie confirms
The Gasper design team decided to keep the upper deck in the same general layout as the existing deck, but upgraded the old wood decking to a composite material (Timbertech Legacy decking, color: mocha) to eliminate future maintenance. They also looked at the deck stair locations and decided to add another set of stairs so that there was better flow between the deck, the lower patio and the new pavilion area. A lower level deck that had previously housed the hot tub was removed and replaced with a new, dry laid travertine patio. Travertine is a desirable natural material to use on a patio or around a pool because it is perfect for bare feet. It does not get too hot to walk on and it is not slippery when wet, which is surprising because it is so smooth to the touch. The hot tub area became a new stone cook station. “The grill is fantastic, but the outdoor fridge has turned out to be very practical. We keep the kid’s drinks in the fridge and it keeps them from having to traipse through the house,” confides Julie.
The existing stamped concrete pool decking was still in good shape and removing it would affect the automatic pool cover, so Gasper’s design proposed keeping it. The cook station/dining patio transitions down to the existing pool deck via a large set of decorative block steps and Gasper was careful to complimented the color and pattern of the existing concrete with the block on the stairs and looks as if it was all built together at the same time. This is hard to pull off, but demonstrates Gasper’s skill since the old and new hardscapes are so perfectly matched.
They explained things when I had questions and everyday everything was picked up and put away. I really enjoyed having them work on the property.
An old paver patio off of the pool became a new Gasper-built pavilion with a stone fireplace and room for deep comfortable seating. The new pavilion also has a travertine floor with an inset paver accent ‘rug’ (Unilock Transition, color: sierra). The dark paver banding which contrasts with the lighter colored travertine, both delineate the footprint of the pavilion and border the connecting walkways and other patio so that the entire space feels fully integrated. “Now whenever we entertain, the kids have their own space. I often sit with my girlfriends out at the pavilion, under the fan, but I can still see the kids in the pool,” explains Julie, “We are out there all the time and always showing it off. Gasper did a fantastic job!”
Let Gasper help you turn your backyard into something you will want to show off. Schedule an appointment today by calling 215-398-6030.