These homeowners are eager to make their yard over into the ideal getaway for the whole family.
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Kate and Patrick Amsbry and their two active young sons recently relocated from another state and are now happily settled into their traditional 1910 Craftsman-style home. The Amsbrys adore their new home but the backyard could use some work to better suit their needs. Patrick and Kate would like to give their growing boys more space to play, and they'd like to have an adult area in which to relax and dine.
The U-shaped backyard wraps around the garage. Because of its awkward layout, there's little usable space for the boys to play their sports games. The Amsbrys envision a children's area of the yard for running and maybe even a clubhouse. At the same time, they want an area for adults, close to the house, for barbecuing, dining and relaxing. Up for this backyard challenge are designers Tom Scoble, the team of Lois Mancuso and Gary Douglas Smith, and Ryan Tracy.
Scoble would pull out the old brick stairs and create a seamless brick patio and new set of steps. He plans to add a spa and provide a great dividing area between the parents' area and the kids' play area. Lois and Gary's design focuses on keeping true to Craftsman-style details. Their water fountain, which would mask the garage, would incorporate some of the 100-year-old bricks that the Amsbrys have saved from a previous renovation project. The boys get their full playing field and clubhouse in the back section of the yard. Ryan Tracy presents a playful jungle like design. For the kids' enjoyment, he has incorporated a natural rock waterfall and a tropical hut clubhouse. For the adults, a spacious entertaining and dining area is located off the back of the house.
Patrick and Kate ultimately choose Lois and Gary's design. They feel that the plan best matches the historic nature of their home and will make the garden feel as if it's always been there.
At last, the new backyard provides a playground for both the parents and the kids to enjoy. Lois and Gary have created a warm and welcoming new wood deck that leads down to an elegant newly paved patio. The barbecue has been moved around by the kitchen to provide more space for entertaining. The custom fountain on the patio, with its exquisite display of historical detail, provides refreshment to both the eyes and ears. A little further down in the yard is a special addition--a spa and the boys' new clubhouse. Lois and Gary have provided the Amsbrys with a yard that allows all to play and relax in one wonderfully refreshing space.
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