Mediterranean Outdoor Living

Designer Drew Sivgals created a Mediterranean-style outdoor living area that includes a welcoming courtyard, a covered loggia and water features.
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September 25, 2015

Photo By: Jeri Koegel

Photo By: Jeri Koegel

Photo By: Jeri Koegel

Photo By: Jeri Koegel

Photo By: Jeri Koegel

Photo By: Jeri Koegel

Photo By: Jeri Koegel

Photo By: Drew Sivgals

Photo By: Drew Sivgals

Walkway Leading to Stunning Mediterranean Home

The front walkway design had to balance two major objectives. The first being safety and the reducing the number of steps as much as possible, and two, providing a clear highlight for guests to see when entering the property. The entry walkway to the home had to be a balance of elegance and simplicity. Due to the age of the clients, we needed to reduce the number of steps to as little as possible, while adding as much traction to the walkway as possible.

Entry Fountain

By providing a quaint bubbling fountain feature from this Terra Cotta pottery, it allowed for a focal feature for both guests who arrive and those that depart since it is centered in both the entry walkway and the front door. Due to Terra Cotta flooring being used throughout most of the interior of the house, it was critical to link the exterior by using the same material. By using it as a banding material, steps, some veneer and the pottery, the link was established without being overwhelming.

Courtyard Entry

The entry to the courtyard shows how the front bubbling urn fountain features are centered with the walkway and front door, and how the dual fountains frame the walkway, all working together to provide a soothing, yet dramatic space. Since the home's materials were neutral, adding a wide variety of planting colors soften the walls and ground plane and provide the contrast in color that was desperately needed.

Dual Courtyard Fountains

After passing through the courtyard doors, you are welcomed by dual fountain features that frame the walkway and provide a tranquil feeling upon entry into this private space. Finding the right glass waterline tile for fountain and spa was difficult since we wanted it to be complementary to the antique brick and terra cotta paving colors, but the Bamboo Blend (Weave Series from Walker Zanger) provide the right balance of color, while also providing enough of a highlight.

Outdoor Gathering Space With a Fireplace

Since this property overlooks the Pacific Ocean, evening breezes can become quite cool and possibly making evening use not as desirable as one would hope for. Therefore, it was important to provide a cozy outdoor gathering space that is out of the wind, and this space between the home and its Casita provides an excellent location for spending time in front of a warm fireplace, while it also provides for an excellent highlight feature when walking to the front door. The clients thought the fireplace alone would be sufficient as a design feature, but after showing them that by adding the short wall, with several view-ports accented with wrought iron (that matches their Juliet balcony) it not only provided a true connect between the home and Casita, it also created a much more grand feature and a sense of enclosure without losing the planting depth behind the fireplace, which was needed for privacy.

Infinity Spa and Lounge Patio

Although the Pacific Ocean was just beyond this backyard and offered an unparalleled view, the space needed a highlight feature that could be seen from inside. The spa can easily been seen from the front door, throughout the great room and other rooms in the house. Its central location, clean infinity edge and alignment with the ocean beyond allow for it to be a major highlight to the backyard, while also blending well with the surrounding materials. From this view, the spa looks quite high, but it is accessed by a 12" raised patio. By raising the patio and subsequently the spa by twelve (12"), it allowed enough height for the spa water to blend perfectly with the ocean beyond.

Covered Loggia With Ocean Views

Beautiful sunsets are seen from this wonderful covered loggia in the backyard. With its vaulted ceiling, multiple seating options, nearby BBQ counter and refreshing fountain feature, this space gets used daily. From early morning coffee, to enjoying a nice BBQ with family and friends, and of course, the vast Pacific Ocean at your finger tips, there are many reasons why this space is truly an extension of the home. Keeping views open was an obvious goal, but setting up the spa waterline at just the right height where it would line up with the ocean beyond was a bit tricky. By raising the patio and subsequently the spa by twelve (12"), it allowed enough height for the spa water to blend perfectly with the ocean beyond.

Courtyard Fireplace Detail

By using matching or complementary veneer materials to that of the home on this courtyard fireplace feature, it allowed it to blend harmoniously. The Spanish Cotto Terra Cotta is used as the mantle and hearth, with the antique brick veneer surrounding the fireplace box and the base of the view-port openings. However, it was the plantings that provided the critical contrast in colors and offered a serene atmosphere to this outdoor 'room'. Although simple in design, the wrought iron crossing over the wall openings matched the wrought iron on the Juliet balconies.

Driveway Lined With Citrus Trees & Terra Cotta Pots

To help provide screening from the neighbor's, and to promote the Mediterranean style, the large terra cotta pots and citrus trees were selected.

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