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Natural Accents
By Kelly Dooley, Lorax Design Group

Natural Accents

The water features and cabana at this private residence in Platte County, Missouri are framed with natural hardscape materials. Lorax Design Group of Overland Park, Kansas, was presented a site with numerous grade changes that made the project much more of a challenge. The steep hillside forced them to creatively transition the project from the upper level to the lower level.

Natural Accents

The design team specified the same substantial timbers as the home into the cabana structure, which was designated to have a full outdoor kitchen and entertainment center. The tops of the swim-up bar and six-sided kitchen island are Brentwood, a proprietary natural stone that is quarried in the region.

Nestled into the woods overlooking acres of agricultural fields, Platte County Ridge with a View takes the words, "outdoor living" to a new extreme. Lorax Design Group of Overland Park, Kansas, designed this expansive project to match the aesthetic of our client's mountain lodge home.

The use of natural materials, flagstone for the pool deck and sandstone for the infinity wall, creates a comfortable ambiance in every area of the project. Moving water provides a relaxing backdrop of white noise in any location.

The bones of Platte County Ridge with a View were established long before contractors broke ground. Having a clear vision is of utmost importance for a project of this magnitude. Early on, we clarified the client's desire and learned from their input. We translated their desire into our design - our clear vision resulted in a consistent approach that resulted in a congruent, cohesive project.

Our design includes an upper pool, complete with an entry reef and free form spa that seamlessly transitions into the upper pool basin. As with every project, we create a design that allows the site to work for us, not against us. We faced a challenging location with major grade changes where a traditional waterline pool simply wasn't an option.

Our solution was a design that terraced the backyard, allowing us to incorporate a plunge pool and waterslide on the steep hillside. The grade changes worked to our advantage in concealing a waterslide. The waterslide was a must for our client with a young family but also allowed for easy access from the upper basin to the lower pool. We incorporated the slide into the design, hiding it behind the grotto structure and landscape, so it didn't become an unsightly focal feature.

Natural Accents

Boulders, real stone and stone veneer cover almost every exposed surface. Water cascades over the swim-in grotto structure (in the rear of the photo) made from all-natural stone, as well as the infinity edge wall (inset) veneered with sandstone.

Natural Accents

The enormous flagstone pool deck was augmented with custom leaf-patterned drains. In the upper right of the photo is the back of the spa that was veneered with sandstone and had natural boulders integrated into its design.

Instead, the infinity wall, with water trickling over various thicknesses of sandstone veneer, became a focal point of the project. The infinity wall added visual interest and linked the mountain theme of the home to another area of the backyard.

Apart from pool-related amenities, this project includes multiple fire features and a full kitchen. The wood timber cabana is an architectural element that provides weight and verticality to scale with the home and rest of the project.

Similar to the multi-level pools, we capitalized on the grade changes by adding functional necessities like a pool equipment room, bathroom and an outdoor shower beneath the cabana. These practical features remain out of sight, hidden underneath the outdoor kitchen, and prevent guests from tracking back into the home to use the shower or restroom.

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August 24, 2019, 4:25 pm PDT

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