A Lake Rosseau project by International Landscaping Inc. was recently recognized with the prestigious 2016 Ontario Landscape Award for the most outstanding landscape construction project.
The award-winning property features hundreds of newly planted mature trees, a vanishing edge pool, gorgeous granite hardscaping, a sky-view sport court and much more all designed to work with a modern sophisticated cottage on a beautiful piece of natural Muskoka shoreline.
“We were overjoyed to see that our hard work and dedication to creating one-of-a-kind landscapes not only exceeded our client’s expectations, but was also worthy of such an incredible honour from our peers in the Landscape Ontario community,” says Mike Flint, landscape designer and consultant for International Landscaping Inc.
International Landscaping earned two of the top Landscape Ontario Awards of Excellence for 2016. They took home the Dunington-Grubb award for best overall Landscape Construction Project for their Lake Rosseau retreat and the Don Salivan Grounds Management Award – plus 13 others.
“We design, construct and maintain. We take care of all aspects of a project,” explains Mike. “We have been fortunate to work with clients on some exceptional projects.”
Success is all about talking with a client, building a relationship and working with them so you can bring their ideas to fruition, he explains.
It’s also about determining what the client wants, along with what is realistic. “We ask ‘How do you want to use your space?’’ explains Mike. “Are they family oriented? Do they entertain a lot? Are they looking for a private getaway for relaxing? We get a better sense of their expectations.”
Then they look at the house design, property assets and challenges, and present a design to the client. Next are revisions until the client is ready to go forward.
For the Lake Rosseau rereat, there was a sophisticated look that needed to blend into the natural setting. For example, the pool had flamed granite patios and strong lines. “Bringing that formality into an environment that was natural and free-form, that required a special blending,” says Mike.
The linear shape and steep incline of the Lake Rosseau property added challenge. “Being creative means pushing the boundaries a bit,” says Mike. “We used a lot of space without overpowering the environment. We worked it into the topography.”
The sports court, nestled into the hill on one side with a 30 to 40 foot drop on the other, was a creative solution for a property with limited space. The garage is under the sports court resulting in a spectacular view from the elevated “sky court.”
There were often 15 to 20 International Landscaping staff on site during the project, but there could be as many as 100 subcontractors there too. “We pride ourselves in exceptional project management. It’s a full service we provide to our client,” says Mike. “There is a specific way things have to be done, a specific order and we make sure that happens.”
More trees were on site at the end than at the beginning of the project. “Hundreds of mature trees, hundreds of saplings, hundreds of shrubs and thousands of perennials were brought in,” says Mike adding that many were indigenous species. “It took quite a bit of work, especially when those mature trees were brought in by crane.”
The Lake Rosseau landscape design can be enjoyed day or night. “There is quite a bit of lighting but it is dark sky friendly,” says Mike. “In the sense that a house would have different rooms, the landscape is divided up for different uses.” He lists an almost hidden area by the sports court, dining outside the kitchen, the pool lounge and several fire pits.
While they are proud of the award, the team at International Landscaping knows their gorgeous Lake Rosseau project is a success. “Wherever you are on the property, there is a way to enjoy it at any time of the day,” says Flint.
The Lake Rosseau retreat is listed with Cayman Marshall and can be seen by visiting caymanmarshall.com or contacting a representative at Cayman Marshall International Realty Inc. to learn more.