Contemporary Coastal Garden , Vancouver
The trees and tall ornamental grasses are planted on the top terrace to conceal and frame the panoramic views and define the entryway down the two sets of “floating” stairs. The stairway is connected by four raised platforms to the house entrance, where the ocean view is framed by windows and glass doors. The ocean view is only completely reveled from inside the house. This approach conserves the view, creating suspense and timing within the entry sequence. The architecture of the mid-century modern house is integrated with the landscape by extending the lines of the concrete wall into the landscape and by adding a floating steel trellis to the roof. The floating theme is repeated in the design of the cantilevered stairs and platforms. The connection of the house to the garden is further emphasized by the retaining walls, which are made of board-formed, cast in place concrete to mimic the house walls. The slope on each side of the stairs is managed through a series of three integrated terraces. A series of small terrace walls are a much more pleasant and cost-effective solution to the slope problem than a single, massive reinforced wall.