Big Picture: City retreat

May 26, 2017 -  By

Location: Chicago
Company: Mariani Landscape, Lake Bluff, Ill.
Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

The clients wanted to update the rooftop, to act as an extension of the interior living space. The landscape architect developed a series of outdoor rooms, each with their own purpose that all tie together visually. This concept was accomplished by creating an intimate seating space with an outdoor fireplace, public entertainment spaces with comfortable seating and an outdoor kitchen with dining area. A custom water wall provides privacy and separation, but allows light through.

This historic building no longer possessed the architectural drawings to ascertain the structural integrity of the rooftop, so the company assembled a team of experts to investigate and test the structure to determine what weight loads were possible. The team also coordinated with a roofer to verify the age of the roof and to determine how best to protect the roof membrane. There was just one small service elevator, which required all of the planters and specialty features to be assembled on the roof.

The landscape architect designed a custom grid support system to allow for the turf joints and paving pattern variations to give each outdoor room its own personality. The metal pergola over the dining table helps to define the space without blocking city views.

The project earned Mariani Landscape a 2016 Grand Award from the National Association of Landscape Professionals’ Awards of Excellence program.

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

A terrace featuring metal and glass awnings was added over the main doors to the rooftop.

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

The custom planters allow for plantings, which makes the terrace feel more intimate.

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

Metal trellises were added to a blank brick wall to create a focal point to the garden walk.

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

A view of the dining terrace.

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

The dining area is covered with a metal pergola to create a sense of space, while accentuating the downtown Chicago views.

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

A water wall was designed to provide privacy at the outdoor kitchen from a neighboring building, while allowing the rooms to feel connected.

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

No rooftop would be complete without an outdoor kitchen.

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

Dramatic night lighting was designed to create festive entertaining spaces.

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

A nighttime view of the garden.

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

A custom pedestal tray system allows for a variety of paving patterns and turf joints to soften the hardscape.

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

Views through the garden.

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

The water wall offers a nighttime focal point.

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

Nighttime views from the terrace.

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

Custom planters with lush planting surround the terrace.

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

The rooftop capitalizes on stunning views of the city.

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

Photo Credit: Linda Oyama Bryan

Rendered concept plan.

Comments are currently closed.