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Resort Landscapes

Mother nature, steep rocky terrain, limited space, and condensed timelines made putting the finishing touches on eight new condo landscapes a world-class dance in which every step counted.

Meticulous planning comes into play

Following an extremely competitive bidding process, our team was chosen to work with PC Construction and SE Group Landscape Architects on eight luxury, cabin-style lodges at Stowe Mountain Resort. Our task was to craft welcoming entryways, relaxing patios, and alpine plantings that could stand up to harsh mountain winters – all trademark details that are part of the Stowe’s world-class vacation experience. But before we could start, the homes had to be built.

Heavy snowfalls in the Green Mountains had caused significant delays in the winter phases of construction. As completion milestones pushed later and later, our deadline did not – condo owners would be given the keys on the date they were promised. Because landscaping is always the very last item on a new home’s to-do list, we were tasked with finishing our scope of work in half the usual time.

As we waited to get onto the site, our team mapped out every single detail of the job down to the hour and the inch. We staged virtual dress rehearsals, repeatedly thinking through the minutiae and developing contingency plans that would allow us to keep moving if conditions, timing, or weather caused changes outside of our control. Adding to the complexity of the planning was the site’s challenging location – one narrow road leading up to a steep, multi-level cluster of construction sites built into the side of a mountain with very little level space around them. Under typical circumstances, we’d plan to have all of our materials and equipment staged nearby so we had access to everything we needed the second we needed it. Here there was no room – supplies and huge machinery had to arrive at just the right time, and we needed to know weeks in advance when each delivery should take place.

Once at the site, we carefully choreographed every task. Sharing crucial workspace with painters, carpenters, electricians, and other tradesmen at eight building sites simultaneously meant that communication, flexibility, and diplomacy were essential. Our crew worked seven days a week, often into the night, to transform muddy construction sites into lush, welcoming destinations. In all, we successfully installed over 3,000 square feet of irregular bluestone, 1,200 square feet of mortared dimensional bluestone, decorative boulders, and 1,000 trees and shrubs – including several 20-foot spruce trees that weighed over 5,000 pounds each. As condo owners packed their bags to enjoy Stowe’s stunning views and fresh mountain air, we were putting the finishing touches on their destination – the only trade that had its entire scope of work completed by the deadline we were given.