Celestial Garden Gazebo

This garden pavilion was built to satisfy a client’s desire for a retreat where he could enjoy his beloved gardens by day and the celestial heavens by night. Set on a rise in the middle of an eleven-acre parcel, the pavilion affords sweeping views of the property and garden façade of the estates’ 1942 Georgian residence.

A guiding principle in designing this pavilion was that it complements the estates’ original residence in its style, detailing and use of fine materials, while differentiating itself as a focal point on the property. Octagonal in plan, the façade is composed of a series of screened arches framed by pilasters and resting on a water table, all rendered in hand-made brick. The bell-shaped roof is clad in specially cut lead fish-scale shingles crowned with a custom-designed, lead-coated copper pineapple finial. The entry door includes a Chippendale lattice panel reflecting one at the front entry of the main house. Matching the original hand-made brick veneer and the flush mortar joint detail of the main house was an early challenge. To achieve the range of brick colors found on the main house required the use of five different types of brick from three different companies. From this palate of bricks, the mason carefully selected each one in order to achieve the proper range of colors desired. The brick is carried to the interior of the pavilion, which has a domed stucco ceiling and star pendant lighting fixture. The floor features a circular polished black granite medallion reminiscent of a pond reflecting the constellations of the open sky, with stars and signs of the zodiac etched into the granite and highlighted in gold leaf.

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“Striking the right balance between respect for the old and integration of the new…”
— East Coast Home and Design Magazine

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