HGTV® Dream Home 2018 Winner Announced

HGTV Dream Home 2018 Winner

As a proud sponsor of the HGTV® Dream Home 2018, we congratulate this year’s winner of the fabulous waterfront retreat in Gig Harbor, Washington, overlooking the picturesque Henderson Bay, an inlet of Puget Sound.

Emily Muniz HGTV Dream Home Giveaway 2018 Winner
Emily Muniz, middle, is surprised by HGTV designer and host Tiffany Brooks with the news that she is the winner of the HGTV Dream Home Giveaway 2018. (photo courtesy HGTV)

Emily Muniz, a 29-year-old from suburban Nashville was randomly selected from over 123 million entries to win the grand prize package valued at more than $1.8 million. The giveaway includes the completely remodeled and fully furnished home, a new Honda Accord and $250,000 from national mortgage lender Quicken Loans®.

This formerly outdated home was selected by HGTV and completely renovated into a contemporary maritime retreat. Belgard was honored to be a part of this renovation as the exclusive hardscape sponsor. Belgard products were used to help facilitate complete front and backyard transformations, adding contemporary curb appeal and providing multiple entertaining zones for taking in the spectacular views of Henderson Bay.

Aerial view of the outdoor living areas of the HGTV Dream Home 2018. (Photo: Robert Peterson, Rustic White Photography)

“The outdoor space at the HGTV Dream Home 2018 in Gig Harbor made it truly our dream home,” Muniz said. “From the back porches overlooking the sound, to the gathering area around the fire pit and the ‎grilling area for summer cookout, it’s a gorgeous property that has multiple spaces that are perfect for gathering with family and friends.”

Urbana Stone permeable pavers
The HGTV® Dream Home 2018 is outfitted with Urbana® Stone permeable pavers to help protect neighboring Henderson Bay from potential pollution from stormwater runoff. (Photo: Robert Peterson, Rustic White Photography)

In addition to providing upgraded aesthetics and functionality to the home, the new paver driveway, walkways, and fire pit patio are also environmentally friendly. Paved with Belgard Urbana® Stone permeable pavers, these areas filter any rainwater or other runoff of impurities before absorbing it into the ground below and returning it to local receiving waters.

To view before and after images of the outdoor renovation, read our transformation blog.

For more information on the HGTV Dream Home 2018, including an aerial video of the exterior, design videos, and photos of the interior transformation of the home, click here.

Take a Look Inside the Philadelphia Flower Show and Enter to Win a Bordeaux™ Grill Island

We are now midway through the incredible 2018 Philadelphia Flower Show and wanted to share some images from the show and give you an opportunity to register for a chance to win a Bordeaux Elements™ Grill Island.

Attendance at the show has been incredible. This year’s theme, “Wonders of Water” includes fantastic displays of waterscapes and landscapes integrated with Belgard hardscapes. To view a slideshow of the Belgard Feature Exhibit, click on any of the images below.

Belgard FEATURE EXHIBIT
Fly-Through Video

Belgard at the 2018 Philadelphia Flower Show

The Belgard Booth at this year's Philly Flower Show puts an array of tranquil water features on display bringing the theme, Wonders of Water, to life: http://bit.ly/2oFXzFS

Posted by Outdoor Living by Belgard on Wednesday, March 7, 2018

 

As the exclusive hardscapes sponsor, Belgard is also excited to see our products incorporated into many other displays throughout the show. As part of the “Wonders of Water” theme, multiple organizations took the opportunity to educate attendees on the benefits of permeable pavers. See some examples below.

Philadelphia Water Department
and their “Rain Check” Program
Mercer County Community College

If you don’t intend to check out the show in person, don’t miss out on your opportunity to win a Bordeaux Elements™ Grill Island. Click on the link below to enter for your chance to win!

Enter the Bordeaux™ Grill Island Sweepstakes

The 2018 Philadelphia Flower Show will continue through Sunday, March 11. For tickets, visit TheFlowerShow.com.

Why Permeable Pavers are a Growing Trend in Outdoor Design

The HGTV® Dream Home 2018 is outfitted with Urbana® Stone permeable pavers on the walkways, fire pit patio and driveway to help protect neighboring Henderson Bay from potential pollution from stormwater runoff. (Photo: Robert Peterson, Rustic White Photography)

Words like “sustainable” and “responsible” continue to grow in importance with today’s consumers as we collectively become more conscientious about how our actions affect the world around us and the legacy we leave behind. However, we still wish to enjoy our time on this planet.

Enter the permeable paver. Permeable pavers give homeowners the opportunity to create eye-catching, livable outdoor spaces that actually improve the environment and allow us to leave the world better and more beautiful than we found it.

The technology is ingeniously simple. Permeable pavers are laid on multiple layers of crushed stone, and the joints between each paver are filled with smaller aggregate. This design allows water to instantly drain through the joints and percolate through the layers of aggregate below, where any impurities are trapped before water seeps into the ground and returns to local waterways. To create the ultimate sustainable patio, driveway or walkway, the system can be designed to collect and recycle rainwater for irrigation and other purposes.

And here’s the best part…in many states and municipalities with water conservation and stormwater management initiatives, there are often grants or tax incentives available for installing permeable pavers or a water harvesting system, which makes the idea of installing a permeable patio, walkway or driveway all the more attractive.

permeable patio design ideas
permeable walkway design ideas
permeable driveway design ideas

For more permeable paver design ideas, visit the Belgard Permeable Paver Pinterest board.

The Best of 2017: Residential Hardscape Design Winners

At the 2017 Hardscape North America tradeshow held in Louisville, Kentucky, the U.S. and Canada hardscape industry judged residential and commercial hardscape designs from across North America for the 2017 HNA Awards. These awards are the industry’s top honors for contractors designing and installing projects using concrete pavers, segmental retaining walls, clay brick, porcelain, and combinations of these hardscapes. Belgard was pleased to have products showcased in 12 of the honored designs, placing in 10 of the 16 categories. Homeowners planning an outdoor living makeover in 2018 can pull inspiration from the award-winning and innovative designs from these residential categories. Click on the galleries below to view slideshows of photos from each project.

WHIMSICAL PAVER PATIO

PROJECT CREDITS  Category: Concrete Pavers, less than 3,000 SF (WINNER). Contractor: Paver Designs, LLC. Designer: Justin Hampton. Product: Dublin Cobble®.

Tranquil Backyard Oasis

PROJECT CREDITS  Category: Porcelain Pavers (WINNER). Contractor: Pacific Outdoor Living. Designer: Terry Morrill. Product: Noon Porcelain Pavers

Dramatic Entrance

PROJECT CREDITS  Category: Concrete Pavers, more than 3,000 SF (Honorable Mention). Contractor: Mirror Lake Designs. Designer: Michael Shawn Kelly. Products: Urbana® Stone, Old Word Paver™.

Eclectic FIRE PIT PATIO

PROJECT CREDITS:  Category: Combination of Hardscapes, less than 4,000 SF (Honorable Mention). Contractor: Precision Landscapes. Designer: Jeremy Rose. Products: Urbana® Stone concrete pavers (primary patio), Noon porcelain pavers (fire pit patio), Weston Stone® retaining wall (fire pit, garden walls, seat walls), Arbel® concrete pavers (seat wall backrest).

Eco-Friendly Walkway & Driveway

PROJECT CREDITS  Category: Permeable Pavers (Honorable Mention), Contractor: Dominion Pavers. Designer: Sasser Construction. Product: Aqualine Series™ pavers.

NEXT WEEK:  Despite the cold temperatures, now is the ideal time to start planning a pool installation to have it ready for the spring!

Project Profile:
Heated Permeable Pavers

In colder climates, it’s not uncommon for driveways, walkways or patios to be installed with either a heated pavement system or a permeable pavement system to help control ice buildup. This homeowner, however, chose to combine the two systems into one to create the ultimate ice-management pavement system.

The heated permeable paver driveway immediately melts and drains snow and ice. A heating coil is hidden beneath Belgard Eco-Dublin® permeable pavers, which are laid at a 45-degree angle to the house to add visual interest to the elegant design. Decorative poured concrete curbing coordinates with the charcoal paver accents and sits atop edge restraints, adding both stability and a finished look to the pavement system. Matching curbing also lines the landscape beds throughout the property.

Benefits of a Combined Heated/Permeable Pavement System

With a heated pavement system, snow and ice melt immediately to prevent accumulation, but if the surface is not graded properly, or if the pavement settles or degrades over time, there can be pooling or other issues. In comparison, a permeable system allows melting snow to drain into the joints and down into the subsurface rather than remaining on the surface and refreezing into ice. Typically, a plow clears the bulk of the snow, ice melt is applied, and the water goes away. However, with a combined heated permeable pavement system, no plowing or ice melt is needed. All snow or freezing rain that hits the surface melts and drains immediately. Plus, concrete pavers are more durable than poured concrete or asphalt, ensuring increased longevity of a properly working system. After two winters, the homeowners report that the system is performing beautifully, with no water or snow accumulation whatsoever.

How Does It Work?

Heating cables are laid out in the bedding layer, beneath the pavers. Two heat/moisture sensors, each about the size of a tennis ball, are installed in the pavement to automatically turn the heating cables on when there is both precipitation and a below-freezing temperature. When the system is on, it takes a lot of electricity to heat the 4,300 SF drive and walkway, necessitating the addition of a 400-amp pedestal to operate the system. However, because the sensors require both moisture and freezing temperatures, the system is rarely on.

A layer of sand prevents the pavers from having direct contact with the heating cable, which is laid out in the bedding layer. With direct contact, potential movement by the pavers over time could wear through the cable’s protective coating and short out the entire installation. This is especially important in a vehicular application.

Installing the System

Although, the system was planned to include only 18” of excavation, abnormal site conditions required 36” of excavation. A variable base of aggregate was then installed – 27” of #2 stone, 4” of #57, and 2” of #9. A heating cable was installed within the #9 stone layer. In order to maximize the amount of heat transferred from the heating cable to the pavers, the stone separating the cable and pavers needs as much contact with both as possible. Crushed stone with fines transfers the most heat, but doesn’t drain, so it isn’t used in a permeable installation. Instead, the heating cable manufacturer, Warmzone Radiant, recommended smaller drainage stone (#9) because it has more contact with the cable and transfers more heat than larger stone. A layer of sand was then installed over the aggregate to create a cushion between the heating cable and the pavers. This was done to prevent potential paver movement from wearing through the cable’s protective coating over time, which could short out the entire system. The crew also took extra care during the handling and installation of the cable to safeguard the protective coating and ensure long-term functionality of the system.

walkway
A heated permeable paver walkway coordinates with the driveway to create a dramatic entrance to the front of the home. The heated Eco-Dublin pavers provide a safe environment for guests and eliminate the need for snow shoveling and deicing agents.

.   .   .

2014 HNA Project Award Winner – Residential Concrete Permeable Pavers

Design/build Contractor: Grindstone Hardscapes, Josh & Kristen Graczyk, Owners
Location: Grand Island, Nebraska

 

Outdoor Living Trends in New Home Construction

For over a decade, the gradual trend has been for homeowners to transform the formerly open backyards of existing homes into definable “outdoor living” spaces. In new home construction, however, this phenomenon has grown exponentially in more recent years to the point that outdoor living has becoming a standard feature at just about any price level. Although upgraded outdoor living spaces are more common at higher price levels, new construction home buyers at all levels want to know that they’ll be able to live in and enjoy their outdoor spaces. According to builders, realtors and landscape architects, some definable trends have emerged as being “highly desirable” to potential buyers.

Indoor/Outdoor Convergence: For several years, the trend has been to create outdoor living areas that mimic indoor living. This has evolved in a way that with many new home designs, there is no distinct separation between the indoor and outdoor spaces, but more of a fluid separation between the two areas. These types of designs might incorporate floor-to-ceiling retractable glass walls, stackable doors or floor materials that contribute to that sense of flow. For example, Belgard Porcelain Pavers were designed for outdoor use, but coordinate with a line of interior porcelain tile, which allows for the same flooring aesthetic to be used both inside and outside of the home.

Superlite_RES_BEL2015_24x24_Mirage_Quartziti_Ardesie_6_preview
Multiple floor-to-ceiling glass doors and Ardesie porcelain pavers make this porch feel like a continuation of the home’s interior living spaces.

•   •   •

Fully Functioning Kitchens: Although this trend is more typically seen in higher priced homes, smaller homes are jumping on the outdoor kitchen bandwagon, even if on a smaller scale — like with a simple built-in grill. But for mid-level homes and above, buyers want an outdoor kitchen with all the conveniences of an indoor kitchen, and then some. In luxury homes, the outdoor kitchen often costs more than the indoor kitchen, with amenities that incorporate everything from dishwashers to brick ovens. In many cases, the outdoor kitchen also functions as an outdoor bar and includes items like roll-top beverage coolers, kegerators and wine refrigerators.

This well-appointed outdoor kitchen and bar includes seating, outdoor refrigerator, kegerator, Bristol Brick Oven, built-in grill, sink and storage.
This well-appointed outdoor kitchen and bar includes seating, outdoor refrigerator, kegerator, Bristol Brick Oven, built-in grill, sink and storage.

•   •   •

Integrated Audio/Visual and Lighting: New homes of every price range are incorporating outdoor televisions and sound systems, even if on the smaller scale of an outdoor-rated bluetooth speaker system. Mid-level homes and above are taking the trend to the next level with outdoor sound systems that are integrated with the interior of the home so that the same music can be played inside the home as outside, which follows the indoor/outdoor convergence trend. With the rapid advance of smart phone technology, this can be taken to an even higher level with systems that can operate off of a mobile app to control every electronic aspect of the outdoor living space, including TVs, sound systems, lighting, fire features and pool equipment.

Every electronic aspect of this outdoor living area is controlled by the homeowner's mobile app, including the fan, lighting, TV and the gas starter on the fireplace.
Every electronic aspect of this outdoor living area is controlled by the homeowner’s mobile app, including the fan, lighting, TV and the gas starter on the fireplace.

•   •   •

Intimate Outdoor Spaces: Home buyers are interested in having a relaxing outdoor living area where they can socialize and unwind, creating a trend towards more cozy seating areas, often incorporating a fireplace or fire pit. Some experts relate this trend to the fact that there’s typically a TV in every room of the house, so a cozy outdoor space away from a TV can be a place to escape. Unlike expansive outdoor kitchen spaces, which may be limited to luxury homes, an “outdoor retreat” can be created on a smaller budget and appeals to buyers at all levels. In fact, a cozy outdoor space can easily be created by adding a freestanding wall or two. With the help of a few staged furnishing, potential buyers can get a feel for how they would live in the outdoor space.

The Bristol Fireplace serves as focal point for this intimate gathering spot.
The Bristol Fireplace serves as focal point for this intimate gathering spot. This same sense of intimacy can also be created with the use of a freestanding wall, which can help define the space and create the illusion of an interior room.

•   •   •

Sustainable Design: According to the American Society of Landscape Architects, this year’s top trends in landscape design include both rainwater harvesting and the use of permeable pavers. Although a standard permeable paver installation simply allows water to filter through the paver joints into the ground below, a permeable paver system can be designed to also harvest and recycle rainwater, converging these two trends into one and allowing the reclaimed water to be used for garden irrigation and other uses. Current top landscape trends also include native plants and low-maintenance landscaping.

A permeable paver system, like this Subterra Stone® patio, can be designed to include a collection cistern and a pump to harvest water for reuse with water features, irrigation or other greywater uses.
A permeable paver system, like this Subterra Stone® patio, can be designed to include a collection cistern and a pump to harvest water for reuse with water features, irrigation or other greywater uses.