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Outdoor Spaces

Walkway that is stamped and stained to and feels like a jungle with the perfectly chosen landscaping.
For a guy who started from the bottom up, Jesse Escalera has managed to make a name for himself over the years through his backyard masterpieces.
Artisan Jesse Escalera Creates Concrete Masterpieces
An infinity pond and a concrete bench in a beautiful mountainous setting.
This Hacienda Resort includes an outdoor kitchen, water slide, fire pit, concrete swimming pool with Baja shelf, two in-pool tables, and a shaded pavilion.
The Hacienda Resort Adds a Concrete Pool
Lavacrete table that is glowing with the help of fiber optics
An “outrageous” beach house on the French side of the Caribbean island St. Martin needed an anything-but-usual outdoor table.
Concrete Tables Include Fiber Optics That Flow And Glow
Outdoor space that is lit up for the night with torches and lights that reflect off of the waterfall and the pool below.
When Tom Ralston Concrete took on the job of building Todd Turowski a lap pool in the backyard of his hillside house, they did so with eyes wide open.
Award-Winning Engineered Backyard
An outdoor kitchen with a concrete countertop and a large grill and a place to store logs for the firepit.
Outdoor kitchens are a popular request no matter where you live. Typically the contractor constructs them in a warm climate, but that's not the case here.
Beyond the Kit: Outdoor Kitchens in Cold Climates
Artisan Jesse Escalera Creates Concrete Masterpieces
The Hacienda Resort Adds a Concrete Pool
Concrete Tables Include Fiber Optics That Flow And Glow
Award-Winning Engineered Backyard
Beyond the Kit: Outdoor Kitchens in Cold Climates
Stenciling Concrete Color Hardeners
Acid Stain Pools Fiber Optics
Water-based Sealers
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Revamping the Pool Deck at the White House

Delays were par for the course, Krach says. Besides the helicopter encounter, he and his crew had to clear the way so Vice President Joe Biden could accompany a disabled veterans' bicycle-racing group on a tour and again so the first lady could work in the garden.When your country calls you to do a job, how much should you charge? That was the predicament Dick Krach, CEO of Sundek of Washington, came face to face with when his secretary fielded a call from someone at a “white house” concerning a pool deck that needed repair and some sprucing up.

Concrete Hardspace Transforms Residential Curb Appeal

Restored decorative concrete garage and driveway.If you’re going the makeover route, why not make it extreme. Or at least dramatic.

Either description can be applied to the three-pronged game plan devised to vastly revamp the hardscapes surrounding a sprawling, exclusive residential property on the Central California coast.

How this Concrete Contractor Moved From Flatwork to Decorative Concrete

Rectangular concrete fire pit with round river rock surrounding fire tube.Troy Lemon, founder and president of Cornerstone Decorative Concrete in Holland, Mich., starts his story with a familiar admission. “I was a concrete guy way before I was a decorative concrete guy,” he says.

One Contractor's Quest to Rid the World of Ugly Concrete

Colin's interest in decorative started with exposed pea gravel, curved joints and other classic decorative elements, then grew to include new-school tricks like stamping and staining.Even on the thumb tip of northwest Washington state, decorative concrete is making its mark, thanks to this father-son outfit.

Experience and Expertise Prove to be the Winning Combination for Puerto Rican Skatepark

Construction of skatepark in Puerto Rico using rebar and concreteThe working conditions weren’t those of a stateside project, but the objective was the same: Build a skate park that had the smooth curves and flawless finishes of any topnotch park in the U.S. Learn how this contractor skated to perfection.

Botanic Garden Receives Concrete Makeover

Compass rose stained into the concrete with reds, oranges and greens.The project was a lot simpler than the one Baltz ended up with. “I was first approached to do some hardscape and subbase for a network of brick or paver stone terraces,” he recalls. “The connecting walkways were going to be asphalt.” He can’t hide the disdain in his voice when he makes that last statement.

Compatibility Issues Between Stained Concrete And Salt Chlorinated Swimming Pools

Does chlorine affect decorative concrete?Scott Cohen, artisan and construction defect expert witness, whose company The Green Scene makes decorative backyards and pools in Southern California, has observed problems around salt-chlorinated pools too, but he is far from certain that all salt pools are problematic.

Skate Park in Santa Cruz Replicates Waves with Concrete

16 foot tall concrete wave at a Santa Cruz skate parkA 16-foot-tall concrete wave? Concrete artists created this and more at a 15,000-square-foot skate park.

Concrete Tables Include Fiber Optics That Flow And Glow

A concrete table made with Lavacrete fiber optic lights An “outrageous” beach house on the French side of the Caribbean island St. Martin needed an anything-but-usual outdoor table.

The Benefits of Decorative Shotcrete

A concrete mason shoots shotcrete onto the wall with a pump.Shotcrete is not a physical product. It cannot be touched or held in your hand. Shotcrete is a process or verb. It is the action of placing concrete to achieve high strengths and low permeability.

Monterey Hillside Bay-Colored Swimming Pool

Swimming pool by Tom Ralston overlooking the Monterey Bay.Imagine this: You own an estate in the California hills overlooking Monterey Bay. You are a lover of art and natural beauty. You want a swimming pool complex with a large concrete deck and pool house. You want it to accentuate the surrounding landscape and incorporate the feel of the bay, but you’re not sure how you want to achieve that. Who do you call?

Bell Tower in Texas Modeled After Historic European Version

Bruce Williamson, of Carrollton, Texas, and a team from French manufacturer Decopierre used a unique limestone veneer to give this bell tower a historic look.Bruce Williamson, of Carrollton, Texas, and a team from French manufacturer Decopierre used a unique limestone veneer to give this bell tower a historic look.

How One Contractor Profited from Safety Surfacing

A rubber surfaced floor that has been artistically upgraded with an image of a clown fish.When asked if concrete contractors should add safety surfacing to their roster of services, George Coon’s answer was a question that was succinct and to the point: “Do they want to make money?”

Executing a Drainage Plan for Pool Decks

When taking the plunge into a pool construction or renovation project, don't forget the storm water drainage.When taking the plunge into a pool construction or renovation project, don’t forget the stormwater drainage.

Backyard Amenity Features Concrete Dock

Decked OutAt first glance, the dock looks like it’s floating just above the water. “It turned out exactly how I wanted it,” says Reuben Keim, co-owner of Keim Concrete in Wooster, Ohio, about his concrete platform. The pier and dock, which sit about a foot above the surface of a 2-acre pond in Keim’s backyard, was fashioned with Proline form liners.

Decorative Concrete Takes Center Stage in Westminster, Colo.

Decorative fountain in city center in Denver, ColoradoIn suburb located northwest of Denver a new park sits on 9 1/2 acres of open land across from its city hall. Built to give the community a gathering spot where children could play and families could stroll, take in art and view live performances.

Decorative Drain Covers Enhance Surrounding Concrete

decorative drain grate in concrete beautifies an area that is usually overlooked.Let’s say you’re part of a design and construction team that has settled on a stunning look for a high-profile exterior concrete project — the entry to a corporate office, a monument to fallen heroes or maybe a creatively upgraded pedestrian walkway for a downtown shopping district.

Construction Firm Creates a Tranquil Backyard with Full Outdoor Kitchen

In Los Angeles, and in particular the Beverly Hills area of the city, there are many OMG backyards.In Los Angeles, and in particular the Beverly Hills area of the city, there are many OMG backyards. This one, though, created by Scott Cohen’s company, Green Scene Landscaping & Swimming Pools, was over-the-top enough to have been featured last summer on the television show “OMG Backyards.”

A Palm-roofed Outdoor Living Area and Concrete Kitchen in Los Cabos, Mexico

Concrete sitting area that is complete with a concrete firepit.As for Hileman’s original vision of using actual coco logs in construction, remember “termites” and realize it is nice to fool Mother Nature — and human guests — in the name of maintenance.

Using Decorative Concrete to Address Drainage Issues

Stairs that have been stained with a red color address the erosion issue that this homeowner experiencedAlthough aesthetics are certainly a key component in any decorative concrete project, that doesn’t mean function should take a back seat. When a Joplin, Mo., homeowner was experiencing drainage and erosion problems, Jim Snodgrass installed a series of walls and stairways that not only controlled water flow, but was visually pleasing to the rest of the high-end subdivision.

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