Just as the existing bungalow served as inspiration and starting point for Dick van Gameren’s design, which completely transformed it into a contemporary villa, so too did the existing garden serve as inspiration and starting point for the garden design.
Among the key elements already in place were, first of all, a number of splendid imposing beaches along the high-lying Oud Valkenveenselaan, whose branches stretch well beyond the lane’s steep incline. Other notable features include the superb location of the garden, which borders on the ditches that once were used to transport the area’s rich sand deposits. Last but not least, the house is surrounded by a number of lovely trees and shrubs.
In the new design, all the garden’s special elements have been fully articulated and given their full meaning.
This has been achieved by removing all that was superfluous: the inert conifers, the jostling maples and the overcultivated shrubbery.
All this has been replaced by a single grand lawn and a wealth of perennials and flowering shrubs along the property’s edges, including the lane’s formerly bare bank.
The perennials have been carefully selected to ensure that the broad flower-beds bloom throughout the year in an ever-changing yet natural pattern comprising different flowers and leaf shapes that match the type of soil and the changing position of the sun.
Along the steep bank, the perennials form a flowering carpet that is clearly visible from the house.
Near the entrance, they stretch as a dark carpet underneath the soaring trees. The existing trees and tall shrubs have been complement with new ones, including an imposing oak in the patio. As a result, at the back, the wood doesn’t just reach the house but actually engulfs it. At the front, by contrast, the house seems to emerge from the trees behind it to open onto the sun-lit lawn that extends to the surrounding water.
Like the house, the paving around it – the entrance, the parking space, the terraces – consists of large slabs of polished concrete, blending both spaces, the inside and the outside, into a seamless, natural whole.
The garden design is spacious, sober and transparent, allowing the house’s sculptural qualities to be fully appreciated. And the natural, clear character of the flower beds allow for easy and moderate maintenance.
In collaboration with
Dick van Gameren Architecten
Francien van Kempen
Jacqueline van der Kloet
Emilio Troncoso Larrain