Department

Zen, Mastered

Soft greenery and Asian-inspired landscaping create a lush escape in the heart of downtown.

March 2014

Being neighborly in a city means considering not just those beside you, but those above you as well. So when Dee Chirafisi and Jim Theye dreamed up their patio space, which is perched on a parking-garage roof tucked among high-rises near Riverfront Park, they aimed for more than just an urban oasis. “We wanted it to be a beautiful composition when seen from above—from our second and third floors and for our neighbors,” Chirafisi says. Working with the late landscape architect Guenther Vogt of Bouquets in LoDo and outdoor construction specialist Todd DePuy of Organica Landscapes, the couple took a cue from the existing ipe wood fence and added custom planters and a raised koi pond, both clad in the Brazilian hardwood. Ornamental grasses divide the patio into outdoor rooms for dining and lounging. Trumpet vine and a stand of bamboo soften the geometric fencing. And a 12-foot Japanese maple adds height and texture to the well-crafted retreat that can be enjoyed no matter what your vantage. 


—Photograph by Raul Garcia