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The Design Process

The Building Process The Design Process

Progress on the Foundation!

September 4, 2020
Just some of the steel columns that will hold up the Zen Treehouse.

The work on fabricating the columns (25 of them!), base plates, and beams has (finally) begun. We are working with an amazing fabricator, Martin Enterprises in Bailey, Colorado. They have 50+ years of experience in a wide variety of metal fabrication projects.

They sent over a few pictures of the column and base plates that will support the tree house. These will sit on the caissons there were completed earlier this year.

I should address the reasons for the delay in getting the construction restarted. The primary reason is that our builder, Cary Dunn from BackCountry Builders, has been on another project that, due to COVID, has had a lot of delays. He has to finish that house before he can really focus on getting things done for our treehouse.

He expects that the steel will go up this month (September) and that he’ll be able to start framing in early October. So…finally…PROGRESS!

I hope from now on, we will have a lot more regular posts of the progress, the ups and downs of constructing something so unique, and perhaps a bit more about our furnished rental portfolio. While the Zen Treehouse is the most unique property in our portfolio, we have five others that we will talk about when there are some lulls in posting. My goal is to have a post nearly every other week from here on out, so I’ll fill in some with how we think about these types of properties and what our nearly 10 years of experience with furnished rentals, Airbnb, and VRBO has been.

Thanks for reading! Would love to hear what you think. Post a comment and let me know what you’d like to know more about!

Peter and Delinda

Columns on the trailer ready for transport to the building site
Columns on the trailer ready for transport to the building site.
Base plates on the pallet. These will be bolted to the caissons and the columns will be welded to these plates.
A side profile of the main cabin to illustrate how these columns will be placed. Also note the beams – we intentionally cantilevered the decks (all three of them) for aesthetic reasons. Imagine a 12′ cantilevered deck more than 40′ above the ground. Sweet!
The Building Process The Design Process

Video Walkthrough – WOW

July 17, 2020

This is what we are building – a luxury treehouse in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado – only 1 hour drive from Denver. Enjoy a video walkthrough of the property – 100% architecturally correct and to scale. The outside environment and the furnishings are a good representation, but not exact. We have made our furniture and finishes selections, but these can (and most likely will) change by the time we get to furnishing the house in the spring.

We think this video walkthrough is the best way for you to get a feel for how special the Zen Treehouse will be! It really does feel like you’re walking through the finished product. We love how this video turned out!

You’ll be able to stay in this beautiful, unique, and very Zen property starting Spring 2021. The construction is active and at the time of this writing (September 2020), the posts and beams that hold the house up are being installed.

This home is one of six furnished rental properties that we own and operate. We began our furnished rental portfolio nearly ten years ago. We also own four restaurants in town (www.indulgewinebar.com) and have been in the hospitality business for twelve years. We know you’ll love your stay at any one of our properties, but especially at this one! Waiting list will open early 2021. Subscribe to our blog to get notified when we will begin taking reservations!

The Design Process

Construction Begins Again – and some new 3d Renders

July 14, 2020
Colorado Treehouse

Our contractor is finally ready to roll and we ordered the steel for the foundation last week. The fabricator will be building the foundation frames at their shop, then bringing them to the site to weld them together. Should be an interesting few weeks to see the steel finally going up!

Also, we hired someone to take our plans and make a 3d rendering of the treehouse – outside and inside. I’ve attached the current draft of the outside still renderings. I’ll post the video rendering of the inside once I get the final version.

We hope to be open for business by January 2020! A lot more updates will be coming soon as the construction restarts. In the meantime, enjoy the renderings of our Zen Treehouse in Bailey Colorado!

The Design Process

Progress on Architectural Design and Planning

April 13, 2018
architect, treehouse design

We met with our architect again this week to make some final changes to the design plans. The biggest change we made to the interior was to make the kitchen and entry way larger. We had to make a change to the entry to the house due to the height in the front. We thought, initially, that we would walk straight across a bridge from the road. But because we are maxing out the height of the house (32′ high from the back deck!), we have to have stairs going up to the bridge. We think we worked it out pretty well and the result will be better than it was before. When you stay in a treehouse, you typically need to climb some stairs to get into the house, so it will be with Zen Treehouse!

I’ve attached some pictures from our last session. We’re still waiting for the structural engineer to get back to us (next week) about the beams and bracing necessary to elevate a house 30’+ in the air on the side of a mountain. We’re hoping he took into consideration the aesthetic that we are striving to achieve. We’d love to have the decks fully cantilevered out from the house with just horizontal beams. We’ll see…

We hope you enjoy the photos of the plans!

Peter

PS – We are hoping to start construction next month. We just need to finalize plans and get subcontractor bids. Hopefully more on this in my next post.

treehouse, architecture, custom home, design process

Interior Planning – Zen Treehouse Main Cabin

treehouse, architecture, custom home, design process

Side Elevation 2 – Zen Treehouse Main Cabin

treehouse, architecture, custom home, design process

Our Architect, John Coffey

treehouse, architecture, custom home, design process

Side Elevation, Zen Treehouse Main Cabin

treehouse, architecture, custom home, design process

Back Elevation of Main Cabin

The Design Process

Preliminary Design and Site Plan!

January 27, 2018

We met with our architect today and we went over the preliminary design. Prior to this, I spent a fair bit of time compiling a design ideas document of images and ideas that I really loved (some tree house, some not). Then we had a preliminary design meeting where we discussed the ideas and thoughts we had around the vision of the treehouse. Today is the first draft of that vision. We moved some things around and discussed changes and ideas, but it’s a really amazing start to the project and we’re super excited to share with you. Let us know what you think! We love the direction that we’re taking this, but would love to hear what you think.

treehouse, tree house

Treehouse Initial Design Elevatio

Treehouse, Tree House

Treehouse Initial Site Plan

aTreehouse Initial Floor Plan

The Design Process

Land Survey and Topography is Finally Complete!

January 4, 2018

Hi everyone,

I haven’t posted anything lately because, well, we’ve been doing nothing but waiting on this to get done. I’m so happy to say that the Land Survey and Topography just arrived (after a six week wait)!

The survey is required by the architect in order to start his work. We have to know where the treehouse structures will be placed so we can then provide this information to the well drilling company and septic system engineer to begin their work.

The architect now has the survey and is starting. I’ll post his progress as he provides us with drawings, plans, etc. Things should start moving on this now..thankfully! I really had hoped we would be well into the conceptual design by now, but we are where we are.

Happy New Year everyone! It’s going to be a great 2018!

Peter

The Design Process

Meeting at the Site with the Architect and Builder

November 12, 2017

Great meeting today at the site with the architect and builder today. The weather was perfect and we decided on the location for the two platforms – one for the main treehouse and the other for the second bedroom/bath/deck treehouse.

We already filed the well permit, which takes 4-6 weeks. We’ve already talked to the septic designer and the surveyors. So, the next step is to hire the surveyors to come out and confirm the lot lines and do a topography and tree/size location in the building site area, which will be about 1/2 an acre (it’s a 2 acre lot). Once we get the survey back, the architect can begin the design process. The septic engineer can also begin his work to get the septic located on the site and designed. Since it’s a steep slope, everything will be more expensive than building on a flat lot. Taking huge trucks down the hill is not easy! Luckly, there is an old 4 x 4 road from the main road that goes to the spot we think the septic will go. Hopefully we can use it instead of building a new one.

Take a look at our views from the building site. The structure should be to the left of the grove of spruce trees approximately 20′ – 25′ off the ground and level with the road. The views are amazing – this picture really don’t do it justice, but for now, will give you some idea.

treehouse, bailey, Colorado, mountain house

At the Zen Treehouse lot with the architect and builder determining the site of the treehouse structure.

The Design Process

Considering adding a Steam Sauna…

October 29, 2017

I think that it would be awesome to have a steam sauna located away from the house, in a grove of trees, for guests to enjoy on a cool summer night or a cold winter’s day. What do you think?

https://almostheaven.com/barrel-sauna/