There were two items left undone when we moved in December due to the weather: the stamped concrete on the courtyard and porches, and the driveway paving. We waited until the weather warmed up, and had not heard from the builder about either of these. We put our outdoor furniture out on the courtyard and side porch so we could use them. Finally, in June we were contacted by the stamped concrete contractor. I dug out our original color and pattern selections from last year and forwarded them to him.
The contractor did a 2’x2′ sample for us to look at. We liked the pattern but decided that the color was too bright, and too orange. We looked at his web site and found another color that we liked better. We met with him and discussed the installation. He did two more samples, and we picked the lighter of the two. By then it was mid-July.
The contractor started work in early August. There were a couple of days when it rained, so he could not work, but otherwise the work proceeded nicely, and he was on track to finish up by the end of the second week.
Then the builder called me on Wednesday and told me that the paving contractor was ready to start work! We left work early so we could meet with the contractor, as we wanted to extend the final driveway for parking and access to the side porch. When we got out there they had regraded the existing gravel. We agreed on the additional area, and they excavated and put down a base layer of stone.
Both the stamped concrete and the paving were finished on Thursday. The paving contractor told us to be careful driving on the pavement at first, but otherwise we could use the spaces.
The stamped concrete looks terrific, and we really like the pattern and color we chose. It complements the stucco and trim beautifully. Here is a view of the entire courtyard with our outdoor furniture:
We have a sitting area set up on the back portico.
The round table is a story all by itself. We bought the ceramic top during our trip to Italy in 2007, in a little shop in San Gimignano. They shipped it to our old house, and we used in on our deck the past few summers. When we moved it to the new house we bought a new base to give it more of a coffee-table height. We think it looks fabulous on the courtyard.
On the side porch we have some wood furniture from our old place, and a potting bench that we bought after we moved.
It’s great to have the driveway done too, with a smooth surface instead of loose gravel. (No picture; hey, it’s just black asphalt.) We’re really happy to have the outside of the house finished.