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Takumi Design: It’s only natural
Landscape design firm helps clients reconnect with nature
Contributing Editor: Bob Dumas
Takumi Design is not your father’s landscape design firm.
The Somers-based company utilizes cutting-edge techniques and designs to create unique high-end backyards, swimming pools as well as a myriad of other residential motifs that push past the ordinary and help homeowners reconnect with nature.
The key is the company’s pioneering of biophilic design, a technique that integrates natural elements, materials, and forms into the architecture—both exterior and interior.
“We bring the outside to the inside and vice versa,” said Charles Gardner, the company’s founder and CEO. “We incorporate the natural elements around you. We bring some of the natural environment into the project, like the sound of water. The tranquility of adding a small water feature to an indoor setting creates a subconscious connection to the outdoors, reducing stress and anxiety. Fire is another element we frequently use. Our firm builds indoor and outdoor fireplaces with a more organic feel to them. These fireplaces truly connect with people on a visual and physical level by rejuvenating and stimulating their senses.”
A Cornell University and Genesis 3 Pool Construction graduate, Gardner has more than 30 years of experience in land planning, high-end residential and commercial design, planting and pool construction. His notable projects include South Street Seaport, Copley Square in Boston, Quaker Valley Farms, the Columbel Estate, the Hascoe Estate, and the Bijur Residence. He is licensed and insured as a landscape architect in both New York and Massachusetts.
About 10 years ago, Gardner became a practitioner of Feng Shui and studied the manner in which our environment affects the energy forces that move around and within us. That led to the incorporation of biophilic design into his projects—blurring the lines between the manufactured and the natural environment.
Charles says biophilic design has even started to be utilized in schools and work places to improve productivity.
“Studies have shown it can improve productivity by more than 20 percent,” he said. “It has been documented many times over, and the increase in success which comes along with that is what we strive to provide our clients. Even if it’s just a small patio, we try to design and build it so our client feels a strong visual affect and connection to the natural environment.”
The name of the company itself was chosen because it implies the organic approach Gardner and his team use in their projects: Takumi is the Japanese word for “artisan.”
And whatever the customer’s needs are, Takumi Design can provide it. The company delivers all the manpower and expertise that’s needed.
“We used to sub out things like pools, but we would have to wait for the contractor and often end up doing half the work anyway. I thought to myself, I might as well be doing it and not have to worry about the next component,” Gardner said. “Now we are a one-stop shop; we combined and streamlined everything. I take on the responsibility and if there is a question or a problem the homeowner just has to make one phone call to me and not 25 different people. We do the irrigation, the lighting, the stonework, and whatever else the project calls for...”
Gardner has been joined in the firm by his son, Corey Gardner, who serves as director of sales and marketing.
“I worked for the firm doing construction initially. After moving to Manhattan to pursue a degree in Advertising, I found a job in sales,” Corey Gardner said. “I acquired knowledge on how to pitch and now call on prospective clients as well as other architectural firms.”
“He understands where we are going as a company and what we want to accomplish,” his father adds.
There is a long list of services that Takumi provides its clients: landscape architecture; land planning; waterscaping; master pool design; outdoor kitchen and bar; green walls and roofs; solar orientation; wetlands restoration; audio and lighting; irrigation systems; and stone masonry – just to name a few.
“We specifically encourage the building of projects that create less waste and use locally sourced materials,” said Gardner, who served 15 years on the North Salem Planning Board. “We can create a more natural lawn using wildflowers and zero footprint development—straying away from the traditional manicured lawn. We try to incorporate as much native plant life and stone as we can.”
Gardner said when his residential projects are completed they often have a transformative effect on the homeowner.
“I’ve had clients tell me, ‘you changed my life,’” he said. “One client explained, ‘I used to sit around with the TV on all the time but I don’t need that anymore. I look forward to waking up each morning just so I can read the paper in my cozy outdoor environment.’ Sometimes the changes are subtler and clients don’t even realize it. However, I guarantee their mindset becomes more positive from their new environment than they shall ever know.”
Right now, new Takumi customers can receive $100 off their project; call before June 1. And those who make successful referrals will receive a $100 Visa gift card upon completion of the project.
To learn more about Takumi Design and what they can do to improve your lifestyle...
Or visit their website at www.takumidesign.net.