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Design of a winter garden with a thousand stories in Geneva

ID card

  • Project name: Winter Garden / Treehouse

  • Location: Geneva

  • Type of project: Private garden

  • Project start date: 2014

  • Delivery date: In progress

  • Project area: 3,000 m2

  • SIA stages: 31 to 53

The mission

✔️ Design a flower garden in winter of 3,000 m2 in harmony with the existing tree heritage

✔️ Design a garden so that it can be viewed from all the rooms in the villa

✔️ Sourcing exceptional materials and plants to deliver a remarkable garden

The brief

Our landscape architects had the task of creating a winter garden for a family home located in Geneva, mainly occupied during the winter and spring seasons.

The recently renovated house, fully glazed on the attic and offering a 360 degree panoramic view, particular attention has been paid to the planting of plants in order to create a real cocoon without any vis-à-vis, a "cabin in trees".

As soon as we arrived, we were struck by the atmosphere imbued with a gentle melancholy that reigned in the park, each element seemed to whisper forgotten stories.

At the heart of the plot, the wild vegetation had erased the original framework of the garden, and the fountain adjoining the villa was impatiently awaiting its rehabilitation. These discoveries inspired us to bring this place back to life and make it a place of healing while taking up this challenge: having flowers in winter.

Rethink structures

After cleaning the park to better assess its tree heritage, our landscape architects have brought to light its true beauty.

A path has been created to allow residents to walk around easily. This circular path, entwining around the garden, is punctuated by the protected passages offered by tall trees and areas bathed in winter light.

To allow optimal accessibility, the garden is fully accessible, the paths have gentle slopes of less than 5%.

The greening project of the park was presented to the neighboring villas for a harmonious integration, giving new impetus to the landscaping of most of the villas in the neighborhood.

Create a place of contemplation

The plant palette of the park is made up of several remarkable ancestral trees, guardians of a generational history. Planted by the father of the current owner, preserved and cherished, these trees are a vibrant tribute to perpetuate the memories with tenderness.

A close collaboration with the owner of the place was naturally set up to select in the nursery the plant parts which completed the collection. Exceptional elements have been integrated, such as a remarkable hedge of Camellias, another of photinias, a magnificent osmanthus, two majestic weeping sequoias, magnolias and a collection of dogwoods and rhododendrons. Thus creating a dynamic and colorful atmosphere in winter.

The ornamental pool has been taken over. Its location in front of the camellia scene acts as a mirror at nightfall, reflecting the composition of the spectacular subjects. Elegant sculptures by artist André Raboud punctuate the garden, creating a striking contrast between the white marble and the shimmering greenery of the camellias.

“An invitation
to stroll
through the
garden in winter”
Stimulate the senses

Our deep intention was to weave a winter garden vibrant with emotions, where each step evokes a different story, and where time seems suspended.

We wanted to create a collection of magnificent plants which, like living poems, remind us of the preciousness of each moment. Because winter, far from being austere, turns out to be a fabulous spectacle which invites us by its grace to contemplation. It is no longer enough to collect trees and works of art, but to collect moments and memories.

“During the rehabilitation project, which included the raising of a floor, I was alongside the client on the roof, we sketched together the perspectives to enhance and conceal, thus creating the atmosphere of a once perched hut. the project completed” recalls Raphaël Saive, in charge of the project.

“Nature makes timeless memories bloom. The value of a moment then becomes an infinite wealth”