Article No: 251

2009-02-02 17:10:09
2009 Best in Concrete Living Awards

First Place Winner
Submitted by Benchmark Custom Luxury Homes
Cast-in-Place System: SafeWall

Created as the first model home in a new luxury golf and country club community in Florida, Benchmark Homes wanted to set a very high standard. They set out to create a unique home that blends classic design, genuine antique fixtures and architectural details, and the latest materials and technology in home construction. No detail was too small; the ceiling boasts distressed wood beams, antique doors are mounted in the entryway and master bedroom, reclaimed antique wood floors, hard-carved columns from India in the kitchen, and antique doors imported from Egypt.

Benchmark paid just as much attention to the building technology, which led them to cast-in-place concrete. With Florida’s notorious hurricane season and strict building codes, the cast-in-place system offered strength and durability found irresistible by Benchmark Homes. This was the first cast-in-place home they have built and they plan to use the technology frequently on future projects.
Insulating Concrete Form
First Place Winner
Submitted by Thermal Concept Builders
ICF System: Phoenix Systems & Components

This 10,575-sqaure-foot Wisconsin home, built by Craig Krysco of Mirage Builders, has approximately 13,000 square-feet of ICF walls. Using Phoenix Engineered Wall System™, Josef Fischer of Thermal Concept Builders built the exterior and most of the interior walls.

The house is entered through an impressive front entrance with large columns, arched windows, and a 6-foot round window. With 22-foot high ceilings in the foyer and great room and two curved staircases leading to the second floor, the house has a majestic air. A curved lower deck at the back of the house is accented with many columns and arches all built with ICF construction by shaping and cutting the blocks to construct complex angles, curves, arches, and columns. 
Insulating Concrete Form
Honorable Mention
Submitted by Lincoln Design
ICF System: Nudura & Insuldeck
Andrea Lincoln of Lincoln Design designed this Maui residence described as contemporary, urban, and tropical. The residence was built on a 45-degree angle lot, which added an extra challenge for the ICF contractors. The structure consists of two side-by-side residences with three levels of Pacific Ocean views on Kalapaki Bay.

In all the bedrooms, Nudura walls were built extra tall for the 10-foot ceilings, as well as for the great rooms and their 14 1/2-foot ceilings. Insuldeck was used for the ceiling/floor structure.
Decorative Concrete Interior
First Place Winner
Submitted by New Edge Design

Pre-cast kitchen countertops are finished with a simple sand color and a polished finish. The raised bar top has a bed of river rock and ammonite inlays.
Decorative Concrete Exterior
First Place Winner
Submitted by Restoration Concrete, Inc.
Product used: Rapid Set ® Wunderfixx®

Located in Anaheim Hills, California, this two-story, 7,200-square-foot home has an industrial, yet luxurious look with clean, open spaces. The mustard-yellow panels and natural stone veneer of the back of the house, which faces the road, leaves an observer wondering the use of the structure. In contrast to the back of the house, the natural stone and steel-framed glass windows of the front give the structure a sense of style. Exposed concrete lends a variation of color, a result of pouring different patches during varying climate conditions, and texture, created by the orientation of the surface during casting.

With a blend of raw concrete and artful concrete patching, the interior provides a cool, graceful setting. Vertical during casting, the slab edges show grain-patterns from the wooden framework and small bungholes.

Rapid Set® Wunderfixx® was used to create a completely smooth surface to match the appearance of some of the uncoated interior walls. The exterior columns at the front of the residence were left uncoated and the lift inserts were left exposed to contrast the smooth painted wall surface and the thin block design.