A Peaceful Exterior

“Balance is the perfect state of still water. Let that be our model. It remains quiet within and it is not disturbed by the surface.” – Confucius

This quote is displayed in the study of landscape designer Fernando Wong alongside a tranquil photograph of a Chinese Garden. “The quote is my starting point for each project I undertake,” he says, “whether it is a sea-side mansion on Tahiti Beach, a terrace on Fisher Island or a traditional storybook house that I am currently designing on South Miami Avenue.”

Wong, a native of Panama, designs beautiful outdoor spaces and relishes the creative process of working with clients. It’s a labor-of-love and approached from an artist’s perspective with initial inspirations evolving into masterful freehand renderings. The final products transform backyards and balconies into beautiful and comfortable outdoor rooms that serve as additional entertaining spaces, dining rooms and even kitchens. Wong’s creative touch can be seen on estates in Indian Creek, Palm Island and Pine Tree Drive, as well as on smaller properties for homes in Coral Gables and Bay Point.

“Most of my clients want to take advantage of the wonderful South Florida climate and enjoy all aspects of their homes – not just the inside,” he says. “I love designing for the Miami climate. It’s very challenging, and I take pleasure in all types of design.”

Wong creates tropical, English and modern gardens, and always strives to maintain the balance and peacefulness that comes from design that is appropriate for a house’s scale and topography.

“The biggest mistakes that people make are forgetting about scale and choosing the wrong plant materials for a specific environment,” he warns. “The amount of sunlight, wind and a home’s proximity to the ocean can all ruin the most beautiful of gardens if the wrong plants are chosen.”

Wong is also an advocate of working with what you have no matter how big or small an area is. “Just because you have a house with no pool, or a terrace without a water view, does not mean you cannot enjoy the outside. My condo on South Beach has a huge 45- by 9-foot balcony that I have turned into three spaces – a meditation area, sitting area and a dining room. (The stunning terrace is scheduled to appear in the Miami Herald Home Design Magazine.) My partner and I loved it so much that we got rid of the indoor dining room table and expanded the living room – which we never use – and now we spend most of our time sitting on the balcony.”

South Florida is synonymous with outdoor living and one’s home should have an exterior design that takes full advantage of our world-renowned climate. Wong takes his philosophy that is rooted in Eastern teachings and applies it to our unique surroundings, thus creating centered and balanced environments that add peace to daily living. To contact Fernando Wong Outdoor Living Design call 786-234-6853.

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