The area to be designed is a semi detached pool house that has been taken over by the man of the house for his golf simulator man cave room. The main area of the room measures 21 feet across (parallel to the screen) and 15 feet front to back. At the back of the room there is an alcove that measures 8 feet 4 inches across and an additional 6 feet 6 inches front to back. This alcove is centered on the main room.
The current condition of the room is a total discombobulated cluttered mess. It serves the function of allowing the owner to practice his golf skills and work on his swing but he envisions having friends over to play 18 holes of golf on some of the worlds best courses via his fancy golf simulator.
The budget for this project is the least he can reasonably spend to achieve his goals. I told him this project could cost $15,000 (US). I think if we come up with a design that he loves and it costs more then that would be the budget.
The screen dominates the room. I am a general contractor and I have an ongoing working relationship with this client. He told me that he wants me to build some custom wood work surround for the screen that should encompass the screen from floor to ceiling on each side of the screen and also span across the top edge of the screen from side to side. This screen surround should return back to the wall behind the screen which is a distance of about 24". We also need to build down a tray ceiling to house heavy curtains that can be pulled out to protect all the glass from the flying golf balls that tend to bounce off the screen. When not in use the curtains should retract back to the screen and recess back into the surround that we build around the screen.
He had very specific requests for the alcove area. You will see from the pictures that there is a camera mounted on the center of the back wall of the alcove. This is how the simulator observes the player's actions. The client wants a custom end table built around the camera that does not obscure it's view and wants to place a nice masculine chair on each side of the table for the comfort of his golf playing friends.
The challenge is minimizing the elephant in the room and tying everything together so that the new custom pieces we build dont feel as out of place as the screen itself. The windows that span the width of the room from 4 feet away from each side wall, across the top of the wall behind the screen present a challenge because the back lighting is not favorable for the projector and the top of the screen surround if returned straight back to the back wall would terminate just above the middle of the windows. These windows will need to be permanently covered or boarded up in a way that can be easily undone in the future. The means by which they are covered will either need to look decent or be completely obscured by the custom screen surround.
You will see that the existing trim work in the room is rather stately and ornate and painted a neutral off white color. We talked about doing the finish of the new work in a stained or natural wood. Not sure how to marry these two finishes together.
It is important to note that the purpose of the tray ceiling is to give the curtains a place to hang from and the design should take this into account. When the curtains are not in use and are retracted back into the screen surround housing the curtain rod or track should be recessed up into the tray and not look like an after thought. My intuition tells me that this can be done tastefully by doing the tray in 2 or 3 tiers so that the middle section is closer to the ceiling than the section on either side and therefore not well lit and when the curtains are retracted the track wont stand out if painted to blend in with the housing.
You will see from the pictures that the side walls are almost entirely glass windows and doors so there is very little room for hanging decorations. The wall behind the screen is covered with a floor to ceiling mirror which should be removed in order to return the screen surround to wall behind. You will also see in the pictures a small putting green along the side of the room in front of the windows that overlook the lake. The client wants to retain an oversized full length mirror in this location because it allows him to work on his swing.
The focus here is on the custom wood work described in the goals above and tieing it all together. As I have been writing up all of this I have imagined the wood to be moderately rustic. Perhaps "pecky cypress" on the ceilings and or old weathered cedar or cypress for the new screen surround and new tray ceiling. If there is a way to deal with the existing trim work to tie it in nicely with the new that would be preferable to replacing the existing stuff. However, I do the custom trim carpentry in house with my own employees so I can be very cost effective in this area so if it makes sense to case out the windows overlooking the lake in a matching material that is not something that I am opposed to.
The projector is currently mounted on the ceiling just inside the alcove area and therefore just beyond the perimeter of the tray ceiling detail. This will limit the depth/height of the tray we build down from the ceiling (at least in front of the projector) which to me feels small for the scale of the room with 12' ceilings.
I do not want to replace the carpets so anything that accents the design in the way of flooring should be accents. However, if the awesome design means installing a killer wood floor to dominate the room and tie the whole thing together then that is why we are seeking the knowledge and advice of people with a real sense of design.
With that being said I would like to tell all prospective designers that this is my first time trying this service. I am a believer in crowd sourcing but the client is a little more dubious. I know that I am not a designer. I am a builder. I will benefit as much from a great design as the end user (if not more) and so I am not opposed to increasing the reward out of my own pocket to facilitate a great design. I just want to be clear that I have a deep respect for designers and I place a very high value on this portion of the project. This is my firs time using this service and I don't know exactly what to expect.