Cashiers, North Carolina, perched 3,500 feet high above sea level in the southern extremities of the Blue Ridge Mountain range, boasts acres of woodland, etched granite dome cliffs, and postcard-worthy views that look like they were painted by Bob Ross himself.
The unincorporated village is frequented by outdoor enthusiasts including hikers, fly-fishers and golfers, who are looking to escape, if only for a little while, the fast-paced culture that many people are so accustomed to. But it's the growing number of people that call Cashiers home that truly make this town unique. Many of the residents, who live in elegant homes peppered throughout the Eastern Continental Divide, devote special attention to the look and style of their homes.
Rand Soellner, award-winning architect and Cashiers native, has customized his home, designated as Falcon Cliff Lodge, to meld with the surroundings. With the beautiful North Carolina mountainside as his backdrop, Soellner constructed a rugged yet refined mountain home with ageless appeal. "It's a mountain lodge, not a log cabin," said Soellner. "It's more refined, and has the muscularity of a big log home. The design is timeless; it looks like a home that has been there for a long time."
On the exterior, one of the things that Soellner focused heavily on was the roof. He wanted something that would be in harmony with the rest of the house, yet be able to handle the harsh mountain winds. Soellner selected EcoStar® recycled emulated slate roofing tiles for their durability and natural slate look. Soellner, selecting from EcoStar's broad pallet of nine colors and six styles, chose to use EcoStar Majestic Slate™ Traditional tiles. The tiles closely replicate natural slate with their rectangular shape and hewn edges, and are strong enough to handle harsh weather conditions.
Challenging LocationContractor Oscar Barcenas of Tiger, Ga.-based Tiger Roofing, admits that the location was a challenge for the roof installation. "The gusting winds made it especially crucial to use a product that would be able to handle the elements," said Barcenas.
Despite the strong wind factor, Barcenas was able to install EcoStar's Majestic Slate tiles on the 12:12 roof using a 6-inch exposure instead of a 7-inch exposure to ensure the roof's integrity. "The product's flexibility makes it competitive. You can customize it to the needs of the home, allowing it to be installed nearly everywhere," he said.
Not only did Barcenas have to deal with strong winds, but the site itself also presented him with challenges. "It was hard to get materials up to the house," said Barcenas. "It's a steep climb, and the road is very curvy." Because EcoStar is only half the weight of natural slate, getting the materials up to Soellner's house was easier than it would have been with natural slate. With a steep elevation and remote location, Soellner did not deny that the project for his mountain home would be a challenging one. "Everything performs differently at a high elevation - the roof, the windows; we specify things a little differently."
Soellner's home is loaded with features that were intended to prevent degradation under the mountain's unforgiving weather. It was built with 30-inch timbers set upon a solid rock foundation, which is anchored down with pins and reinforcing bars. "With a home that is two-thirds of a mile above sea level, I wanted to use a roofing tile that would remain secured to the roof deck." All EcoStar tiles are tested and proven to withstand wind, water, fire and hail. With the integrity of EcoStar's 50-year Gold Star Warranty, Soellner knew he was getting a quality roofing product that would provide years of security and protection, even under the area's harshest conditions.
Soellner was first introduced to EcoStar's Majestic Slate tiles when he saw a builder using them on a neighbor's house. "I saw handsome slate roofs on neighboring homes. At least I thought it was natural slate," said Soellner. "I was surprised to find out it was made from rubber and plastic." So when his recent project came up, Soellner contacted local EcoStar's Southeast regional sales manager, Spence Bardeen, and worked from the premise that his house already consisted of natural, quality building materials and he didn't want a run-of-the-mill roof. "The more I found out about EcoStar, the more I liked it."
Equally important to Soellner was his desire to use sustainable, recycled materials. "With the ecology in mind, I utilized low-energy systems, or green materials in my home," said Soellner.
As a former master-planning architect for the Florida Solar Energy Center at The University of Central Florida in the 1980s, it's no wonder why Soellner invested time in finding a roof that would not compromise aesthetics, but also complement his environmentally friendly theme. In a house that features double-paned, low-emissivity windows and higher than required insulation levels, EcoStar's Majestic Slate tiles made perfect sense to Soellner.
Soellner wanted to select products that reflected his personal design. "It needs to look impressive; I direct several of my clients to view my home as an example of what I can do for them."
For more information, visit www.premiumroofs.com.