Nebo, NC

Camp Lake James

A Rustic Mountain Retreat With Abundant Amenities


Completed 2008


Camp Lake James


Hospitality + Entertainment


Landscape Architecture, Civil Engineering

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An Experience Constructed by Nature

The backdrop of an idyllic mountain retreat leaves a memorable impression as guests and residents participate in several activities.

Nestled in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, Camp Lake James provides nearby residential communities with several recreational opportunities throughout its vast 36-acre property, such as swimming, boating, kayaking, and fishing. Amenities include a social hall, expedition center, amphitheater, pool and spa area, natural beach, docks, butterfly garden, and two tennis courts.

LandDesign worked with Crescent Resources from the project’s inception to its delivery, carefully crafting the unique amenity-driven experience communities would enjoy at Camp Lake James. The project is the recipient of multiple awards, including the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) NC Chapter Award of Merit (2009), American Society of Irrigation Consultants Excellence in Irrigation Award (2009) and American Institute of Architects (AIA) NC Chapter Award of Merit (2008).

Our Vision

Using Exclusive Mountain Retreats as a Blueprint for Unique Community Amenities

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Camp Lake James takes the luxury of a country club and blends it with the rich character of a rural mountain retreat. Natural materials, handcrafted details, and a native plant palette emphasize the seclusion of the resort, largely inspired by the existing landscape. Paths, ramps, and steps integrate with the terrain, sending visitors on a scenic journey wherever they are headed. Gathering spaces, including an amphitheater and campfire ring, are situated to maximize the natural views of the lake and mountain range.

The Challenge

Recreation With Respect for Nature

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To preserve the experience of immersive outdoor recreation, the client adopted guidelines for development that most notably challenged LandDesign to nestle built features into the landscape where they are subordinate to nature. A tree buffer between the lakefront and camp makes the structures barely visible from the water, maintaining an undisturbed view from the lake.