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A Bocce Court Livens up This Social Family’s Rhode Island Home

It’s all fun and games in this waterfront Rhode Island backyard.


Lighting design by Brilliant Lighting. Landscape contracting by Fields of Dreams Tree Farm & Landscaping. Build by Newport Housewrights. / Photo by Michael Osean

The Problem

While lowering an active family’s hilltop tennis court to create clearer sightlines out to the bay, landscape architect Katherine Field had to level the steep slope bordering it—and found herself with a new patch of yard that needed a purpose.

The Solution

Field’s proposal? A bocce court straight out of an Italian countryside. “They love having people around, and bocce is the kind of game where you can have several players,” she explains. The clients were onboard. Keeping the family’s busy lifestyle in mind, Field designed a court with low-maintenance synthetic turf bordered by artificial boxwoods. At the far end, she added an overflowing urn fountain sandwiched by two concrete Lunaform benches for when the game draws a crowd. Her final touch: installing strip lighting inside the court’s granite curbing, as well as custom gas torches and spotlights off the neighboring pergola—perfect for when “the family and friends [play] late into the evening,” she says.