What are Retaining Walls and Gravity Walls?

What are walls?  The walls I am referring to are made out of concrete and are made to look like a rock.  These walls are referred to as Retaining Walls or Gravity Walls.  Wall block comes in many sizes, shapes, and colors. Retaining or Gravity Walls can be little and used for something such as a seating wall or very large and used to hold up a parking lot that is twenty foot higher than the first wall of course.

Most of the walls we build in our area are used for seating around a patio or to outline a planter or tree.  This is an easy and quick way to add curb appeal to your house without a big expense. By doing something as simple as encircling a tree with a wall, only 15” high, you can change the whole look of your front yard.  These small garden walls allow you to build up the grade and keep the mulch from migrating into your grass.  We often add some low voltage lighting to the walls to give them a great look at night.

We use the same wall material to build steps; many times we build a set of steps and incorporate small planter walls next to them. Add some lights under the caps of the steps and wall……WOW!  What a great look. So if you want to add a little pizzazz to your yard and not spend tons of money, let us install a garden wall for you and see how it can change the look of your yard.  Contact us at DiPalantino Contractors to schedule a Free Consultation and we’ll help turn your home into a Masterpiece! 609-465-9102

By |October 11th, 2012|Blog|Comments Off on What are Retaining Walls and Gravity Walls?

DiPalantino Contractors Expert Hardscaping in Cape May Courthouse, NJ

DiPalantino Contractors

Pennsylvania contractor sets up shop in Middle Township after falling in love with Jersey Shore

By KEVIN POST, Business Editor press of

The ocean and beach lure a lot of vacationers to the shore, and sometimes they also lure business people.Michael DiPalantino of DiPalantino Contractors  Michael DiPalantino is one of them. Vacationing with his family in Cape May County as a young man, he fell in love with the area and his future wife, Karen.  His grandfather, who came over from Italy in 1929, was a stone and brick mason who started Joseph DiPalantino & Sons, a contracting firm in Huntington Valley, Pa.  Michael learned the trade from his grandfather and father, as did his brother, who stayed with the original business.  “I decided to make the move to South Jersey.  My wife is from here and I wanted to raise a family here in Middle Township,” DiPalantino said.

In 1999, DiPalantino Contractors was born, whose primary work is in hardscaping, including pavers, retaining walls, concrete, brick and stone work.  Pavers in particular were made a centerpiece of the business, early enough that DiPalantino lined up as his online address.  “Everybody thought we were crazy specializing in pavers.  It was before they got really popular,” he said.  He trained at EP Henry Corp. of Vineland, a hardscape materials manufacturer, on the fine points of paver installations.

Outdoor living areas, as well as stone home entries and driveways, have been in big demand the past decade, and have fallen off less than most home-related sectors in the economic downturn.  “Even with the economy, business has been pretty good this year, with people putting money back into their houses instead of selling,” DiPalantino said.  That means lots of work creating outdoor kitchens, patios, fireplaces and pergolas – arbors made of cedar or vinyl beams that top the kitchen or even surround the fireplace.  DiPalantino said he has a strong project manager and designer in Mark Supran, of Vineland, whose 30 years in the business include horticulture and landscape planning.  “We don’t do landscape but our designs always include what’s going in there,” DiPalantino said.

Another side of the business sells and installs a full line of enclosed or screened rooms for seasonal or year-round use.  South Jersey Sunrooms is a dealer for Crown Sunrooms and Sunroom Source.  Built on concrete, a block foundation or a deck, the sunrooms typically are 12 feet by 30 feet, but can range up to 16 by 45, he said.  Engineered floors with 6 inches of foam insulation are available so any of the all-vinyl rooms can be used year-round.DiPalantino Contractors - Installing pavers, Stone walls and an outdoor fireplace

“All are available with our popular Eze-Breeze four-track-window system, which allows all four panes to retract to the top or bottom for a 75 percent open window instead of the usual half,” DiPalantino said.  The windows are on a model sunroom that the company has built inside the Pool Zone on Route 9 in Cape May Court House, he said.

Seventy percent of the company’s work is on the island and 30 percent on the mainland, he said.  Staff size adjusts to the seasonal variation, with a dozen in summer dropping to six to eight by January.

In winter, DiPalantino Contractors offsets the slowdown in stone and sunroom work by adding snow removal to the mix.  For that, up to 16 workers may be called in, he said.  DiPalantino said his father was worried that his business wouldn’t have enough work, since his territory – north to Linwood and Egg Harbor Township – is not very densely populated and stonemasonry is a disappearing craft.

But two years after launching, DiPalantino Contractors already was busy and making a name for itself, and his father was asking what the secret was, he said.  “I told him, ‘It’s simple.  Do good work, show up for appointments and give a fair price,'” DiPalantino said.  “You’d be surprised, a lot of contractors don’t show up.  They’re called Cape Maybes.”

By |July 25th, 2012|Blog|Comments Off on DiPalantino Contractors Expert Hardscaping in Cape May Courthouse, NJ

A Back Yard Pool Party is Always a Hit

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Hosting a party in this backyard is always a hit!  Custom features planned into this design allowed the homeowners to create a beautiful backyard getaway for themselves as well as family and friends without exceeding their budget.  DiPalantino Contractors, working together with other key contractors were able to work together for seamless installation and maximum use of potential for this backyard project.

When the homeowners chose to install a pool they contacted USA Pools located in Avalon, New Jersey.  DiPalantino Contractors was contacted to install the pool patio and to incorporate a bar to be located near the pool.  After meeting with the homeowners to discuss their wants and ideas, a design was drawn up.

There was an existing deck coming off of the house that had stairs heading towards the driveway on the side of the house; initially the stairs were located heading straight out to the pool.  After planning to install the bar by the pool side, Mike DiPalantino of DiPalantino Contractors realized that there wouldn’t be adequate room for people to pass by the stairs and be behind the bar comfortably or safely.  Having contractors working together at this stage of the project allows for any unforeseen issues to be hammered out before installation begins saving everyone time, money and headaches.  Plans where changed to move the stairs to the left side leading down to the side of the house and the side railing was made removable in order to watch the television that was strategically placed to be viewed from outside.

The bar installed by DiPalantino Contractors, is finished with EP Henry Veneer Stone.  The granite counters for the bars and stool seats was selected from and provided by Merlino Marble & Granite (Cape May Court House, NJ).  The stools that are in the pool swivel, can be easily removed at any time, and were crafted by Oceanview Welding (Oceanview, NJ).

A custom waterfall feature coming out of the bar is a unique concept.  Although it looks like the water would hit you directly in the lap as you sit there, it actually hits your feet keeping you cool as you relax with your family and friends.  Electric is ran to the bar allowing the host to use the counter space as an outdoor kitchen instead of running back and forth to the kitchen inside.

The pool has a paver coping; the patio surrounding the pool is concrete and has paver bands inset.  This allows the homeowners the beauty of having pavers, but keeps the expense down by mixing it with the concrete.  The Penn State emblem has been installed on the pool step, truly making this a custom project the homeowners will enjoy for years to come.

By |July 24th, 2012|Blog|Comments Off on A Back Yard Pool Party is Always a Hit

Add a Back Yard Retreat to your Home!

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It’s a great time to add a back yard retreat to your home!

A retreat doesn’t have to be some massive paver patio with all the bells and whistles.  It can simply be a small paver or natural stone patio with a fire pit maybe or a small water feature.  Something you can sit down with your friends and family, just enjoying quality time together.  I can’t tell you how many times I sit down with my family around our fire pit during the summer months.  It is one of my kid’s favorite things to do.  We roast marsh mellows, make s’mores and hobo pies.  Not to mention the open fires help keep the pesky bugs away.

If you like to entertain your friends than maybe an outside kitchen is the way to go.  An outside kitchen can be as simple as a grill with a beautiful counter top.  It can also be more elaborate by adding a side burner, a warming oven, icemaker or refrigerator, the more you add the more convenient it is to entertain your guests.  A nice thing about having all the amenities you have inside your house outside is that you are not running back and forth in and out of the house.

Adding a raised countertop or raised table connected to your outside kitchen adds a nice feature.  This creates a place for you and your guests to sit and enjoy a drink or enjoy the wonderful food you have prepared for them.  It also allows the chef to be part of the conversation with everybody.

So if you want spend some more time enjoying your home this summer (and save on gas), give DiPalantino Contractors a call at 609-465-9102.  We will design an amazing getaway to fit your home, lifestyle, and budget.

By |July 24th, 2012|Blog|Comments Off on Add a Back Yard Retreat to your Home!

DiPalantino New Website Coming Soon!

DiPalantino New Website Coming Soon!

By |May 10th, 2012|Blog|Comments Off on DiPalantino New Website Coming Soon!