“Trying to be as gentle as possible with what was already there because it was incredibly beautiful, it was just like a diamond in the rough. There was just a lot of polishing and refining. It really felt like it was taking shape, kind of like a sculpture when you’re chipping away all these pieces and you begin to actually see the figure and form of what you’re creating.”
We’re in great company with Isaac French, Founder of Live Oak Lake where guests can find respite, restoration and relaxation at modern lakeside cabins nestled in nature, yet right outside of the charming downtown Waco, Texas.
After growing up just minutes down the road, Isaac spent time in the Pacific Northwest where his deep love of nature and the principles of timeless design that best harmonie with it, took root. Upon returning home, Isaac and his wife Helen took their Southern hospitality to new heights in creating Live Oak Lake.
In celebration of Father’s Day, Isaac pays homage to the values and entrepreneurial spirit rooted in his large family tree, and what he hopes to pass on to his newborn son and the next generation of the French family.
[1:30] Having grown up down the road with 9 siblings in a family of entrepreneurs, agriculturists, artists and tradespeople, Isaac shares what drew him back home and what he is building here.
[11:00] Isaac’s advice in pursuing an entrepreneurial career is to “always be learning.” Make mistakes, find a mentor, get your hands dirty and do it yourself to learn how it’s done.
[3:30] From a dream concept to a chance glance at a Zillow Listing to building reality, how Live Oak Lake came to be.
[25:00] From the gated driveway to the cabins nestled amongst the live oak trees to “The Commons” patio, pool, pergola and dock, Isaac paints a picture of the setting, like “stepping into another world.”
[26:55] Isaac describes the inspiration behind the minimalist design of these cabins intended to disappear into nature.
[38:00] Beyond Live Oak Lake, Isaac hopes to inspire and help others create their own landscape hotel concepts throughout other underserved markets or “hidden gems” all around the world.
[42:55] What Isaac hopes to teach his son Lucas in fostering a sense of curiosity and creativity, just as he was blessed with learning from his own parents as a child.
The French Family’s Businesses in Deary, Idaho
Homestead Heritage Farm & Community in Waco, Texas
Magnolia in Waco, Texas
Den Outdoors Home Plans
Olsen Kundig Architecture & Design
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