Our Team

Colao & Peter is an award-winning landscape architecture and construction firm serving Virginia, Maryland, and Washington, D.C. We specialize in residential and commercial projects of all sizes including, but not limited to, complete site design and construction, pools, pool houses, decks, patios, walkways, plantings, water features, driveways and outdoor kitchens.

Colao & Peter began as Colao Stone, a custom stone and masonry company. With masonry comprising more than 60% of most landscape projects, our origins in the masonry & stone industry give us a competitive advantage over other landscape companies.  We are able to design our landscapes so that they can be installed in the field efficiently, providing our clients with a project that is delivered on time and on budget.

Colao & Peter is a partnership between Joe Colao and JR Peter.  Joe Colao comes from a long line of stone masons with Joe Sr. being a first generation Italian stone mason working along the Hudson River in New York. JR Peter is a Registered Landscape Architect having graduated top of his class from Virginia Tech.

The management team of Colao & Peter brings very specific skill sets that allow for the success of even the most complicated projects. Fusing an understanding of architecture and creative design, combined with the ability to specify and install the right stone, ensures the completion of projects within their specific parameters. 


Joe Colao, standing in front of one of Colao & Peter's first full site builds.

Joe Colao, standing in front of one of Colao & Peter's first full site builds.

Joseph Colao III, Partner

With two decades of experience in the natural stone industry, Mr. Colao has worked and consulted on all types of residential and commercial stone project. Fluent in English, French and Chinese, he regularly travels overseas to inspect factories, quarries and carry out quality control testing to ensure complete adherence to the specifications of each material. With his language skills, Mr. Colao is able to communicate directly with the European and Asian suppliers, which streamlines the fabrication process. Being involved in the installation process, Mr. Colao not only understands the materials but also the parameters associated with quality installation done at a reasonable price.

Through his close relationship with his design team and partner, J.R. Peter, Mr. Colao is able to offer consulting services, design work, shop drawings, cut tickets and installation at the highest standards of the industry. With his quarry level knowledge of local materials as well as international materials (including but not limited to all materials from France, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Turkey, Israel, India, China and Brazil) as well as the installation process, Mr. Colao is able to assist in successfully completing even the most complex of stone projects. 


JR Peter accepting 3 LCA awards in 2017

JR Peter accepting 3 LCA awards in 2017

J.R. Peter, Partner, Registered Landscape Architect

Mr. Peter's background is in exterior design. He holds a degree in Landscape Architecture from Virginia Tech and brings with him almost 20 years of design experience in the landscape industry. He has worked in design-only firms as well as spent most of his years with a design/build company creating award-winning projects for his clients.

Mr. Peter has quickly gained a reputation for being extremely passionate about his work with a unique ability for making his clients always feel part of the design and installation process, regardless of the project size. His projects have been published in "Home & Design" and "Spaces" magazines and he has won the Grand Award for design from the Landscape Contractors Association of MD, DC and VA. As a Licensed Landscape Architect, Mr. Peter's projects have ranged from a small urban patio of $5,000 to large estate landscapes over $2 mm. 

"We believe it is important to work together with our clients to help them create their dreams. A client's home is so personal, and they interact with their space daily.  As a designer, I have the ability to transform their daily life experience to something more functional and beautiful, making our clients happy...and that's what drives me."