The Jaffa Group is a family business that goes to extremes to build dreams.
By Ann Zimmerman
In 1994, Richard Jaffa and son Scott joined their formidable talents together to found the Jaffa Group in Park City with the intent of offering custom-designed homes from conception to completion. With construction, architecture, and interior design under one roof, the Jaffa Group works with clients from site acquisition, land planning, initial job costs, design, building plans, bidding, permitting, construction, move-in, warranty, and maintenance.
“Yes, talking to clients, we saw the need for a one-stop firm that could globally handle construction, architecture, and interior design with one point of contact and completely integrated service and responsibility,” recounts Scott Jaffa, AIA. “Out-of-town clients especially want an easy and productive experience with no blame-shifting. The Jaffa Group offer that.”
“It’s also attractive to our clients that we have such a broad range of experience building custom and spec homes. It gives us a good sense of the market for what clients are looking to build. In addition, we know what things cost and consequently can prepare highly reliable preliminary budgets,” Scott notes.
However, clients can pick and choose the Jaffa Group’s services according to their wants and needs. “Clients can ask for as much or as little as best suits their situation. There are many cases where we only do the design or only the construction. Right now, we are working on a project where we are preparing the architectural design and constructing the home, but the client is opting to work with an outside interior designer they have worked with previously. We offer consolidated or individual services,” Scott clarifies.
And what are the advantages of one firm doing the entire project? “Our clients tell us they sense the entire house is one vision that echoes through the architecture, faucets, cabinets, and trim,” Scott answers. “There is a wholeness when design is consistent and well-thought through that clients describe as a great sense of being right and centered.”
Design and Build: Natural Partners
The Jaffa Group has completed approximately 100 new homes and significant remodels during its twenty years through the natural design/build partnership of father and son. Richard Jaffa has been constructing fine homes for an impressive 50 years, and in doing so he has assembled an ability for getting things done and making things work that only comes through experience. With roots in Park City dating back to 1981, Richard also knows the town and its people. Scott Jaffa, AIA, earned an undergraduate degree in design and a master’s degree in architecture, and he had extensive home design experience before joining the Jaffa Group.
Both Richard and Scott Jaffa apply technology to benefit their projects; job superintendents carry iPads, and the firm creates a project website for posting pictures, progress reports, quotes, and invoices. “We have clients in London and Africa, and they love enhanced communication,” notes Scott. “Plus, I think technology makes us better builders.”
Both Richard and Scott hold certifications in green building, and they have been local leaders in Park City’s green building movement. When asked about questions he gets, Scott responds, “There is a common misperception that a green home has a special look. We can design and build a green home tailored to fit the client with any look they want.”
The Jaffa Group’s commitment to raising the bar on design and construction in Park City has consistently been recognized over the years by their peers and professional associations with extensive awards. In turn, Richard has offered his time and leadership as president to the Park City Home Builders Association.
Many of the Jaffa Group’s clients return for repeat projects. Clients also offer the Jaffa Group testimonials as to their positive experience and pleasing results. “It’s who we are and what we do,” explains Richard. “We do our best, and we design and build easily and seamlessly.”
Trying New Things
The Jaffa Group recently completed a new LEED-certified Gold, contemporary 5,700-square-foot home in Park Meadows on a spacious lot looking up the ski runs. While others call it stunning, Scott has a different perspective. “Because it is my own home, I look upon it as a science project and a chance to experiment with new construction techniques and inventive detailing.”
Scott points out his approach to the home. “The outside of the home is intended to be maintenance-free. I used cement board siding painted with 20-year latex paint, stucco, stone and metal siding and roofing. In our remodeling work, I observed water damage when natural materials were assembled in a manner where they couldn’t breathe. Here we have a three-quarter-inch airbreak ventilation layer in the walls and a one-and-a-half-inch exterior rigid insulation thermal break. The photovoltaics on the roof are performing well, but I am revising the solar hot water system to work better with our demand.”
For Scott, a green home should endure. “I call this a life-cycle house: it is designed so that in 20 years, it is still relevant. I selected a simple, monochromatic scheme, since colors don’t stand the test of time as well as whites, browns, and blacks.”
Another important consideration for Scott was full use of all the home’s space by the couple and their active twin preschoolers. “We designed for how we live, rather than an ideal of how we would like to live, but won’t.” The concept is one of a great hall that combines an open kitchen with dining and living areas. A 22-foot wall of windows folds away to fully connect the space with the outdoors. It’s cozy for the four of them, and they can easily host a party or fundraiser for 200.
Scott and Richard say the build quality for this Gold-certified home is typical for the Jaffa Group, whether or not a certification is pursued. To learn more about the Jaffa Group, find them on the web, or call for a consultation appointment.