Our Story

Circa 1941.

Circa 1941.

Colao Stone & Design, Inc. was founded in 1999  by Joseph Colao III.  The company,  then called Milestone Stone By Design, was a stone supply and installation company based out of Washington DC.   Mr. Colao's decision to get into natural stone came from a long family heritage in masonry and construction.  Colao Sr., originating from Southern Italy, was a stone mason getting his start in White Planes NY and then ending up working residential projects throughout the Catskills and Hudson River.  Colao Jr. became a civil engineer working on complex construction projects in Sub Saharan Africa and the Asia Pacific Rim.

Combining his love for construction and international experience, Colao III began a stone importing company focusing in on supplying high-end construction projects with unique custom stone.  His ability to source and specify stone allowed for greater options to his clients as well as truly unique and giving them the best product for their projects.

As Mr. Colao's reputation grew, so did the request for the company to provide full scale architectural and design services.  From this emerged Colao Stone & Design, a partnership between himself and JR Peter, registered landscape architect.  The new company would focus on all aspects of landscape design/build from full scale design services (including 3D modeling) to installation pools, hardscape and plantings.

Joseph A Colao III, President

 A graduate of the College of William and Mary holding a BA in international Business, Mr Colao has fifteen years experience in the stone industry, having worked and consulted on all types of residential and commercial stone projects. Fluent in English, French and Chinese, he regularly goes oversees to inspect factories, quarries and do quality control testing to ensure complete adherence to the specifications of the project he is working on. With his language skills he is able to communicate directly with European and Asian suppliers streamlining the fabrication process. Being involved in the installation side through his company Colao Stone & Design, Inc., he not only understands the materials but also the parameters associated with quality installation done at a reasonable pace.

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 (incl. 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.

Mr. Colao holds a Class A contractor's license in VA and home improvement license in MD and has built and sold custom residential homes in excess of $2 mm allowing him to understand all aspects of construction

J.R. Peter,  Vice President, 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 ten 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 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 million.