Been longing to design your own stylish outdoor retreat but have no idea where to start? Whether you have a porch, pool, or patio, take advantage of the warm summer weather and create your own stunning outdoor space with our inspiring collection of outdoor spaces that will help guide you in creating a luxurious outside lounge. To create a truly functional outdoor space for relaxing and entertaining requires some careful planning. Just like you would design an indoor space, you will need to consider such design aesthetics as architectural style, color harmony, good traffic flow, space requirements and comfort. An outdoor room has its own special challenges, including designing for privacy and creating shelter from the elements.
You will need to determine both the size and layout of your outdoor space, which will depend mainly on the activities you wish to accommodate as well as the size of your property. Whether your outdoor room is cozy and intimate or large and spacious, you will want to consider creating separate zones for various activities—such as cooking, conversation and relaxation—while ensuring there is good traffic flow throughout the space. When situating your outdoor room, also consider the natural elements such as prevailing winds and sun orientation.
We have more design tips suggested for you as you look through our collection of 31 simple ways to create a stylish, inviting outdoor room.
Complement your home’s architectural style. The patterns and colors possible with decorative concrete are unlimited. Narrow down the options by choosing a design scheme that harmonizes with your home and landscape and echoes the design of your indoor rooms.
Create a room with a view by orienting seating areas to overlook flowerbeds, water features and other attractive scenery.
Plan for privacy. Your outdoor room won’t have walls, so if privacy and noise are concerns, you’ll need to install a fence or tall landscaping plants between you and the neighbors. For design continuity, consider installing a precast concrete fence or screening wall with a decorative stone or brick pattern that complements your concrete patio.
Consider convenience. Your outdoor room should be easily accessible from the house, with food preparation areas located near your indoor kitchen to reduce trips back and forth. Also consider access to power and water.
Provide a sheltered retreat. Awnings, umbrellas, gazebos, and pergolas supported by decorative concrete columns are all ways to shelter your outdoor guests from harsh sunlight and light rain while creating intimacy.
Take it in stages. If you’re on a tight budget, you can build your outdoor room in stages, starting with a decorative concrete patio and a concrete countertop for serving food. You can install other features later, such as an outdoor fireplace, a decorative concrete fountain, landscaping and lighting.
Get help pulling it all together. Work with a landscape architect and decorative concrete contractor to make your design ideas reality. These professionals can help you plan an outdoor room that matches your budget, aesthetic and functional requirements.
Photo Sources: 1. FormLA Landscaping, 2. Incorporated, 3. Dufner Heighes Inc, 4. Jeffrey Gordon Smith Landscape, 5. Ana Williamson Architect, 6. SchappacherWhite Ltd., 7. AMS Landscape Design Studios, 8. Kemp Hall Studio, 9. Outer space Landscape Architecture, 10. Charmean Neithart Interiors, 11. Dresser Homes, 12. Michelle Walker architects, 13. Tim Clarke Design, 14. J. Grant Design Studio, 15. Pinterest, 16. Architectural Digest, 17. Pedersen Associates, 18. Sennikoff Architects, 19. Sealy Design Inc., 20. Cornerstone Architects, 21. Paradise Restored Landscaping, 22. Chandos Interiors, 23. Allen Bianchi, 24. Sutton Suzuki Architects, 25. Bianchi Design, 26. MJ Lanphier Interior Design, 27. Castro Design Studio, 28. Summerour Architects, 29. Molly Wood Garden Design, 30. Culbertson Durst Interiors, 31. Urban Jobe Architecture
Sandy Koepke is a Los Angeles, California based designer who creates stunning outdoor rooms for her clients for entertaining, dining and the pure enjoyment of being immersed in nature along with beautiful interiors that are timeless design that radiates warm and comfortable family environments. “Sunlight. Space. Sophisticated comfort. These are the elements I incorporate into every home and garden design. Yet each project is as individual as the clients — compatible with the specific site and architecture, and reflecting their own style and needs.”
Sandy has a BFA from the University of Nebraska and an MFA from Arizona State University. She developed her incredible design style from living in sunny Southern California. Her style is fun and relaxed, combining the best ingredients in imaginative ways; creating seamless transitions from indoors to out. Twinkling layers of vintage lighting and masses of succulents in California pottery and salvaged containers add charm and color to her outdoor living environments.
“I love the design process: the attention to detail, partnership with my clients and collaboration with architects, contractors and artisans. Most of all, I love turning ordinary spaces into beautiful places that welcome you home. Timeless and effortless….a light-filled and light-hearted approach to interior and garden design.” Sandy’s work has been featured in national shelter magazines, design books and on HGTV.
Photos: Courtesy of Sandy Koepke
When the owners of this Canterbury property in Victoria, Australia were briefing the architects at Canny Design of their requirements for their new home, the wish list included a clean line and functional architectural home. Outdoor enthusiasts, they stipulated that a water feature and an alfresco area be a component of the outdoor space – viewable from all the main rooms, whilst taking advantage of the northerly aspect.
Whilst the home carries a somewhat modest facade, it’s the interior and rear components that really set the tone of this casually sophisticated property. With four bedrooms, four-car basement garage, two-and-a-half bathrooms, cellar and four living areas, it encapsulates everything the clients could possibly imagine. Everything about this home is state-of-the-art, from the Jetmaster fireplace and integrated barbecue in the pool house, to the dumb waiter and $15,000 custom built glass pane from the study outlook to pool, no expense was spared in creating this perfectly tuned home.
The Canny Design team exceeded the expectations of the clients with a stunning lap pool and water feature combination, with the ‘floating deck’ a focal point of the overall entertaining area. The granite external cladding on feature walls and thoughtful use of timber assist with the seamless integration of the home’s functional and aesthetic components. The fully-tiled pool with granite stepping stones marries in beautifully with the stonework of the adjacent alfresco area; and the spotted gum decking flows from the polished floorboards of the main living area to provide an inviting exterior island oasis. The 15×2 m lap lane adds functionality to the pool, whilst continuing the theme of a wrap-around water feature. The pool is fitted with in-floor cleaning, solar heating and premium filtration to keep it looking perfect year-round with minimum fuss.
Canny, renowned as one of Melbourne’s leading design and construction companies, have an in-house team of architects and interior designers who have the combined capacity to create a truly unique concepts. With all services under one roof, from design, engineering, documentation and construction, Canny provides an integrated solution and coordinated approach to even the most demanding and intricate projects.
Photos: Courtesy of Canny Design
Domus Civita is a unique 14th century medieval home nestled in the pristine medieval village of Civita di Bagnoregio, Italy set into carved volcanic rock by two rivers. Entering the old town by walking over its footbridge and going through its Etruscan gateway is like stepping back in time 600 years to rediscover the beauty and peace of a different way of life. The home is set on top of 2,600 year old Etruscan caves and tombs and a beautiful 2,000 year old Roman water cistern, all of which are accessible from inside the house and spill open onto a beautiful hanging garden that is four stories down and through the cliff.
The owner wanted took the ‘soul’ of the house and re-expressed it by contrasting it with modern interventions and furnishings, adding a touch of romanticism and humor. Preserving the original and beautiful details of the home, a new stairwell was added to connect all three levels. Left all white with soft and delicate details, there are accents of brass, gold and grey with bursts of bright color throughout. A simple and serene ambiance chalk full of wonderment and romantic touches.
The residence has three bedrooms all with private baths and a study with extra beds. The home can host up to eight guests. There are two kitchens, one inside the house and one in a cave that opens onto the garden. There is a heating swimming pool with Jacuzzi inside one of the largest caves and a unique wine cellar for guests inside the Roman water cistern. All the other caves, which there are nine in total, are devoted to art installations and storage. The house also has a formal Italian garden with an old fountain, an outdoor living room and a gazebo with barbeque for outdoor dining.
Domus Civita is available on a weekly basis from Saturday to Saturday year round, with prices ranging from $2,950 – $4,950, from here.
This gorgeous eight-bedroom estate is comprised of three villas in a walled compound in the beach town of Seminyak, on Bali’s southwest shore. The property is only two years old, with two three-bedroom villas and one two-bedroom villa, all with en-suite bathrooms and their own private entrances and swimming pool. Large sliding wooden gates in the garden separate the villas from one another, allowing privacy between villas or they can be combined to create an expansive private compound. The entire compound is comprised of 9,200 square feet (855 square meters) of living space.
The main villa is sprawled out all on one level, situated at the front of the property, featuring a lotus pond in the entryway and an intricately carved ironwood door. The living and dining spaces are designed as an open plan, boasting hardwood flooring and a soaring shingled ceiling that is illuminated by fabulous Swarovsky crystal chandeliers. Sliding glass doors off the back of this space spill out onto a pool deck. The dining area is connected to the fully equipped kitchen with a breakfast bar.
The master bedroom overlooks two decorative ponds with koi and Balinese stone fountains. The en-suite bathroom features a rainfall shower and a large bathtub carved out of a river rock. There are two additional bedrooms that complete the main villa, one with direct access to the pool area, the other, doubles as a den, adjoining a spa room. The smaller villas both contain kitchens and living rooms; one has two bedrooms, the other three. All of the swimming pools are surrounded by lounge chairs, coconut trees and tropical gardens.
This sensational estate is listed for sale at $1.95 million, from here.
This ancient farmhouse of pheasants in the South of France has been beautifully transformed by interior designer Elizabeth López-Quesada. Green meadows and paths of lime trees and chestnuts surround the cabin, whose exterior is composed of eucalyptus wood and cedar shingles. The spectacular garden is comprised of roses, hydrangeas, oaks and jasmine, designed by landscape designer Fernando Caruncho. The outside porch features a living and outdoor dining space, protected from the elements by beams of pine and permits the owners to enjoy the stunning landscape.
Unscripted, spontaneous decisions inspired the decoration of this fabulous home. The interiors feature a rustic-chic look, with recovered corrugated iron from an old chicken coop dressing the walls and ceiling and untreated concrete flooring in the living room. The furnishings are simple, with a look of sophistication like the Artemide lamp. The kitchen is designed in a vintage-chic style with a pine table illuminated by a lamp of industrial air. Other details include chairs of natural fiber, old utensils and a charming sink, that the owner rescued. A large wood cabinet delineates the charming master bedroom from the bathroom and also serves as a backdrop to the gooseneck lamps that contribute light for reading on either side of the bed. The double wash basin in the bathroom has been designed by Isabel. The sculptural, open-curved shower was purchased in Paris. Via
It is that time of year again, time to start preparing your outdoor spaces for summer. There are numerous ways to infuse life into your outdoor living spaces and create your own personal backyard oasis based on your budget and limitless creativity. Outdoor living is a dream for all of us; it is an extension of your home so it must be a beautiful and cozy place for it to be a pleasurable experience to spend time in this environment. Whether your plans include creating a cozy courtyard or an expansive patio or terrace with all the amenities, you just need some ideas and inspiration to make your space a truly beautiful and relaxing place to be. We have gathered a collection of inspiring outdoor spaces for all budgets, chalk full of ideas, whether you want an outdoor movie theater or a heavenly tranquil oasis where you can curl up and read a book. So sit back, relax, and be inspired for summer with this collection we put together for you of 50 inspiring ideas that will be sure to rock your senses. Don’t forget to let us know which outdoor living space is your favorite!
This beautiful cabin retreat is situated on over 800 feet of river frontage on the Roaring Fork of Woody Creek, Colorado. An angler’s paradise, the newly remodeled 2,147 square foot (199 square meters) main house includes a newly constructed river pavilion located on the river’s edge. The residence is designed with clean interiors featuring contemporary furnishings, wood beamed ceilings in the living, dining and kitchen areas and plenty of natural light with high ceilings and skylights. This is the ultimate angler’s retreat with a “honey hole” right outside your back door. What do you think of this cabin paradise retreat, could you spend your holidays here?
This cozy cabin retreat is listed at $3,895,000 from here.
The Westlake Drive house is located on a beautiful golf course in Austin Texas, designed by James D. LaRue Architects. This sleek and contemporary residence is set deep into the hillside, blending seamlessly into its environment. According to the architects, the overall design of this 4,722 square foot home consists of three separate building structures, each housing different functions but all flawlessly connected by bridges, breezeways and â€˜streetsâ€™. A cantilevered steel entry bridge hovers over an impressive, cave stone covered retaining wall creating a sunken garden below with a cool continuous breeze. An abundance of windows, a glass enclosed bridge to the Master Suite and a glass lined stairwell allow for golf course views from nearly every room while erasing the separation of indoors and outdoors. Stone walls that continue from the exterior to interior, lend in drawing nature inside. Complete with a pool, outdoor kitchen, fireplaces and several seating areas, the outdoor living space blends naturally with the surrounding environment creating a modern but warm appearance. Despite the challenging terrain, this sophisticated, Texas contemporary home merges with ease into the hillside presenting a sophisticated look to the passing golfers while enjoying a coveted view of the golf course.â€ Via
Visit the website of James D. LaRue Architects here.
This beautiful home we are bringing to you today from Skeppsholmen features all the imaginable amenities one could dream for dispersed onto two levels. This private dwelling is located on the 6th floor with ample glass windows and a large terrace with a mini pool in one part and a bar in the other, as well as a dining area and lounge as well as expansive city views of Malmo, Sweden. The incredible 3,670 square foot (341 square meters) floor plan has been designed brilliantly with materials and furnishings that are consistently of the highest class. The open kitchen boasts top of the line appliances and a generous dining area and beautiful fireplace for cozy autumn evenings in good company. There is also a wine room, heated and with the correct humidity. The floor plan encompasses three bedrooms, two bathrooms, a generous sized living room, additional lounges with a smaller kitchen and two separate balconies in the west. The master bedroom boasts direct proximity to both the balcony and an exclusive spa. The luxurious spa includes a steam room, generous bathtub and shower.