Create an outdoor space that reflects your personal style and makes guests feel welcome and relaxed.
The warmer months have truly arrived here in Sydney and heading into summer, many are anticipating lingering days echoing the sounds of laughter, with the smell of BBQs wafting through the air – and a calendar full of social events with friends. This is the time of year when people shake off their hibernation and venture to the outdoors.
With months of warm weather on the way, prepare yourself and your home to better cope with logistics of hosting social and family gatherings. We have some outdoor entertaining tips for you to manage and flourish throughout the festive seasons of spring and summer.
We have listed 5 things you can do to create a great outdoor entertaining space, not only for Summer but all-year round.
Seamless House Design
One of the keys to successful outdoor spaces is helping your home flow seamlessly between the indoor and outdoor areas. Aussies have always had a love of the outdoors, and contemporary house designs are reflecting this affinity by blending the indoor and outdoors seamlessly. To get the most out of your home and the most out of your block, choosing a floor plan designed with your outdoors lifestyle in mind is a very important first step.
For some time now, at Better Built Homes we have been leading the way in house design – providing families with a connection to their natural environment while providing protection from the elements and everything you need for entertaining – the Astoria 39 house design features a walk-in butler’s pantry, seamless flow between indoors and out and proximity to entertaining areas to the back of the house, yet a division of space indoors to give guests opportunities to roam about the space.
In our harsh Australian climate, having shade in the warmer months is necessary for not only coping with but also enjoying the outdoors in the middle of a scorching summer’s day. Our Alfresco designs provide permanent cover, which allows protection outdoors from the searing sun and rain and also helps to reduce glare.
Plants provide shade and play a part in cooling the air also. Creepers can offer green all year round, or deciduous climbers soften the strong lines of the ceiling battens, and provide warming sunshine throughout winter, and work to cool a space in summer. Jamie Durie, host of the Seven Networks ‘The Outdoor Room’, suggests choosing plants native to the local area as they will be best adapted to the local soil and climate, and more likely to thrive in your local area.
A sense of privacy
Without closing out your neighbours and boxing yourselves in, it is important that your family and your guests have a sense of privacy while enjoying your outdoor area. Jamie Durie’s advice is that people will feel more comfortable if there is a sense of enclosure, even if it’s just suggestive. ‘No-one feels comfortable exposed to their neighbours, the cold wind, or the western sun.’ Simple solutions such as a wall of screening plants, an area to nestle some seating into, or even the shading canopy of a big tree, help to create a more comfortable feeling.
Amelia of the Undercover Architect encourages her clients to ‘look at the view your neighbours might have of your place from above, and create subtle screens by either selective landscaping and plants options’. Features such as decorative screens or water features can also help to obscure a direct view. However, there is a fine between feeling cosy and ‘imprisoned’ in your enclosed space.
Inject some personal style
Let your outdoor room reflect your personal style and make your guests feel at ease. It is a common trap people fall into of creating a great sense of comfort and style indoors and neglect the outdoor areas. By having a house design with an Alfresco right off the dining or kitchen areas allows for a more continuous and connected sense of space and use of your personal style.
Providing comfortable outdoor chairs, and thick comfortable cushions in various areas will encourage guests to not only venture outside but also linger and enjoy the experience. Consider various lighting options that create a more welcoming space – fairy lights and the trending larger outdoor string lights instantly create a warmer mood. Solar lanterns throughout the garden provide lighting for people moving about the area.
See our Pinterest Boards ‘Outdoor Entertaining Spaces’ and ‘Garden Inspirations’ for over 100 ideas for your own Alfresco or outdoor area. We have created boards with great plant suggestions for use as subtle screening options, and simple ways to decorate your Alfresco and garden to give your own personal touch.
Simplify the logistics
Encourage guest to move about the space by setting tables or having different ‘stations’ in different areas. For example – the drinks located inside and the dessert on another table outside. Access to food prep and cooking areas whether it the BBQ, the kitchen or both, is integral to having a more relaxed time hosting guests throughout the warmer months.
Many of our designs consider this, with the kitchen and family entertainment areas connected and flowing through to an alfresco. This way guests don’t have to disappear for hours to keep up with following the big game on TV and you don’t have to lose half of your party to the TV room.
Lastly, Invest in a good quality BBQ, and you will be set to go!
Drop into our display home at Oran Park Village to see for yourself the connection you can have with the outdoors by having the right house design and alfresco for your lifestyle. Alternatively, fill out our online contact form and tell us what you are looking for in your dream home. We’ll be in touch to help get you on your way!
Where: Corner of 52 Webber Loop and Winterbottom Street, Oran Park.
When: 7 days a week from 9am to 5pm
Contact: 1300 100 922.