Move Your Life Outdoors!

Outside Living Rooms

Ease of movement and flow are essential when connecting indoor and outdoor spaces. Outside rooms  designed for relaxation and recreation will add new living areas to your property whiole increasing your home’s value by as much as 15%.  Not a bad return on a project meant to help you make the most of your property — which  you already own!  Designing and installing  fresh, exciting and timeless landscape architectural designs that remain functional are key to the spaces I create for clients.     

This week we’re going to explore outside living possibilities.  First up?    Outdoor “living rooms,” which became popular after the Sept. 11th terrorist attacks.  These spaces gained even more popularity in 2007 as an uncertain economy became a regular presence in our lives.  I design a smaller version of these spaces that I call “cocoon” spaces which comfort and inspire.    

Outdoor living rooms are the second most popular home remodeling project after remodeling of a kitchen.  These spaces can include fireplaces or firepits, a cooking station and comfortable seating.  They can also reflect your own distinct personality while providing a welcome getaway for family and friends.  Kitchens add value to any home, and an outside kitchen will most definitely increase your home’s value.  

It’s important to work with a professional on this type of living space.  Landscape architects are educated in how to design these types of outdoor living areas, properly locate and install them, and take all of the architectural elements into considerations (grading, etc.) so there will be no problems down the road.  



Outdoor Entertainment Areas

Heat Up Your Outdoor Space!

Transforming an outside space into a cozy and intimate area to gather with family and friends is easier than you may think.  I call these intimate garden areas “cocoon spaces,” which became a trend in 2007 as the uncertain  economy  prompted  home- owners to spend more time at home.   Cocoon spaces are safe and secure intimite garden areas, and in addition to giving home- owners an affordable and inspiring new garden space to escape to with friends, they can increase a home’s value by as much as 15%.  

The cocoon space trend continues into 2011, but this year we’re turning up the heat!  Because of recent  technologies and other new options, smaller outdoor kitchens and fireplaces have become easier and much more affordable to install.  A small and thoughtfully designed outdoor kitchen area gives your home a new heart and gathering spot, while an outdoor fireplace adds a multi-seasonal  cozy spot for intimate conversations with family & friends. 

An added bonus?  By using a mix of recycled stone, and hardscape materials purchased from local artists and quarries, you can take a new “green” step in your garden space while supporting local businesses.  Take it outside this year, and enjoy your garden spaces!