6 Stunning Summer Outdoor Rooms



Samara Greenwood Architecture, original photo on Houzz

We have no doubt come a long way in how we treat our outdoor garden spaces as extensions of our homes, fulfilling a need to sit outside and enjoy the sun in a cool and comfortable space. In years past, outdoor rooms often were nothing more than a covered area at the back of the house with no visible connection to the spaces within the house. They were not very inviting, and were more or less an empty space lacking character and real function.

But today many designers treat these outdoor garden spaces as they would a room within the house, providing outdoor area in which to sit, reflect and entertain. All aspects of interior design are merely translated to the outside, with alternative materials that withstand the elements with style. Here are some examples to get your creativity flowing.

1. A room above the treetops
You don’t have to know too much about this home to establish that it sits high above the treetops. The views are sensational not only of the landscape but also of the city (out of shot). And what better way to enjoy them than to sit under a pergola where the ground beneath appears to float? In this outdoor room, you don’t want to feel a sense of containment, but a sense of belonging to the landscape, so you can enjoy the outdoor elements.


CNC Building, original photo on Houzz

2. A theatrical outdoor room
Above a sunken courtyard sits this outdoor room with a great sense of drama. Originally intended as a carport, it’s also used as an outdoor stage and family area. Access is from a side bridge. There is no roof but a series of walls with mood lighting, a soft curtain at the rear and bifold doors. Here the focus is not on the green garden but the functionality of the hard-edged space.


Wolveridge Architects, original photo on Houzz

3. The trellis effect
The architects of this contemporary porch have designed an outdoor room that has a sense of enclosure while maintaining a relationship with the outside. Laser-cut screens both block and allow sun to penetrate, creating geometric shadows. The space is minimal while also being rich in material.


Compagnie D, original photo on Houzz

4. Mother Nature’s bedroom
The designers at Compagnie D have translated interior elements to the outdoors to create this peaceful retreat at the back corner of a garden. There’s a sense of enclosure: The tree canopy acts as the ceiling, the perimeter fences as the walls, and the lattice detail as textural wallpaper. The analogy doesn’t stop there. The decorative dishes sit on the wall like picture frames, and bird cages and lanterns in the trees act as pendant lighting. The soft, lush plants are Mother Nature’s carpet, leading to the daybed, a place of respite and rest. It’s an organic outdoor room for anyone’s garden.


Angus Mackenzie Architect, original photo on Houzz

5. A hole in the wall
Sometimes you want that outdoor garden room but you’re not prepared to create a space in its own right. Like opening a window to the outside to allow a cool breeze to enter, or to hear the sounds of birds singing in the trees, architect Angus Mackenzie created a hole in the wall of this home, where a series of sliding doors open to reveal the optimum indoor-outdoor seating spot. When weather permits, you can enjoy all the elements that Mother Nature provides and when such occasions require the closing of the glass doors, this window seat becomes a cosy interior corner in which to sit and view the world outside.


Highgate House, original photo on Houzz

6. The outdoor living room
You could be forgiven for thinking you were viewing a photo of a living room in a summer house, styled to reflect its location with the cool blues and whites of the ocean, when in fact, you are not inside the house at all. Rather, this photo was taken outside in a contemporary porch. The furnishings are durable outdoor-suitable materials like wicker for the seating area, durable wood and stainless steel for the table and plastic resin for the chairs. The interior designers have created the full outdoor experience with a built-in kitchen at one end and a central dining area and a place to sit at the other. Who says style has to be relegated to only the interior of the house?

This article was originally published on Houzz.com
For more related posts see:
Bring Birdsong to the Garden With a Bird Bath
Home Decorators Add a Touch of Designer Style to Outdoor Rooms
Pick the Right Outdoor Furniture to Enjoy Summer in Style

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