backyard bocce court
Photo: Keller and Keller
« »

Planning Where to Put the Space

The location of an outdoor room depends primarily on its purpose. “If playing bocce is what you want to do, it’s a whole lot different than if you want to drink wine with friends,” says Tina Skinner, author of Outdoor Rooms: Fresh-Air Kitchens and Living Areas. A dining and entertainment area, for example, should be close to the house, to minimize the hassle of ferrying food and beverages between indoors and out. A game room or sports court is best far from the house, to prevent errant balls from cracking a window and to give kids ample room to run. If you’re planning more than one outdoor space, it’s important to consider the flow between them; strategically placed focal points, such as a fireplace or fountain, can help draw people from one area to the next.

Schechter advises starting any outdoor-room project by taking into account four fundamentals: wind, light, view, and privacy. You want gentle breezes, not whipping winds; sunshine is great, but not when it brings baking heat; and while you may like your neighbors, you don’t want them as voyeurs in your backyard retreat.
Ask TOH users about Outdoor Structures

Contribute to This Story Below

    More in Landscaping