Imagine enjoying dinner outdoors on a warm Minnesota evening in the summertime. As the sun sets, you’re sipping after-dinner drinks on the patio while a fire twinkles in your outdoor fireplace.
Wouldn’t you love to have an outdoor kitchen, dining room, or living room? Not only are these outdoor spaces wonderful to enjoy with friends and family, but they’re also a terrific investment in your home’s value.
According to Realtor.com, four of the top 10 most profitable additions to your home can be combined with outdoor living: fireplaces, pools, exterior lighting, and kitchen upgrades. Outdoor kitchen/dining spaces are very popular, along with furnished living room style spaces, because they set the stage for hours of memorable gatherings.
Let’s take a closer look at your options for adding a custom outdoor kitchen, dining area, or living room with the help of a Minnesota landscape design professional.
Outdoor Kitchens and Dining Areas
There’s nothing else quite like outdoor dining. As you enjoy the natural beauty that surrounds your home, you can prepare a meal and spend time with your friends and family.
An outdoor kitchen makes the entire experience complete. Everything you need is right at your fingertips, designed especially for the outdoors right down to the smallest detail.
The best outdoor kitchen and dining areas are a perfect blend of functionality and beauty. Install strong, reliable, weather-proof cooking appliances that look stylish from every angle. Include natural stone countertops, durable flooring, and everything else that looks and feels right for your home.
Some of the top features we’re seeing on outdoor kitchens and dining rooms include:
- Outdoor weatherproof refrigerators
- Wine refrigerators
- Ice makers and ice chests
- Beer taps
- Deluxe two-sided grills
- Barbecue stations with side burners
- Warming drawers
- Pizza ovens
- Blenders and drink-making stations
- Storage drawers and weatherproof shelves
- Sinks and garbage disposals
- Trash and recycling stations
- Task lighting
- Bistro-style tables and chairs
- Extra-long tables with ample seating
- Bars and countertop seating areas
Cozy and Spacious Outdoor Living Rooms
Just steps away from your back door, you could have an outdoor living room where everyone can kick back and relax. Outdoor living rooms extend your floor plan beyond your home’s interior, welcoming nature right into your living space.
As you’re picturing an outdoor living room, let go of any old-fashioned notions about rickety patio furniture on a boring concrete slab. Today’s outdoor living spaces are fully furnished with comfortable lounges, end tables, footstools, decorative touches, and ample lighting that sets the mood well past dark.
An outdoor living room can be just as stylish and functional as an indoor living room. As you work with your landscape construction professional to design the space, consider adding features that make it feel like home.
Here are some outdoor living room features that bring style and comfort to your space:
- Flooring that matches or complements your indoor rooms
- High-style fireplaces with detailed stonework
- Low voltage outdoor lighting
- Overhead lighting fixtures, fans, and chandeliers
- Seating areas that include upholstered pillows and poufs
- Waterscaping features which integrate fully throughout the space
- Built-in audio and video capability
- Columns, arches, and other architectural/structural features
- Fold-away and slide-away doors that allow the interior to blend with the exterior
- Custom decking, like oversize parquet-style planks and slats on the diagonal
- Screens and privacy walls
Expert Landscape Design
As you build your outdoor kitchen, dining room, and living, room, remember the importance of blending it into the natural environment. This is what truly makes an outdoor space suit the style of your home.
Work with your landscape construction company to add hardscaping features throughout the space. By adding a stone seat wall and a matching stone fireplace, for example, you can elevate an ordinary patio to feel like a true outdoor room.
Incorporate landscaping plants and rock zones that are strong enough to take the tough Minnesota weather, all year round. With thoughtful exterior landscape design, you’ll enjoy your outdoor living spaces just as much as your home’s interior – if not more!
Start Designing Your Outdoor Space
If you’re ready to create an outdoor space you’ll love, connect with ALD, Minnesota’s landscape design-build experts. We’re a woman-owned company and a family business that has been serving the Minneapolis area since 2003.