Stylish and Unique Outdoor Entertaining Area Ideas

outdoor entertaining area ideasWho doesn’t want to be proud of their home? Your backyard might currently be an afterthought, but it can be so much more than a simple place where your kids or pets play. With the right backyard design, you can become the envy of the neighborhood. Here are our best outdoor entertaining area ideas to help you start envisioning what you want for your backyard living space.

Choose Furniture that Suits the Space and How You’ll Use It

To make your outdoor living space a great place to hang out, you first need proper seating. We recommend creating zones to encourage conversation and to customize your backyard for different purposes. For example, you might want lounge chairs in the sunniest parts of your deck or high top tables in areas where people will be eating as they mingle during parties.

If you’re building a new deck, consider some built-in seating as part of your backyard layout. Benches are perfect for extra seating when you need it, but can also serve as plant stands and even extra storage. They’re a great addition to any outdoor living space.

Add Lighting to Add Drama (and Safety!)

Adding proper lighting is extremely important if you plan to use your backyard for entertaining. Experts recommend three types of lighting:

  • Ambient or general lighting, which adds overall brightness to a space when the sun goes down (such as a big light so you can see your entire backyard)
  • Task lighting to provide direct light when you need to see (such as a small light over your grill)
  • Accent lighting, which gives you focal points and serves as a way to highlight the design of the space (such as adding solar powered lights to an outdoor fountain/pond or twinkling string lights draped across your deck)

If nothing else, make sure that you add lighting for safety in areas where your guests will be walking, such as around stairs. You don’t want a fun party derailed because someone falls.

Create Cozy Focal Points

When building an outdoor entertaining space, add some focal points for people to sit around and enjoy one another’s company. This can include the following:

  • Water features such as ponds and fountains
  • Fire pits
  • Outdoor fire places
  • Hot tubs
  • Outdoor televisions or projectors

These features instantly make your outdoor area more inviting. Fire features are an especially good idea because they make your deck usable during more months of the year.

Make Food and Drink Distribution Easy

One bummer about some backyards is that guests have to go inside your home every time they want a plate of food or a cold drink. Sure, you don’t have to have a full outdoor kitchen, but you can also simply add a few features to make your deck more convenient for food and drink distribution. Here are a few outdoor entertaining area ideas we love:

  • Add some built-in coolers. We love benches for this! However, this does require people to stand up whenever they want a drink, so it’s not for everyone.
  • Purchase a few rolling carts. You can add sorted drinks and ice for a party but roll them into storage when they aren’t in use so they don’t take up precious space, especially if you have a small deck.
  • Consider a small outdoor refrigerator, which can keep drinks cool and prevent people from constantly needing to go into your home for a refill.

We also love adding an enclosed area to your deck or screening in a porch. This gives you a space to have food out all evening without attracting bugs.

Build Extra Storage for Quick Party Clean-Up

One of the biggest features that homeowners don’t realize they’ll love until they have it is extra outdoor storage. Outdoor entertaining can create a lot of clutter in your home. Especially, this is true if you need to have extra seating, party decor, and other items that you only use occasionally. Adding a shed or other storage area solves this problem and makes clean-up a breeze. As a bonus, it gives you an easy way to store yard toys for the kids, pool supplies, and other items that you need to access quickly.

Include Design Features that Make the Space Usable Most of the Year

As we noted previously, adding a fire feature is a great way to make a deck usable during more months of the year. However, there are other features you can add to your outdoor space as well if you are hoping to use your backyard well into the cooler months or when it is raining. Here are two of our favorite options:

  • Add a roof to your deck – this makes your deck usable even during rain showers and can cut down on maintenance when if comes to leaf/debris removal in the fall.
  • Screen in your deck or porch – your space may not be heated with screens, but they can help break up the wind, prevent bugs, and provide shade during the hottest parts of summer.

Our team would be happy to discuss building a roof or adding screens for an existing deck/porch or designing and building a new deck/porch from scratch.

FAQs About Our Outdoor Entertaining Area Ideas

We’d love to answer any questions you have about our outdoor entertaining area ideas. Our team is always happy to discuss how we can work your backyard design ideas into the perfect plan for your home. Here are a few commonly asked questions to help you get started:

Will an outdoor living space add value to my home?

In most cases, yes! A professionally designed and built space will add value to your home. Click here to learn more about making the best financial decisions for your new deck or porch.

How can I decorate to make my space more inviting?

Simple is often better when it comes to your outdoor space, as you want the beauty of your yard to shine. Choose a few colors and patterns for outdoor furniture and rugs, and talk to a member of our team about special features, like the ones we discussed in this article, to make your backyard more inviting.

What should I do to get started working with your team?

Contact us today for a no-obligation consultation! We’d love to hear more about your ideas for an entertaining space and show you how a new deck or porch could be exactly what your backyard needs.