6 Unique Ways to Create Indoor/Outdoor Spaces In Your Home
People often think of outdoor living as a lifestyle activity better suited to the beach, in tropical or Mediterranean climates. In fact, an EPA study revealed that, between home, work and automobiles, the average American spends 93% of their life indoors. But even without palm trees and sea breezes, you can have the benefit of the outdoors in your own home. At AV Architects & Builders, our philosophy is to build luxury custom homes that feel like vacation homes year-round. That means that we see outdoor spaces as an integral part of the master plan. We give careful thought to creating appealing indoor/outdoor spaces to increase their usage. Here are six unique ways that we integrate the outdoors into the master plan of a house.
1. The Entry Porch
The first access point to the home is the entry porch. A good entryway will include a porch with a roof so that you don’t get rained on when arriving home. Consider building a porch large enough to have an area for a chair and a table, letting you sit and have a drink while watching kids at play in the front yard.
2. Great Room Deck
The heart and soul of the home is the great room – a space designed to encourage the family to gather together. Build a deck or patio off the great room to extend this space into the outdoors. Make sure that the deck or patio is at the same elevation as the great room to be visible, accessible and inviting from the indoors. Don’t make the mistake of building the primary deck off the lower level. “Out of sight, out of mind” and inconvenience lead to disuse. To truly extend the great room into the outdoors, all or part of this deck should be covered, and perhaps even screened so that the space can get used for more of the year.
3. Outdoor Kitchen
Often, the great room and the kitchen are adjoined. Similarly, the outdoor deck or patio should adjoin an outdoor kitchen. In addition to being adjacent to the great room and the main kitchen, the outdoor kitchen should be close to the garage. These three places hold all the items you need for a successful kitchen, which can be as simple as an outdoor grill, or as complex as a fully functioning kitchen with all the appliances.
4. Owner’s Suite
A walk-off patio accessible only by the owner’s suite has become a must-have for people building custom homes. Since it will get more limited use for a morning coffee or a private evening cocktail, this patio does not need to be covered. Consider creating a private garden to truly make this an oasis within the master suite space.
5. Dining Room
When planning a dining room, consider having a small patio and roof extension with large sliding doors. This space can be opened-up allowing for a pre-meal drink and fresh air while dining. Depending on the layout of the house, this patio does not need to be enormous, but it is a great way to extend another part of the home into the outdoors.
6. Lower Level Activity Walk-Out
Today’s homes often include a planned exercise room on the lower level. When laying out this level, consider having the room accessible to the outdoors and build a patio where you can do morning yoga, or a post-workout stretch.
Luxury Custom Home Designs in Northern Virginia
With thoughtful planning, the outdoors can become more of an extension of the whole living space. Creating patios, decks and dedicated areas that have ease of access, and consideration to the intended use will maximize the likelihood that your outdoor spaces will be integrated into year-round living, creating the feeling of being on vacation in your own luxury custom home.
Contact AV Architects & Builders in Northern Virginia to schedule a luxury custom home design consultation today!