Designing a Dual-Purpose, Luxury Outdoor Living Space Luxury Living: Designing an Outdoor Space for Entertaining & Relaxing Written by Wayne Visbeen, AIA, IIDA, principal & founder of Visbeen Architects, Inc.
The desire for outdoor living spaces has increased exponentially over the years. Homeowners who were once satisfied with a glorified fire pit and some lawn chairs are raising the bar and their expectations when it comes to outdoor living design. Outdoor spaces are acting as a relaxing backyard oasis to escape life’s stressors and as a place to host friends and family comfortably. One of my favorite designs, the Avington, is a contemporary # bed, # bath home perched on the shore of Lake Huron, which is a great example of versatile, luxury outdoor living. Whether you are floating in the pool or enjoying the warmth of a fire, the Avington’s backyard patio overlooks shimmering blue waters and breathtaking sunsets.
When designing an outdoor living space, there are two important purposes to keep in mind—entertainment and relaxation.
An Exciting Entertainment Space:
Walking in the front door of the Avington, the first thing you’ll notice through the rear wall of glass is the gorgeous outdoor living space. One important aspect of this design is the seamless integration between the outdoors and indoors. Among the amenities is a beautiful infinity pool large enough for the whole family and their friends to enjoy together. When there’s a chill in the air, the two-way LuxuriaTM Linear Fireplace provides these homeowners and their guests with the heat they need and the aesthetic they love.
The entertainment complex has seating for dozens around a warm, inviting Napoleon Fire Table. A luxury grill and outdoor kitchen allow the grill masters of the family to whip up a tasty meal, from basic burgers to fantastic filets, for many hungry guests at one time. A custom bar allows the mixologist of the family to create craft cocktails with ease without needing to return indoors.
A Relaxing Retreat:
When the guests are gone, this entertainment hot spot transforms into a relaxing oasis. With the crash of the waves playing a lake house melody, these homeowners can float in the pool, relax on the large outdoor sectional or unwind in the hot tub and enjoy the built-in gas Luxuria fireplace. The reality is, Michigan’s weather can be unpredictable and the winters can be harsh. An outdoor fireplace extends the longevity in which a homeowner can enjoy the space. When the outdoor living space is winterized, these homeowners can still enjoy the relaxing beauty of this fireplace. The Luxuria Indoor/Outdoor Kit allows for two-sided enjoyment. In this design, the fireplace can be enjoyed while soaking in the outdoor hot tub and from the master bathroom’s Jacuzzi tub. In other designs, the Luxuria Indoor/Outdoor Kit can be utilized to view the fireplace from any indoor space, such as a living room or family room, and from the outdoor living space as well. A two-way fireplace allows for double the enjoyment, especially in climates that dictate the use.
The Avington is a great example of a space that can accomplish multiple purposes—entertainment and relaxation. Whether you are jumping in the pool or unwinding in the hot tub, cookin’ up a gourmet meal or sipping wine by the fireplace, The Avington offers a functional, luxury outdoor living space any homeowner would love.
Wayne Visbeen, AIA, IIDA, principal and founder of Visbeen Architects, Inc., is known for his one-of-a-kind home designs. Visbeen works with clients to understand the important aspects of their vision and then transforms these into a conceptual sketch right before their eyes. Winner of more than 100 Residential Design Awards and dozens of Best in American Living Awards, Visbeen incorporates these themes and more into his designs and his own home, located in Grand Rapids, Mich.