David Tisherman’s Visuals, Inc.; Photo courtesy of ©Costea Photography
Depending on where you live, for at least a few months of the year living outside is better than inside. As long as you're resourceful, you don't need to miss out on any of the indoor comforts while soaking up the sun. Is there anything that says bliss more accurately than swimming up to a tiki bar for a cocktail in the comfort of your own home?
One of the simple things that makes having an outdoor area really work is when you get to do "indoor" things outdoors. There are obvious safety concerns you need to navigate to do this, of course. For example, if you have wall-mounted TVs, you'll need to make sure that you can keep them from being a safety risk when it rains. If you're making a large outdoor seating space, you need to make sure things are covered when not in use.
With all that said, having an outdoor space to really cherish means pushing the boat out a little. There are some accessories that you just can't do without when it comes to making "just a pool and some chairs" into "a great outdoor space."
A Good Barbecue Grill
If you're going to spend a lot of time outdoors - and in summer, you're going to want to - then cook and eat out there! Barbecue grills are popular for a reason. Once you've got the hang of cooking this way, you'll want to keep doing it. And with the evening drawing in and the sun setting, it gives you a view to beat any restaurant.
That said, make sure you're getting a grill that's worth the money. Find one that scores high for safety first and foremost, but also one that gives a clean, even cook every time. Remember that it's going to be fairly close to a pool, so it needs to be sturdy and steady as there will be people, including kids, nearby most of the time.
Heat By The Pool
We all like a good swim and just to cool off every once in awhile when the mercury heads skyward. But too long spent in the pool can be bad for you, not least from a point of view of cramping. Also, at a certain point you just want to kick back and relax which isn't always easy to do in a swimming pool. This is where it is important to have some heat and keep tired muscles warm. Check sources like Hot Tub Advice to see what's available to suit your needs.
The best idea is to make sure your seated space is well served with patio heaters. Being open to the elements is nice during the day, but temperatures drop at night. When people come out of the pool, even in the height of summer, being wet and cold can do a number on their health. Sitting next to a heater with a towel wrapped around you is cozy, and also helps avoid muscle strains.
A Classy Pool House
We've all been there, planning a relaxing day whiled away poolside. Or in the pool, or both. Then the sky clouds over and makes it very obvious that there is rain in your future. Do you call off the pool party? You don't have to if you've got a decent pool house. When it's tricked out with a well stocked fridge, a TV and sound system, this can be a great refuge while you wait for the storm to clear.
A pool house is also an excellent solution if you have guests over for a pool party and not enough space in the house to accommodate everyone. There's a reason that pretty much every sitcom has had an adult son who has moved into the pool house for awhile. It's got everything you could want - sleeping space, entertainment, food and drink. Persuading people back to the main house could be the problem.
A Covered Seating Area
Some people might wonder why a person would go to great lengths to create an indoor-style space outside. The answer is simple. Outside you have all the fresh air you could want. You have open space around you and you're closer to nature. Does putting chairs, tables and modern conveniences into that space defeat the purpose? No. It allows you to do what you would be doing indoors, outside.
Got important paperwork to finish off before you go back to the office? It's a bummer, but it's much less unpleasant when done by the pool. Want to watch a big game on the hottest day of the year? Sat under a parasol with a pool just yards away is the ideal way to do that.
Having a roomy, covered seating area between your house and the pool means that you can be ready for any weather conditions. It is perfect for entertaining: there will always be space for people who want to have fun and for some privacy too. So if there are people indoors watching the TV with the volume up, you can still talk business sat by the pool.
As long as you keep in mind the key factors, your outdoor space will be one that you can be proud of. Remember that you need to keep safety in mind. This includes safety in the pool but also around it. If you're going to have appliances nearby, you need to make sure they don't get wet.
It also means ensuring the area is regularly cleaned. As clean and tidy as you might like to keep the indoor area, outside is not a controlled environment. Sun loungers and outdoor sofas need to be protected from the elements, and also from nature's own flora and fauna. So, too, do the grill and any appliances.
As long as you keep all of the above in mind, though, taking your indoor life outdoors is a way to let the stresses and strains of modern life melt away. Having a space like that is something that pays for itself in very short order, as long as you shop wisely. The biggest problem you'll have is getting visitors to leave!