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8 Things to Consider for a Great Alfresco Area

Outdoor living and entertaining is part of the Australian way of life. The climate in most parts of the country is ideal for being outside, and it is part of our culture to entertain family and friends in the great outdoors. In your new house design, it is about bringing the outside world in, and extending living spaces past the back door. Here are our top tips for designing the best outdoor alfresco living area:

1.Integrate inside and outside

Ideally you want to design your alfresco room to feel as integrated and connected to the indoor living spaces as possible.

Folding doors integrate inside and outside

2. Size

Think about how you are going to use the space to determine the best size.

A large multi-use alfresco area

3. Shade

Your alfresco room should be a space you can enjoy throughout the day. In the Australian climate it is particularly important that there is adequate shade cover. For alfresco areas that are integrated with the main house, they often have a fully plasterboard ceiling, but if not, here are a few ideas.

Louvered roof provides shade in the warmer months

4. Climate/weather

It is great if you can use the space all year around and in most weather conditions.

A fireplace brings warmth in the colder months

5. Outdoor kitchens/BBQ

If you are thinking about including an outdoor kitchen, here are some questions to ask yourself:

A sleek and functional outdoor kitchen


6. Lighting

Lighting is a really important element that can help set the tone of your alfresco area. Unlike some of your indoor spaces where you need bright task lighting, this is an area where you want to create a relaxed atmosphere. Have multiple lighting options.

Up/down wall lights can be used for ambient lighting

7. Decorating/Styling

With all the choices you make in styling your outdoor room, you want to think about creating a relaxing calm mood.

Dark colours can create a relaxed mood

8. Landscaping

Just as you should think about how your inside spaces blend with your outside spaces, don’t forget to consider what kind of landscaping you are likely to do. The best alfresco areas seamlessly link between both spaces and should integrate with your landscaping.

A green wall brings the garden into the alfresco area

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