Outdoor Living Spaces: Ideas for Outdoor Rooms

Learn about options and ideas for outdoor rooms and outdoor living spaces.


Nature is a popular interior decorating theme, and the term "bringing the outside in" is often used to describe using natural features like plants and rocks inside—but what about "bringing the inside out"?

As you explore deck and patio design ideas, keep in mind that creating a relaxing, stylish outdoor living space or outdoor room can greatly increase the appeal and value of your home and provide an oasis for friends and family to enjoy the great outdoors in supreme comfort.

15 Outdoor Spaces for Entertaining

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A Charming Spot for Outdoor Dining

Rustic furniture pieces add warmth to an intimate backyard setting, while antique lighting allows guests to visit even after the sun sets. For those who enjoy the smoky flavors of a delicious homemade pizza, consider a brick wood-burning pizza oven. Photo courtesy of Wood Stone Kopke

Photo By: Sandy Koepke, Wood Stone

An Oceanfront Escape

An ideal outdoor room is all about flow from the interiors. The oversize windows and the large opening to the balcony create an exotic staycation in a weather-controlled space. Photo courtesy of Kichler Lighting

An Outdoor Room for Fireside Chats

Outdoor fireplaces create a strong focal point in outdoor rooms, and they provide warmth for those cool evenings in the mountains. Photo courtesy of Mega-Bergerac

Photo By: Chipper Hatter

Lakeside Living

Sometimes all you need is a stone fire pit, two Adirondack chairs and a lake view. For a completely natural look, nothing beats stone. Keep in mind, natural stone costs more because it is quarried and has to be trucked in, adding transportation costs. Photo courtesy of Mega-Arbel

Photo By: Chipper Hatter

Outdoor Dining With a View

This outdoor dining room offers a year-round entertaining experience with a breathtaking view. When deciding on location for your outdoor room, consider how you want to use it. Photo courtesy of Gloster Furniture Inc.

Photo By: Gloster Furniture Inc.

Lounge-Worthy in the Backyard

Plush seating is a must-have in any outdoor room. Make sure you pick weather-resistant materials for long-lasting use. Photo courtesy of Kichler Lighting

Photo By: Kichler Lighting

An Intimate Gathering Place

Walls, a ceiling and a fireplace create a distinctive living room outdoors. Layer in mood lighting with eye-catching fixtures and lanterns. Photo courtesy of Kichler Lighting

Photo By: Kichler Lighting

Poolside Play

An umbrella is a great option to shade your outdoor living spaces. Also, consider awnings, canopies and gazebos to keep your guests comfortable on sunny days. Photo courtesy of Room and Board

Photo By: Room & Board

Southwestern Retreat

Personalize your space with flair. This rustic outdoor room by Jamie Durie is complete with a branch chandelier, flagstone flooring, a patterned rug and an antique.

Pops of Color

While gray stone is a classic hue for an outdoor space, add pops of interest with colorful accessories. When picking your furniture pieces, look for synthetic wicker for more durability. Photo courtesy of Mega-Arbel

Photo By: Chipper Hatter

Courtyard Dining

A full-service outdoor kitchen and dining area invites a crowd. In a sheltered backyard, large French doors with transom windows above can provide access while allowing natural light into your home.

Photo By: DianePadys

A Grand Retreat

Provide plenty of seating options for your guests. This outdoor room features a plush couch, a built-in bench and a dining area for optimal gathering. Photo courtesy of Marrokal Design and Remodeling

Photo By: Marrokal Design and Remodeling

Simply Chic

Turn your dull concrete slab into a fabulous backyard focal point with a clean mix of color. To define the space, face some seats toward your house. Photo courtesy of Room and Board

Contemporary Outdoor Dining

To add structure to the space, Jamie Durie added walls covered with scented herbs and fruit.

Photo By: Jamie Rector

Outdoor Destination

Greenery adds softness to a hardscaped outdoor design. Choose plants that are well-suited to your area and give them plenty of room to thrive in big pots. Browse images from Bassenian Lagoni Architects on ProGalleries

One of the most popular outdoor room touches you can explore is enclosing a gazebo or pergola in colorful outdoor curtains. These will have the effect of framing the outdoor room and creating a gentle perimeter, and they can also offer precious shade on sunny days.

Another outdoor room idea is to create an arch, trellis or doorway leading to your outdoor room. This structure can give guests the distinct feeling of entering a new space, and you can add interest to the design with colorful climbing plants.

Fencing is another great way to frame an outdoor room. Latticework, bamboo, weathered barn wood or even shrubs can create a stylish boundary for your outdoor living space, and once you have these "walls" in place, you can explore decorating them with artwork that'll stand up to the elements.

To protect your outdoor room from the elements, consider adding an awning in an eye-popping design. This way, your outdoor living space will be open for enjoyment even during inclement weather.

Don't be afraid to add stylish accents and traditional indoor furnishings to your outdoor room. Carpets, throw pillows for furniture, and other design touches will create a welcoming feel. Just make sure they're rated for outdoor use if they'll be exposed to the elements.

Outdoor Living Spaces

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