20 Great Outdoor Design Ideas

An outdoor room lets you work, rest, play—and enjoy your garden for more of the year.
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Photo By: Image courtesy of Ben Rollins www.thebenrollins.com

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©2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

©2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

©2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

©2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

©2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

Photo By: Image courtesy of Brian Patrick Flynn

Photo By: © 2010, HGTV

Photo By: Kenny Collins, The Collins Group, Inc.

©2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

Photo By: Photo by Jamie Rector

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Photo By: Marc Nissim Design

Lush Surroundings

The frame for a greenhouse provides definition for a charming outdoor room with a table, seating, lantern and plenty of containers to give the space definition and purpose.

Year-Round Outdoor Space

A spacious, covered gazebo is ready for multi-seasonal use by offering a fireplace, ceiling fan, two sofas, a mounted TV and surround sound.

Backyard Amphitheater

Tiered stone surrounding a fire pit creates natural seating or a place to display potted plants on this gorgeous patio.

Pavilion Patio

An outdoor dining space can provide hours of enjoyment in the garden. A covered, yet open structure above the area can give the space a cozy feel while allowing filtered sunlight into the gathering.

Black Pergola Design

Gorgeous views and cool shade await loungers in this wisteria-covered pergola. Design by Scott Cohen

Balance and Proportion

Here, a stone alcove leads to a sunken garden. Try planting tough groundcovers underneath stairs, benches and other features for a natural look that will last throughout the season.

Living Roofscape

A living roof, also known as a green roof, is a very simple and accurate description of what basically is a vegetated covering for a roof, with growing medium and plants taking the place of metal, gravel ballast, asphalt, shingles or tiles.

Veiled Playhouse

A treehouse tucked away in the corner of the garden makes a perfect place for children to let their adventures begin and their imaginations run wild.

Point of Interest

Building a conservatory onto your home not only creates a light and airy living space, but, seen form a garden perspective, offers visual excitement.

Outdoor Living

This vibrant patio is a great escape from the city and has enough space to entertain friends and family.

DIY Pergola From Old Doors

Make a charming entryway for your garden from a pair of old doors.

Serene and Sophisticated

Plush, white seating brightens up this beautiful Asian-style space from HGTV's Carter Can.

Brick Pavilion With Wisteria Framed Peaks, Garden and Weathered Gate

The weathered-finish gate serves both an aesthetic and functional purpose to the space. Wisteria frames the peaks of the pavilion, giving it a storybook quality that fits well with the beautiful flower garden and the structure's cottage feel.

Fun With Fabric

The trend for creating engaging outside rooms is reflected in this Fresh Garden from designers Chris Deakin and Jason Lock meant to illustrate the many uses for fabric outdoors.

Vantage Point

The wooden pavilion is reminiscent of colorful gently curving roof supported by decorative panels. Inside, the comfortable wooden box seats, scattered with cushions, offer a lovely place from which to admire the garden.

Hot Tub Home

The Don't Sweat It team turned this busy couple's into a romantic backyard destination with a covered hot tub and chic outdoor curtains for extra privacy.


This Jamie Durie backyard renovation completely transforms the yard into a fun entertainment space a raised deck with fire pit, pool and one-of-a-kind pergola.

The Lotus

Treehouse or art installation? Both! This 8' x 10' wooden structure was installed around an oak tree in Beverly Hills, California. Guests can enter via wooden steps, or by a two-seat cable car that connects this structure to its twin a few feet away.

Secret Spot

This flower-covered gazebo creates a private area way from the rest of the garden.

Outdoor Entertaining Room

Designer Marc Nissim maximized space in this outdoor area, adding a dining space, fireplace and pond-like pool that are all optimal for entertaining.

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