Design Tips: Hosting for the Summer

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The wait is finally over and summer is here! On Oahu we love spending the summer season outdoors, soaking in the sun and enjoying the company of family and friends. In order to keep everyone comfy and relaxed during a good ‘ole fashioned summer gathering, you may need to expand beyond the living room, inviting your guests instead to the backyard, patio or lanai. This month we’re offering our favorite tips on how to enhance your space with unique outdoor entertaining features.

Channel what’s indoors when designing the outdoors

Some homes have a much larger space to work with, and can accommodate additional areas like a lanai. When working with larger homes, we’re always looking for ways to create a seamless transition between indoor and outdoor spaces. Take a cue from our Island Tranquility project, which features not only an outdoor lounge area, but also an outdoor kitchen, fitted with a BBQ grill, sink, and dining furniture. In order to create a coherent design vibe between spaces, we designed a bypass from the kitchen to the lanai, which features channel-grooved soapstone for easy access to the outdoor counter and barbeque area.
Island Tranquility
Island Tranquility

Sometimes an outdoor kitchen makes all the difference

Of course, not everyone has room on their property to incorporate both an outdoor lounge area and an outdoor kitchen. If you’re working with a smaller space, consider upgrading your lanai with just an outdoor kitchen. An outdoor kitchen can take many forms, from a simple undermount sink and countertop to an expansive built-in BBQ and grill set. When tackling our Ohana Place project, we added built-in appliances by GE Monogram, including an undercounter refrigerator, undermount sink, double-drawer refrigerator, and wine unit. Not only is it a contained area that doesn’t take up much space, but this outdoor kitchen also makes it easy and convenient for the homeowners to keep their guests entertained throughout the home!
The Ohana Place

Don’t underestimate the power of natural cooling

One of the best ways to keep your outdoor spaces cool and protected from the elements is to ensure your roof is well-ventilated. An effective solution, especially when rebuilding, is to incorporate large eaves and awnings to keep both your indoor and outdoor spaces cool. When tackling Sustainable Style at Waahila Ridge, a rebuilding project that resulted in a single-family custom home boasting one of the only LEED for Homes PLATINUM certifications in Hawaii, we created cross-ventilation by adding large eaves details and covered lanais to provide ample natural cooling to the home.
Sustainable Style at Waahila Ridge
Sustainable Style at Waahila Ridge

Don’t be afraid to splurge

It’s okay to treat yourself every now and then—our Bay House owners know this from experience! To round out the interior design additions to their whole home remodeling project, we upgraded one of their outdoor spaces with a Sam Simeon Fire Pit, around which we positioned an assortment of Brown Jordan Havana chairs to complete the tropical, exotic vibe. This design choice transformed a bare outdoor space into an island oasis, perfect for guests to relax and indulge after an evening of summer fun.
The Bay House

Make the most of your hosting skills this summer by fitting your home with an outdoor space your guests won’t soon forget. We hope these design tips will inspire you to upgrade your lanai with memorable design features that work for your space and budget.