‘Tis the season for long days and warm nights, an abundance of sunshine and the smell of bbq grilling wafting in the air. Your neighborhood is suddenly abuzz with energy and activity.
The ice cream trucks are out and the kids are taking full advantage of their summer break. The summertime truly is a magical time, where we find ourselves re energized after the bleak skies and chilly weather of the long Canadian winters.
When the weather takes its turn toward the warmer months, it’s only natural that we feel pulled towards the outdoors. For homeowners lucky enough to have backyard space that allows for features like a barbeque area, this is the time when you’ll want to take full advantage.
The best use of your ideal barbeque area will vary depending on your family’s size, needs and preferences. From the barbeque itself to the dining and entertainment area surrounding it, you’ll want to carefully consider the layout and design of this space in order to make the most of the area you’ve got to work with.
Taking a look at your outdoor space and considering its potential as you map out things like your grill, a functional seating area, accent lighting, entertainment systems and of course - safety and maintenance, are all part of designing the perfect barbeque oasis.
Your backyard area and the specific space you have to work with in terms of square footage will be the biggest influence on how you design your space. Defining the area that will be allocated toward your barbeque project will need to include not only the grilling area but also any deck space, entertainment nook and dining space, to start.
You’ll also want to ensure that your barbeque space does not encroach on any activity areas you have where yourself and your family use for other purposes. For example, if the kids use a section of the backyard for their sports activities, then you’ll want to try to plan your grilling zone for a pocket that sits at a safe distance away from any high-traffic activity zones.
A professional outdoor kitchen contractor or landscaper will be able to offer insight and make creative suggestions for your barbeque paradise.
While every backyard barbeque oasis will vary in design and details, there are a few key must-have features that you should aim to include in your design planning.
Just a few of these must-have features include:
There are many types of barbeque styles to consider when making your selection of the perfect grill for your outdoor barbeque paradise. From built-in, mobile or portable, charcoal, gas, pellet, electric or charcoal.
Build.com offers an excellent breakdown of what each type of grill offers in terms of pros, cons and specialty uses, but the most popular style of backyard barbeque grill are typically gas and propane.
Gas grills owe their popularity to their ease of use, convenience and ability to heat up fast - not to mention the accessories available to customize your grilling experience. For those who prefer a “clean” taste to their grilled foods, the gas barbeque is ideal, as it adds considerably less “grill flavour” to foods than other barbeque styles, such as another popular grill style - charcoal. If that smokey-grill flavour is your preference, it may be worth considering charcoal-style grills.
When narrowing down your top-choice barbeque options, consider the following:
Consider your cooking style, space allowance and budget to ensure your grill of choice is the perfect fit for you and your family’s needs.
If your space allows for it, a comfortable and practically-situated seating area to dine on delicious barbeque and relax with loved ones - or even just enjoying some peace and quiet on your own - is the ideal addition to your bbq oasis.
As with your grill, be mindful of your space, where you will position the seating area and the safety factor of not having this area directly next to the grill, where the smoke can become an issue.
One idea for a seating area that can be converted to accommodate additional diners, on the occasions where you are hosting guests, is a modular outdoor seating setup. Modular outdoor seating works in the same way that indoor modular sofas are designed, with separate pieces that come together to form various seating formations. This can look like just a few pieces to configure a basic loveseat to a full u-shape sectional with several pieces in styles that can be put together, or scaled back in the case of day-to-day use with less seating required.
The summer season in Canada may not be as lengthy as other places, but our summer sun still packs a punch. Bright and strong, the UV rays alone are a good reason to ensure your outdoor backyard oasis offers some shaded areas for safety and general comfort. For the grill master of your home, a covering of some sort over the grill area is important to not only offer some protection from sun exposure and heat, but also allows you to comfortably grill even in rainy weather conditions.
There are many affordable and space-saving covering options for those who are unable to create a solid, fixed covering in place. One example of this is this steel frame canopy shelter from Overstock.ca, which retails for under $500. This canopy covering features removable hooks for hanging tools, grid metal shelves, and Tent Peg to ensure secure fastening and stability under windy conditions.
You’ve designed your backyard paradise with family fun and hosting in mind - all those hours of enjoyment under the summer sun! But what about at nighttime? Summer nights under bright starry skies and comfortable temperatures are meant to be enjoyed too!
To make the most of your outdoor area in the evenings, you’ll want to explore your options as far as outdoor lighting. Whether it’s general lighting to illuminate the space overall, or accent lighting to highlight certain features of your backyard oasis, there are countless ways to brighten up your space once the sun goes down.
Just a few lighting ideas for your outdoor backyard barbeque paradise:
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