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GT pavers deck with fire pit and pergola with table and chairs

Creative Ways to Convert a Simple Patio, Balcony or Deck into a Five-Star Outdoor Entertainment Space

Last Updated on May 17, 2021

Is your backyard ready for outdoor entertainment? Warmer weather invites us to spend more time outside. Whether it’s hosting a pool party, backyard BBQs, romantic dinners under the stars or an afternoon brunch, there’s something about spending time outdoors that brings us a sense of peace and tranquility. If you’ve always dreamed about converting your existing outdoor deck, patio, porch or balcony into a cool place for friends and family to hang out, you’ve come to the right place.

This month, Granite and TREND Transformations wants to share some creative ways of transforming your backyard area into a five-star outdoor entertainment center that the whole neighborhood will be talking about. Additionally, these outdoor entertainment center ideas are easy on your wallet and can be completed in less time than you think!

Seating

GT Brick patio with brick fire pit in garden

Ask almost any host about their concerns and they’re likely to say not having enough seating is one of their biggest worries. When you’re entertaining outside, it’s vital that everyone has a place to sit and relax. Hint – dragging your kids’ bean bags and mismatched chairs from inside is not the answer. Here are some fun and creative seating ideas for your outdoor entertainment center:

  • Fire pit seating—Arranging a set of colorful Adirondack chairs with a soft pillow on each seat around a fire pit is an easy and inexpensive way to create an intimate social circle where everyone can sit back and relax.
  • Build your own bench—Cinder blocks and planks of wood are a great combination for an easy DIY bench that everyone will love. Simply tie a bright cushion to the planks, place on the cinder blocks, and voilà – extra seating! Did you also know that cinder blocks can be used in many ways to create seating of varying heights and shapes? Just add a super-comfortable cushion and it’s ready to go.
  • Tire seating—Have a few old tires and some rope laying around? Check out this cool DIY project to create outdoor seating that doubles as storage space!

In addition to any of the fun and creative seating ideas listed above, upscale patio loungers and furniture can be set up to provide plenty of seating for all your guests.

Sun vs. shade

GT Outdoor wood deck with fish pond, pool and outdoor seating

Sunshine can be a real mood booster but having an outdoor entertainment center with too much direct sun can limit the time spent outside and put a damper on your entertaining plans. Here are some options to keep yourself – and your guests – out of the sun or under the shade:

  • Add an awning
  • Install a pergola
  • Place a large umbrella to cover seating area
  • For a big change, build a covered bar area, complete with custom countertops, bar seating, elegant lighting, double sinks and a flat screen TV.

Incorporating one or more of these outdoor entertainment center ideas separates the space and creates a good flow to allow your guests to mingle from one space to the other. Additionally, it makes your space look bigger.

Cooking outdoors

GT Pavers Patio corner with built in grill, sink and coutertop

As the party host, how many times have you been stuck in the kitchen while your guests are mingling and enjoying themselves outside? This year, why not take your outside entertaining up a notch and create an outdoor kitchen space? Having a BBQ area is a good start, but designing a space where you can prepare, cook and serve is the ultimate outdoor entertaining center – not only for you, but for your guests. It allows you to be a part of the fun instead of disappearing into the kitchen. Here are some ideas to consider:

  • Purchase a premade outdoor grill island. It not only gives you counter space and storage, but you can take it with you should you ever decide to move.
  • Add a brick pizza oven, a smoker or mini refrigerator to take your space up a notch.

Depending on your level of DIY expertise – and your budget – you can create a backyard retreat that goes from simple and elegant to luxurious and over the top.

Choosing the right materials

GT Wicker table and chairs with blue place setting and glasses

When creating a beautiful outdoor entertainment center, you want to be sure to choose the right materials that will stand the test of time – not to mention the weather. Using weather-resistant materials is the way to go for maintaining a safe and beautiful outdoor area. Here are some suggestions on what to select for your outdoor entertainment center:

  • Stainless steel appliances, which are easy to clean and resist corrosion.
  • Sealed pavers or concrete flooring, which are low maintenance and easy to clean.
  • Aluminum chairs are lightweight, affordable and won’t fade. It should be noted, however, these chairs can get very hot when left out in the sun for long periods of time.
  • Wicker and wood furniture are good options since they are comfortable and sturdy. Wicker and wood, however, can be more pricey than other outdoor furniture.

Just a reminder: Bring patio cushions inside when they are not being used.

Think about the vibe

GT Family at dinner table under outdoor canopy with lights

Music and lighting can set the mood for your outdoor space. It can also make or break the party if it’s not planned out. Here are some tips to keep the music playing, along with other suggestions so the fun continues well into the night.

  • Install outdoor speakers. If available, stream music for uninterrupted enjoyment.
  • If using a television for entertainment, place it in a shaded area away from direct sunlight to reduce glare and any damage.
  • Install a fireplace or firepit for cozy conversation.
  • Install a water feature for a serene backdrop. They also make great conversation starters.
  • Install the right kind of lighting to keep the party going after the sun goes down.
  • Consider space heaters and/or ceiling fans to keep you and your guests comfortable.

Are you inspired to create a new outdoor entertainment center? Whether you want to spruce up your existing space or are ready for a total backyard or patio makeover, now is the time to start thinking about what’s best for you and your entertaining needs. Plus, improving on your backyard space will not only increase your home’s value but it also provides a beautiful retreat for family fun all summer long.

Now is also a great time to think about a kitchen or bath renovation. Contact Granite and TREND Transformations today for a free in-home design consultation and see how our beautiful line of etherium® by E-Stone surfaces can transform your home in less time than you ever imagined.

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