10 Patio Ideas from Our Tours: Real Life "Rooms" for Relaxation

10 Patio Ideas from Our Tours: Real Life "Rooms" for Relaxation

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Tess Wilson
Apr 24, 2015
(Image credit: Pablo Enriquez)

Depending on where you live, "sitting outside with a glass of rosé" season is possibly approaching or already in full swing. These 10 spaces demonstrate that whether you have a fully furnished rooftop or a folding chair on a balcony, the joy of the outdoors can be yours...

Chris & Jenny's Collective Elegance
Let's kick things off with this spectacular terrace that's all the more impressive since the couch, coffee table, and planters were built by Chris. With those pieces, cool string lights, and the sweet bistro table and chairs, the couple has transformed their outdoor space into an additional living room and breakfast nook. The pops of color echo the way bursts of yellow, blue, and orange enliven the indoor space.

(Image credit: Marcia Prentice)

Nancy, Ethan, & Ohle's 1903 Cabin in the Country
This shot proves it doesn't take a full suite of furniture to create an inviting patio or porch; just a couple of chairs, a table or two, room to stretch your legs, and some plants to liven things up. I could drink iced tea and read here all day.

(Image credit: Submitted by Judit)

Before & After: Judit's Teeny Tiny Balcony Total Makeover
On the other hand, don't let limited space limit what you include. This totally teeny tiny balcony includes a proper table and chair, a plant wall, a curtain for privacy, and Astroturf. It's jam-packed with excellence, without being crowded.

(Image credit: Submitted by Judit)

Before & After: Judit's Teeny Tiny Balcony Total Makeover
I couldn't resist featuring one more shot from this amazing balcony— look how intimate and glamorous it is after dark!

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

Nicola's Colorful & Cozy Balcony Garden
Here's another instance in which a "cram it all in!" approach works smashingly. Nicola's got two ample chairs, a table, tons of plants, and a Weber grill, all in a 9'x4' space— and the effect is lush and welcoming.

(Image credit: Marcia Prentice)

Matt Makes His Tiny Rental into a Home
This outdoor table is Matt's only dining space: what even is Los Angeles?!? Climate jealousy aside, it was brilliant of Matt to outsource one of his rooms to the porch, thereby freeing up precious space in his 400-square-foot apartment.

(Image credit: Justice Darragh)

Karen's Color Explosion
This patio demonstrates how an outdoor space gives you a chance to branch out aesthetically. Karen's home is a riot of color and textures, and her patio is open and spare— practically spartan in comparison to the indoors! And yet, the way she's incorporated colors and textures into her patio design bring the two spaces together- clearly coordinating, yet contrasting.

(Image credit: Adrienne Breaux)

Trent's Relaxing, Beach-like Retreat
Adding a hammock to a patio shows you mean business: you take your relaxing seriously. For good measure, Trent has added a couch, tiki torches, curtains, hanging candles, framed art, and a king's ransom in cushions. This is not a "catching up on my correspondence" balcony or a "working on my laptop" porch, this is a "blender drinks after a day in the sun" patio.

(Image credit: Adrienne Breaux)

Matt & Leah's Modern Menagerie
Here we have a patio that has more living room goodness going on than my actual living room does: generously proportioned chairs, couch, coffee table, cozy cushions and throws, an ottoman, trees, herb planters, a light installation, and even a rug. Why would you ever go inside ever again?

(Image credit: Marcia Prentice)

Matt Makes His Tiny Rental into a Home
I just had to show you another angle from Matt's patio because, to me, it is perfect. Two chairs, to bistro tables, a hammock, a verdant border, a small stone patio, and a breathtaking view. I'd assumed that it would be impossible to recreate this outside of Italy, so the fact that Matt lives in Los Angeles give me hope.

(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)

Marie-Laurence & Johan’s Eclectic Montreal Condo
In this house tour, Marie-Laurence and Johan cite their "crappy balcony" as their biggest embarrassment, but it's nicer than any balcony (okay, fire escape) I've ever had. They've got serious plant-growing skills, some nice chairs that fold up conveniently, and what looks like a nice view of some trees. Just add Judit's Astroturf, Nicola's tiny tulip table, and Matt's simple string lights and they'll be cooking with gas!

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