Turning Your Outdoor Space Into A Livable Space
A NARI COTY AWARD-WINNING RENOVATION BY MICHAEL NASH DESIGN BUILD
“If a homeowner doesn’t feel comfortable using the outdoor space and if it isn’t an extension of the warmth of their home, they won’t use it. We want our clients to take full advantage of everything their home can offer.” –Sonny Nazemian, master designer/remodeler at Michael Nash
ONE OF THE BIGGEST TRENDS IN MODERN HOME RENOVATION (PARTICULARLY DURING THE PANDEMIC) HAS BEEN CREATING LIVABLE OUTDOOR SPACES. Having a beautiful spot to relax outdoors at home expands usable area and increases enjoyment of just being in our place. Older home design generally didn’t focus on outdoor living, or the original design is now outdated or in need of replacement as the weather is hard on decks and other materials. Families are now making changes.
“The first key to outdoor living design is making a space that is inviting and warm,” says Sonny Nazemian, master designer/ remodeler at Michael Nash. “If a homeowner doesn’t feel comfortable using the outdoor space and if it isn’t an extension of the warmth of their home, they won’t use it. We want our clients to take full advantage of everything their home can offer”.
Last year, homeowners in Woodbridge worked with Michael Nash Design Build to transform their 28-year-old outdoor living space into the perfect retreat. They had a beautiful wooded lot and scenery, but they weren’t getting the most out of it.
“Our deck was beginning to show signs of age, it was very dark and dreary, and the design wasn’t conducive to using it,” says the retired homeowner. “We wanted more from our home and the natural world around us.”
The team at Michael Nash worked to design a sunroom and covered porch with a multi level deck and patio. The staff created a 16’x25’ porch with cedar paneled ceiling and a linear gas fireplace with a large television above it on the stone chimney. Two large skylights and porcelain flooring keep the area bright and sunny and it is now the perfect spot to lounge and watch football games on chilly fall days. Large ceiling fans keep the area cool during the summer.
The designers added Trex decking a few steps below as another living and dining area, leading to a flagstone patio below with a wood-burning outdoor fireplace and grill area. The patio is also accessible through double doors from the lower level of the house. The final touch is the use of post lights and LED lighting to keep the space bright at dusk.
“The stone of the porch fireplace ties in perfectly with the flagstone patio below, so there is a unified, natural look and pulls the entire area together,” says Sonny. “We wanted the homeowners to feel like all elements tie together and the stone is an extension of the natural world around the home.”
Now the homeowners have multiple areas where they can sit, cook and eat. (A storage area was also added under the porch to safely keep lawn mowers and other yard tools). They can watch the grandchildren play in the backyard and patio area, make marshmallows and enjoy the quiet comfort of their home.
“Words can’t describe my emotion being able to spend time outdoors in this beautiful environment,” says the homeowner. “It has transformed how we live.”