Inside the Stone Walls of Outdoor Rooms

According to a recent outdoor living trends survey done by American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA),  over 94% of residential landscape architects rate outdoor living spaces like kitchens or entertaining space as very popular for 2010. The survey identified the trend that the most popular outdoor entertainment features will avoid more expensive, elaborate items in favor of the essentials. For 2010, expectations are for the continued interest in seating/dining areas using installed seating like benches and seatwalls or weatherized outdoor furniture, along with the ever-popular fire pit/fireplace.

An outdoor patio is an extension of a living space and home owners are taking advantage of outdoor space more than ever. The options for patio design, furnishing and accessories can be over overwhelming but the common homeowner considerations for patio design are still comfort, relaxation, and usefullness. Many outdoor living spaces are frequently limited by various factors, such as space, budget or specific contours of a landscape, so finding ways of maximizing the space in outdoor rooms can allow for some rather creative designs.

NSWS™, in partnership with Old Village Landscape and Native Terra Design LLC (, have recently created an outdoor room with a patio space optimizing feature – a hanging bluestone bench.

In this project, NSWS™ retaining walls frame a brick style patio with gray accent pieces and a bluestone bench on hangers finishes off a creation of a tranquil place for the homeowner’s family, friends, and neighbors to enjoy the outdoors. The bench offers the practicality of a seating area, and at the same time allows for a larger area of the patio and patio design to be in view thus creating an effect or feeling of a larger or more open outdoor space.

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