Events of the last few months may have you seeking to spend more time outdoors, including having your meals there. After all, eating or prepping meals in an outdoor kitchen can serve multiple purposes these days – you get fresh air, you can enjoy the sunshine, and practice social distancing in your own back yard!
But, what if you don’t already have an outdoor kitchen? The simple answer is … get one! But, before you do, let’s take a look at a few design and installation considerations.
Outside design vs. inside style
When considering an outdoor kitchen, many homeowners question whether they should keep it the same style as their indoor kitchen. Ultimately, the choice is yours but ideally, the two shouldn’t clash.
For example, a rustic outdoor dining area probably won’t look so great with a sleek, modern home, even though it may function just fine. That’s not to say that you can’t have a different style outside, however. In fact, it can be a lot of fun to design and use a space that’s different than your everyday indoor dining experience. Just be careful that the contrast between the two isn’t too great.
Outdoor kitchen appliances
Are kitchens outdoors comprised only of barbeque grills and picnic tables? Not by a long shot! Sure, those are options, but today’s outdoor appliances have come a long way compared to what was available in the past.
Do you have a convection oven or stove inside? Now, the same is available in your outdoor kitchen! Or, shake it up a little and choose a wood-burning stove or masonry fireplace for outdoor cooking. Also available are a wide variety of stainless steel appliances including ice makers, refrigerators, cooktops, and sinks. You name it … if it can be found in an indoor kitchen, you can also find the equivalent for your outdoor cooking space.
All this boils down to you being able to have everything you need in one place. That means spending more time with your guests and not having to make endless trips back and forth to the house.
To cover or not to cover
Eating outside can be invigorating and the fresh air might even whet your appetite. But, what happens if the weather turns or if eating in the sun is simply too hot?
Outdoor kitchens can be fully covered, left uncovered, or have a combination of both. Before you choose, consider when and how you’ll be entertaining guests or dining with your family. For example, if you plan to only eat outside when it’s too hot to heat up the inside with cooking, you’ll want to make sure you at least have some covered area outside. This can often be solved with an umbrella over a patio table, or a shaded area for eating.
DIY outdoor kitchens vs. custom made by professionals
Planning an outdoor kitchen can be very exciting. And, do-it-yourselfers may be tempted to do the project themselves. It may not be in your best interest, however, unless you’re a professional contractor yourself.
Why? Let’s take a quick look at some of the things you’ll encounter when planning and installing an outdoor kitchen:
- Design considerations (making the space complement your existing home)
- Local permits (if required)
- Plumbing needs (sinks, dishwashers)
- Electrical requirements (for appliances or outdoor lighting)
- Masonry work (stone walls, patios, outdoor fireplaces, etc.)
- Gas hookups (for kitchen appliances)
- Carpentry (pergolas, cabinets, etc.)
Professional kitchen design
At Sea Pointe Design & Remodel, we are happy to assist you with your outdoor kitchen endeavor. Our experienced designers are experts at designing spaces that fit your needs, style, and budget. And, our professional builders can help make it all become a reality.
Give us a call at (949) 861-3400 to schedule a design consultation and get your project started!