Spas, pools and saunas

Spas, pools and saunas remain popular outdoor amenities. (Handout/TNS)

An outdoor space can easily be transformed into a backyard entertainment oasis. Amenities such as pools, outdoor kitchens, firepits, gardens and outdoor living and dining areas can add a lot as far as homeowner outdoor enjoyment. Whether you live in a city, suburban or rural setting, there are a number of ways to increase your outdoor enjoyment and entertainment.

The popularity of bringing indoor features such as kitchens and spas outdoors remains more popular than ever. Investing in your home's outdoor environment can not only allow you in essence to expand the environment of your home, but allow the "inside to go out." Creating outdoor appeal, may also increase one's sense of calm and allow you to enjoy your home outdoors year round.

Looking to kick-start your outdoor environment? Here are some ideas to help get you started.

An outdoor firepit

An outdoor firepit helps to provide year-round entertainment. (Handout/TNS)

1. Outdoor firepits. Firepits can either be made using brick or stone or simply a fire bowl. Outdoor firepits remain popular because they can be enjoyed year-round.

2. Outdoor kitchens. Looking to bring the indoors out? There is no better way to do that, than with an outdoor kitchen. An outdoor kitchen creates an instant hub for outdoor entertaining.

3. Pools, spas and saunas. While prices can vary relating to their cost and maintenance, pools, spas and saunas remain popular outdoor entertainment amenities. Spas and saunas in most cases are portable allowing you to move them to a different home or location if needed.

4. Pool and tree houses. Not just child's play, these outdoor living spaces can be used for both entertaining and lounging.

5. Outdoor living spaces. Think of your backyard as an outdoor living room by making the space feel as comfortable as possible, infusing everything from outdoor sofas to chairs.

6. Outdoor dining. There is something that is quite appealing as it relates to dining alfresco. Set up a dining zone that is separate from your living zone. Options include rectangular or round tables in addition to more modern high-boy seating.

A garden can not only bring outdoor enjoyment

A garden can not only bring outdoor enjoyment but color as well. (Handout/TNS)

7. Gardens. Not only do gardens add to the overall appeal of an outdoor space, a garden can also add lots of interest and color as well.

8. Sun protection. From trellises to covered patios and umbrellas, sun protection may play an important role.

9. Outdoor children's entertainment. Outdoor entertainment shouldn't just be for the adults but the entire family. From basketball hoops, trampolines and swing sets there are a number of ways to keep every member of the house happy and entertained.

10. Outdoor fabrics. When looking to incorporate outdoor upholstered seating, outdoor fabrics will add to their longevity.

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Outdoor entertainment

Outdoor entertainment can involve the whole family. (Handout/TNS)

Cathy Hobbs, based in New York City, is an Emmy Award-winning television host and a nationally known interior design and home staging expert with offices in New York City, Boston and Washington, D.C. Contact her at info@cathyhobbs.com or visit her website at www.cathyhobbs.com .

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