Indoor-outdoor flow is very important for many people who like to make the most of their urban gardens. Many city dwellers would love to relax in their outdoor space on colder days and not just use the swimming pool in summer. A covered deck and an outdoor fireplace can be a good start to make this option possible.
The owner of this house, in a popular metropolitan suburb, aimed to achieve just that and sought help from landscape designer Bill Holden. The customer identified three main requirements in the brief:
1) Development of the rear of the property including a pool, covered deck and an outdoor fireplace.
2) The spaces must function effectively for outdoor entertaining by adults and mature family members.
3) Covered spaces must be light, spacious, and all components well integrated with each other.
The landscaper had to be creative to achieve the above in a densely populated area with neighbouring villas and small gardens. It was decided to create an extended gable roof over a deck, which would match the pitch, and be attached to the roof of the existing house.
Effective integration between the covered deck and pool areas was achieved by eliminating posts. The use of a welded steel gable frame was explored and refined using 3D modeling. The two posts supporting this frame were designed to be hidden in the extended wall on one side, and in the fireplace structure on the other.
The shape and size of the pool and spa was then refined, using computer modeling, to suit the customer’s needs. A swim jet was incorporated to compensate for the reduced size of the pool.
The original plan was for a wood burning fireplace, however this was changed to a gas outdoor fireplace which allowed the incorporation of support posts into the fireplace structure. The owner was presented with various options and the Escea EF5000 outdoor fireplace with Stainless Steel Slab fascia was chosen because of its modern look and suitability for the purpose. The designer Bill Holden says “The end result is simple, modern (without compromising the character of the villa) and functional with the canopy ‘floating’ neatly over the deck and fireplace”.