Existing deck off family room too small for a table and easy traffic flow, plus afternoon sun scorched diners. No privacy from neighbors. Back fireplace never used because it didn’t have gas. Rear concrete patio slippery and remote.
Build up large flagstone patio level with family room. Add 40-inch trellis on edge of patio to provide shade, define eating area, and open up middle of patio to traffic flow. Use low walls surrounding patio as extra seating, and raise one wall behind barbecue for double use as buffet table, or as a kids’ eating bar with added stools. Position outdoor kitchen at lower level, close to kitchen door. Plant trees for privacy screen. Resurface fireplace to match stucco and brick of house, add gas line and intimate flagstone patio.
"We wanted lots of spaces for people to have smaller conversations," said homeowner Maria Vaughn of San Jose. "My husband and his friends could be smoking cigars around the fireplace. My girlfriends and I could be up on the patio having a glass of wine. The kids could be eating a meal at the bar. We were trying to create relaxing, yet functional space for our family to enjoy."
Landscape design and construction by Don Hall in San Jose. Urns by La Jardiniere.