An Undiscovered Oasis
Living in the mountains is a gift—the fresh air, the inspiring views, the vibrant flora and fauna. Our homes make up our own personal solace among the greater alpine sanctuary, and we craft our interior spaces with care and dedication. Furnishings, lighting, appliances, flooring, and audio/visual entertainment are each considered carefully for their function, appearance, and effect when we design our living space.
With our homes in such a lavish natural setting, shouldn’t we dedicate as much attention to our exterior spaces? If our rooms are the inner sanctum, then the outdoor areas are the gateway to our surroundings. These alfresco arenas have the capacity to become as much a part of our home’s appearance as the rooms inside.
Kelly Wallman, owner of San Francisco Design in Park City and Salt Lake City, believes that the exterior area of your property is a continuation of your livable space. Her company offers furnishings, accessories, and other outdoor products to fulfill any exterior design needs. “View the outside as an extension of your home,” advises Wallman. “It’s an expression of your individual style that’s every bit as important as any other room in the house.”
In this way, our burgeoning inclination to outfit our outdoors is an adaptation of our idea of the domestic sphere. “We’re creating environments that are not confined by walls but, instead, defined by a new sense of personal space,” Wallman observes. Brian Engstrom, buyer for Christy Sports (& Patio Furniture), agrees. “Now that warm, sunny days have returned, enjoy your patio or deck to the fullest,” he says. “But everyone should ask themselves: What do you want to use your outdoor living space for? The answer to this question will help determine what type of furniture best meets your needs.” Once you know how you want to use your outdoor space, you can best select seating, materials, design, entertainment, and accessories.
The foundation of these outdoor spaces is the flooring, which is often a deck. Patrick Occhino, owner of Pro Deck Doctor, considers the deck to be the platform upon which we can connect with our environment. “One’s deck is often the staging area for what attracted someone to Park City in the first place: the view,” says Occhino. “We work hard to accentuate the beauty that surrounds by creating beautiful surroundings.” Various types of outdoor flooring construct distinctive settings; wood, composite stone, or vinyl each offer a unique style.
Outdoor spaces also have the ability to play host to full, spacious gardens. Garden artisans and landscape architects use creative touches such as lighting, glass, bird houses, sculpture, trellises, arches, and planters as garden art, a blossoming genre of décor that brings pleasure and recreation to our expanded living spaces. Use of water accoutrement also enriches the setting by providing a hydrodynamic feng shui. Pieces such as fountains and bird baths transform
an ordinary landscape to one of refreshment and tranquility, and waterscape features such as ecosystem ponds and waterfalls become the focal point of any garden.
“Exterior living spaces in Park City have the good fortune of the Wasatch back in the vista,” remarks Occhino. With such a natural endowment freely available to us, there is no question that maximizing your outdoor space is the best way to enhance your living space and home appearance. Whether huddling around a fire pit as the sun sets, mounting a vertical garden on your balcony, building a barbeque station next to your pool, or adding outdoor entertainment systems to your patio, turning your attention toward your home’s outdoors will magnify your summer fun.