25 Outdoor Living and Dining Areas to Inspire Summer Living

25 Outdoor Living and Dining Areas to Inspire Summer Living - A good outdoor living space is almost an essential in New Zealand. With super hot summers, a shady, breezy spot to relax in is pure heaven. A bonus if you have a barbeque and can eat outside as well!

The days are getting brighter and warmer, and it’s gearing up to be another beautiful New Zealand summer. One of the best parts about our culture is our fondness of outdoor living. On any given day, if the sun is shining, you’ll find pretty much  children playing, and everyone outside enjoying food and relaxing in the summer heat. This year I’m looking for a good outdoor dining table and big umbrella so that I can take my computer outside and work in the fresh air without melting. If you love outdoor living and want some outdoor inspiration, keep reading.

I really love how this outdoor area has doors that separate it from the other outdoor section. You can close them to block wind, or to create privacy. Outdoor rooms like this are always so inviting on a hot day. They’re shaded so you don’t burn, there’s furniture so you can get comfortable, and you can still get a nice breeze flowing through. A space like this can easily face an interior courtyard, which makes the doors even more clever as you can lock them but still enjoy the freedom of having an open space.

This outdoor space is absolutely incredible, and so glamorous. The tall curtains, beautiful lanterns, and beautiful leather armchairs create a feeling of luxury. The furniture is a really unique choice – a big step away from the usual wood or wicker furniture that people put on their patios.

This space is definitely more rustic than I usually go for, but I couldn’t stop myself from including it. The exposed beam details are absolutely gorgeous, and I can just picture putting out big tables for family and friends to sit at while enjoying a huge meal. The best thing about spaces like this one is that you can have lighting wired into your electrical system, and put them on a dimmer. Bonus – the views must be incredible!

I have a fondness for fountains. Whenever I’m doodling out a property, I always find a place for a water feature. The sound of a fountain bubbling is especially pleasant in the summer, and the mist from the water will help keep you cool. If I had a fountain, I’d love to be able to sit on the edge and stick my feet in the water on a hot day. They’re also beneficial for bees, birds, and butterflies as well!

This simple space is going to look incredible when the plants grow in a little more. It also proves that you don’t need to stick to typical surfaces for your patio. This particular material is black basalt gravel, and means that you wont have to worry about dead grass patches, or marks on concrete. The minimal design of the space is a fresh twist on the new style of farmhouse, and is a great low-maintenance option if you want high impact without the cost.

What a great idea to put visually interesting lanterns in the trees! They can probably be taken down either on a ladder or with an extendable hook, and a lot of outdoor lanterns run on solar power as well. No worrying about electrical cords fraying and setting your tree on fire.

I am absolutely in love with this outdoor space, and whoever decorated it this way. The pink side tables really capture the bright and beautiful shade of the flowers, and the whole space feels so elegant and refined. Inside the pool house is actually a full dining room with chairs in the same shade as the side table and flowers. The neutrality of the other furniture pieces helps the vibrant green of the plant life really shine.

Sheer net curtains are a good option for outdoor spaces. You can get them in hardy materials that are suited to stand up to the weather, and in summer you can pull them across to create intimacy (and prevent bugs). The couches provide a place for lots of family and friends to curl up comfortably in front of the stunning stone fireplace.

Even small areas can benefit from good design. This tiny patio allows the residents to cook and eat outside by a nice cozy fire, and makes much better use of the space than the usual bistro table and chair set that most people own. Having walls on most sides of the patio helps to block out noise from neighbours, and means that the nearby rooms get an extra bit of sunlight.


Whatever space you have, definitely try to make use of it this summer. Remember to be cautious with your water usage, and indulgent with your sunscreen! Don’t let your outdoor areas go to waste any longer. Fill them with furniture and art, water features, sculptures, cafe lighting, and family.

PS: You should also plant some flowers. Dahlia, butterfly bush, hydrangeas, and oleander are great options. Gardenias, sweet pea, and sweet autumn clematis are also beautiful, with pretty scents to make your garden smell wonderful.

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Header image is of the beautiful North Ocean Boulevard estate by Wittman Building Corporation.

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