A terrace, patio or other outdoor space is one of the simplest means of capitalizing on the summer season, and it doesn’t have to be a difficult endeavor.
Shaun Stanley/Durango Herald
Many local businesses are adding outdoor terraces for customers and employees. Amanda Sellers, executive assistant at 1st Southwest Bank, right, and Susan Smith of Another Dimension Design look at the view from one of several terraces the bank will have.
Shaun Stanley/Durango Herald
The 1st Southwest Bank building at the corner of College Drive and East Second Avenue will have several terraces with bar-height tables and chairs so employees can enjoy the view.
Homeowners, outdoor furnishing suppliers and designers shared a few trends for decorating outdoor spaces and tips for making them happen:
Poly-wood is inThe recycled plastic, which resembles that used in Adirondack chairs, is durable, maintenance-free and resistant to both sun and snow, which is why local decorators have found it’s an ideal material for outdoor spaces in Durango.
Terraces and patios aren’t just for homesDowntown businesses with rooftop patios and terraces are popping up along Main Avenue.
The new 1st Southwest Bank underway at East Second Avenue and College Drive will have a terrace for its employees’ use. “We’re furnishing it with bar-height tables and chairs so they can enjoy a view, and the furniture is multi-season so it can be used in winter,” said Susan Smith, owner of Another Dimension Design.
Mix colorsDecorators are mixing the Southwest’s trademark tans and cream colors with colors that pop. “It’s a mixture of conservative earth tones and bold colors like turquoise and peacock colors,” said Sam Christensen, owner of Ultimate Mountain Living.
Get a fire pitThey can help transition a patio or terrace from summer to winter and allow homeowners to enjoy their outdoor space longer. Some of the cheapest and smallest can be found for about $50, with the higher end pits around $3,500.
Wait for the discountsDurango as a whole saw a slight slump in sales tax this summer, but the summer months are peak sales time for patio furniture retailers. Those sales will be on the decline until Labor Day, when outdoor furniture sales typically taper off completely. That means huge sales to stock up on furniture for next summer or design an outdoor space conducive to fall and winter. “If you’re willing to wait, all the stuff on my floor is discounted heavily as we get closer to Labor Day,” Christensen said.
Bring indoor rooms outdoorsHomeowners who have the luxury of space and privacy in the country might be able to get more creative with outdoor space. “Because we’ve got a great climate here, clients just want to experience more of the outdoors,” said Alex Kogan of Kogan Builders, who has worked on outdoor kitchens and spas and is currently designing an outdoor shower for one customer living near Baker’s Bridge. “It’s built out of big boulders, like a rock grotto, and you’ve got an incredible view overlooking the Animas River.”
Add greenIn-town homes sometimes don’t afford a lot of space, but plants and flowers are cheap ways to add color. Search websites like Houzz.com for ideas for vertical gardens, which can save even more space without giving up the greenery. New Growth Designs sells synthetic greenery made for outdoor use that will endure hot summers and snowy winters. “When you can’t grow live plants, or there’s a drought, this is an alternative to have greenery year-round without the worry or upkeep of live plants,” said Rich Cherry, who heads the marketing department for the North Carolina-based company. New Growth, which markets to customers nationally and internationally, offers UV-resistant and temperature-resistant plants, which means their colors won’t fade in the sunlight for up to five years.
Add lightLights are inexpensive compared to furniture and add ambience. “Our customers are more and more interested in adding lights to outdoor rooms because they’re festive,” said Tad Eckert, owner of Picnic Lights, which supplies a line of indoor and outdoor LED lights that range from $50 to $200. Property owners are also gravitating toward floating lights that can dress up a pool or pond.
You don’t need a designerAfter moving 14 times, Michael Bray said he and his wife have figured out their own decorating tastes. Their Edgemont Highlands home will be featured in this year’s Parade of Homes, and it has a covered outdoor patio, rustic wood beams, aspen ceiling and wrought iron and canvas furniture that can be used in summer and winter. “There’s a rock texture with a stone border, and we put a fire pit out there,” Bray said. “We just looked at websites for ideas and worked with our architect who helped us put together a design concept.”