Building Your Home’s Amenities Into Experiences

The value of a home is more than what it can be bought and sold for – it also lies in how it makes you feel. Security and comfort are vital components, as well as convenience; however, what many buyers are looking for in a home in 2018 are amenities that deliver a luxury experience. With that in mind, we decided to take a look at a few ways a home can add an “experience” that sets itself apart.

Indoor-Outdoor Pools

  • In much of the country, an outdoor swimming pool isn’t that uncommon. The simple luxury of a private space for recreation can be the centerpiece of a home’s charm.
  • Expanding that possibility is the indoor-outdoor pool, which segments a pool into a covered, indoor region, as well as an outdoor area.
  • Anyone who loves spending time in the water but lives in too cool a climate to use a pool year-round can enjoy an indoor oasis in the winter that flows seamlessly into an outdoor space in the warmer months.

Creative Wine Cellars

Credit: Spiral Cellars / SpiralCellars.com

  • Who among us wouldn’t love a wine cellar? It’s an opportunity for self-expression that echoes back upon centuries of vintage creativity.
  • Not every home has the space to build a traditional wine cellar, but a bit of creativity can open the door to other possibilities.
  • The underground, spiral cellar, as pictured above, is one way to add a stylish centerpiece to your home that will undoubtedly create a unique experience for your guests.

Outdoor Home Theater

Credit: Pinterest / Realtor.com

  • The indoor home theater is far from passé but building upon that experience with an outdoor theater can take your movie nights to the next level.
  • The key to this design is versatility. If you live in a sun-kissed state you can construct a lightly covered space for viewings. An artful canopy or raised trellis can be the enclosure.
  • Wetter or dustier climates pose a greater challenge, but a retractable awning is a multi-functional feature that can transform your yard into a private cinema no matter the weather.

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Why Not White Marble?

 

Are you thinking about replacing your kitchen or bathroom countertops? The choices are endless; tile, granite, soapstone, wood, or maybe marble? White marble often gets a bad rap because it’s a more porous metamorphic stone than most (which means it’s prone to stains and scratches), but we beg to differ, and here’s why.

White marble is as timeless as it is modern. Adding white marble to your kitchen or bathrooms is like bringing home flowers for your significant other; always a good idea. It looks great on kitchen counters, but also just about anywhere in your bathrooms, from the floor to the shower walls.  Adding white marble countertops to a dressing vanity in bedrooms is also a great way to incorporate it throughout your house.

After you’ve made the decision to install white marble into your home, you’ll need to decide on a finish. Honing gives a matte finish, whereas polishing creates a shiny, reflective surface. If you want to reduce etching, choose a honed finish instead of a polish. If you don’t mind some added etching, then polished white marble is as stunning as it sounds.

How do you keep your marble happy? Make sure to apply a seal prior to using it. To reduce staining, wipe away spills immediately, and only use a neutral detergent to clean your marble. These simple things will keep your white marble in shipshape condition.

When it comes to your marble, it’s more like you than you think. Marble goes through good times and bad times and some scars fade better than others. It will never be perfect, but in the end, we think you’ll love it—imperfections and all.

Check out white marble looks we love on Pinterest.

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5 Tips to Improve Indoor-Outdoor Flow

Wouldn’t you love to double the size of your house for the holidays, or when you’re entertaining a large groups of friends? And when the party is over and all the guests have gone home, have your nice, cozy house back just like that?

It doesn’t make sense to maintain a large entertaining space that gets used only a couple of times a year. That’s why it’s so practical to have a functional and efficient indoor-outdoor space.

Modern Outdoor Spaces: Blurring the Lines Between Indoors and Outdoors

Having a well-designed outdoor area adjacent to your main entertaining rooms is a great way to get more space when needed and to add value to your home. The indoor-outdoor concept is not a new idea, but when you combine it with an open floor plan, you can create a large entertaining area that your guests will savor.

Here are some tips to make sure you get the most out of your indoor-outdoor design.

Dawna Jones Design, original photo on Houzz

Create a big opening. Don’t be afraid to invest in big openings between your indoor and outdoor spaces. Large pocket or accordion doors are a great way to blur the visual barriers between the two areas. When weather permits, you can open up the exterior wall and instantly double the floor space.

IndoorOutdoor 2: Giulietti Schouten Architects, original photo on Houzz

Keep it covered. It’s always best to have a combination of covered and uncovered outdoor spaces — but be sure to provide a covered entertaining area if at all possible. Essentially, you’ll be creating a series of outdoor rooms that will give you a sense of place without taking away from the fact that you’re outdoors.

Browse Thousands of Outdoor Umbrellas

JMA (Jim Murphy and Associates), original photo on Houzz

Make it level. The goal is to remove any visual or physical barriers between the two spaces — including any changes in floor level. Making sure your indoor and outdoor spaces are on the same plane assures they’ll function as one space when needed.

IndoorOutdoor 4: Horst Architects, original photo on Houzz

Create floor flow. Choosing a flooring material that works well inside and out is another great way to make the two spaces feel connected.

Hire a Flooring Professional

Take advantage of the view. There is nothing more impressive than a large, open space that takes advantage of an incredible view. Make sure you orient your interior to look at the vista through the adjacent outdoor space. This way you’ll get to enjoy the view from both inside and outside the house.

The truth is, great design is less about the way your house looks (although it should look remarkable), and more about how it functions. A well-designed house will work better, cost less to build, be more efficient to run and maintain, and get you more for less.

IndoorOutdoor 5: GM Construction, Inc., original photo on Houzz

Great design doesn’t cost more to build than good design, but it sure feels a million times better to live in.

By Dylan ChappellHouzz

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