If you are looking for a way to really accentuate your home, tongue and groove is a unique and really customized way to do so. Adding wood to your ceiling provided warmth to the typical stucco homes found here in South Florida. When it comes to choosing the wood we recommend Cypress wood. Hot Tip: Make sure the ceiling is level prior to installing the tongue and groove ceiling. The reason we choose cypress is because it is native to Florida and best withstands Florida’s climate. We also recommend finishing the tongue and Groove with an exterior stain which can come in a variety of colors. This also protects the wood from the many insects we are so fortunate to have here in Florida. Click on the link below to watch a video of one of our recent projects done right here in Miami.
What is the best outdoor kitchen counter top? Here at Outdoor Living we have installed hundreds of outdoor kitchen counter tops and want to inform you on what we have found to be the best. Here you will find the pros and the cons of each material. We have broken it down into 3 main categories:
Pros – Usually less expensive. If one cracks you don’t have to replace the whole slab. Usually stays cooler in warmer environment.
Cons – Has grout lines. Also, may not give you that “flowing look” and offers a limited selection for the bull nose.
2.) Granite/Stone Slabs
Pros – No grout lines. Looks more like a single counter top. There is a greater selection of bull nose faces.
Cons – Can add an additional cost of up to $20-$200 per square foot of counter top. Can get very very hot if exposed to the sun. If there is any damage or cracking the whole slab will unfortunately need to be replaced.
Pros – Usually stays cooler in hot environments. It also can be colored to be matched many different finishes.
Cons – With out proper expansion gaps it may be susceptible to cracking due to Florida climate. Also it can add $50-250 per square foot of counter space. Concrete can be porous and needs to be treated regularly to maintain its appearance.
We, at Outdoor Living in Wellington Florida have installed over 500 outdoor kitchen counter tops and we feel that the counter top is critical to the beauty of the finished product and the function of the cooking area. The counter top can be broken into three main categories:
- Granite / Stone Slabs
Each counter top selection can be used according to your specific
situation. In order to help with the decision, Outdoor Living has applied its “Three Pros and Three Cons” for each type to give you a better idea of how to decide for yourself.
Pros — Usually Less Expensive, If one cracks you don’t have to replace
the entire slab, Stays cooler in hot environments
Cons — Has Grout lines, may not give you that “flowing look”, limited for the vertical section (bull-nose)
- Granite / Stone Slabs
Pros — No Grout Lines, Can look more as a single counter, Greater selection of bull nose faces
Cons — Can add $20 to $200 per SF to the cost of the project, can get
very hot if exposed to the sun, If it cracks the whole slab needs to be
Pros — Stays cooler in hot environments, you can lighting or other
materials (e.g. glass) into the aggregate, it can be colored to match
many different environments
Cons — It can crack and if it does you need to replace the entire slab, can add $50 to $250 per SF to the cost, it has to be treated regularly to maintain its appearance.
Come visit us at www.outdoorfl.com “We bring the Florida Lifestyle to Life” Serving Vero beach to Key Largo. For more information related to your outdoor projects, feel free to email us at email@example.com any time for a personal consultation.
Alessandra Colao and Kevin Keene — Your Backyard Gurus
Outdoor kitchen landscape design is an increasingly popular trend in garden planning, not just in the year round warmth of southern Florida, but in cooler climates as well. Modern outdoor design takes the elegant style of your interior living space and continues it into the yard, creating the same functional living space on the outside. Because the kitchen is an integral part of entertaining at home, many people prefer an outdoor kitchen or sometimes referred to in the cooler climates as a ‘Summer Kitchen’ for convenient cooking and dining in the beautiful outdoors.
Planning Your Outdoor Kitchen
Designing an outdoor kitchen for your landscape design requires careful planning. Today’s kitchens are much more elaborate than the traditional outdoor grill near a picnic table and there are many things to consider to ensure a living area that is both functional and attractive.
Outdoor Kitchen Appliances
Outdoor kitchens can be as simple, or as grand, as the homeowner desires. Many design plans for these functional outdoor living spaces recreate the modern conveniences of the indoors with outdoor plumbing, elegant counter tops, cabinets for storage, and Viking refrigeration.
The size and number of your outdoor appliances and accessories will depend upon your budget, as well as the space available for your kitchen and the number of people it will typically be used for.
An outdoor grill barbecue is the most basic component of your design. There are a variety of styles and types of appliances designed for the outdoors including the Viking outdoor cooking equipment shown in this photo.
Choosing Your Outdoor Grill
There are a wide variety of barbecue grills available. The right one for your outdoor kitchen will depend on the number of people you typically entertain in your home. A large cooking surface or double rack design will allow you to prepare bigger meals, but a compact model will be sufficient for more intimate gatherings.
Today’s outdoor grills feature a number of accessories and add-ons as well. Side burners are the best way to prepare a full meal without the inconvenience of being trapped indoors.
Choose from simple models with one or two burners or large barbecue grills with full sized cooking surfaces for the feeling of an indoor kitchen. Cabinets and storage areas are also popular options.
Outdoor Barbecue Islands
Luxurious outdoor kitchen landscape designs often feature a barbecue island to provide a functional, yet attractive, workspace for meal preparation as well as room for storage. Outdoor kitchen islands can be custom made from fine wood, polymer, or brick or can be purchased in prefabricated sections for convenient installation.
Custom outdoor barbecue islands are:
• Easily suited to the appearance of your home with matching brick or complementary wood.
• Built on site for permanence.
• Designed according to your specifications so your outdoor kitchen landscape design meets all your needs.
Prefabricated outdoor kitchen islands offer:
• A simple, piece together installation.
• A more affordable price.
• A variety of styles, materials, and colors to blend with your overall design.
• Several different options to personalize your outdoor kitchen.
Other Outdoor Appliances and Accessories
Your barbecue island can be designed to contain your grill as well as several other appliances and accessories that make outdoor entertaining more convenient and enjoyable. Refrigerators are extremely common elements of outdoor kitchen landscape designs. Sinks, beer taps, wine coolers, pizza ovens, warming trays, cabinets and storage, and even dishwashers can also be integrated into your plans. A custom outdoor kitchen design can provide unlimited possibilities for cooking outdoors.
The Best Materials for Your Outdoor Kitchen
Because your outdoor kitchen will be open to the elements throughout the year, it is important to select materials designed for outdoor use. Polymer is a strong, weather-resistant material preferred by many landscape architects because of its ability to not peel or crack with changing climates. Brick is another long lasting material for outdoor use that has a luxurious appearance in your landscape design.
Counter tops and surfaces are typically finished with natural stone for a sophisticated look similar to your indoor kitchen design.
Granite, marble, and slate counter tops are common in high-end outdoor kitchen designs and ceramic tile is also an option hat can be found in several colors.
The final touches to any outdoor kitchen landscape design, regardless of how simple or elaborate, are outdoor accessories that enhance the overall style of your home. Dining furniture, decorative accents like sculptures, throw rugs, or potted plants, and the right outdoor lighting design can help unify your outdoor kitchen with the rest of your outdoor design as well as with the interior of your home. Creating a unified look throughout your property is extremely important for a professionally designed appearance. Our landscape design team specializes in upscale designs, including outdoor kitchen landscape designs, and provides complementary on-site consultations to property owners throughout the United States.
Featuring Kevin Keene…known as the “Backyard Whisperer”…
Kevin Keene resides in South Florida but is world renown for outdoor design and construction – having completed projects as far away as Central America and the Middle East. With over 400 completed outdoor kitchens, pergolas, fireplaces, and cabanas, Kevin Keene is known by clients as someone who can speak to their home layout and custom design an outdoor living space that is seamless with the indoor living area.
Educated in The United States and The United Kingdom, Mr. Keene has also lived in France and Spain. Additionally, he has visited other countries such as; Italy, Canada, Mexico, Switzerland, Ireland, Scotland, Holland, Costa Rica, and Panama to study architecture and the varying design aspects of other cultures.
Besides his outdoor design and construction success, Mr. Keene has earned a Masters of Business Management (M.B.A.) from Rutgers University and is a Florida State Certified Residential Contractor. He is available for telephone and personal consultation by calling 561-779-0005 within the United States and 001- 561-779-0005 outside the United States.
Why live in Florida if you don’t spend your time outdoors? One way is a custom outdoor kitchen and entertainment center. Outdoor Living provides 100% custom, innovative outdoor kitchen designs that are handcrafted with high-quality workmanship. We provide the best in service and quality for Florida residents that wish to build an outdoor kitchen. Just ask one of our clients from our 567 completed outdoor projects in Florida.
If you are looking for a single point of contact for all your exterior design and construction including; Outdoor Kitchens, Built-in BBQ Grills, Outdoor Equipment, Pizza Ovens, Pergolas, Cabanas, Pavers, Pools, Fencing, Landscaping, Lighting, Electrical Needs and Plumbing Needs please call 561-779-0005. One call will solve it all!
The top ten factors when considering building an outdoor kitchen in Florida are as follows:
1). Yeah… We are different down here in Florida… Florida Outdoor Kitchens differ from those in other states. Besides the obvious differences in architecture and finish, consult an expert to determine if the countertop and base finish is appropriate for Florida’s hot-humid, sun drenched environment.
2). ” Get Out of the House”… Outdoor Kitchens in Florida are a social gathering location not just a functional item. Florida residents are known to want to “get out of the house”. Keep in mind that your outdoor space should accommodate more than the cook if possible. The old joke that “no one will stand over your shoulder and tell you that you are not baking a cake properly, but 10 people will carefully watch how you are ruining their burger” stands true.
3). “It’s the economy stupid”… A great quote and it is very relevant in today’s Florida housing related economy that has been hit hard and people are not as willing to move. Consider that you may not live at your residence for ever but you should make it “enjoyable for the time being” by designing and spending wisely by working with a qualified and experienced OUTDOOR DESIGNER.
4). Don’t cook the cook… What do we mean? Remember that the Florida sunshine over our outdoor kitchens can be brutal. Make sure you plan for some type of shade and/or rain protection if possible.
5). Grills Gone Wild! Many Florida residents who build outdoor kitchens are very concerned with look and appeal, but overlook the most important component of the outdoor kitchen — THE GRILL! Find an equipment expert who has experienced a wide range of equipment manufacturers and styles for your built-in BBQ grill. This is the very important because you cannot easily switch out one built-in BBQ grill for another type or manufacturer of grill equipment. Be weary of retailers who wish to sell you outdoor equipment without a clear plan regarding the design, construction and necessary electric, gas and plumbing. You may end up with great equipment that sits for a year before finding the right company to build the outdoor structure. Also, speak to the Grill Salesperson’s service company to ensure that you are going to get service should your outdoor BBQ break-down.
6). Yeah, The outside is not the inside of your home… Building outdoors requires extensive outdoor construction design and experience in order to ensure that you get the best outcome possible. That is why South Florida Interior Designers turn to Outdoor Living for the Outdoor Environment. In fact we are a trade partner-member of (ASID American Society of Interior Designers). Be cautiously optimistic about any company that says they “do it all” without the assistance of subject matter experts in the specific area of your home. What is that saying? Jack of all trades…
7). What Do You Mean We Are Married? Many times, Florida residents who hire a licensed contractor for Outdoor Design & Construction find themselves in a 1 to 6 month emotional and intimate relationship. Make sure you are comfortable with your hired partner. One way is to check that they have all the necessary contractor licenses and insurances to qualify them to build these projects. Can they pull a permit for your outdoor kitchen construction? Be very weary of anyone that says that a custom built project – improvement at your home does not require a building permit or large sums of money upfront to start the project.
8). Florida Outdoor Kitchens are not just for cooking anymore… Many times, Outdoor Living’s Outdoor Design and Projects include much more than just a built-in BBQ. We provide Pergolas, Arbors, Cabanas, Outdoor Bars, Outdoor Fireplaces that will create an opulent outdoor oasis. Pergolas and cabanas can provide the necessary shade. Outdoor Bars can provide the entertainment for you and your family. And outdoor fireplaces offer the ambiance that you wish to enjoy when taking in the pleasant Florida evenings (especially during the Winter months). Total Outdoor Design including every aspect of your outdoor space is a bid part of our day to day activities. That includes managing the planning and implementation of outdoor kitchens, pergolas, pavers, pool construction / refacing and all the related gas, electric and plumbing.
9). You Get What You Pay For… If you think that you are going to get a luxury car for a basic car price please go visit a car dealership today! The same holds true for Outdoor Kitchen projects. I will argue all day that a handy man will not give you the same results as a licensed and insured professional with experience with similar projects. Try to get a handy man out to repair a problem a month later or fix your grill because it was not installed properly. Also, be aware that “Outdoor Kitchen Manufacturers” are just that…a manufacturer not a builder. Most times they are not licensed to perform construction and you are very limited in your rights as a home owner when you hire these companies.
10). Be realistic about your budget… When a professional asks you “what is your budget” they are trying to do you a service as a consultant in order to meet your needs by staying within your financial planning guidelines. The size, finish materials and equipment can be adjusted to fit your budget and it is important to have an idea of what you wish to spend. The typical Custom Outdoor Kitchen in Florida ranges from $6,000 to $75,000. This includes construction, equipment, and related plumbing and electric. However, the average cost for everything is between $9,000 and $15,000. If you cannot finance this amount, you are probably not going to be happy with the end result of the project. Our recommendation is do a smaller high quality project at your budget Vs. a larger project where you cut corners.
If you live on the East Coast of Florida between Vero Beach and Key Largo, please contact Outdoor Living today for the ultimate Florida outdoor living experience at 561-779-0005
This is the last week before Halloween, but you may want to hold off carving those pumpkins until mid-week. We just had a cold front, but Palm Beach, Florida is still fairly hot in October, meaning your jack-o-lantern could be all shriveled up by Halloween. If you’re visiting the Outdoor Living Blog, chances are you don’t want a wrinkled pumpkin on your patio. To keep your jack-o-lantern, and your outdoor space, looking fresh you can implore the following methods to slow dehydration and mold.
One technique is to coat all cut surfaces of the pumpkin with petroleum jelly immediately after they have been carved. This includes a light coating of the entire inside of the pumpkin. If you can’t do the whole inside, at least try to coat the design that you’ve cut into the pumpkin.
The petroleum jelly acts as a barrier to seal in the pumpkins internal moisture to help slow down the dehydration process of the pumpkin. You can use a finger to coat the eyes, nose and mouth but you may want to use a paper towel with jelly on it to coat the inside. It’s less messy that way.
Be sure to keep pumpkins in the shade during the day and away from sprinklers. If you have space, you can store your jack-o-lantern in a refrigerator, maybe the refrigerator in your outdoor kitchen.
When interviewing an outdoor kitchen contractor in the state of Florida keep these question in mind. If your not satisfied with their answers then you know they are not the outdoor kitchen contractor for you.
- Are you a licensed contractor in this state and city? Check to see if your state requires a license. Some states accept work experience, membership in professional trade organizations, and continuing education units in place of a license. If the contractor has a license, get the license number, and call the local building department to validate the number. Also, call the State Consumer Protection Agency to find out if the contractor had to prove financial stability, pass an exam, or just pay a fee for the license.
- Can I have three references from customers in the past 12 months? Past three years? Use references to check the contractor’s current and past work history.
- Can I have a banking and/or financial reference? Check financial stability. If the contractor is unable to pay for materials, labor, and overhead costs, the job could go unfinished.
- What professional/trade organizations are you are a member of? Check membership standing in the organization provided.
- What insurance coverage do you have? At a minimum, contractors should have Workman’s Compensation, general liability (including property and personal liability), and automobile insurance. These policies help protect you and your property from potential legal problems should an accident occur. Call the insurance agency to confirm effective dates of the insurance policies.
When a contractor starts a job, it’s good practice to have a valid certificate of insurance naming you and your property as co-insured. Have the contractor contact his insurance agency and request that a copy be mailed directly to you. Do not accept a photocopy.
- How long have you been in business? A contractor with at least five years experience usually has a stable business foundation and is reliable.
- Have you taken any classes or attended any trade seminars in the past 2 years? Industry trade shows, seminars, and classes help a contractor stay on top of the latest solutions and techniques for remodeling and building. Courses centered on managing a business successfully are also important.
- Based on the project detail, what permits may be required? The contractor should be familiar with local building code requirements.
- May I have an itemized estimate on the project that includes materials, labor, overhead, and a time frame? The estimate should be in writing in order to compare it with the estimates you receive from the other two contractors.
- Do you have a “before and after” picture portfolio? Most contractors have pictures of past work.
Plan Your South Florida Outdoor Kitchen With Great Ideas – Outside Kitchen Plans – Outdoor Kitchens Miami
Few South Florida Seasonal pleasures are as much fun as a cookout. The smell of grilling food is mouth-watering, everything tastes great and it’s hard not to have a good time – that is, unless you’re the harried host running back and forth between the grill and the kitchen for the chicken and steak, forks and knives, beer and wine, and ketchup and mustard. And when everybody’s done, all the leftovers must be lugged back inside.
An outdoor kitchen can help you slow down and spend more time with family and friends by putting all the ingredients for outdoor dining close at hand. It can be as simple as a storage cabinet for cooking gear or as ambitious as a full kitchen with grill, refrigerator, sink and eating area. Either way, your yard will gain an outside “room” that’s a natural gathering spot.
WHAT TO INCLUDE
Outdoor kitchens cost from about $3,000 for one with a good-quality grill, a 6-ft.-long counter and a patio to $15,000 and up for higher-end versions with an assortment of appliances. Although it’s tempting to compare outdoor kitchens to the one indoors, there are some key differences.
For example, while a grill and counter space for preparing food are essential, a refrigerator and sink aren’t. But including them can boost the value of your home by helping your outdoor kitchen qualify as a second kitchen.
How elaborate should yours be? That depends on what you and your family need. For example, if you barbecue only once a week or so, a grill and a counter-high storage cabinet covered with tile or stucco should do it. The cabinet will protect supplies from the weather and the countertop will provide work space when you get down to cooking. Like to eat outside as much as possible? Then you’ll want storage space and a counter or table for dining, along with a sink and refrigerator.
FOR VIEWING PLEASURE
This property in South Florida gives breathtaking views of the surrounding area. Unfortunately, the family had to walk to the back property line to take in the sites. That and the fact that there was really no place for the family to cook and dine together led to a fully equipped outdoor kitchen near the rear of the yard.
Outdoor Living of South Florida believes the most important step in designing such a space is to find the ideal location for the grill. With this kitchen, that meant placing the cooker so the smoke from it wouldn’t blow into the faces of family and friends sitting around the counter or table. The location also had to be near the edge of the shade structure so that smoke could escape and not become trapped by the roof of the structure.
Outdoor Living of South Florida was then able to put the countertops, the sink and a refrigerator within easy reach of the cook. The color scheme on the structure matches that on the house. And the tiles and brick pavers in the area look like those that surround the pool.
This kitchen contains a gas grill, as well as a refrigerator and lights that require electricity. Running power from the house ordinarily would disrupt the yard and boost the cost of the project, but Outdoor Living of South Florida minimized both by digging one 24-in.-deep trench for electric, gas and phone lines. This cut excavation costs and allowed him to separate the gas and electric lines by the 12 in. required by local codes.
PLANNING YOUR SPACE
An existing backyard patio is a great foundation for an outdoor kitchen. You can add a grill, counters and other elements without having to make structural modifications. Decks, on the other hand, require additional support for all but the simplest of outdoor kitchens.\
Whichever route you choose, a Miami outdoor kitchen should be near the house to save you steps when you need to go inside for supplies. But that doesn’t mean it has to be visible from the house. “You don’t want to be inside and look at a stack of dirty dishes,” says kitchen designer Kevin Keene. Under-counter shelves that keep dishes out of sight until cleanup time are one way around that problem. Also be sure the spot you choose will accommodate everything you want the kitchen to hold.
Here are some typical space requirements for each component:
You’ll find grills with cooking areas from 24 to about 48 in. wide and 15 to 26 in. deep. You can also add a side burner or shelf, each of which can add another foot or so to the width. Whichever grill you choose, place it so smoke blows away from people eating.
Tables typically range from 42×42-in. models that can seat four to rectangular tables up to 96 in. long for six to eight people. Allow at least 36 in. and preferably 42 in. between the edge of the table and a wall, deck railing or other fixed object so there’s room to walk behind those seated. And, for safety’s sake, place tables at least 60 in. from stairs, even if the eating area is just one level up. For eating counters with high stools, provide at least 24 in. of counter width for each stool. Also plan on 15 in. of undercounter leg room.
You’ll need plenty of open countertop space to prepare food and serve as a holding area for a variety of items, so don’t skimp. As with indoor kitchens, plan on 36 in. of counter on each side of the grill if possible. And to make food prep and cleanup easier, allow 18 to 24 in. of open space on both sides of a sink.
Because the grill is the heart of any cookout, build your outdoor kitchen around it. Then arrange the items in the kitchen so they’re easy to reach when you’re cooking. Don’t forget hooks for hanging tongs, spatulas, forks and other grilling utensils. If you include a sink, refrigerator and storage cabinet, they should all be close to each other. But they don’t have to be arranged in the indoor-kitchen work triangle that ties the stove, refrigerator and sink together. One functional layout to consider: Place a counter opposite the grill, creating a mini-galley or U-shaped kitchen similar to the Waltz kitchen. This setup is not only efficient, but it also keeps kids and other traffic out of the work area. Barriers that keep children away from the grill are a plus.
If you are serious about enjoying your outdoor lifestyle then please give us a call and we will be more than happy to help you concept, design and build your South Florida Kitchen. Check out the rest of our website and sign up to see all of our outdoor kitchen design. Thanks and make everyday a sunny day.