When it comes to relaxing in the summer sun, there are few things better than grabbing a crisp pint or a suitably fruity cocktail (or mocktail) and unwinding at your favourite outdoor bar. The problem is that getting a seat at any one of these bars can be pretty tricky when the sky is cloudless.
To get around this problem, you might consider hosting your own summer get-together when the weather is good, assuming you have the space to do so and don’t mind going back inside for snacks and drink refills.
Of course, one cost-effective way to bring a real bar into your home is by building a garden bar. Not only does this type of outdoor space replicate the real thing – minus the noisy patrons and full seats – but it can also provide you with an entertainment space you can use, both in bad weather and all year round.
So, if this is the sort of project that appeals to you, we’ve come up with the core concepts to consider when designing your personal garden bar shed, including the best types of windows, doors, and skylights to install to really welcome in the outdoors.
When it comes to designing a garden room, you have numerous outdoor bar options available to you.
For starters, you could simply opt for a pre-built bar that you can quickly order and set up yourself in your garden. This is ideal if you have limited time and space, but it doesn’t provide you with a truly bespoke garden room that can house multiple guests during sudden downpours.
In most cases, the best way to get the most out of a bar in your garden is to hire the help of a professional garden architect. With their assistance, you’ll be able to fully realise the concepts you have into a room that is both feasible and practical to your needs.
Space should be at the very forefront of your mind when deciding where to build your bar shed, particularly if the space you have available is limited. Remember that your garden bar doesn’t have to be enormous by any means, but you at least want to build an area with enough room to accommodate multiple people.
In most cases, you’ll want to position your bar in one of your garden’s more prominent spots, allowing it to become a focal point that draws visitors in while also being readily accessible from your home.
Of course, this doesn’t necessarily mean constructing it slap-bang in the middle of your lawn. Positioning your bar closer to the edge of your property between tall plants, hedges, or trees, can bring some much-needed shade for when the sun is beating down.
And, naturally, if you plan on expanding your bar out to have electrical features and plumbing, you’ll want to be sure to construct it in an area with ready access to powerlines and piping.
Generally speaking, a large majority of garden room bars are constructed out of wood. Not only does this add to the summer feel, but the natural insulative property of wood means you can use your bar room all year round without worrying about installing heavy insulation – though you will want to include a degree of insulation for the colder months.
Wood is also highly flexible in how you use it and is much cheaper than other material options. However, you can certainly build a garden bar shed out of bricks or stone – it simply comes down to personal preference and your current home décor.
Now for the most important part – what do you actually include in a bar shed?
Well, before we get to the essentials like a standing bar and various seating features, you’ll first want to consider ventilation and lighting. As a bar in your garden will likely primarily be designed to be used during summer, you’ll want to be sure you can keep the heat out while allowing in the maximum amount of sunshine possible.
To do this, we highly recommend installing a set of bi-folding doors as the main entry point into your bar room. Not only do these types of doors look great, and provide stunning views, but they can be fully opened to provide an unbroken entrance and exit – ideal for running along a veranda when you have large numbers of guests stepping in and out.
Alongside these doors, you might also want to consider installing a skylight or other glass roofing system so you can make the most of the sun throughout the day, simultaneously eliminating the need for excessive indoor lighting while making everything feel more airy and fresh
Finally, if you have the space, then a full set of aluminium windows could be installed on the sides without entrances, again to bring in increased light. We recommend picture windows that go from floor to ceiling, which will give you the same view and light benefits as a set of bi-fold doors.
Naturally, once you’ve finalised all of these details, you can then set about ensuring your garden bar shed includes a full-length serving bar and complementary seating, fold-down wall tables to help save on space, and comfortable seating to relax in – whatever you need to bring your dream bar shed to life.
With the main priorities out of the way, we couldn’t leave you without a few bar feature suggestions that will go a long way to truly bringing your home beer garden to life.
What we’ve described up until now is the stereotypical garden shed bar that allows enough space for you and your guests to relax outside or pop indoors if the rain hits, but what about if you have a little extra room to work with?
Well, if you plan on having a large bar with more than just a serving and seating section, then you could consider turning part of it into a gaming area, complete with pool and table tennis, games consoles, or even a cinema setup.
Or, alternatively, if you’re a big sports fan, adding seating and a screen next to your bar that can stream each event live means that you and your mates can get together on match day with front-row seats!
And, finally, you could turn your shed bar into a multipurpose building, with its own plumbing, relaxation space, and even a bedroom or full-blown kitchen if you’re so inclined.
Last, but by no means least, we come to the décor of your new garden drinks space. At this point, the aesthetic is entirely down to you, so you should personalise your new space as you see fit, whether you favour modern garden ideas or something more traditional.
In keeping with the bar theme, adding in lots of extra shelves and a cupboard or two will give you some much-needed extra storage space, and filling these with bottles will allow you to show off your cocktail-making skills when called for.
Alongside these additions, installing genuine taps and pumps will further lend to the bar feel, and you can even add overhead rails to hang your glasses on. A handy mini-fridge-freezer wouldn’t go amiss either.
And on a more practical level, you might want to consider using lights held by dangling ropes or installed directly into the roof, so they don’t look out of place, as well as a speaker system for music if that’s your thing, all to allow you and your friends to continue the party into the evening.
At the end of the day, how you choose to build and style your very own garden bar is entirely up to you, but we hope that the suggestions we’ve put forward will help make the process that much simpler.
And if you’re thinking of building a bar for your garden, then why not contact our expert team at Express? We have a whole range of window and door products that you can view in our showrooms, many of which are perfect for outdoor garden rooms.
Don’t forget to visit our blog as well, for more articles like this one, such as ideas for your very own garden office shed.