1. Designated Areas
Bringing the indoors outside is a wonderful way to make guests feel comfortable with outdoor entertaining. Designated areas that feel like “rooms” help with functionality and flow while still bringing an appealing aesthetic.
2. Mood Lighting
With outdoor entertaining, it is important for guests to be able to see each other without spotlights and bright patio lighting. To help set the mood, we suggest strung globe lights, lanterns or chandeliers to create a soft, fanciful ambiance. Pergolas, while primarily used for shade during the day, are wonderful structures to hang lighting from for evening outdoor entertaining, as well.
No party should ever be without music! Background music helps guests to relax (or rev up!) and sets the tone for the event. With all of the wonderful wireless technology, it’s very easy to install speakers throughout the space that hook up to a smartphone or Bluetooth device. If you’d prefer to not see the speakers then one way to get around this is to install speakers that replicate stones or blend into the foliage, which has become a popular option in landscape design.
4. Proximity To The Kitchen
Hosting guests can be a big feat, so anything you can do to make the process easier for yourself is essential. We recommend creating the dining space in close proximity to the barbecue or an entrance into the house so as to save time running between the table and the kitchen. Take a look at my post on the best wood fired pizza ovens for some cooking inspo! http://myultimategarden.com/the-best-wood-fired-pizza-ovens/
5. Food and Drink
One of the keys to a successful party are keeping the food simple and having ice cold refreshments in close proximity! Keeping beverages on hand and accessible to you and your guests will make everyone comfortable — guests won’t have to bother you every time they need a refill and you won’t have to play bartender. There are many ways to display drinks, such as rolling bar carts, galvanized tubs and built-in outdoor coolers and refrigerators. As long as the drinks in hand are cold and tasty, guests will be happy!