Dining al fresco—one of the few times where we get to enjoy a sophisticated yet casual eating experience in comfort and luxury while outdoors. Outdoor dining, especially popular during summer, is an excellent spring time pursuit. As the nights start becoming lighter, brighter and warmer, we see the emergence of outdoor seating in restaurants, pubs and cafes. The etymology of ‘al fresco’ is particularly interesting, a quick Google search brings up the information that ‘al fresco’ is taken from Italian to mean ‘in the cool air’. However, upon further investigation, this term is more commonly used by Italian speakers to indicate spending time in jail. Amusingly, most of us would be more than happy to ‘endure’ jail if it were simply a flavourful Scotch egg, pork pie, and fruit platter in the cool breeze, but these days the term al fresco has cemented its own meaning of outdoor dining within the English language.
Make the most of your outdoor area this season, and renovate your garden to include a stylish and exciting al fresco dining space. Moreover, take a look at the following exciting examples below, and get some inspiration for your next home renovation project.
As the snow melts and we begin to slowly emerge from our warm domestic cocoons, the spring breeze signals time to get outdoors and make the most of the warmer more temperate months ahead. What better way to do this, than with a stylish dinner party, or classic sunlit luncheon? Get you al fresco dining experience happening with the right setting, and of course the right accessories. Make sure you choose items that are practical for use outdoors (i.e. not the fragile porcelain bowl that your great-grandmother willed to you). Choose useable accessories, such as tough ceramic jugs, bowls and serving platters, along with matching or coordinating pots and planters to give a sense of cohesiveness and style. If the weather is still brisk outside, think about adding some throw rugs to the seating, for guests to warm themselves against the breeze.
If you have a view, then use it! A nice midday lunch is perfect with a gorgeous landscape to look over and enjoy. If you are in the city, consider a rooftop terrace to enjoy the fresh air. This al fresco dining setting has a lovely set of comfortable all-weather wicker chairs and table that are perfect for rooftop dining as they will withstand the elements far better than natural untreated cane. Furthermore, remember to dress your table in a way that suits the season, the style of event and the colour scheme. This setting is perfectly simple, yet elegantly tasteful. Add white crockery, fancy drinkware, and you will have yourself a spectacularly memorable space.
If you are lucky enough to have a garden, think about a paved courtyard space that can be transformed into an al fresco delight. Not only is there enough room for a stylish dining setting, but the extra room will allow guests to gather afterwards, and mingle with an after meal digestif. A paved courtyard such as this coordinates excellently with the manicured garden and rustic stone elements of the tiling. Further to this, the water feature injects the area with a sense of tranquillity, and is perfect for creating that al fresco experience in your own back garden.
If you want to experience al fresco dining, but the weather just isn’t permitting, try incorporating an indoor/outdoor space into your home. This gorgeous indoor kitchen with outdoor dining space utilises the benefits of open plan living to generate a connection between the inside and outside. Moreover, this al fresco dining space allows year round entertaining, with an emphasis on luxury, comfort and opulence. If you are considering this style of outdoor dining in your own dwelling, choose raw timber elements to contrast the sleek linear form of the architecture, and ensure you create a space that is soft and comfortable as well as grand and magnificent.