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Designing and Building Outdoor Entertainment for Your Home

Feb 8, 2011 | Patios

Mailing Address: 7201 Brookville Road, Chevy Chase, MD 20815; Business Address: 5011 S. Olney-Laytonsville Road, Olney, MD 20832

301-740-8850; F(301)740-8853; www.jlsinc.net


Designing and Building Outdoor Entertainment for Your Home

Prior to designing and building an outdoor living environment, spend some quality time considering how you will use your outdoor space. When you entertain, how many people usually attend? What time of day or evening do you usually entertain? Will you need night lighting? Do you or your guests have children, and does your entertainment space allow for kids to run and play?

In this photo in taken in a Montgomery County, MD residence, the design included two outdoor pergolas covering the deck and the barbecue grill. Other than aesthetics, the pergolas’ purpose included providing shade from the sun because the homeowner’s back yard included a lot of sun in the early evening.

red sign

During Construction

New, Outdoor Living Space

outdoor entertainment in front of a white house

In this Northwest, Washington residence is designed to give the outdoors a sense of space and fun, while simultaneously giving the perception of privacy. This is accomplished through the tiered retaining walls and plant beds outlining the pool deck.

Northwest, Washington, DC Residence – Pool Deck and Landscape

lounges near a pool

Other things to consider include the location of your grill, and how to incorporate the grill into the rest of the design. Many clients desire a “built-in” grill like the one below, which allows ample space for food preparation using custom cut stone which beautifully integrates into the rest of the patio and walls.

Montgomery County, Maryland Residence


Finally, some folks forego the custom built grill and prefer the simple beauty of a patio, retaining wall, and plantings next to an outdoor fire, like the one in the back of this Bethesda, Maryland home.

Bethesda, Maryland Residence

patio table and chairs near a stone wall

Whatever your outdoor entertainment needs or preferences, with careful forethought, guidance, and planning, you can design a space to be used how you intend to enjoy your free time. You’re investing a lot in this outdoor space….isn’t it worth it to take a little time to ensure you will use your investment to the fullest?

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About the Author

Matt Johnson grew up in a family of landscapers and gardeners as the grandson of Raymond Johnson (Founder, 1933, Johnson's Florist and Garden Center) and son of James and Carol Johnson (Founders, 1960, Johnson's Landscaping Service, Inc.). Since 2007, he has led Johnson's Landscaping Service with his brother, Charlie.  Matt and his wife Jaime live in Petworth in Northwest DC with their 3 sons and 2 big dogs.

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Our Locations

7201 Brookville Road
Chevy Chase, MD 20815


5011 Olney-Laytonsville Road
Olney, MD 20832