Column: Open-air porch with fireplace provides family entertaining options

ORIGINAL DECK/PATIO: This home, located in the Village of West Clay in Carmel, was built in 2005. Although the original brick surround patio was beautiful, it was practically unusable due to intense evening sun. “We host Sunday family dinners every week for our family and we grew tired of having a patio that we could never entertain on. We decided to add on a large outdoor room so we could finally enjoy the outdoors without being subjected to the heat.”

EXTERIOR FINISH: Tying in with the existing gable and rooflines, the new porch was framed over the extended aggregate patio. A cathedral ceiling, custom made screened doors and gable windows were included. The elevated cathedral ceiling gives a grand appearance, but also retains the view to the backyard from the front entry. The exterior was finished with cedar siding and trim and was painted to match the existing paint color.

FIREPLACE DETAILS: The fireplace was one of the major focal points. The fireplace was constructed using stone veneer in an “Autumn Sunburst Ashlar” color and angled with a straight sightline into the kitchen. The interior fireplace wall included a 6-inch recess that was perfectly sized for their new TV. To give a dual-sided look, two fireboxes with separate flues were installed on the interior and exterior, which prevents insects from crawling inside. A limestone hearth was installed to complete the final look of the fireplace.

INTERIOR DETAILS: After the windows and screened door were installed, new casings were installed to match the family room. Motorized retractable screens were also installed to give the homeowners the desired open-air concept. A double fan with woven bamboo blades was installed along with coordinating wall sconces and carriage lights in an oil-rubbed bronze finish.

FINAL RESULT: “Our favorite part of having the new porch is being able to open the interior of our home up to the outdoors. Our house finally feels more airy and breezy.”