A Short Guide to Gazebos, Pergolas, and Pool Houses

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In the throes of winter it can be easy to start fantasizing about summer parties, languishing on the lawn under a hot sun, and entertaining in the humid shade. The key to doing any of these things is having the right kind of structure — not all outdoor features are created equal. Here are three of the most common outdoor structures, how they differ, and what they’re good for.

1. Gazebos
A gazebo is one of the most common outdoor structures. These are generally made of wood or a sturdy fabric like canvas. They are usually at least six-sided, which gives the structure more of a rounded look. Gazebo builders usually cover the roofs completely, so they offer a space out of the weather. Some have screened in sides and others have open sides — a gazebo builder should be able to accommodate both. Either way, these are generally large enough to accommodate a table and a few chairs for a sit-down meal or just somewhere to set out food and drinks.

2. Pergolas
A pergola is pretty similar to a gazebo, except that the roof is not covered. A pergola is usually a four posted structure that has an open roof with horizontal rafters and completely open sides. While offering a bit of shade, these do not protect from the weather the way that a gazebo will. However, they are still ideal for covering an eating area, provided the weather cooperates with your plans.

2. Pool Houses
A pool house is also a pretty common outdoor structure, but — of course — this really only works if you have a pool. A pool house is literally a small house. It’s unlike both gazebos and pergolas in that they are completely enclosed and have a solid roof. Pool houses are usually situated near a pool which is perfect for a space out of the sun and for a little light entertaining.

So you want to add any of these structures to your property? Feel free to share with us in the comments section below. Find more.

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