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Alfresco areas

Balmy evenings, a cool sea breeze and the great Aussie BBQ. If there’s one thing Australian’s love it’s relaxing with family and friends and firing up the barbeque.

As our outdoor entertaining gets fancier and we upgrade from the good old snag to full on roasts, so too are our alfresco areas. Now so much more than just a barbeque and an outdoor setting, the alfresco area is an extension of the home.

The outdoor kitchen creates a ‘transterior’, bringing the outside into the home and the inside out in a seamless integration.

A high priority on new homebuyers and renovators’ checklists, the key to a great alfresco area is in the planning.

Owner of Newgrove, Sean Blood advises to plan your area before you go out and purchase your BBQ.

“We see too many people rushing out and purchasing an inappropriate BBQ and then find it doesn’t suit the area or there are better options for a seamless transition from benchtop to BBQ,” says Sean.

When planning, think about how you will use the space and what’s important to you.

Will you still use your main kitchen for food preparation and then cook outside? Or, do you want to be able to do everything outside? This will determine your choice of appliances, whether you need a sink, is there access plumbed water or natural gas and how much bench space you will needs.

“Beverage centers including under counter bar fridges, bottle cooling and ice storage can all be part of your alfresco area,” says Sean.

When it comes to choosing benchtops and cabinetry, it’s important to use a product that is going to be durable, withstand the harsh sun and torrential storms. Sean recommends DuPont Corian as an all-weather material.

“It’s a hi-tech solid surface that’s perfect for the outdoors. Colours and patterns run through the entire thickness of the material and cannot wear away.”

“Corian is easy to clean and maintain and it does not stain. Grease and fat simply wipe away with hot, soapy water.”

Corian is available in a range of UV stable colours, dark colours are not recommended for external applications.

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