Living on the lake provides so many special opportunities for homeowners to entertain friends and family throughout the year, with summertime the obvious favorite when temperatures soar. Daytime water activities can be easily paired with casual outdoor meals, requiring minimal effort when the outdoor living space is oriented to maximizing time spent outdoors. With the lake as a beautiful vista and bountiful playground, lakefront homeowners have endless opportunities to customize the experience with unique private and entertaining spaces.

When planning out the ideal layout for lakefront property, in terms of utilizing access to the lake and allowing for maximum enjoyment, the following key components all contribute to creating the ideal setting:

Seating Areas: depending on property size and features, multiple seating areas may be designed for specific utility. Think private relaxation versus gathering with friends. Consider having different areas for comfortable lounge chairs to relax in, conversation areas with couches, chairs and cocktail tables for cocktail hour, and practical lakeside seating such as Adirondack chairs to enjoy a sunset or bonfire.

Outdoor Dining: al fresco lakeside dining may be traditionally rustic and casual, allowing for hassle-free maintenance in the elements; however, today’s options with all weather patio and lawn furniture allows for more elegant and refined options. Optimally, design a space that allows for both intimate and large gatherings.

Firepits: today considered a necessary backyard addition for luxury homeowners, firepits are a wonderful way to finish any day on the lake. Drawing on the traditional bonfire arrangement, firepits can be designed as an architectural element to the property’s landscaping with decorative masonry surrounding the pit, or be a more simple, rustic affair in keeping with more natural settings.

Piers/decking: shorefront zoning regulations can be tricky when it comes to piers and shorestations with limited frontage; however, many local pier specialists can design conforming deck options that will allow for great seating and dining areas right on the water without interfering with lake activities.

Umbrellas: coverage from the hot afternoon sun is a necessity for full days outside, also allowing for those with sun sensitivities to be included. With several color options available, they can also be a pop of color on the patio or pier, tying in with other cushions or fabric.

Lighting: always the perfect mood setting at night, adding twinkle lights in trees or hanging lanterns adds a special touch to every day lake living. There are also many unique lighting options for the walkway or stairs down to the lake, ranging from subtle to landscape-enhancing fixtures, creating a beautiful nighttime glow and ensuring safety.

Storage for Water and Lawn Toys: the more the lake is enjoyed, the more “stuff” tends to accumulate. Having a proper place to store everything from paddles, life jackets, fishing poles, ropes, floats, etc. ensures that they are well kept, easy to find and easy to keep out of sight.

Consider these creative ideas on our Pinterest board to reimagine your lakefront entertaining options: