As with many living spaces in the modern day custom build home, the game room has many different interpretations to meet the needs and taste of the owners. Traditional game rooms are timeless, incorporating classic games such as pool, darts, ping pong and card tables with modern media rooms. Also considered a “bonus room”, many current homeowners contemplate a temporary solution to current family needs that will evolve with time and the ages of the children of the family.

The planning begins with the designation of the space. Converting an existing attic or basement into a welcoming environment for family and entertaining is just as easy as starting from scratch with a new custom built home. To maximize the use of this recreational space, it helps to start with a few important questions:

  1. What would make the game room inviting for the entire family?
  2. What activities would you like to enjoy in that space?
  3. What member(s) of the family will use it most for entertaining?
  4. How do you envision the game room being used today versus 5-10 years from now?

Starting with #1, what would make it inviting for the entire family, this speaks to the design elements as well as furniture that is comfortable. Even a game room warrants tasteful design elements that can be tied in with the rest of the main living spaces and entertaining spaces in the home. From lighting and artwork to furniture, it is easy to create or transform a game room that incorporates the tastes and styles of the entire family.

Addressing which activities are most likely to be enjoyed in the space provides the blueprint for how to incorporate and accommodate these activities. Video and electronic games can be enjoyed on a large screen, which doubles as a movie theater with comfortable seating. Puzzles and board games can be conveniently stored under an oversized coffee table with stools, also the main spot where they can then be enjoyed. If billiards and ping pong are both desirable and space does not allow for both, customized tables are available which are used for both games.

If the game room is designated to be more of a kid zone/ play space, the environment needs to be easily navigated, simply organized and basically kid-friendly to make it stress-free for both kids and the parents. It should be designed for kids to easily navigate independently, with their favorite activities (pinball, Legos, video games, art projects, board games) front and center, easily accessible and easy to keep organized.

If the game room is envisioned as a permanent part of the home, timeless as the family dynamics evolve, there are many different approaches. It may be appealing to more mature custom home owners to design the space as a traditional gentleman’s game room reminiscent of a private club (fireplace, comfortable chairs, hand carved pool table, card table). Or the space can be designed to be transitional, rather than designing around a particular game or table, to adapt with the family tastes, thus having less permanent game elements. Whether designed to be traditional or transitional, the game room should consist of the same high quality finishes (i.e. flooring, cabinetry, wall finishes) that exist throughout the luxury custom built or renovated home to maximize the flexibility for future use.

Check out some of these unique game room ideas for additional inspiration: