5 Alfresco Lighting Ideas

To fully embrace your alfresco zone, good lighting is a must-have. And it’s not just to keep you entertaining late into the night either. Clever use of lighting can set your ideal scene – perhaps a tranquil glow for a relaxed lounge setting or throw a spotlight on your dining area? Plus, a well-lit alfresco zone is essential for practical purposes too – think illuminating stairs, pathways and your outdoor kitchen. Discover these top lighting solutions to brighten your alfresco area and help make it a year-round place you’ll want to be.

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1. Ceiling lighting
If your alfresco zone includes a lined ceiling, then downlights are the perfect choice. Not only does this offer you the advantage of easily positioning lighting over the hotspot areas and throughout the whole zone, but it also creates the ultimate seamless indoor-outdoor look – making it a natural extension of your home.

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If a lined ceiling isn’t part of the plan, then you can still create a big impact with cleverly positioned feature lighting. You might be tempted to place lighting in the middle of your alfresco space, but do consider your preferred furniture layout first. An oversized fan with lighting or a modern pendant-style feature light might be best casting light over your table or another well-used space within the zone.

2. Wall-mounted lighting
Wall-mounted lighting is particularly useful when ceiling lighting isn’t an option but you still want to throw a stack of light into your outdoor space. Choose from options including antique-style or industrial-look lantern wall lighting to stainless-steel slim-line fixtures or modern-look floodlights that will brighten your whole space.

3. Decking lighting
Cleverly positioned decking lighting (spaced not too closely and dotting your outdoor space’s perimeter) can create a soft glow and the perfect ambience for a relaxing night outdoors with guests. Decking lighting is also particularly useful to illuminate areas that could become a night-time safety hazard. Consider adding lights to stepped areas, alongside railings and near the entrance/exits to your outdoor space.

4. Statement or feature lights
Don’t discount making lighting a feature of your alfresco zone. Let it serve a practical purpose and offer some pretty or pizzazz too. Shop around for the perfect statement light to set the scene in your alfresco zone – from a warming fire pit to a modern-take on the chandelier, oversized fans incorporating lighting or antique-style lanterns. There are plenty of options to harmoniously deliver your indoor styling theme outdoors too. 

5. Solar lights
Seeking an environmentally-friendly option? Or worried you’ll want more lighting as time goes on? There are plenty of DIY solar-lighting options that can shed some extra light your way if need be. Consider: solar-powered floodlights to throw extra light on your outdoor kitchen, to show the way to garden walkways or illuminate a pool area; solar path lighting to direct guests to your garden, patio or water feature (for a classic option, try lantern-style path lights but if you prefer modern, opt for a stone look or bollard style); or try solar-powered motion-censored lights (mounted to a wall).

For advice on renovating your Melbourne home to create an alfresco zone, phone The Makeover Group on 1300 768 464 or see www.themakeovergroup.com.au