Transform Your Backyard: 10 Must-Have Features for Ultimate Outdoor Entertainment

Poolscape with deck and social area

Want to take your backyard from basic to brilliant? Love entertaining family and friends? Fancy yourself a backyard pizza chef? Then it’s time to talk to Zones about making your dream outdoor entertainment space a reality!

As Tauranga landscaping specialists we have created stunning outdoor entertaining spaces for countless homeowners. Whether you need decking solutions, an outdoor kitchen, or outdoor lighting ideas, our experts are here to help. Looking for inspiration? Read on to discover our top ten must-haves for the ultimate outdoor entertainment space.


Every outdoor living area needs a good deck. Not only do they extend your living space, but they provide the perfect place to gather friends and family for a classic kiwi BBQ. Our expert consultants can help determine the right decking material for your environment and needs, from hardwearing classic Kwila decking used in this stunning renovation to low maintenance composite decking that’s great for kids. Our Landscaping Consultants can also take care of consent applications for you, making the entire process stress-free.

Deck with pergola and coloured chairs

Outdoor Kitchen

Take advantage of the beautiful Bay weather by installing an outdoor kitchen. Outdoor kitchens are a fantastic addition to any home as they increase your cooking space, allow you to entertain with ease, and add value to your property. Your outdoor kitchen can be as simple or extravagant as you wish, from a basic bench and grill to a built-in fridge, sink, and cocktail bar! Zones Tauranga provide custom outdoor kitchen designs and builds that are tailored to your lifestyle and budget.  

Outdoor kitchen with benchtop


The sunny Tauranga climate may be an attraction for many, but sometimes there’s a need to cool off in the shade of a backyard pergola. A pergola is a must have when planning your outdoor living space as not only does it provide relief from the sun but, when combined with a louvre roof, it can be used year-round to extend your living space. A pergola is functional, adds character to your outdoor space, and can be custom designed to complement the look of your home.  

Louvred pergola

Fire Pit

Everyone loves toasted marshmallows! Fire pits are becoming an increasingly popular addition to outdoor entertainment areas as they not only provide warmth, but backyard ambience and entertainment too. A purpose-built fire pit can provide a focal point in your landscape design and is a great feature for families. Combine a fire pit with custom outdoor seating for the ultimate outdoor entertainment area.

Firepace and seating

Pizza Oven

When it comes to creating a backyard entertainment area, a pizza oven is often at the top of everyone’s wish list, and for good reason! There’s nothing quite like the taste of a fresh, wood fired pizza – especially if it’s cooked in your very own backyard! From stainless steel portable pizza ovens to gorgeous firebrick designs, an outdoor pizza oven will be a stylish centerpiece in your outdoor living space and provide a unique cooking method that is a fun (and tasty!) entertaining experience.

Outdoor pizza oven

Outdoor Seating

Outdoor seating doesn’t have to be a standard table and chairs. Your outdoor seating can be built into your landscape design and be a unique feature in your backyard. Consider bench seating added to decking, swing seating from a pergola, or a custom chaise by the pool. When planning a new deck, patio, or pool, speak to your design consultant about how you envision using the space and plan for the type of seating you will enjoy.

Outdoor couches

Garden and Landscape Features

When considering outdoor area ideas, think about how you want to utilise the space and your lifestyle. If you don’t enjoy gardening, then plan a low maintenance look including pavers, pebble, decking and easy care plants as seen in this amazing backyard renovation. If you love growing your own veges, then make a feature of raised planter boxes. There are dozens of ways to make your backyard space uniquely yours, and our landscape specialists can help you design a concept that highlights your favourite landscape features.

Landscaped front yard

Incorporating Audio and Visual Elements

Adding a touch of tech to your outdoor living space can be the cherry on top when it comes to entertaining. Built-in speakers make it easy to share the perfect summer playlist or relax with a podcast, while a mounted TV (or better yet – projector screen!) to play movies or sports games is fantastic family fun.

Outdoor kitchen and dining area


In all the excitement of planning an outdoor entertainment area, storage can often be overlooked for more exciting features. But by ensuring storage is built into your concept design, your backyard will not only be clear of clutter, it will also be more user friendly. Don’t forget storage options on your deck, whether that is simple shelving for firewood or a storage cupboard or bay for the kids’ toys. Don’t skimp on storage if you are installing an outdoor kitchen, and don’t forget adequate storage for pool toys, too. If you have a large garden, it’s nice to have a small storage option for frequently used items as well as the typical garden shed.

View of shed from inside the house

Eco-Friendly Lighting Solutions

For the ultimate eco-friendly lighting solution, you can’t go past solar power. Solar lights harness the sun’s (free!) energy to charge during the day and illuminate your outdoor space at night. You could also consider energy efficient LED lighting, and motion sensor lighting to keep the cost to both the environment and your power bill down!

Lighting surrounding the house exterior

Want to update your landscape features?

Then it’s time to talk to the Tauranga landscape experts! We can help you design and install your dream outdoor entertainment space. Contact Zones today to arrange a free, no obligation consultation.

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