Backyard Renovation with a Custom Deck and Pergola Transforms a Home in St. Johns, Auckland

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This Auckland backyard was unkempt and underused, with a deck that lacked shelter and had no flow to the garden. But an outdoor renovation by Zones transformed the space into a relaxing and peaceful retreat, complete with a customised pergola.

Before After
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The Initial Consultation

Tony and Anna’s worn and weathered looking deck was hardly ever used. The existing pergola offered little shade and no relief from the rain, and the space felt cluttered and small. The couple knew they wanted a transformation so they contacted their local Zones Consultant Kate Ryan for advice.

Kate met with the couple at their home to discuss their goals and explain the benefits of the simple 5-step Zones process for outdoor renovations. Tony and Anna wanted to increase their outdoor living space and invest in a shelter for day and evening use to better utilise their deck. They also wanted more connection to the garden with its lovely established trees and bushes.

Kate explained that with Zones, she would manage every element of the project from design to delivery, so the renovation would be hassle-free for the couple. Plus, with the assurance that no work would start until both parties were comfortable with a detailed design and budget, Tony and Anna could reduce the risk of any unwanted budget surprises!

Creating a Concept

Kate listened to everything that Tony and Anna envisaged and began developing a concept that would achieve their goals within their budget. It was clear to Kate that the deck size needed to be increased, and the existing pergola wasn’t delivering what the couple wanted from their outdoor space. Kate suggested a new pergola with a customised roof that would offer better protection from the elements.

Tony and Anna loved this idea, but wanted to ensure that any new roof element wouldn’t block light from the kitchen. Kate worked through several options and ultimately found the perfect solution in a custom build that included solid panels as well as glazed skylights that attached to a louvre roof.

New steps from the deck to the garden would create better flow, and new planter boxes and garden lights would add finishing touches to the backyard. 

Work Begins

With an exciting concept locked in, Tony and Anna’s backyard transformation could begin. As a Zones Consultant, Kate had an established network of local suppliers and tradespeople so she could immediately connect the right person to the right part of Tony and Anna’s project. Kate also took care of the council consent process, so Tony and Anna didn’t have to worry about that either. 

While the custom roof combination was being built offsite, work was underway removing old materials and building the beautiful new deck. Tony and Anna requested a few additional details such as a trellis under the deck, and a special timber cover to hide the air conditioning unit and were happy with the increase to the budget to achieve the look they were after.

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A Backyard Transformation

In just four months, Kate and her Zones team transformed Tony and Anna’s outdoor living space from cramped and underutilised to a stunning new living space that they can enjoy both day and night. The skylight panel combined with a louvre roof is the perfect solution for Tony and Anna, offering shade and shelter outdoors without compromising light in the kitchen. It’s also fully waterproof, thanks to the painstaking efforts of the Zones team. The larger deck means the space now feels relaxed and peaceful, with plenty of options for enjoying the outdoors, eating al fresco, or entertaining friends.

Steps into the garden finally connect the spaces, while pergola and garden lights and new planter boxes provide the finishing touches.

Final Words

Tony and Anna’s new outdoor living space is a beautiful, relaxed space that feels like a peaceful retreat away from the busy city. By extending the deck footprint and investing in a specially made pergola and roof solution, they now have the outdoor area of their dreams.

Kate is thrilled with the outcome. “The deck is a beautiful space with outstanding views out to the local golf course. It took time to come up with the right solution for the pergola, but our custom build with skylights was the perfect solution for what Tony and Anna wanted from their outdoor space. And most importantly, Tony and Anna couldn’t be happier with the transformation!

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This project was completed in
July 2023
Project description
Decking and louvre installation
Auckland Central
New Zealand
Project duration
4 months
Cost estimate
Actual cost
Attaching the new pergola to the existing balcony and ensuring water tightness.
Interesting aspects
Aluminium pergola with custom glaze skylights
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Kate Ryan is Landscaping Consultant of Woodbury Landscapes Ltd, a franchisee of Zones Outdoor Renovations Ltd, doing business in Auckland.

Actual costs vary by project. Plan ahead to reduce the impact of industry changes or disruptions. For more information see here.

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