Your Twin-Cities home isn't just a place where you eat, sleep, and get ready for work. It's also a place where you and your family entertain friends and extended family. The beauty of building a custom home is that you can create a space that allows you to do that in a way that fits your family's lifestyle. With that in mind, let's take a look at designing your custom home for entertaining.
How Do You Like to Entertain?
While great home design should always look good (and reflect your sense of style) it should also always be about comfort and convenience. You’ll want your home to match the way you like to entertain.
- Casual: If you like keeping things uncomplicated and even spontaneous, you'll want a home design that reflects that. Convenience may be an important feature for you. Perhaps you and your friends are more into a simple gathering around snacks and drinks. Maybe you'll want to include a built-in bar for mixing drinks or kitchen space that's open to the family room so that guests can move around freely.
- Formal: Some families prefer a more structured setting for entertaining around the dinner table. If that describes your preference, you may want to consider a separate dining area (perhaps one that’s even closed off, so your guests aren’t staring at the pots and pans you used to make dinner). This kind of separate eating space also puts a bit more emphasis on the meal, so it might be a nice option if you’re into gourmet cooking.
- Other Activities: You may enjoy having friends and family over to watch movies, enjoy sports, or even do some online gaming or enjoy arcade games. That might call for creating a separate media room or an arcade room to enhance that experience.
Where Do You and Your Guests Spend Time?
Obviously, the way you prefer to entertain will have a huge impact on where you and your guests spend the majority of your time. That, in turn, will influence how you design the rooms of your home.
• Kitchen: A kitchen, such as the one you see here, lends itself to a casual gathering of people. The large island offers abundant workspace—as well as seating for guests to be with you as you're preparing (and enjoying) snacks. There is plenty of room for people to mingle without getting in the way. On top of that, this room makes great use of natural light and installed lighting—making it an inviting place to linger.
• Dining Area: If your meal is the focal part of your time together, this dining area brings that event front and center. While you still have easy access to the kitchen (and you won’t be cut off from guests while preparing food), the dining area is separated from the kitchen a bit so that the focus is on the meal. Another advantage is that you can easily get back into the kitchen for additional servings or to replenish drinks. At the same time, guests won’t feel like they are sitting directly in the kitchen.
• Family Room/Living Room: Some homeowners like the idea of having a separate space for quiet conversation. Here’s an example of a living room we built that lends itself well to that purpose. You can make this kind of room as formal or informal as you want (depending on your preference). The inclusion of a fireplace adds warmth and comfort to the room.
• Activity Room: You may never choose to include a basketball court in your home, but the whole point of a custom home is that you get to choose what best serves your style and interests. You might choose to build a media room or an arcade room or some other kind of room that reflects what you and your guests enjoy doing. You don’t have to let conventional ideas limit you!
Counting the Cost
While price shouldn't be the only thing that influences your choices, you'll certainly want to have an idea of the cost range before you begin to build. And while many factors can impact the final cost of your home (including size, materials, appliances, and changes to the plan), it's good to have a starting point. That's why we offer a Price Your Custom Home feature that gives you an idea of what to expect. You can choose options that include location, tome type, garage size, flooring, appliances, and more. It’s a great step to take to help you make design choices that fit your needs and budget.
If you’re looking for additional ideas and inspiration, we invite you to visit our Custom Home Gallery for great photos of additional kitchens and living rooms that might be a match for your entertaining style. Of course, you can adapt and modify these to your preference—or simply use the ideas as a springboard to create what suits you best. You can even take virtual tours of a variety of home styles (Rambler, Two-Story, Multi-Level, or Villas) to see which ones are best suited to your lifestyle and entertaining style.