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7 Perfect Summer Patios

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Polish up your patio this summer with verdant green walls, unique sculptural elements, and an open layout.
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  The residents didn't want to use curtains to screen their wide-open home from noisy neighbors in their New York home. Instead, Kari Elwell Katzander of Mingo Design, an urban landscaper, created a living wall of wooden planters and English ivy that provides privacy without blocking light. Photo by Roland Bello.  Photo by: Roland Bello

    The residents didn't want to use curtains to screen their wide-open home from noisy neighbors in their New York home. Instead, Kari Elwell Katzander of Mingo Design, an urban landscaper, created a living wall of wooden planters and English ivy that provides privacy without blocking light. Photo by Roland Bello.

    Photo by: Roland Bello

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  A living wall along the rear patio adds a lush element to the indoor-outdoor flow of a Mexico City home. 

    A living wall along the rear patio adds a lush element to the indoor-outdoor flow of a Mexico City home

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  A private raised patio in the small backyard extends and expands a 20-foot-wide San Francisco lot into the outdoors. Photo by Todd Hido.  Photo by: Todd Hido

    A private raised patio in the small backyard extends and expands a 20-foot-wide San Francisco lot into the outdoors. Photo by Todd Hido.

    Photo by: Todd Hido

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  Architect Jenda Michl of Vertu Studio in Los Angeles created a sculptural glass awning to divert water away from a patio space in a Boulder, Colorado, home.    Courtesy of: 2011 Daniel O'Connor / danieloconnorphoto.com
    Architect Jenda Michl of Vertu Studio in Los Angeles created a sculptural glass awning to divert water away from a patio space in a Boulder, Colorado, home
     

    Courtesy of: 2011 Daniel O'Connor / danieloconnorphoto.com

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  California isn't known for its front porch culture, but Eric Grunbaum loves Venice's walk streets and their pedestrian vibe, so he employed landscape designer Stephanie Bartron to orient his small patio towards the street. The house itself acts as a windbreak, and lush patio furniture and a small fire pit turn what could have been another exercise in backyard solipsism into the home's most neighborly spot. Photo by Ye Rin Mok.  Photo by: Ye Rin Mok

    California isn't known for its front porch culture, but Eric Grunbaum loves Venice's walk streets and their pedestrian vibe, so he employed landscape designer Stephanie Bartron to orient his small patio towards the street. The house itself acts as a windbreak, and lush patio furniture and a small fire pit turn what could have been another exercise in backyard solipsism into the home's most neighborly spot. Photo by Ye Rin Mok.

    Photo by: Ye Rin Mok

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  Resident Ben Watson, who works from home when he’s not traveling, likes to use the back patio as his office during warmer months. In choosing patio furniture, he decided on a reversal of the interior color palette: A rectangular white metal table and chairs by Richard Schultz are durable but refined while contrasting with the cedar deck. Photo by John Clark.  Photo by: John Clark

    Resident Ben Watson, who works from home when he’s not traveling, likes to use the back patio as his office during warmer months. In choosing patio furniture, he decided on a reversal of the interior color palette: A rectangular white metal table and chairs by Richard Schultz are durable but refined while contrasting with the cedar deck. Photo by John Clark.

    Photo by: John Clark

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  Barcelona-based architects José Antonio Martínez Lapeña and Elías Torres discreetly sunk a pool into the roof terrace of the old corral behind rug designer Nani Marquina’s home. In order to shade part of the terrace, the architects designed a freestanding sun shelter. So as not to damage the outer walls of the old building, a galvanized-steel frame is secured to the terrace floor. A bamboo-reed covering projects a soft, filtered light onto the outdoor living area below. Photo by Albert Font.   Photo by: Albert Font
    Barcelona-based architects José Antonio Martínez Lapeña and Elías Torres discreetly sunk a pool into the roof terrace of the old corral behind rug designer Nani Marquina’s home. In order to shade part of the terrace, the architects designed a freestanding sun shelter. So as not to damage the outer walls of the old building, a galvanized-steel frame is secured to the terrace floor. A bamboo-reed covering projects a soft, filtered light onto the outdoor living area below. Photo by Albert Font.
     

    Photo by: Albert Font

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