Lifestyle & Seasonal

Patio Party Series: Outdoor Bar Tips and Ideas

The warmer weather is in full swing, which means a lot of us are already spending more time outdoors with friends and family. Dining al fresco on the patio is a one of the main reasons so many people decide to add an outdoor living space onto their home in the first place.  It’s no wonder, now that fully functional outdoor kitchens (once only thought of for Hollywood royalty) are becoming standard in many suburban backyards.

Whether you are hosting a large party or enjoying an intimate dinner out on the patio, one of summer’s greatest pleasures is having a nice glass of wine or an ice cold beer outdoors. Coolers are cooler than ever these days, but many homeowners are taking it a step further by incorporating an outdoor bar into their patio designs.  One of the reasons that it’s so popular is that an outdoor bar or beverage station can easily be incorporated to both new and existing patio designs.

3 Things to Consider

  • The two most important things that you’ll need to consider are space and style. Be sure to take both the bar and chair space into consideration; as well as how much space you’ll need to maneuver behind it.  Consider a trip to your favorite pub with a tape measure in hand to get real and accurate dimensions of what works and what doesn’t work for you. Be sure to consult standard heights for the bar/stool ratio to ensure your guests are seated comfortably.
  • The style of your outdoor bar sets the stage for your furniture and accessory selections, so you’ll need to decide on your outdoor bar “vibe”. Do you want your bar to say beer garden, wine tasting or cocktail lounge? This personalized wine barrel would look right at home in a wine tasting setting, but in a cocktail lounge setting this 2 step lighted liquor shelf would be right at home.


  • Depending on the allowable space on you patio, your outdoor bar can either be a permanent and fixed piece of patio furniture or one that is brought in and out as needed.  This rolling beverage cart from Brookstone features a built in ice bucket as well as condiment containers. These are great for large parties so that you can have multiple, temporary beverages stations set up around the backyard.

Finishing Touches

It requires more than a good collection of IPA’s and reserve wines to turn your outdoor bar into an inviting space. Here are a few bar décor items to inspire your inner barkeep.

This customized wall-mounted bottle opener solves the “Where’s did the bottle opener go” question once and for all. Don’t forget to mount it over a trash can, or, mount a small container underneath to catch the bottle caps.

This penguin cocktail shaker originally made the scene back in 1936 and is the perfect barware accessory for martini lovers everywhere.

You always need some green in the garden, so why not plants some beer hops? These vines love sun and grow vertically, so they’d work great as a focal point behind the bar or a trellis for added privacy.

Start putting your backyard bar ideas together now; and your backyard can the neighborhood speakeasy that everyone is talking about this summer.

Like this content?
Want more?