BACKYARD entertaining is heating up as fire pits pop up in homes around the Gold Coast.
And with our tropical southeast Queensland climate ensuring we have less-than-freezing winter months, it’s not hard to see why the flaming heaters are fast becoming one of the hottest outdoor trends of 2016.
Property stylist Kylie Hammond, of Kirra-based Style by Space, says the fact our Gold Coast winter is quite mild, means fire pits create enough warmth to allow for alfresco entertaining even in the cooler months.
The design guru says the fire pit trend originated in America, but just like the hot dog and the doughnut, it is starting to take off here in Australia.
She says some project homes – including Stroud Homes’ Kentucky 348 display home at Jimboomba - are even offering built-in fire pits as an addition to a new build.
“Fire pits are a wonderful USA trend that Australians have started to pick up on because if you think about it, here it doesn’t get too cold and we’re still able to sit outside in the winter,” she says.
“Gone are the days where people are sitting around the barbecue with a drink, now they’re sitting around the fire pit, which is not only great for social gatherings but is also visually stunning for outdoor entertainment spaces.”
Fire pits come in a variety of styles including ethanol, wood or gas burning and can be fixed or movable structures.
Far from just being used just to toast marshmallows, the look of a fire pit can be customised in many ways, depending upon specifications of your private oasis.
They can be put together by a DIY builder for as little as $100 or built into a backyard patio with pavers for thousands of dollars.
Shane’s Scapes owner Shane Hickey, who builds paved fire pits, says homes that feature simple white lines suit stone fire pits.
“People just want something unique, they’ve got the pool for summer and they want something for winter,” he says.
“Families find them great, particularly the ones that have seating around them because they can make use of the area even when a fire isn’t burning.
Stone fire pits looks great against stark white walls or homes because the stone really breaks things up and makes it a feature.”
Southern Stainless general manager Matt Brown will soon launch a brand new range of gas powered fire pits made from marine grade stainless-steel, priced from about $5000.
Matt says a fire pit adds value to a home and can turn a boring backyard into a relaxing space.
“What they’re great for is ambience and decoration, as well as a bit or warmth,” he says.
“They’re quite user-friendly and will increase the value of a home.”
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