5 Essentials for Family-Friendly Outdoor Living Spaces

By Toll Brothers 3 minute read

Last updated on August 24th, 2022

When you have children, the backyard is a favorite place to run, swing, and play. As important as it is to accommodate the needs of your kids, today’s outdoor living spaces are able to include so much more. They can also be places to entertain, cook, dine, and gather with friends and family by the pool or around a warm fire. By incorporating something for everyone in your backyard design, you can create a beautiful and functional outdoor space that grows with your family.

Entertainment Area

An inviting outdoor entertainment area provides the ideal setting for hosting all kinds of events, from neighborhood get-togethers to birthday parties to graduation celebrations. The best place for family and friends to gather is a covered patio or deck that echoes the same level of luxury as your home. Ample, elegant seating in colors and styles that complement your interior décor helps visually connect the two spaces. Grouping sofas and chairs together encourages conversation and makes your guests feel comfortable and welcome. A stone fireplace, wide-screen TV, sound system, and soft lighting add the perfect touches that make your outdoor area a year-round oasis.

Outdoor Kitchen

According to the American Institute of Architects, the popularity of outdoor kitchens is growing. Not only does this sought-after addition increase the value of your home, it provides a functional and enjoyable way for people to express their culinary creativity. When planning your cooking area, make sure to include plenty of prep and storage space. Separate food and wine refrigerators, an ice maker, and a full bar are also convenient features, especially if you like to entertain. Round out your cooking area with a high-performance grill and innovative appliances, including a family-favorite artisan pizza oven.

Outdoor Dining Area

With regular cooking and entertaining, an outdoor dining area is a must. Designate your space with an arbor or pergola that adds elegance and protection from the sun. String lights overhead to create an ambiance that both kids and adults will enjoy. You can also hang lanterns or even a chandelier to create a luxurious feeling. As for the table, look for pieces made from teak. This hearty hardwood is inherently strong, water resistant, and refined, providing the perfect canvas for your favorite tablescapes.

Play Space

Of all the outdoor features for kids, space to play tops the list. A designated plush, grassy area is appreciated by children of all ages. Even as they grow into teenagers, they will welcome having space to play football, throw a frisbee, and hang out.

When your children are young, play equipment is a sure way to keep them busy. A cedar swing set will provide many years of entertainment. Playhouses are also a favorite, with options that include custom-designed forts, castles, log cabins, and cottages. On hot days, a splash pad is fun and refreshing for the entire family. With adjustable spouts that spray water from a few inches to 12 feet, splash pads can also serve as a regular patio when not in use.


When the weather gets cooler, a firepit with built-in seating makes a cozy gathering place, especially for families with teenagers. A sunken stone firepit is an elegant option that controls flames better than aboveground pits and makes the area feel more intimate. Tie in your outdoor décor with throw pillows, load up on marshmallows, and you’re ready to spend many memorable evenings around the fire.

By designing your outdoor living space to incorporate areas for entertaining, cooking, dining, playing, and gathering, you tick all the boxes for family fun. There are many options when it comes to customizing these spaces and designing a look that complements the beauty of your home environment. For more great ideas, visit the Toll Brothers Outdoor Living Pinterest board.

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Embracing an unwavering commitment to quality and customer service, Toll Brothers currently builds in over 60 markets in 24 states nationwide, and is a publicly owned company with its common stock listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: TOL). In 2024, Toll Brothers marked 10 years in a row being named to the Fortune World's Most Admired Companies™ list.* Toll Brothers has also been named Builder of the Year by Builder magazine and is the first two-time recipient of Builder of the Year from Professional Builder magazine. For more information, visit TollBrothers.com. From Fortune, ©2024 Fortune Media IP Limited. All rights reserved. Used under license.


    1. Tom calton says:

      Hi, I’m an orthopedic surgeon in Ogden,Utah and I’d really like to explore the possibility of a toll brothers project.

      • Sam M says:

        Hello Tom, we currently have one open community in Herriman, UT. We have two communities coming soon to Draper, UT and another coming to Herriman, UT. To learn more, please visit our website here.

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