Into the Night


Into the Night


Summer nights in Las Vegas are spectacular and the absolute perfect time for outdoor gatherings.  Once that sun goes down, the temperatures become bearable, allowing for food, fun and relaxation under the desert sky. But entertaining outdoors requires a few important details to help create the ambience you need to not only wow your guests, but keep them comfortable. Designer Melissa Amos took an average backyard and crafted a fashionable space that works for a variety of gatherings. Whether imbibing in a cocktail or two poolside, sitting down to a full course meal, or enjoying a friendly game of cornhole on the lawn, Melissa’s ideas can help you create that special party space in your own backyard.



The original pool area lacked cohesiveness.  The firetable/bar feature and impressive outdoor sofa were good starting points but felt detached from the pool and other seating areas.  The addition of several poolside fire features, a comfy lounger for two, colorful throw pillows and contemporary bar stools tied the space together, creating a club-like atmosphere you’d expect at the finest Strip hotels.


Creating specific “zones” in your backyard that are designed to create traffic flow from one form of entertaining to another is paramount.  The addition of a modern, wood fencing feature fitted with ambient lighting makes the pool area feel like a room all its own. It’s also a clever way of creating privacy and style, masking unsightly, builder-grade wrought iron fencing.



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Located close to the kitchen is a dining area that’s used for more formal dinner parties. If you entertain in this manner it’s important to choose the sturdiest and most stylish table you can afford; one that makes a statement and won’t blow away in those unexpected Vegas windstorms! Choose equally substantial chairs, covering them with custom made slipcovers made from outdoor fabric for a classic look. These can also be changed for seasonal decor. Set the table with upscale, outdoor stemware and plates, choosing real deal (never plastic or paper) silverware and linens to complete the look. Outdoor dinnerware comes in a plethora of styles and colors. Buy them as a set or build up a little every season.


The Valley’s intense sunlight can wreck havoc on tables, chairs and outdoor furniture. Consider ordering protective covers for all pieces, including fire tables and barbeques. There are many local upholstering shops that can measure and construct these covers for a perfect fit or you can DIY measure and look online for a more economical solution.  The simple step of covering your outdoor furniture when it’s not in use will keep your investment in great condition for years to come.




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One of the most important areas of the entertainer’s backyard is the kitchen area. Just like inside your home, everyone wants to congregate around the food, chatting, noshing and sipping while the host or hostess fusses on all the finishing touches of the meal. This kitchen and bar area was centrally located in the yard so that it’s easily accessible to the pool, dining and lounging areas. Provide as much counter space for preparing, cooking and serving food as space will allow, and consider a bar area that allows guests to interact with the cook.


Finally, always add green space for ball games, star gazing or a pop up picnic. It’s a desert out there and real grass is a waste of water, so consider low maintenance, artificial turf. You can get a water credit for removing your real grass and save your hard surfaces from overspray marks. It’s just one more section of the yard your guests can enjoy for now, and the cooler months to come.