While demand for outdoor living has been consistently growing over the past decade, it’s exploded within the past three to four years. What once was thought of as a luxury upgrade has now become an expectation for apartment dwellers at all levels, resulting in an amenities competition among multifamily properties, with outdoor living spaces often serving as a key differentiating factor.
As residents continue to seek more sophisticated and comprehensive outdoor entertaining options, shared outdoor kitchens, clubhouses, pool spaces, rooftops and balcony units can provide stylish and functional solutions with a strong return on investment for developers—but only if specifying in durable products designed to withstand both the elements and the wear and tear seen in shared spaces.
To address this growing need, outdoor kitchen leader Danver offers multifamily-specific product solutions— including ADA-height cabinetry—which were designed based on feedback from builders, architects and developers. As multifamily project needs continue to grow, Danver now also offers a dedicated Multifamily Specification Guide to provide design professionals with a tool to save time creating multifamily projects. The guide includes detail on key products as well as a range of popular design layouts, which reflect successful designs from projects across the U.S. and are intended as building blocks for professionals’ designs, but can be customized to the specific needs with the help of Danver’s in-house design team.
When designing a shared outdoor living space, design professionals should keep the following needs in mind to elevate their property through sophisticated, long-lasting outdoor entertaining amenities:
Invest Upfront in High Quality Materials
While it may be tempting to specify the most affordable products, shared outdoor spaces need to endure not only high traffic from residents but year-round wind and weather conditions. For waterfront properties, this often also includes exposure to salt water. To avoid having to replace products later on, it’s important to invest at the outset in quality materials—and powder coated stainless steel has the ability to beautifully withstand all climates with minimal maintenance and a long life.
Prioritize Safeguards for User Error or Neglect
Safety is key in any shared space, where residents don’t often take the same level of care they would in a single-family home. One of Danver’s latest innovations—an Automatic Gas Timer Shut Off—addresses this need, with an exterior installation that eliminates the need for users to adjust gas beneath the grill, making it easy to lock gas line access behind cabinetry while giving maintenance fast access. Designed to replace a manual shutoff valve and meet local code requirements, this timer is also equipped with a safety feature (red knob) that functions as an emergency shutoff.
Specify Tailored Multifamily Solutions
Shared spaces bring unique challenges and deserve products designed to address the accessibility and endurance required of them. One of Danver’s longest standing and most popular multifamily innovations is its Post & Panel System (PPS), which is designed to look like standard cabinetry but is in fact composed of panels rather than doors or drawers—eliminating access to storage while extending countertop access at a lower cost than cabinetry. This product limits the ability for residents to store unwanted products or waste in a shared outdoor kitchen and features removable panels that can easily be replaced in the event of residential damage, even with a countertop in place, without having to replace the entire unit. The Danver PPS is available in ADA-height cabinets to meet accessibility requirements and can be made in any of Danver’s powder coat finishes.
Don’t Forget About Style
Functionality is critical in any shared space—but the less tangible emotional connection with amenities is often what sells residents on a property. When it comes to outdoor kitchens, residents often crave a design that looks and feels like an interior space including elevated cabinetry door styles like Shaker and Bead Board, concealed appliances and stylish colors. While bolder colors are on the rise for single family outdoor spaces, powder coat finishes like champagne, metallic bronze and black are increasingly popular in multifamily applications—in part for their ability to fit easily into any space and keep clean. One of the latest innovations maximizing style and functionality is Danver’s new Cosmopolitan Table—a versatile solution for small spaces like balconies in particular and available as a Prep Table, Cooking Table or Dining Table. A fast favorite, the new Cosmopolitan Cooking Table features Invisacook technology—with induction incorporated below the tabletop for seamless style—introducing cooking capabilities for spaces that may not have room for a grill or where regulations may not allow the use of propane and then reverting easily to a table.
Multifamily properties across all regions and climates are dedicating increasingly larger budgets and footprints to outdoor entertaining spaces to stand out from the crowd now that outdoor living has become a must-have feature. As the first brand to focus on outdoor kitchen solutions more than 20 years ago, Danver offers a unique breadth of experience, a dedicated multifamily offering and an in-house team of design experts to support any design needs for builders, designers, architects and developers looking to develop new or expanded outdoor spaces, and can be found at Danver.com.
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