When it comes to designing an outdoor area, sometimes the best inspiration can come from non-residential spaces. This time of year, we often look to restaurants, bars, and hotels with outdoor patios and decks meant for socializing. While these spaces often have all-weather dining tables, there’s another seating arrangement that can work for those who might not entertain al fresco frequently: The sofa-and-chair conversation nook. Whether you’re looking to create a cozy nook for a cocktail or a versatile furniture arrangement that allows for the occasional guest, these lounge-inspired pieces offer up the most comfortable spot in (and out) of your home.
Perfect for: Those who want options in their outdoor seating arrangement
This modular outdoor sofa can be configured in a number of ways, depending on your entertainment needs. Shift the backless rectangular section to the front of the seats to create a spacious lounge for a nap, break up the modular seats to create a conversational grouping, or arrange in the configuration above for a sofa the whole family can enjoy.
Perfect for: Those with a smaller outdoor space, or a larger space that serves multiple functions (dining room, bar, etc.)
Constructed of handwoven all-weather wicker and sustainably harvested teak, this set can gracefully withstand the elements. The styling nods to sleek mid-century silhouettes without going too retro, making this set a perfect choice to update your outdoor space.
Perfect for: Creating a comfortable spot to stretch out in the sun, or under the stars
This sleek set from Janus et Cie has a minimalist, modern feel. However, it doesn’t sacrifice comfort — the durable mesh offers just the right support. The included side table also has just enough space for two glasses of wine (and the bottle itself!).
Perfect for: Creating a cozy nook by the pool, on a patio, or in a garden
Sometimes, you want a little shelter from the elements as you relax outside — especially if you’re by the beach, where the wind can get a little unpredictable at times. No matter where you’re located, though, this spacious seat instantly creates a welcoming nook. It’s fun for one, cozy for two, and very fun for kids (who just can’t seem to resist piling into the seat).
Perfect for: Creating a spot for one in a tight space, like a balcony or terrace
This unique combination piece reminds us a bit of those made in the mid-century (which combined a few seats plus a table surface, usually used in lounges or waiting areas). The look is very contemporary, however. The comfortable seat offers just enough space for one, while the table surface can easily hold your drink or coffee as you unwind with a good book. (Another idea: Use the table surface to support a container garden.)
Perfect for: Creating an instant conversation arrangement
This complete outdoor furniture set by Gloster has everything you need to create an inviting place to catch up with a friend — including comfortable outdoor pillows. The coffee table is just the right size for cocktails or refreshments, while the ottoman can be called into service when you need a bit more serving space (just add a tray).