by Jennifer Walton

How do you live outdoors? The connection from the inside to the outside of your home and its natural surroundings is central to your outdoor living experience. That outdoor space has the potential for a deck, patio, or pool with an outdoor kitchen, fire pit, and lounge area for entertaining and so much more. With incredible and inspiring materials available from Cosentino, beautiful custom home designs from James Carroll & Associates, and outdoor kitchens from Mountain Land Design, the opportunities to enjoy every season are endless.

All Hands on Dekton

Unlimited Applications from Cosentino’s Award-Winning Surface

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It’s summer, and you’re hosting the first of many parties of the season in your new outdoor kitchen. Out of the corner of your eye, you notice that a guest has fumbled the barbecue sauce, and there is a splotch the size of Texas on the counter. While that’s happening, another guest sets down their sangria glass, and now there’s a noticeable ring. Should you be concerned about the sauce, the wine, or the risk of an after-dinner coffee mishap?

Live the outdoor life fully with Cosentino’s ultra-compact surface, Dekton®, enjoying every moment because those entertainment snafus are worries of the past! Why? The technologically advanced surface is produced from a proprietary blend of porcelain, quartz, and glass that is highly resistant to sun, scratches, stains, abrasion, fire, and heat, as well as freezing and thawing. The perfect solution for outdoor environments because of its unique properties, its use for residential, commercial, and public space applications is virtually infinite. Think outdoor surfaces like a building’s facade, kitchens, countertops, patios, fireplaces, and pools and jacuzzis (yes, it has a zero tolerance for water absorption) to indoor kitchens and bathrooms, floors, and walls, plus a myriad of applications that architects and interior designers are incorporating in new and exciting projects every day with stunning and sophisticated results.

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“The advance in technology is allowing us to achieve hyper-realistic designs,super light materials, and extraordinary performance.”
–Nick Vargas, General Manager, Salt Lake City Cosentino

Cosentino Group is the global leader in innovative surfaces with 80 years in the stone industry and operating the distribution of their materials in over 110 countries in the world. Its 50th location in the U.S. and Canada recently opened in Salt Lake City, and their entrance into the Mountain West region provides more choices for architects and designers for complex outdoor and large-scale concepts. Introduced in 2013 in a new product category, Dekton® created a sensation with this ultra-compact surface. However, last year, Cosentino took it one step further with the launch of a series of new Dekton® colors named the Stonika Collection. “Technology continues to improve, allowing us to provide colors that are increasingly closer to the look and appearance of natural stone without the maintenance needs and concerns of natural stone,” states Nick Vargas, General Manager of the Salt Lake City Cosentino showroom.

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“The advance in technology is allowing us to achieve hyper-realistic designs, super light materials, and extraordinary performance. It means that now you can use solutions for outdoors that could not have been used before. Cosentino has launched Dekton® in 4mm, which will open up new categories of business, as Dekton® will be able to be used in areas never thought possible before such as furniture cladding, doors, large panels, and much more,” Vargas continues.

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“What makes a great outdoor living space is making it as comfortable as an indoor space but at the same time connected with the environment.”
–Nick Vargas, General Manager, Salt Lake City Cosentino

Dekton® is available in large format (up to 320cm x 144cm or 125” x 56”), which significantly reduces the number of pieces used, and because few places join, the texture, design, and color takes center stage. In varying thicknesses—8mm, 12mm, 20mm, and 30mm—Dekton®’s versatility is second to none. “What makes a great outdoor living space is making it as comfortable as an indoor space but at the same time connected with the environment. A great outdoor space provides the versatility to extend the comforts of the things you enjoy about the interior of your home in an exterior application, and Dekton® performs exceptionally well in both indoor and outdoor applications as it is UV-resistant and will not fade or degrade over time,” says Vargas.

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Imagine an outdoor kitchen and living space where you no longer have to worry about high-traffic areas receiving too much use or countertops whose porosity can’t handle water, stains, or impact. Prepared for inclement weather, ill-prepared chefs, and the unintended mishaps from resident partygoers, Dekton®’s remarkable strength, enduring resistance, and extreme durability help it perform like a prima ballerina and a professional hockey goalie with equal parts elegance and pure grit. Homeowners speak of its almost satin feel and a look that mimics marble, wood, or concrete. It is incredibly easy to maintain while showing off clean, minimal lines and providing structural integrity as well. So, live it up. Get creative, get outside, and make Dekton® your outdoor partner this season.

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With the Outside mind

Outdoor Living with James Carroll & Associates

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“I’ve always loved the outdoors,” James Carroll says with a grin. “And, as a born and bred Michigander, I remember the first time I placed our family television outside during the summer. My parents didn’t quite understand it until we were all under the tree enjoying that beautiful evening together. That was the first time I decided to extend the indoor living space outdoors, and I have been doing it ever since!”

Located in Salt Lake City, Utah, James L. Carroll has pursued a 30-year-long career in home design. His love for residential design is evident in his portfolio of custom homes throughout the country. He and his team have planned, designed, and executed projects that show their talents for show-stopping interiors and exteriors in traditional, contemporary, and mountain modern styles. And, naturally, they create those innovative outdoor spaces where his clients favor and consistently request “bringing the outside in and the inside out.”

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“I remember the first time I placed our family television outside during the summer. That was the first time I decided to extend the indoor living space outdoors, and I have been doing it ever since!”
–James Carroll, Founder, James Carroll & Associates

“How can we design and extend the indoor living space outdoors and create ‘outdoor’ spaces to use year-round?” Carroll pauses and then answers. “Many of my clients want multifunctional spaces. Not just an outdoor deck, but an area around the fire pit, an area for lounging, and more importantly, an area for an outdoor kitchen.” Placing that outdoor kitchen near its partner (the indoor kitchen) is part of Carroll’s design aesthetic so that the indoor plan begins to flow into the outdoor program. Then, Carroll explains, “The first of the three most requested elements is a water feature, and I ensure its location by designing it as a focal point because I want it to be enjoyed as much as possible from indoors and outdoors.” Fire pits and fireplaces are the second most desired features. “And, they’re affordable at everyone’s price point, in addition to being conversation pieces, which makes them fun to incorporate.”

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On a recent project, Carroll was tasked with combining a view and providing privacy. “I love sweeping views, but often a neighbor’s location means exposure. On this particular project where views and privacy garnered equal importance, we solved it by siting the pool at a lower level, by raising it above the sidewalk a few feet and placing a hedge around it so people could not see into the pool area. On the pool deck, you could see the view.” The project resulted in a stunning outdoor pavilion-type setting where the family entertains year-round.

“Creating the outdoor living area as an extension of the indoor living, where you spend the majority of your time, will maximize the use of those outdoor spaces.”
–James Carroll, Founder, James Carroll & Associates

What Carroll often asks his clients is this: “Are you asking for a space that may only get utilized for larger gatherings once or twice a year, say for holidays or special occasions?” Because if so, he suggests considering the ability to enclose an outdoor covered patio near the space where you spend most of your time from the elements, when you choose to with large, multi-sliding doors or panels that disappear in pockets. “Leave it wide open for summer; and when it’s designed correctly, you now have an indoor ‘four seasons’ room that can be enjoyed year-round and accommodate large gatherings when needed.” This intersection of flexibility and problem-solving is what Carroll & Associates is known for.

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Carroll also notes that to help separate spaces, he uses landscape materials, such as large, flat rocks, to accentuate the landscape, but also to serve as extra seating. These creative seating arrangements are outdoor solutions and they simultaneously afford entertaining areas that may not have been previously considered. By cleverly arranging “zones” for a variety of uses, Carroll explains, “Creating the outdoor living area as an extension of the indoor living, where you spend the majority of your time, will maximize the use of those outdoor spaces.”

Turning your outdoor space into the ideal destination with generously proportioned seating, an outdoor kitchen, an area for alfresco dining, a shaded or covered patio that serves both everyday occasions and annual events, and other options that suit your lifestyle, is why your staycation this summer could be in the backyard of your dreams.

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Entertaining Your Dreams with Mountain Land Design 

Ignite Your Passion for Outdoor Living

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You may have driven by one of Mountain Land Design’s five showrooms located throughout the Mountain West and wondered what’s inside. Yes, Salt Lake City, Sun Valley, Boise, Jackson, and Provo all have beautiful showrooms, exquisitely designed and organized with kitchens displaying the latest in appliances, plumbing, and hardware. But it’s the feeling of family, the “Mountain Land family,” says Kirk  Smith of Mountain Land Design, that matters the most. That feeling is what makes the client experience so distinct. 

  

“When a client walks through the door, they’re surprised to discover that we are not a typical retail store. We have a relaxed environment that is suited to creativity, design, and fulfilling dreams.” Those dreams of extraordinary kitchens, patios, and outdoor spaces are easily realized with a team whose attention to detail and knowledge far surpasses that of staff at an average box store. Mountain Land Design’s team is educated on the most modern appliances, technology, and kitchen innovation because of weekly product training, which takes place in those stunning showrooms. 

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“When a client walks through the door, they’re surprised to discover that we are not a typical retail store. We have a relaxed environment that is suited to creativity, design, and fulfilling dreams.”
–Kirk  Smith, Mountain Land Design

 

Outdoor living spaces require careful consideration. When designing an outdoor living space, Mountain Land Design suggests you bring your architect, landscape architect, or interior designer with you. “They understand the elements of outdoor living spaces, and consider elements often forgotten like plumbing, the purpose of the product, and placement of product,” Smith says. “Generally,  most clients understand the elements of outdoor living spaces. However, we like to dive deeper with questions that give us a clue into our clients’ lifestyles. Questions like, ‘Do you like to entertain, and how many guests do you entertain? What do you like to cook? Alternatively, are you in charge of cocktails? Then you’ll want to consider an ice maker.’ We like to know their lifestyle and entertaining levels before we recommend products for a specific layout and project.” 

 
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With appliances for all budgets and styles that reflect a multitude of applications for every part of the house, Mountain Land Design is prepared with collections from Alfresco to Zephyr (and everything in between like Lynx, Sub-Zero-Wolf, Viking, Kalamazoo, and Heston). Mountain Land Design is equipped with innovative ideas and a deep understanding of outdoor spaces so that your outdoor living is on par with your dreams. 

  

Smith states, “One of the trends we have seen this year is the focus on outdoor living. People want to be outside as much as possible in our mountain regions.  Often,  they will replicate the kitchen inside their home outside their home because they want to utilize that outdoor space year-round. In  all of  our markets, we have four seasons, and our clients love the ability to entertain at any time. An outdoor kitchen is full of options like refrigeration, ice makers, wine cellars, storage, sinks, and cocktail stations, ventilation, heating, trash and recycle bins, warming drawers, and other integrated products like steamers and fryers. Clients will request winterized products when available. Also, we’ve seen more covered patios and high-end grilling opportunities, like multiple grills for smoking, blazing, and of course outdoor pizza ovens.” 

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“People want to be outside as much as possible in our mountain regions. Often, they will replicate the kitchen inside their home outside their home because they want to utilize that outdoor space year-round.”
–Kirk  Smith, Mountain Land Design

Another quintessential element for an outdoor living space is versatility. Whether your gathering is an intimate one with 10 to 15 people, or a full-blown summer shindig, the layout should be able to accommodate either scenario with ease. From lounging while the kids swim to grilling while the game is on, the kitchen area remains one of the central locations from which to enjoy the view of your backyard. Designing the outdoor living area with its culinary space also  takes into account  whether there is a pool, jacuzzi, or fire pit. This is also an area where the experts at Mountain Land Design excel. They know that inspiration and planning are essential to the design of your ultimate outdoor kitchen and that their clients are happiest with the results when comfort, convenience, and function are placed high on the list of priorities. 

  

Smith reiterates, “Our clients enjoy their lifestyles, and we want what’s best for them because they become family through the design process. We know our high-quality brands and products will satisfy their needs, but we want them to explore the possibilities that will make their lives more enjoyable and relaxing while they spend time together.” 

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