Dining Alfresco: 5 Lavish Homes for Hosting Outdoors

Dining Alfresco: 5 Lavish Homes for Hosting Outdoors

  • SK Group
  • 07/12/23

Outdoor dining is one of life’s greatest simple pleasures, whether it’s pain au chocolat at a sidewalk cafe in Paris, ribs and brisket at a Deep South barbecue, or a clambake on the coast of Maine. 

Midsummer’s long, sunny days and balmy evenings invite dining alfresco, especially in a scenic place. The occasion makes for memories, whether it’s dinner and cocktails at an elegant riverfront restaurant or a picnic for two in the park. 

And what better way is there to enjoy time spent at home, alone or in the company of family and friends, than in a dedicated dining space outdoors?

From enclosed garden courtyards to poolside pavilions and grand waterfront terraces, the homes in this Luxury Defined collection showcase a wide variety of open-air options for alfresco dining in style.  

1. Waterfront Perfection in Mykonos, Greece 

At this idyllic villa on the Greek isle of Mykonos, beautiful terraces frame the views of the Aegean Sea.

Built into a rocky promontory with direct access to the Aegean Sea, this secluded seaside villa epitomizes the Greek Islands lifestyle. 

The property has been updated for the 21st century but retains all its traditional Mykonian charm. Indoor and outdoor reception spaces include a living room with a fireplace and a formal dining area, both with sweeping sea vistas.  

The main kitchen opens to a sensational swimming pool terrace for alfresco dining and entertaining, but there are multiple terraces—some with shaded pergolas and outdoor kitchens—set in more than an acre of garden landscape. 

There is a gym, three staff bedrooms, including a guardian’s cottage, an electric generator, and a desalination plant. A guest house lies at the water’s edge. Just beyond is a private sundeck set among the rocks, with tiki huts and a swimming ladder into the cerulean seas below.  

2. Hollywood Hills Estate in Los Angeles, California 

Built in the heyday of Hollywood moguls, this home’s double-height windows and floor-to-ceiling picture windows illuminate magnificent fittings, fixtures, and finishes. Outside are sunlit terraces and a linear pool surrounded by greenery.

Modern luxury and timeless design converge at this lavish estate in the West Hollywood foothills above L.A.’s famed Sunset Boulevard. The property, which made the cover of Architectural Digest, currently showcases interior designs curated by Jane Hallworth. 

The bones of the house are magnificent: Built in 1936, its light-filled, double-height living spaces lead to floor-to-ceiling picture windows and bifold doors for indoor/outdoor living on a grand scale. 

The sleek kitchen, clad in large-veined, marble and bronze accents, opens to the courtyard for year-round alfresco dining and relaxation. Residents can entertain in the music room, or the lower-level bar with wine cellar; screen films in the spacious theater; or relax on the grounds with the pristine pool and luxurious pool house. 

There are five spacious bedrooms, six full bathrooms, and three partial baths. The primary suite offers a private balcony, dressing room, and a Breccia Capraia marble bathroom, its tub carved from a single block of stone, and its steam shower fitted with a sculpted marble chaise longue. 

Minutes from the Hollywood dining and entertainment scene, this custom estate celebrates design mastery in a picturesque environment.  

3. Reef House on Oil Nut Bay, Virgin Gorda, British Virgin Islands

A luxurious escape from the everyday, Reef House is a contemporary villa, just steps away from the azure waters and white sands of Oil Nut Bay on Virgin Gorda in the British Virgin Islands. 

On Virgin Gorda’s eastern tip is Oil Nut Bay, an ultra-exclusive beachfront community accessible only by boat or helicopter. Reef House is built into a palm-clad hillside with uninterrupted vistas of Sir Richard Branson’s Necker Island and Eustatia Sound. 

The pod-style layout ensures maximum privacy for residents and guests. Four separate bedroom suites have private bathrooms (with indoor and outdoor showers) and private balconies. 

The heart of the home is the great room: Its floor-to-ceiling windows take in the surrounding islands and tropical reefs. It looks onto a veranda with a spectacular heated infinity lap pool with tiki huts at either end, one for sitting and relaxing, the other for outdoor dining next to the chef’s kitchen, equipped with Sub-Zero and Wolf appliances.   

The cozy media room has a full bathroom, and doubles as a bunkroom. The property is offered fully furnished with pieces sourced from around the world—and includes a 40-foot boat slip. 

4. Santa Maria Estate in Mellieħa, Malta

This contemporary cliffside villa on Malta’s northern coast offers three levels of indoor-outdoor entertaining areas accessed via an external staircase. At the top is a private roof terrace with a freeform pool and spa, alfresco dining area and bar, and an observation deck facing the Mediterranean Sea.

The Santa Maria Estate is a contemporary villa built into a rocky ridgeline to take in the views of Malta’s northern coast and the island of Gozo. The sleek geometries of the living spaces unfold over three levels. 

The main floor houses several reception areas with a contemporary aesthetic that look out to a pool deck with a postmodern sense of fun.  

The kitchen opens to a dining area and sitting room with a show-stopping stainless-steel firepit. This floor also offers three en suite bedrooms and three sea-view terraces.  

The lower level houses a gym, wine cellar, office, cinema, en suite bedroom, and laundry room. An external staircase rises to a beautiful roof garden with a freeform pool, sunken spa, bar and alfresco dining area, and an observation deck facing the Mediterranean Sea.

5. The Luxury Villa Sea View in Koh Samui, Thailand

This idyllic Thai villa was designed to open up to extensive outdoor spaces, including an oceanfront sala and an alfresco dining terrace under a canopy of palm trees.

This private freehold villa on the island of Koh Samui, with a secluded, hillside setting overlooking the Gulf of Thailand, is designed in sleek, contemporary style.  

The thatched pavilion-style home erases the boundaries between indoors and out, with 6,458 square feet of airy, open-plan interiors which seamlessly connect to the tropical gardens.  

Sliding glass doors on the main level open to a teak deck with a swimming pool, and a thatched, teak-decked Thai-style sala with a panoramic view of the coastline and the sea. A 10-seat dining room and open kitchen enhance the feeling of space. 

Four en suite bedrooms, configured as either double or twin rooms, have vaulted ceilings and large windows to bring in the light and the views.

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