cozy alfresco dining area on a rasidential blacony with a retractable awning roof for shade and water protection

How to Create the Prefect Al Fresco Dining Area

Posted on Posted in Tips for Outdoor Living Spaces, IQ Awning Retractable Roof, IQ Louvre Roof

How to create the perfect space for enjoying al fresco dining, all year round.

retractable louvre roof build into existing outdoor roof structure to create a modern and functional outdoor dining area

In the UK, the weather can be unpredictable and outdoor dining areas benefit hugely from covered or sheltered areas. With a range of patio roof structures available from IQ Outdoor Living, we can help to create the perfect al fresco dining area.

Table and chairs will be required to create an al fresco dining area, as well as a BBQ or outdoor kitchen system if the homeowners want the option of preparing the food outside. Many of our roof structures can be designed with integrated lighting, to create different levels of light for the evenings.

If the dining area is located near to the house, an awning roof could be the best option as it can be fixed directly to an exterior wall. The awning roof is fully retractable, becoming a watertight solution when fully closed.


One option is for the dining areaoutdoor living pod with aluminium louvre roof and retractable blinds for walls to utilise an IQ Outdoor Living Pod. these pods are designed to offer contemporary solutions for enjoying the outside environment. The pods can be designed with a retractable awning or louvre roof, to include the option of an open air space when the weather permits.

The versatile design of these systems means they can reach impressive sizes, housing large dining tables for a spacious indoor-outdoor experience. You can choose what type of walls surround the pod structure, with the most popular choice being sliding glass doors due to the minimal design and ability to increase airflow and ventilation when open.


freestanding louvre roof with LED lights for a modern outdoor kitchen area

Outdoor kitchens are becoming increasingly popular in contemporary garden designs, with completely weathertight systems allowing homeowners to create an al fresco dining experience without needing to travel between the home and garden. 

Although outdoor kitchens are designed to withstand harsher conditions, you can increase the lifespan and durability of the specialist systems by incorporating an IQ Outdoor Kitchen Cover. These advanced covers mean that a wide range of high-end cooking systems could be used outside as they are protected.

The modern shading solutions offer solar shading to the kitchen area below, without compromising on minimal design. The walls can be completely open, to allow a huge amount of ventilation throughout the area and make it suitable for cooking.

The modular systems can be designed to enhance the exterior design of any home, with a range of colour and material choices to either blend in or create a contrast.


al freco dining area with an aluminium louvre roof, outdoor blinds and stunning coastal views


The IQ Louvre Roof System is another option, providing a weathertight solution that can be fully automated for enhanced functionality. The roof structures can be freestanding or attached to an exterior wall with two supporting stands, or in some cases where no supporting posts are required a floating structure is possible.


contemporary alfresco dining space with grey aluminium outdoor roof

The aluminium louvres are fully adjustable and can be automated to provide solar shading throughout the day, depending on the position of the sun and the orientation of the al fresco dining space.

If large sizes are desired, the modular system can be engineered with multiple roof fields fixed together, covering much larger garden spaces. The maximum size for one Louvre roof is 6 metres by 4.5 metres.

A freestanding structure offers more flexibility, offering homeowners the choice to place the shelter wherever they like. With a freestanding structure, the louvre roof is fixed to the ground through the supporting posts, achieving the most minimal design as all fixing details are below ground level.


All of our outdoor living solutions are designed with a contemporary aesthetic in mind, allowing architects and specifiers to create truly unique al fresco dining areas. To speak to a member of the team about which solution is right for your space, get in touch via



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