Plan a Pavilion Perfect for Spring and Summer in Harrisburg, PA

Plan a Pavilion Perfect for Spring and Summer in Harrisburg, PA
Pavillion in Harrisburg, PA

With spring just around the corner, you’re probably thinking about how to update your outdoor living space so that you get even more enjoyment out of it. Updating your patio with a pavilion can extend your outdoor entertaining and relaxing because it offers protection from sun and rain. Here’s how to plan a pavilion that would be perfect for spring and summer in Harrisburg, PA.

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What Is a Pavilion?

A pavilion is a permanent outdoor structure with four open walls. It is commonly installed on an existing patio although it can be installed as a free-standing structure anywhere you like. It is used to shelter outdoor kitchens, dining areas, and seating areas.

How Will You Use It?

The first decision to make is how you intend to use the pavilion. 

Will it offer shelter for an outdoor kitchen? In that case, you will want to install a ceiling fan or vented hood to help keep the area comfortably cool when cooking is in full swing. 

Will it cover a seating area? In that case, consider installing an outdoor fireplace on one side to keep the party toasty warm in chilly evenings, especially if you’re eager to use the space in the cooler days of spring. This is also a great option if the pavilion will be poolside, to warm up swimmers when they exit the pool.

A pavilion lets you use nicer furniture in your outdoor living space, and it offers enough shelter for a TV so you don’t miss a second of the game. You can even install a hot tub under a pavilion for year-round enjoyment!


The second decision is location. Will you want to take advantage of a spectacular view? Do you value privacy? Do you want it to feel like an outdoor room that’s part of the home, or should it have its own majestic presence further from the home?


The next decision to make is an aesthetic one. For best results, take inspiration from your home and match its design aesthetic. Pavilions can be ultramodern with flat roofs and metal beams; rustic timber-framed structures; tiki-hut style; or traditional with a peaked roof and classical columns—or completely custom with a flair of their own! The columns, ceiling treatment, column base materials, roofing, and colors all contribute to its presence and appeal. 

Taking architectural cues from the home also includes height and volume. A pavilion should feel like an extension of the home (even though it’s not attached); for best results, you could follow the same rooflines, overall shape, and proportions as the home, while balancing that with the practical aspects of the pavilion’s intended use. A pavilion can be small enough to house a small table and chairs, or be spacious enough to cover the entire patio. 

Material choices will depend on the pavilion’s design and location. Consider whether you want the pavilion to be integrated into your outdoor living space (for example, using the same stone veneer at the base of the columns as you use on your outdoor kitchen and retaining walls) or bring focus to it as a stand-alone landscape feature by using completely different materials. The stand-alone approach works exceptionally well if the pavilion is farther away from the home, such as on a hilltop overlooking the valley below. The closer the pavilion is to the home, the more it should match the home’s aesthetic.

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