Entertaining Area Ideas – 10 Design Tips for The Perfect Space

a small kitchen island with bar stools and a coffee station in the background

Creating an entertainment space can be tricky on the surface; however, there are many simple tricks and tips you can use to create a space perfect for your family and when you have friends over.

If you are looking for the perfect entertaining area ideas, you’ve come to the right place. A well-designed entertaining area is an essential part of any home, offering multiple benefits to homeowners and guests alike.

A well-designed entertaining area serves as a comfortable space for family and friends to gather, socialize, and enjoy each other’s company. This can help foster deeper relationships and create cherished memories.

A well-planned entertaining area not only makes your home more inviting and cohesive but also enhances overall comfort. It provides a dedicated space to relax, entertain, and enjoy your leisure time.

Entertaining Area Ideas

a gold bar cart with drinks in the corner of a living room

An entertaining area, in the context of home design and architecture, refers to a designated space within a home or property that’s specifically designed and arranged for the purpose of socializing, hosting guests, and conducting recreational activities.

Entertaining areas can be indoor or outdoor spaces, and they vary widely based on the size of the home, the preferences of the homeowners, and the specific needs of the family or residents.

Indoor entertaining areas might include spaces like living rooms, game rooms, home theaters, dining rooms, or basement areas converted into entertainment hubs. These areas often feature comfortable seating, entertainment systems (like televisions, sound systems, or gaming setups), and sometimes even a minibar or snack area.

Here are some entertaining area ideas to get you started – 

1. Use or Upgrade Your Existing Furniture

a breakfast bar in the kitchen with coffee machine
A breakfast bar is the perfect place to entertain in the kitchen, upgrade it with some new bar stools

One of the first things you should do is look at what you already have to work with. If you already have the right size room, there is a good chance that simply moving your furniture into a different configuration can help turn it into an entertainment space.

If that doesn’t work, look to add and upgrade some furniture. A mini bar with a couple of Adairs bar stools or a new wingback chair or two can help you change the look and feel of your space in an instant.

When you’re designing an entertaining area, the comfort of your guests should be a top priority. Comfortable furniture makes the space more inviting and enjoyable for guests, encouraging them to relax and stay for longer periods.

This includes elements like plush seating with ample cushions, ergonomic designs, and furniture at appropriate heights and sizes for various activities.

The type of furniture selected should align with the intended use of the space. For a casual outdoor entertaining area, you might choose comfy lounge chairs or a sectional sofa. For a dining area, you would need comfortable chairs that encourage guests to linger after meals.

2. Create Zones

a dedicated dining area with festoon lights in the garden
A dedicated dining area in the garden helps zone your entertainment space

While not the same, using a nightclub as an example can help you understand “zones” in a space. In a club, there is a bar area, a dance floor, a place to sit and talk, and possibly an outdoor area.

Having zones and dedicated entertainment spaces allows you to create an area that caters to different needs and will enable you to incorporate things you may not have otherwise bought.

Differentiating between your kitchen, living room, mini bar area, and outdoor space will give you plenty of home entertainment areas, all done by simply knowing where to place your furniture.

Even in smaller areas, creating distinct zones for different activities can make the space feel larger and more organized. For example, in an outdoor entertaining area, you might have one zone for dining, one for lounging, and one for outdoor games.

Also, don’t forget to utilize vertical space. Shelves, hanging racks, or wall-mounted entertainment systems can free up floor space and provide extra storage without making the area feel crowded. This is perfect if you want to create a little breakfast bar in the kitchen where people can enjoy a coffee or a pallet bar in the garden which is folded away when not used. 

What Type of Entertainment Do You Enjoy?

a corner sofa with large coffee table to play board games

Another aspect to consider is what type of entertainment do you enjoy? Do you enjoy a games night, drinks with friends, dinner, or a regular party, or do you enjoy having a space to have a relaxing chat over coffee?

3. Games

If you, your family, and your friends enjoy a games night, you want a space that can cater to that. Comfortable couches, a big table, and easy access to the kitchen are all things that can improve a game’s space.

Provide bean bags or floor cushions so people can sit around the table in comfort and plan ample storage to keep all your board games and pack of cards.

Good lighting is crucial for any gaming area. Natural light is best for board games, with candles to give it and task lighting to provide a comfortable ambiance. 

Lastly, keep the entertainment space flexible. Tastes and preferences change, especially with children, so make sure the space can evolve and grow along with them. We all know how fidgety kids can be, so being able to move the seating around, will keep them engaged for longer. 

4. Drinks

A dedicated area in a kitchen with fridge, spirit shelf and cocktails

If you are someone who likes having a few friends over for drinks after work or before going out, you want to create that caters to that. Once again, comfortable seating is a must, but a minibar or something similar would be the cherry on top.

Place the mini bar close to where you want your friends to gather so they can get another drink easily. If you have the space, create a drinks corner in your kitchen with a dedicated fridge, shelves for your spirits, and an area to create cocktails.

5. Parties

a gold bar cart in the corner of a living room

For parties, whether it be for a birthday or a dinner party, you want to find the balance between creating a comfortable entertainment space and having everything you need to hand.

Decide where you want to set up your drinks area. This could be a corner of your living room, a section of your kitchen, or even a dedicated home bar if you have the space. The location should be easily accessible, have enough space for movement, and fit well within the overall layout of your home.

Furniture that can be used as a table or for seating is a must, as well as placing your furniture in a way that allows for many guests and allows everyone to move around the space comfortably. If space allows, include some bar stools or comfortable chairs where guests can sit and enjoy their drinks.

Consider how you want to store and display your drinks and barware. Open shelves, cabinets, or a bar cart can all work, depending on your space and style, making sure everything is easily accessible and neatly organized.

This area needs to be close to your seating areas to stop the disruption of people moving in and out of the room. 

Essential bar equipment includes a variety of glassware suitable for different types of drinks, a cocktail shaker, a jigger for measuring, a strainer, a bar spoon, a muddler for crushing herbs and fruits, a corkscrew, and a good-quality cutting board and knife.

A small refrigerator for keeping drinks cool can be a great addition if you have the space and budget and a drinks cabinet or bar cart is perfect for storing all your drinks. 

Finally, lighting plays a key role in setting the mood. Consider warm, ambient lighting for your drinks area. Decorate the space to reflect your personal style – this could include fun bar signs, artwork, or even a theme that resonates with you.

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6. Coffee Corner

a cosy coffee corner with sofa and coffee table

Setting up a dedicated coffee corner is a great way to welcome guests and show your love for coffee. Your coffee corner should be in a convenient, accessible spot, preferably near an electrical outlet for your coffee maker. The kitchen is an ideal place, but if you’re limited on space, a corner in your dining or living room can work well too.

Depending on your budget and how serious you are about coffee, you might invest in a quality coffee machine or even an espresso machine.

A good coffee grinder is essential if you’re using whole beans. A kettle (preferably one with variable temperature control) for pour-over coffee and a French press for an alternative brewing method could also be part of your setup.

shelves with coffee cups and jars

How you store and organize your coffee supplies can add a lot to your coffee corner. You’ll need a place for your coffee beans or grounds, sugar, and other coffee supplies.

Airtight containers are ideal for coffee storage, to keep the coffee fresh. Use shelves or a small cart to keep everything neatly organized and within easy reach.

Invest in a range of cups and mugs of different sizes suitable for different types of coffee drinks. You may also want a creamer and sugar bowl, a couple of small spoons for stirring, and a tray for carrying things to and from the coffee corner.

7. Design for Easy Flow

a modern living room with large leather modular sofa and round coffee table
The perfect entertaining area with curved edges and plenty of seating

While not necessarily a problem for those with bigger spaces, if you have a smaller space, you need to pay attention to the space you have and how people can fit or move around. As mentioned already, the best way to add functionality is to have versatile furniture.

This can range from the seating that can double as a table, but also something like a sectional couch, which can allow you to create different layouts depending on your needs without having to purchase additional furniture. 

Here are some tips to ensure easy movement and interaction in your entertaining areas:

  1. Consider Traffic Patterns: First, think about how people will move through your space. Are there clear paths to walk through? Is there enough room around your furniture for people to move freely? Plan your space in a way that doesn’t obstruct the natural flow of traffic.
  2. Arrange Furniture Wisely: Arrange your furniture to promote conversation and interaction. Instead of pushing all your furniture against the walls, consider grouping them together in a more central location. For example, place sofas and chairs facing each other to encourage conversation.
  3. Maintain Spaciousness: Avoid overcrowding your space with furniture or decor. An overly cluttered room can feel claustrophobic and inhibit easy movement. Leave enough space for people to walk around comfortably.
  4. Ensure Accessibility: Keep commonly used items like drinks, snacks, remote controls, etc., easily accessible so that guests don’t have to interrupt their interactions to get what they need.
  5. Use Round Tables: If you have space for a coffee or dining table, consider choosing round shapes. Round tables allow guests to interact more easily because everyone can see and hear each other.
  6. Open Floor Plan: If possible, opt for an open floor plan. Open plans tend to be more conducive to socializing as they offer more flexibility for movement and arranging furniture.

8. Include Your Outdoor Space

a small outdoor patio with rattan table and chair patio set
An entertaining area doesn’t have to be large

If you have access to a patio or balcony, don’t make the mistake of thinking of it as a separate space. If you have nice long Summers and enjoy being outdoors, don’t neglect your outdoor furniture and amenities.

Nowadays, you can purchase many different kinds of outdoor couches and seating arrangements, as well as over-the-top extras like a pizza oven. Both can be done on a budget, and both can take your entertainment options and space to the next level.

If you are looking for some budget-friendly ways to transform your backyard, patio, or balcony into a perfect spot for entertaining, here are some ideas:

DIY Furniture

Instead of buying expensive outdoor furniture, consider DIY alternatives.

Pallets can be repurposed into seating or tables, and cushions can be made or bought cheaply to add comfort. An old ladder can be turned into a vertical garden or a display for outdoor lights.

Outdoor Lighting

String lights are relatively inexpensive and can instantly transform the atmosphere of your outdoor space. You can also use candles or lanterns for a more romantic touch. Solar-powered lights are a great energy-saving option.

Create a Fire Pit Area

a firepit in the garden with seating arranged around it
A fire pit is a brilliant way to create an intimate setting when you are entertaining at home

If allowed in your area, a fire pit can be a fantastic and relatively affordable focal point for your outdoor entertainment area. Whether you’re roasting marshmallows or simply enjoying the warmth on a chilly evening, it’s a great way to bring people together.

Invest in a Grill

While a fancy outdoor kitchen might be out of the budget, a simple grill can still provide plenty of entertainment. Hosting a BBQ is a classic way to entertain guests outdoors.

Inflatable Pool or Sprinkler for Kids

If you have children, an inflatable pool or sprinkler can provide hours of entertainment. These items can often be found quite cheaply and can be easily stored away when not in use.

9. Keep it Family-Friendly

a living room with plenty of storage
Providing plenty of storage helps pack away board games, blankets, and any other items you use for entertaining, or just for family evenings

Another thing not to overlook is the fact that your entertainment space isn’t always going to be used for entertaining. On a day-to-day basis, it will be a space where you spend most of your time with your partner or family.

Therefore, it is important to remember not to go too overboard with the “entertainment” aspect and to ensure it remains a space where you can comfortably watch TV, work, and relax. This is why smart storage solutions can transform your space, keeping it organized and clutter-free.

Smart storage solutions make entertaining easier by ensuring that everything you need is readily accessible.

This could be anything from extra cushions and blankets to board games, speakers, or dishware. Invest in furniture pieces that also serve as storage such as an ottoman with storage inside or a coffee table with shelves or drawers.

10. Added Extras

a cosy living room with a board game set up and candles lit

Finally, there are a few extras to think about that can add the final touches to your space. Firstly, lighting can play a crucial part in setting the tone of a room. Softer, yellow lighting can make a space feel very cozy, while bright, white lighting can shock the senses a bit.

The room’s color palette can also change its feel; do you want the space to be bright and slightly eclectic, or do you want more browns and greens to create a calming space that oozes class but ultimate relaxation?

Lastly, small touches like having a blanket or two available are perfect if you live somewhere cold or for when you are entertaining on cooler nights. All these small details add the finishing touches to your space.

a neutral living room with large modular sofas

Creating a well-designed entertaining area is more than just beautifying a part of your home. It’s about shaping a space that fosters connection, enjoyment, and relaxation, not only for your guests but for you as well.

A thoughtful and well-planned entertaining area becomes an inviting platform for shared experiences and memories.

Whether it’s a simple dinner with close friends, a lively party with a large group, or a quiet evening with a book, a well-designed entertainment space can greatly enhance these experiences.

Disclosure: Some of the links above are affiliate links, meaning that at no additional cost to you, I will receive a very small commission if you click through and make a purchase. These links help to pay the editorial costs of writing a blog. For more information, read my full affiliate disclosure here.

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