echelon builders

Increase your Living Space with the Perfect Outdoor Sanctuary

photography by UNEEK LUXURY TOURS

Transform your outdoor living space into a haven for relaxing, entertaining guests and creating lifelong memories for your family. Echelon Builders can customize the perfect outdoor sanctuary for both family enjoyment and entertaining guests to maximize one of the best benefits of living on the Space Coast – beautiful weather all year long!

Every family is unique with their own lifestyle preferences, which is why Screen-shot-2014-08-26-at-5.35.54-PMoutdoor areas should be customized to promote maximum utilization. As you begin to think about your family’s needs, consider things such as how do you use your yard? How do you entertain? What specific elements would give you the most enjoyment – more yard, more covered space, more counter space, more lighting, more storage or more sitting areas?

Echelon Builders created a custom summer kitchen, pool design, gazebo and cabana area to produce an important part of the entire home design – outdoor living.  Factors such as views, landscape lighting, waterfalls, fire, music and shelter from the heat and bad weather all played critical roles in the design process.   

“Recognizing that you will be making an investment that will increase your home value also made it important to make decisions that others will appreciate as well,” said Greg Ellingson, owner of Echelon Builders.

The first step often begins with the pool. “We wanted functionality but we wanted to have something exciting to look at,”

Greg said. “Raising the spa and creating a cove area for the kids to swim in was a must.” 

That lent itself to building a platform for the gazebo area. This area has a Screen-shot-2014-08-26-at-5.36.08-PMmisting system for the heat and an insect misting system to keep bugs out. Hoping to have something both comfortable but attractive, the homeowners decided to use stained wood and stone columns to increase the visual appeal.

Echelon also built a distinctive summer kitchen. Not satisfied with the “typical” barbecue area, the homeowners wanted a space where friends and family could gather. A special hood, a large grilling space to serve food and a place to anchor the outdoor patio were additional features of the kitchen. The outdoor kitchen functions just like an indoor kitchen, allowing the family to entertain 

guests as they would congregate inside, but with an added sense of enjoyment only the outdoors can provide.

Some features to consider when creating the perfect outdoor kitchen include:

  • Grill size and location
  • Stovetop burners for quick cooking
  • Refrigerator
  • Icemaker
  • Smoker
  • Wood burning oven
  • Storage space
  • Sink(s)
  • Low counters for prep work
  • Bar-height counters for entertaining guests
  • Stereo systems


Well-designed indoor rooms typically build off one element which gives the eye something to land on; the rest of the furnishings and accents support that piece. That same principle applies to outdoor living spaces. The cabana is the cornerstone of this family’s backyard.  “We even made it large enough to be a potential permanent living space if needed for family in the future,” Greg said. “We wanted to be able to comfortably seat 10 adults, hold birthday parties, serve Thanksgiving dinner or watch a Super Bowl game.”

Using high quality materials like stone, granite, stained wood, and crown molding upped the luxurious feel of the space. Night lighting, sound and fire features rounded out the ambiance that made the cabana complete. If you have a fireplace inside your house, you know it’s where you love to curl up with a good book on a quiet night or where larger groups gather on those rare chilly evenings. The same is true in outdoor living spaces: a source of fire draws people.

Echelon Builders made sure the homeowners thought of every detail, from the storage area for pool equipment to a lockable wet-bar with icemaker, and plenty of space for entertaining.

Creating a play area for the kids with a buried trampoline was the perfect complement of design, functionality and safety.  “Now the family spends all of their weekends grilling for friends or playing outdoors,” Greg said. b

To learn more, visit or call
(321) 794-6203.