*Currently we do not offer any gazebos, pergolas or pavilions for sale on our website. To be notified if we do, please contact us.*
Outdoor structures can provide shade, protection from the elements, and a place for outdoor entertainment. The question is, which one is the right for you? Well, today we are going to clear up the confusion surrounding these commonly mistaken architectural structures to make sure that you know the difference between a pergola and a gazebo ( and pavilions)!
Although many often use these terms interchangeably, there is a distinct difference between each of these structures. If you’re like the masses, you call any outdoor structure a gazebo. There there, we are going to help you impress your friends at your next outing! “What a fabulous Pergola this is!”
At first glance, important subtleties may not be evident but there is always a way that you can tell what type of structure you are looking at. Some cues that you can look for are the shape, style, and functional purpose. Let’s define the most popular; the Pavilion.
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The pavilion is an architectural structure that became well-known in the 1800’s. Originally intended to be the host of entertainment and other activities, pavilions have served a multi-use purpose for centuries. The size of these structures can vary widely and are often reserved for parties, weddings, banquets, and other events. Pavilions typically have roofs that are similar to a house. Imagine a house without any walls! They are often used for venues, picnics, and outdoor weddings.
Gazebos are also quite popular in parks and backyards. They can transform the look of your backyard with a relatively small investment. Once you enjoy your first dinner outdoors in the comfort of your own patio, you will be glad that you made this decision! The main difference between gazebos and pergolas is that gazebos ALWAYS have a round shape. This is a quick and easy trick to tell them apart!
Gazebos are shaped in the form of an octagon with a domed roof that is supported by 8 symmetrical pillared columns. Furthermore, pavilions are much larger than gazebos which are ideally designed to accommodate a small gathering of anywhere from 5-15 individuals.
Sometimes a gazebo may not be a feasible solution for all homeowners. On average, it costs a total of $3,100 to build a 9 ft pergola. There are some alternative solutions however. Some people opt for Commercial Patio Umbrellas that are up to 14 ft wide and are only a fraction of the cost. Above is a picture of the Square Garden Pavilion Umbrella.
Pergolas are used to cover walkways and to provide shelter for seating areas. Rectagunlar shapes and four legged structures are characteristic of pergolas. One of the easiest ways you can point out a pergola is by its roof. Typically consisting of horizontal planks of wood, Pergola roofs are most commonly flat and open. Take a look at these photo’s and you will be able to tell the difference very quickly! Many times, these structures are used in gardens or adjoining homes to create an elegant outdoor setting.
Pergolas are perfect for outdoor kitchens as they anchor your outdoor living space. Read 10 Things You Must Know Before Planning an Outdoor Kitchen to learn more. Find a stylish patio sofa set to entertain guests on hot summer days!
Furnishing an Outdoor Structure
Once you have your outdoor structure set up, you’ll need to fill it with places to sit and enjoy your new patio! Outdoor Dining sets allow you to enjoy dinner outside. If you plan to turn your pergola or gazebo into a outdoor living room, these outdoor sectionals will provide ample seating for large gatherings. You don’t have to purchase anything today but it’s a good way to get the ideas going and plan out your backyard renovation!
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- 5 Things to Look for When Hiring a Landscape Architect
About the Author
Cheryl Khan is a contributor to the Patio Productions Blog and an avid reader. Some of her favorite publications include Architectural Digest, Time Magazine, and luxe Interior+Design. She recommends each of these very highly! Follow her on Twitter.