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Clever Ways to Beat the Arizona Heat with a Shady Retreat

Summer is coming. As the days get longer and the temperature rises, one thing becomes increasingly precious in our back yards: Shade. We want to enjoy our back yard retreats in the warmer seasons, and shady spots help us sustain our outdoor enjoyment.

Of course you could opt for a tried-and-true patio umbrella, but there are much more innovative and creative ways to create some outdoor shelter from the scorching sun. We’ve listed a few of our favorites below.

Tiki Umbrella Bar

What’s better than a patio bar? A tiki bar that offers a shady shelter from the sun with a sprawling thatch-work tiki umbrella! When you’re not cooling off in the pool, head to the tiki umbrella bar to cool off with an icy beverage.

Canvas Patio Awning

Simple, portable and elegant – a canvas patio awning provides a wispy, colorful accent ceiling to your patio while furnishing a wide area of shady shelter for relaxing. Place a few lounge chairs under the awning or even a hammock and enjoy a breezy afternoon outdoors without all the sun.

Poolside Cabana

Not only does a pool side Cabana offer reliable, sun-busting shade for any size pool deck, it adds a resort-style accent to your pool area that turns your back yard into a vacation spot all its own. Available in stationary and mobile varieties, you can place them just about anywhere you need shade.

Dress Up the Pergola

Wooden pergolas are a stylish addition to any patio, back yard or pool deck. They’re also ideal for ‘dressing up’ with canvas awnings, sail shades and even simple bed sheets to create an elegant cover from the sun. You can improvise with coverings you already have on hand or procure specialty coverings designed for shady solutions.


One of my favorite back yard retreats is the trusty Gazebo. You can do so much with a Gazebo, and they look so beautiful in any back yard – but they also provide shade and even a shelter from the elements if you end up outside during a summer squall. The center of your gazebo can house anything from seating and lounges to bars and kitchens.

What are you doing to create your shady retreat this summer? Let us know!  Don’t forget, we can help you set up just about anything in your back yard, and Dream Retreats serves a huge span of Arizona with Landscaping and Back Yard projects, in Phoenix, Gilbert, Scottsdale and more!

3 Benefits to a Patio Fire Pit in Your Gilbert Landscape

Arizona Landscape Design Fire Pit

Gilbert Landscaping Patio Fire Pit

1) 1) 1)Entertainment

Fire pits are a great way to extend your party outside.  There is no better way to gather a group of friends or family like roasting marshmallows, swapping stories or gazing at the stars while sitting around one of nature’s most captivating elements.

2) Heat for Those Chilly Nights

After Arizona’s long scorching summers it could be hard to remember that when summer ends the Arizona desert actually does get pretty chilly at night.  Be able to have the option of staying outside longer on those fall, winter and spring nights by staying warm next to your fire pit.

3) Add Value to Your Home

Fire pits add a very unique addition to your home that can add value if you ever decide to sell.  Fire pits are very appealing features that can make your house stand out from the next.


Fun Ideas for a Kid Friendly Arizona Landscape Design

These days it seems like video games are more popular to kids than back in the day when kids used to be outside until the sun went down.  Get your kids (and maybe even yourself) more excited about being active outside with three new backyard landscape design ideas:

Arizona Backyard Sport Court

Phoenix Landscape Design Sport Court

1.  SPORTS COURT – A sport court is a great way to get your kids interested in sports.  With a sport court you can play multip.e sports including basketball, tennis and volleyball.  If you already are involved in a sport, the court is a great way to get extra practice and get ahead of the competition.  The unique feature of having a sport court in your own backyard is that you have the options of building a court almost any size to fit your families lifestyle.

Scottsdale Landscape Design

Scottsdale Landscape Splash Pad

2.  SPLASH PAD – A splash pad is also known as a splash park, but kids call it just one thing – FUN!  Especially in the Arizona desert, a splash pad is a fun way to still enjoy being outside.  Another great feature about the splash pad is the zero depth of water, meaning there is no risk of drowning.

3.  BUILT-IN TRAMPOLINE – Not only does a built-in trampoline give kids a fun opportunity to get outside and be active, it gives the whole family one.  Playing fun games like one of the most memorable, “Crack the Egg,” will guarantee smiles all around.  The benefit to having a built-in trampoline compared to one above ground is the safety.  Nobody has to worry about someone flying off the trampoline to the ground below.

Arizona Backyard Landscape Sport Court

Gilbert Landscape Sport Court


Choosing An Outdoor BBQ For Your Phoenix Landscape Design

Arizona Backyard Landscape Outdoor Kitchen

Custom Backyard BBQ by Dream Retreats

A built-in BBQ is the centerpiece  for Arizona outdoor kitchens.  It’s a key factor in outdoor entertainment.  Whether you plan to use your grill for nightly dinners or entertain for a group of 30 outdoors, choosing the right backyard BBQ for your needs in important.

1)  Deciding On The Correct Size:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              First things first, where will your outdoor BBQ be located?  A smaller enclosed patio will need a grill that conserves space, while a larger , open area can make use of a much bigger grill.  The amount of food you plan to cook is equally important when deciding on the size.  Make sure you choose a grill size large enough to accommodate your outdoor cooking needs.

2)  Choosing the Right Features:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       There are many different features that can contribute to your outdoor grilling.  Before getting overwhelmed with all of them, decide what features you would like to have the most.

3)  Finding Your Perfect Look:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Arizona BBQ grills for your Phoenix landscape design should compliment the overall style of your outdoor living space, as well as your home.  You want to select a color, finish and style that suits your design.

 Dream Retreats is an Arizona professional landscape contractor where each outdoor kitchen is specifically designed and built for your outdoor space and specific style.  We custom build with masonry materials each outdoor kitchen.

Scottsdale Landscape Contractor

Scottsdale Landscape Custom BBQ by Dream Retreats

Houzz…Great Way To Find Professional Phoenix Landscape Contractors

Dream Retreats LandscapeDream Retreats is  now on HOUZZ!   We’re a local pro in the Phoenix area specializing in Arizona residential landscape design and contracting.  If your in the market for any type of indoor or outdoor house design ideas or local contractors specializing in what you specifically want to get done,  HOUZZ is the website to checkout!  Within a couple of minutes you can checkout local professional contractors who specialize in what your wanting to get done at your house!

Arizona Landscape Designs: Plants & Trees

Arizona Landscape & Design by Dream Retreats

Arizona Landscape & Design by Dream Retreats

Arizona is well-known for it’s extremely blazing hot summers.  During these sunny days Arizonians are not only expected to endure these rising temperatures, but plants and trees are expected to as well.  Contrary to popular belief, Arizona’s landscape during our record breaking temperatures don’t have to be dying plants and trees.  The big question is what plants and trees flourish best in these conditions?  There are some plants and trees that require a constant amount of water while on the other hand there are plants and trees that can survive on hardly any water.  The amount of maintenance and attention on plants and trees during the summer could affect a Phoenix landscape design.

Fortunately, Todd Stetka with Dream Retreats, has been in the landscaping business for 20 years and counting.  Dream Retreats vast knowledge and experience during summers in Arizona landscapes designs means that they are aware of the diverse plants and trees that will be best suited for our unique summer conditions. Our landscape designs are created with the educational knowledge of a landscape architect.   Dream Retreats can create a design and construct a landscape with a wide variety of plants and trees that can flourish for your new landscape project.

Chandler Landscape Design

Chandler Landscape Design

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