Guys need space, other than a cave

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - STYLE - PAT SETTER

While the dark, dingy man cave with the mis­matched re­clin­ers has gone the way of video­tapes and TV an­ten­nas, new houses come with op­tions that the man-of-the-house will love. Here’s a look at new ways to find rooms for guys to hang out.

RE­CRE­ATION ROOM

Many new houses have a bonus room that can be turned into a well-de­signed re­cre­ation room. Add a pool ta­ble and some ar­cade games and this will soon be­come the heart of the home, where Dad can spend time with fam­ily and friends. Be­fore buy­ing that long-dreamed-of pool ta­ble, be sure to mea­sure the room. You will need at least a 5-foot area around the ta­ble to be able to play be­cause cues are 4 to 6 feet long.

WINE CELLARS

While not all houses have cellars, wine rooms can be cre­ated above ground. The trend for wine lovers is to not only have a place to store wine in a proper set­ting, but also to ex­pe­ri­ence the wine in a des­ig­nated space. Mediter­ranean-style rooms with rus­tic woods and stone walls are pop­u­lar, but the key is com­fort to en­cour­age guests to re­lax and en­joy the ex­pe­ri­ence.

OUT­DOOR KITCHENS

Grilling can be as sim­ple as crack­ing open a beer while wait­ing for the coals to heat. But the out­door kitchen has be­come in­creas­ingly pop­u­lar and more elab­o­rate over the years, es­sen­tially tak­ing the en­tire kitchen out­side. To­day’s grilling ar­eas of­ten in­clude a sink, a re­frig­er­a­tor and ice­maker as well as a lux­u­ri­ous gas grill. An out­door liv­ing area is be­com­ing an im­por­tant sell­ing point for to­day’s home­buy­ers.

ME­DIA ROOM

This will prob­a­bly be just as pop­u­lar with the teenagers in the house, but a me­dia room can be mas­cu­line in decor. The term me­dia room is now used more gener­i­cally and doesn’t have to be a dark­ened home theater. What it does need is a screen large enough to watch a fa­vorite sport­ing event with friends and, of course, comfy seat­ing that can be used while snack­ing. Whether con­tem­po­rary or tra­di­tional, these spa­ces are more so­cial than the tra­di­tional theater room.

OF­FICE

As the workplace has be­come more mo­bile and many peo­ple are now working from home, hav­ing a des­ig­nated space to make calls and con­cen­trate is es­sen­tial to pro­duc­tiv­ity. Need more quiet space away from the house? Con­vert a garage into a pri­vate of­fice space or even add a mod­u­lar unit to the back­yard. But be sure to check with the home­own­ers as­so­ci­a­tion first. If there’s room for more than just the desk and chair, add a comfy seat­ing area and this room can also serve as a li­brary. And dec­o­rate the space to help get Dad in­spired. If he has al­ways wanted to work in a trendy, down­town loft, add brick wall­pa­per for that vibe.

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