Midtown Backyard Paradise

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Beautiful craftsman style outdoor covered patio with cooking area, fireplace, pool
Beautiful Midtown Tulsa Retreat

Awwww! Nothing quite says “take your flips off and have a glass or two or three” more than a beautiful, bubbly, backyard pool at-home on an Oklahoma summer night. Just listening to the gentle gurgling of the water will lower your blood pressure by double digits. Especially if you’re worn down by the infamous hot, sticky humidity Oklahoma is well known for.

Getting the Backyard Remodel Started

The homeowners, Rob and Debbie, of this lovely outdoor space started with a vision of lazy summer poolside barbecues steps away from the comforts of their midtown Tulsa home. The outdoor area remodel plan included a covered cooking and lounge area with a smaller, relaxed pool. A project this size usually takes about 6-8 months from the first planning stages through the final clean up. So if you’ve got the pool and outdoor living itch…start planning now in time for all your summer festivities!

Backup to a year ago last fall and you would have found a tiny green space in the back of this over sized garage with a very, very small living space attached. The only real purpose the building had was storage and a really cool teenage hangout, sorry kids.  The backyard space was way to small to really do anything with; with the exception of Enzo, the resident Golden Retriever. He was the only member of the team who used it… doin’ what dogs do, diggin’ and dumpin’?.

before picture of garage room remodeled backyard area


backyard area after the demo and before construction starts

demo on the back garage room


And So It Begins…Ultimate Outdoor Area Remodel

To begin the back half of the double long garage area had to be removed. It was demoed off and built back as the main wall for the covered outdoor kitchen/living area. Enzo’s area was dug up, plumbing, drains and electrical pipes were laid down for the pool and lounge area. Forms were set for the new structures. Then finally the concrete was poured…for everything…all at once!

Once the concrete was cured, the frame crew and stone masons went to work. The new master bedroom door was cut out and positioned just steps away from poolside.  This was done with midnight swims and soothing water noise in mind. Awww…heavenly!

pool shell is built and demo to the master for french doors

new bedroom door and pool shell
New bedroom door

pool shell, competed fireplace and construction on cabana

Any construction remodel project always seems chaotic during the first stages. 


Pool finished with water, lounge ledge with lounge chairs
So calm and peaceful

Critical for Rob was eliminating as many weekend chores as possible; like not having to mow. The installation of fake grass (or turf) was essential. Gravel was laid down before the turf over bare soil in between the crevasses left by the stone and concrete design. The turf was cut to lay on top of the exposed spaces. With the turf being permeable, water from pool over-splash and rain will drainage properly and cut down on standing water. And the fake stuff added a fun pop of color and guess what…it will never die! .

The area behind the covered patio was planted with hostas and boxwoods; plants that do not require a lot of sun or water. Plus it’s a great private place for Enzo to do his business:)

To purchase similar lounge chairs click here:)


finished craftsmen cabana with tv, kitchen fireplace, pool and lounge ledge

This area just screams cozy, intimate, relaxed party area…doesn’t it?

The massive hand planed cedar beams were a top priority for this project. The craftsmanship of the stonework together with the handsome cedar beams set the tone of the whole area; easy, fun, and very welcoming. The miller’s auto planer broke a couple of days before receiving the beams, so he did it the old fashioned way, by hand. They turned out amazing!


finished outdoor kitchen area with pizza oven, smoker, beer tap, fridge, grill

Who wouldn’t want to cook in this space? No expense was spared for the appliances. Smoker, grill and the “famous” pizza oven along with the chilled keg tapper, ice maker, refrigerator and abundant storage make this area totally self sufficient from the kitchen in the main house.

The Pizza Oven Dilemma

Long story short…Rob ordered the pizza oven as an afterthought. Jim was a little,… ha, ha… a lot concerned with the weight of the oven. But as usual, he had reinforced the counter top foundation insuring the foundation would hold  the 900# vessel. The only problem was how the heck was he going to install it with out completely screwing the oven up or wrecking the counter top or “heaven forbid” drop it?

finished fireplace, kitchen area, structure
Perfect place to hangout and watch football

Friends to the rescue!

Thank goodness Rob has so many buddies! What more do you need? A few fearless men, a forklift and a keg! Not sure in what order, but mission accomplished…without any uh ohs or dropsies! Whew!

loading pizza oven crate onto forklift
The guys getting set up to install oven
unloading pizza oven in outdoor kitchen area
Here comes the tricky part

Installed pizza oven on top of counter with firewood underneath
Mission Accomplished!


Homeowner enjoying her finished new outdoor living space
Deb enjoying her new living area!


It’s the Little Stuff

Finishing this project, as with all construction projects, the small stuff really makes a huge difference. Not all homeowners understand the importance of lighting. The right amount and kind of lighting can make a new space an exciting statement or make it just like every other outdoor area. With out really cool lighting this outdoor area would have been just another regular outdoor space. With a little bit of imagination and forethought, the lighting and sound system (speakers in the ceiling) make this spot dramatic. It’s tough sometimes to spend extra bucks on lighting when you’ve invested so much in getting the structure and fixtures just right. But let me reassure you, the extras pay off in the long run making it exclusive and exciting!

Completed backyard craftsmen living space with pool
Silver subway tiles were installed as a back splash for dramatic light reflection.
Competed outdoor living space with fireplace, tv, outdoor kitchen, pool
The pool and kitchen area lighting can change colors by remote control

Remodeling a kitchen or adding a brand new wing to your home can be extremely intimidating for some and to others the “redo” is all they look for when searching for the right home.  Your homes customization’s will ensure lots of years of special memories in your unique one of a kind spot.  And that’s is all that matters.  Right, Enzo?


Enzo the dog relaxing on the pool lounge ledge
Enzo…lovin’ life

For more information on working with Jim Austin, Austin Construction Co. 918-629-5697 please follow this link

Additional Ideas for Updating Your Outdoor Area Space

Redo your existing patio furniture with new paint and a fun design…follow this link

A really cool porch swing would look great in an outdoor living space like the one above!


Disclaimer: Clicking on the informative, interesting, and helpful affiliates in this post may result in a very small residual for this blog. 

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