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Example of a classic patio design in San Francisco with a fire pit

Covered Patio

The homeowners desired an outdoor space that felt more rustic than their refined interior spaces, but still related architecturally to their house. Cement plaster support arbor columns provide enough of visual tie to the existing house exterior. Oversized wood beams and rafter members provide a unique outdoor atmosphere. Structural bolts and hardware were minimized for a cleaner appearance. Structural connections and supports were engineered to meet California's stringent earthquake standards. Ali Atri Photography

Example of a classic patio design in San Francisco with a fire pit —  Houzz

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Questions About This Photo (46)

Carol Reifsnyder wrote:December 26, 2013
what is wall color

  • redholly
    where did you get the round furniture from?
  • rubicon2006
    The color of the house is similar to my house. Tropical Tan by Kelly Moore
nancber wrote:December 29, 2013
what are th epillars made out of - how do you make them?

  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group
    The structural members of the pillars are steel posts on a concrete foundation. The posts are then "boxed" out with 2x wood studs and plywood, then coated with cement plaster to match the house. The girth of the posts was for esthetic purposes only. You should consult with a structural engineer prior to building such a structure, as the foundation size, connection points and how it is attached to the house are all very critical issues on the arbors overall structural integrity.
  • farrahbradley
    what type of stone was used for the flooring and for the fire pit? Also what kind of beams are being used for covering and where can I get it from?
Rebecca Kennedy wrote:January 4, 2014
What is the roofing material?

  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group
    The center peaked part of the arbor is solid standard composition shingle roofing. The translucent side portions are polycarbonate. For more info on polycarbonate, please see our photo #3 and a previous answer to a question.
Creative Concepts Contractors Inc. wrote:February 7, 2014
What material did you use for the fireplace caps?

  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group
    If you mean the fire pit top, it is Arizona Sandstone, cut into semi circular sections and the exposed face chiseled for a natural look.
sallyavellino wrote:February 9, 2014
What is the color and type of floor?

  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group
    The patio pavement is Arizona Sandstone, Buckskin color in an Ashlar pattern. This stone is set atop a concrete base with expansion joints and an antifracture membrane to control surfacing cracking or fracturing of the stone.
ddaniel337 wrote:February 16, 2014
Where did you obtain the round seating

juanpimentel wrote:February 17, 2014
Gorgeous arbor. Please what are the dimensions of the wooden beam.thi

- thanks

  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group
    There are numerous sized beams. The lower beams are 6x12 cedar. The ridge beam is a 4x12 parallam, veneered with cedar sheathing for an overall appearance of a 6x14. Before building such an arbor, make sure that you consult with a structural engineer, as different wood types have different structural span tolerances. Also, the connections between the beams are very important.
    just now
lizqualls wrote:March 23, 2014
What type of doors are on the house? Where can I find them?

  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group
    The doors are manufactered by Anderson Windows and Doors, a major manufacturer of windows in the U.S. Visit their website for all the options that they offer.
Muriel Mackey wrote:April 20, 2014
  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group
    It is about 26' wide by 18' deep. For more information, you can click on the photo and you will find a series of questions/answers.
Donna Riley Architect wrote:May 6, 2014
what did you use for sheathing on top of pergola?

  • Devin Darnell
    Thanks for the response, here is my patio, sorry I don't have a good picture during the day. I want to put a pergola in the "u" area of the patio. I would have the rain run of either to the front and have a gutter on the pergola, or have it run back onto the houses roof, which will also have gutters.
  • Devin Darnell
    Sorry I thought I attached this picture yesterday.
keolalani wrote:May 16, 2014
  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group
    Unfortunately, or fortunately (depending upon your take on artificial grass) this is real grass. It is a dwarf fescue blend.
  • keolalani
    You can't beat the real thing but we have issues here in phx growing good looking grass so I'm leaning toward synthetic. This grass looks great.
David Burzynski wrote:June 1, 2014
  • jkv1
    I love this design and am about to copy it. i want to have daylight come through and am curious what material did you use for the roof?
  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group
    It is a material called Polycarbonate. If interested you can click on the 'more info' and find out more details about this project.
Adriana Sirafi wrote:July 2, 2014
  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group
    Sunlight into to adjacent rooms was of critical importance and therefore led to the use of the translucent polycarbonate roofing. The opaque polycarbonate now provides a softer and less harsh sunlight pattern under the arbor and into the house.
Adriana Sirafi wrote:July 2, 2014
  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group
    Yes, Polycarbonate is a waterproof material. It comes in sheets and the seams of the sheets are where potential rainwater leakage can occur. So, the architectural detailing of the seams is of critical importance.
eli_1971 wrote:July 7, 2014
Is there venting for the outdoor grill under the enclosed roof?

  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group
    No there is not. We contemplated an intake fan and vent, but determined that there was adequate ventilation on 3 sides of the arbor. The uppermost portions of the 2 sides adjacent to the house are gapped enough to allow for cross ventilation and the escape of smoke. But this is something to consider and evaluate in any specific circumstance.
sarijita wrote:September 8, 2014
bethbarham wrote:November 2, 2014
  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group
    This question has before. Please feel free to go to the photo on our Houzz site and review our previous answers: Not knowing where you are located, it might be best to shop on-line if a local outdoor patio furniture store does not carry such furniture. You might check frontgate.com and modernwicker.com. You can also do a "wicker furniture" search for comparison shopping. Circular furnishing are becoming quite popular as evidenced by a few of our projects.
  • Erin Schwab

    Will this style of roof allow sunshine to come through the windows? I am trying to decide between a solid roof and a pergola style structure. I don't want to lose the sunshine coming into the home but also want relief from the sun on our patio.

Yvonne Luna wrote:November 3, 2014
What size is the fire pit?

  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group
    It is a 5' 6" diameter fire pit with a 30" diameter fire pit opening, providing a nice 18" wide perimeter for setting plates, drinks, or feet! This pit is also only 14" high, as we like to make our pits a bit lower for ease of seating and conformity to most seating heights.
samohd wrote:November 6, 2014
laurenmhurley wrote:December 6, 2014
How much is the fire pit?

  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group
    This was a custom build fire pit, with a natural gas line, stone veneering and cap, a custom fire ring. Such a fire pit can cost in the upwards of $7,000 in the San Francisco Bay Area. You may see lesser costs depending upon labor rates where you live.
jkv1 wrote:February 12, 2015
  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group

    This structure was painted with a semi-solid stain. We generally use stains on outdoor exposed structures as a stain will not chip and flake like latex paint, although its durability is about equal. The stain is mostly for cosmetic purposes - to achieve a uniform color or complementary tone. The wood itself should be durable and resistant to rotting - such as redwood or cedar. If you use a wood that is not durable, painting on a regular basis with a latex or enamel paint is critical in preventing dry rot or termite damage.

alicow wrote:May 7, 2015
what is the flooring material? I like the neutral colors.

eagadz wrote:May 20, 2015
What type of stainless steel posts where used for the pillars.

- What size and how did you connect them to the lower beams?

  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group

    The posts are 5"x5" steel with a welded plate cap and threaded rod. The rod then extends through both wood beams and is bolted down. There are numerous alternative methods for such a connection. I recommend consulting with a local structural engineer to determine the best method for your location.

eagadz wrote:May 25, 2015
What is the size of rafters and the beam that connects the columns

  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group

    The rafters are 3 x 10 and the beams are 6 x 10. These members were sized in accordance with their spans and loads. Also, the type of wood could impact the sizes, as some wood has greater structural strength. Aside from structural requirements, wood members should be size in order to achieve a an esthetic hierarchy and scale.

Allison Westwood wrote:July 10, 2015
  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group

    Our clients had concerns about loss of light into their adjoining rooms as well. The center ridge is solid shingle roof, however the majority is covered with polycarbonate sheets that are opaque white. This allows for filtered sunlight and plenty of muted brightness under the arbor as well as into the house.

vicki McPherson wrote:August 29, 2015
What is the size of this patio and the fire pit

rayholm wrote:September 11, 2015
What are the footprint dimensions

  • Ondina Brusso

    Please let me know if this pergola will be good in Miami, Florida with all the rain and hurricanes sometimes. If not, which will be the best one for Miami weather? Thank you kindly for your response.

  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group

    You should most likely talk to a structural engineer to make that determination. I imagine that such a structure is possible, but an engineer would design the connections and roofing to withstand the wind loads that you face in your unique climate.

allysonvon wrote:September 12, 2015
  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group

    This structure was connected to the 2 story back section of the house, but independent of the side roofs. Our structural engineer indicated that it could have been independent, connected to all 3 sides or the one as we have it. We chose the direction we did as it provided structural support and minimized disturbance of the side wings.

Tom M. wrote:October 7, 2015
  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group

    The San Francisco Bay Area climate is a very forgiving one, so hot, humid days are rare. This patio sits on the east side of the house, so it does not receive any direct hot afternoon sun. The entire face of the arbor is open as are the sides where the arbor overhangs the adjacent side roofs, so there is plenty of air circulation. Yes the heaters are hanging from the ceiling and meeting all code compliance distances. A fan was never considered, and we mostly install fans for the purpose of discouraging insects, not for temperature purposes.

wbmusser wrote:December 20, 2015
What is the roofing material? And how long will it last?

  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group

    The center roof is standard composition shingle, but the lower slopes of the gable are covered with "polycarbonate" a plastic material that is flexible, durable and non-flamable. We cannot attest to its lifespan, but we have some installations over 10 years old that have no signs of degradation or deterioration.

amijm wrote:February 2, 2016
  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group

    Please click on the photo and the string of questions and answers will hopefully satisfy your questions.

  • dfuture
    Anyone know where the furniture was purchased?
sunydays01 wrote:February 17, 2016
What is the stone around the firepit?

  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group

    It is Arizona Sandstone, the same stone as the cap of the fire pit and all the surrounding paving.

deblehmanconsult wrote:March 22, 2016
  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group

    It is held on with wood screws with neoprene grommets about every 18" o.c. Temps in the SF Bay Area range from the low 30's to the high 90's. You may want to check with a polycarbonate supplier to see if any weather issues exist. I imagine shrinkage and expansion could be potential issues. This product is uv resistant, commonly used for greenhouses.

hbrown6512 wrote:April 22, 2016
  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group

    The roof is a combination of standard composition shingle in the ridge, and polycarbonate plastic on the sloping sections.

Lola Whiteside wrote:May 10, 2016
  • PRO
    Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group

    Most structures such as these require building permits. Also a structural engineer should be involved, as the collapse of such a structure could cause property damage and personal injury. This structure cost close to $200/sf in the SF Bay Area which has one of the highest construction costs in the County. I imagine that in Riverside the cost to construct would be around 30% less. We are landscape architects who design custom structures, so we do not sell items nor finance. I recommend you contact a local landscape architect or architect in your area for some consultation.

Lola Whiteside wrote:May 11, 2016
can I buy the plans?

    Bill Tussy wrote:July 6, 2016
    • PRO
      Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group

      I'm not sure I understand your question. This arbor and patio was custom designed, then build by a craftsman contractor. The entire process took about 1 year.

    Miriam Contreras wrote:July 13, 2016
    • PRO
      Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group

      Those are low voltage light fixtures manufactured by a company called FX Luminaire (FXL.com). The ones used in this project were model TC and were Halogen bulbs. The lights facing towards the lawn are model TS. They have since come out with an equal products in LED, which we would recommend.

    • Miriam Contreras
      many thanks for the prompt response
    dorethea_g_ricks_civ wrote:July 18, 2016
    Who is the builder? Would like to get an estimate.

    allshookup wrote:September 12, 2016
    • PRO
      Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group

      There are gutters on the roof eaves and the arbor polycarbonate roof overlaps the gutters and roof edge by a half foot or so. There are rain water leaders but the pillars obscure vision of them. During very windy rain storms, water does blow into the patio area, as we designed this area to be "weatherproof" and not "waterproof".

    • allshookup

      Thank you for such a quick response! I am waiting on my GC as I type this


    Joann Monaco wrote:October 4, 2016
    • PRO
      Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group

      Hi. The area under the arbor is 24' x 16' with the firepit circle projecting out about 12' x 8'. It is a ample space for this family of 4, but when they entertain large groups, it is not generous. Depending upon your entertainment needs, you may want to upsize.

    madreamsky wrote:April 27, 2017
    what is the size of the covered patio.

    Quat Le wrote:June 17, 2017
    • PRO
      Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group

      The distance between these posts is about 14'. We have done spans as long as 20' with a larger beam. And with a steel beam veneered with wood, spans could be even longer. In any case, you should consult with a structural engineer. Factors such as the the height and thickness of the beam, the type of wood (glue lams are another option), the connection method to the post (these had steel posts),if the arbor is connected to a bldg for shear strength, etc. will all determine the size of all wood members.

    • Quat Le

      Very valuable details. Helped me a lot with my design decisions. Thank you very much for sharing.

    olgacgut wrote:May 21, 2018
    • PRO
      Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group

      I'm not sure if this is a question or just a note that you attached to remind you of the photo.

    Gary Ruckman wrote:August 3, 2018
    What color of stain did you use on the cedar wood?

    Gary Ruckman wrote:August 3, 2018
    What type of heaters are those hanging down?

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