Are you familiar with the word Lanai? What is a Lanai ? How do you say it?
Here in Naples, Florida ( and other Florida towns) homes often have a Lanai. If you are unfamiliar with the word according to Wikipedia Lānaʻi (in Hawaiian pronounced [lɑːnɑʔi is a Hawaiian Island. Lanai (without the okina) is the Hawaiian word for a porch or balcony.
Since we are not in Hawaii, you guessed it the term is used here in Naples to describe a porch or living area. This area is often shared with a pool/spa and often (though not always )is enclosed by a large screen structure. It may incorporate a roof (covered area), fireplace, or outdoor kitchen. This " living area" is not counted in the living area square footage of a listing but will show in the total square footage on the MLS print out.
I have some friends from New Jersey ( whom I love dearly) who refer to this area of the house as the LANN - I. They will tell you we pronounce it the same ... I'll say La/ nigh and they'll say that 's what we said... the LANN -I. In order for most Neopolitans to understand what you are talking about I would go with the La/nigh pronunciation to be safe.
So you say you have a home with a Lanai or you want a home with a Lanai? Here are some examples of what you might find.... They come in all shapes and sizes....
Often times outdoor living areas can be an asset. Sometimes however a lanai can be neglected. Some are simply amazing and sell the house; others are tired, bleak and need some tweaking.
With a few simple and inexpensive pieces you can make your lanai fabulous. Better yet have it help sell the house !
- Add Plants - a few plants go a long way. Check out Lowes, Home Depot or a local nursery. Try mixing different varieties of palms, some simple shrubs like Crotons, or ixora. Hibiscus are nice but always remember with flowering plants especially Hibiscus they drop their flowers daily and you need to clean them up. A nice potted plant can also add tremendously to the end tables or outdoor dining table. Hanging plants are also inexpensive and attractive . Choose carefully - ask yourself how often do I want to water? Does it need shade or love sun - ask an employee for help. Already have plants? Well are they in need of some fertilizing or repotting? A nice decorative pot can also spice up the area.
- Patio Furniture - Now is a great time to flip the cushions (fading) or visit local shops to check out the end of season sales. Several stores also have great outdoor throw pillows in some fabulous patterns and designs that can really add to your space. You might also want to wipe down your furniture, clean off the spider webs, throw out the torn cushions. Ask yourself would you want to sit on it? with white pants? Check out places like Pier 1 they have some really cool candles, glass holders, place mats, etc Make it inviting.
- Outdoor Accoustics & other Electronics -Maybe now is the time to install those outdoor speakers, upgrade your lighting or install the flat screen television. This area of improvement for reasons I can't explain seems to get the attention of men, whether buying or selling most think it's a good idea.
- Surfaces - Is it clean? Do you have a nice doormat in place? Have you considered adding an outdoor rug to an area that is out of the weather? Is it time to consider resurfacing or having the flooring painted? Are their cobwebs, dried leaves, holes in the screen? Is it time to clean the glass doors? windows? Perhaps it's time to hire someone to powerwash areas you cannot reach? Do you need to weed and mulch the area outside of your screens?
These are just a few tips on keeping your Lanai looking it's best. Now go put your feet up and enjoy your outdoor space! (Make mine with a lime ! )
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Copyright © 2008 By Shannon Gilmore All Rights Reserved. *What is a Lanai? 9/29/08