by Brett O’Neill
Florida Lanais can be found all over the world, but they’re ubiquitous in Florida. In Hawaii, where the words “lanai” come from, they’re typically open-air, roofed porches or outdoor passageways. Lanais are attached to homes and hotels and provide extra outdoor living space.
Florida Lanais Why People Have Them
In Florida’s tropical climate, temperatures permit enjoyment of the outdoors nearly all year. Florida lanais are typically screened, within a larger pool cage enclosure, or attached to a different side of the house. Most Floridians would agree about why everyone should have a lanai.
Florida Lanais Keeps Pests Out
Floridians love their climate, but so do mosquitos and other biting insects. A screened lanai allows homeowners to relax outdoors without the annoyance of insects.
Florida has more than flying pests—there are pests that slither, creep, and crawl. And whatever you’d call an alligator’s method of perambulation, a lanai can discourage scaly, four-legged visitors, too.
Proximity To Nature
Lush tropical vegetation and beautiful birds are features of many Florida landscapes. A lanai is a place to get closer to natural beauty, watch birds without disturbing them, and appreciate brilliant, fragrant flowers in their natural setting.
Increases Living Space
A lanai is a great place to set up an outdoor dining area or living room. Some are equipped with bars, outdoor kitchens, or fireplaces.
Great for Entertaining
Guests who love to be outdoors, but would rather not jump in the pool, can relax and socialize on (or in) the lanai. Lanais are often constructed as roofed extensions of the pool deck, creating a seamless transition from indoors to outside.
Increases the Value of Your Home
Most Florida home buyers expect a lanai. A well-designed lanai facing a desirable direction will gain more traction with prospective buyers than a home that doesn’t have a lanai.
Depending on which side of the house the lanai is on, one can get different benefits. South facing lanais get a lot of sun and heat, especially in late summer and fall. East-facing lanai rooms get morning sun, while west-facing lanais enjoy lovely sunsets, but can get quite hot late on summer afternoons. North-facing lanais may be the best compromise—they get sun but tend to stay cooler than south-facing areas.
Security, Safety, and Privacy
A screened lanai keeps small children and pets corralled safely inside while allowing them to enjoy the outdoors. Adding privacy screening allows homeowners to enjoy their outdoor space without feeling watched by neighbors and passersby.
Older lanais may be due for lanai screen replacement. In recent years, screening materials have become stronger and more resistant to tears, pets, and pests. If you’re buying or selling a house in Florida, it makes sense to inspect your lanai’s screening, and repair or replace it if it’s become torn, faded, or dirty over the years.
A nicely furnished lanai with new screening is itself an answer to why everyone should have a lanai. The benefits are obvious, and the enjoyment is real.