Seven homes for outdoor entertaining
The sun is shining, the garden's looking lovely, and the sausages and burgers are sizzling away.
The average British household, according to price comparison site Idealo, has ten barbecues a year, generally on a Saturday afternoon.
For a lot of us, having a barbecue means wheeling out a rusty old bucket and struggling to fit on all the food. But buy the right property, and you could find yourself welcoming your family and friends in real style.
We look at seven homes ideal for outdoor entertaining.
In the large back garden of this five-bedroom barn conversion is a summer-house and entertaining area, with a huge brick-built barbecue, pizza oven and open fireplace. It has great views over the landscaped garden and paddocks beyond. If your guests fancy a swim, though, they'll have to move inside to the heated pool. Agents Woolley & Parks are looking for offers over £750,000.
Canary Wharf, London E14
You'll be on top of the world in this duplex apartment, which has spectacular views across the Thames to Greenwich and the Olympic Stadium. On the lower floor are two en suite bedrooms, with a large living/dining/kitchen above. The highlight of the flat, though, is its wrap-around terrace, which comes complete with an outdoor kitchen - cooker, sinks, sofas and all. Unfortunately, you're not likely to have much cash left for burgers: the apartment costs 1.475 million through agent Humberts.
This Victorian home has everything from formal dog kennels to lakes - three of them - within its five-acre plot, so it's no surprise that the owners have squeezed in an eating area too. There's a huge, bespoke pizza oven with a sweet twisted chimney and an electric sun shade that covers the patio area. Inside the house, there's a wine cellar, so you can keep your guests well lubricated. The house costs £1.25 million through agent Shortland Horne.
Hyde Park Gate, London SW7
Just ten minutes walk from Kensington Palace, this luxury five-bedroom apartment has a huge terrace measuring 1,127 square feet. Your guests will be able to enjoy spectacular views over south west London and Hyde Park, while sitting around the sleek firepit. Contact agent Rokstone Estate Agents if you can find the £13.5 million price tag.
You get two outdoor eating areas with this large detached home. There's one up by the house, with a wood fire and a canopy in case of rain. At the bottom of the garden, meanwhile, is a wooden cabin, built around a good-sized barbecue. "We all have lots of fun in the Nordic Lodge (aka the Party Hut) which can seat up to 15 people on reindeer skins around the central fire/ barbecue," say the owners. Agents Fine & Country are looking for offers over £750,000.
See also: The UK's most popular homes - you won't believe number one
See also: Would you like to live in one of these half-price homes?
The house is a classic nineteenth-century home; the garden is rather less conventional. There are several seating areas, with a large covered patio that boasts an integrated sound system, a purpose built barbecue and an outdoor fire. There are several bright blue poo's and waterfalls, and built-in ambient lighting. The house costs £799,950 through Arnold and Phillips Estate Agents.
This glorious mid-nineteenth-century home is very grand indeed, and has an outdoor entertaining space to match: a large stone-flagged terrace with a covered outdoor kitchen and barbecue. If flipping burgers gets you too hot, you can take a dip in the adjacent indoor swimming pool or adjourn to the games room, sitting area or bar. Price on application from agent Robert Powell and Co.