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Garden Guest House

Our clients wanted to turn their old backyard shed into a beautifully finished garden guest house for hanging out, entertaining and to accommodate overnight guests.  The main open space is flexible and gets great natural light from the new windows and doors. In addition, the finished space includes a bar and full bathroom. And our in-house interior designer Lauren Hoke gave the homeowners the transitional style in the outbuilding that they desired. Here’s a closer look at the transformation.

Garden Guest House Before

The building was a typical shed for storing bikes and landscaping equipment, constructed of cinder blocks.

Garden Guest House

Garden Guest House After

Architect Lee Ryfun of ALR Architects guided the way on the architecture. We replaced the shed’s doors with double French doors and side lites to maximize the natural light. These elements also make the building look much more attractive and inviting, while coordinating with the architecture of the main house.


The interior was a raw, unfinished space best suited to storing the lawnmower and fertilizer.

Garden Guest House


Now the interior is a beautifully finished space. Our in-house design team helped the homeowners with all the finish selections. “It’s a small space, so keeping it as open as possible really made it feel larger,”  says interior designer Lauren Hoke. Now the homeowners have the flexibility to furnish it as a multi-functional space — studio, entertainment space and guest house.

Garden Guest House


We built up the floor and installed COREtec’s Cairo oak plank flooring. This is a luxury vinyl tile that looks like wood but is much more durable. The open space is all in the front, with the kitchenette, storage and bathroom along the back wall. There is also a mini-split system for heating and cooling. We kept the ceiling vaulted to make the space feel more airy, and added shiplap for texture.

Garden Guest House

An oversized subway tile along the bar’s backsplash extends all the way to the ceiling, delineating the space. The shape of this tile also winks to the original cinderblocks of the shed. The bar includes a wine cooler and sink.

Garden Guest House

The white oak floating shelves add warmth and offer a spot for bottles, glassware and decorative objects. In addition, they bring the wood from the floor up to the walls. The countertop is Top White quartz and the faucet is polished chrome with an integrated pull-down sprayer. And the walls are Sherwin-Williams’ Pure White.

Garden Guest House

Here’s the view from the bar area toward the doors. The white ceiling fan keeps the air flowing.

Garden Guest House

A new window offers a leafy view.

compact guest house bathroomBathroom

The space also has a full bathroom, which allows the accessory building to serve as a guest house. Choosing a floating vanity made the compact space feel larger. So does the tall mirror over it. The modern vanity is by Timeless Home, and its green color brings in a natural touch.

compact guest house bathroom

Maintaining the all-white palette also kept the compact bathroom feeling larger. Framing the harlequin-patterned tiles elevated the look. Matte black fixtures (Trinsic by Delta) add a dash of contrast to all the white.

hexagonal floor tile

The hexagonal  bathroom floor tile adds a geometric pattern to the space.

If you’re thinking about renovating or adding onto your home, or if you’re ready for an accessory dwelling, guest house or studio for your own backyard, please schedule a free consultation to let us know more about your project.

If you enjoyed this story, here are a few more we think you’ll enjoy:

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