These beach house design ideas are essential for bracing the elements – from intense sunlight to strong winds
Problem: Many building materials require tedious upkeep due to deterioration from exposure to coastal air.
Solution: Stuccoed concrete-block siding stands up to powerful storms; cedar-shake roofs can last for up to 40 years, more than twice the average lifespan of asphalt.
Solution: Windows with impact-resistant coating can withstand pressure from winds up to 200 miles per hour and flying debris up to 35 miles per hour without shattering. Laminated glass also increases a house's overall stability.
Solution: The elegant arched door handles won't pit or corrode, thanks to the protective oil-rubbed bronze finish.
Arched door handles in Oil Rubbed Bronze
emtek.com for retailers
Solution: Made of a synthetic woven material over powder-coated aluminum frames, these look-like-the-real-thing chairs are a match for coastal elements.
Havana Modular Lounge Chair
gloster.com for retailers
Solution: Pick sofas and chairs with loose cushions that are easier to replace, or simply cover cushions in weather and fade-resistant fabrics.
Solution: Painted cedar floorboards have a glossy, oil-based exterior finish for extra durability.
Solution: Natural rush mats are an eco-friendly alternative to towels and feel cool on bare feet.
Solution: Look for lightweight, weather-resistant resin planters that are modeled after their heavier counterparts. They won't crack and chip, and they're easier to move.
Egg Cup Planter
$350 to $2,400 each
Solution: A trademark of island architecture, a vaulted roof is both pretty and practical, keeping indoor spaces cooler by pulling warmer air high above living areas.
Solution: Installing a ceiling fan can provide additional air circulation by dispersing cool breezes. And it's stylish enough to work with any beach decor.
Summer Breeze Fan
hunterfan.com for retailers
Solution: Made of fade- and rot-resistant fabric, these heavy curtains stand up to harsh sun and pesky mildew. A blackout lining helps late risers to snooze longer. Be sure to install curtains on a sturdy rod that can support their weight.
Rough 'N Rowdy Fabric in Sea Salt
perennialsfabrics.com for pricing and showrooms
Solution: Caribbean-style cedar shutters weather beautifully and can handle sun and moisture while protecting outdoor areas. "The added bonus of cedar is that salt air actually helps preserve the wood, making it last up to several decades," says architect Don Cooper.
Solution: Buy a sturdy, anti-mildew polyester rope hammock that can be left outdoors year-round. It's just as comfortable as its cotton cousin.
Classic Polyester Rope Hammock
Solution: Made of high-density recycled plastic and rust-proof hardware, these maintenance-free chairs can stay put.
Polywood Recycled Plastic Curveback Adirondack Chair