Orangeries were originally built in the 17th Century to be used in the same way as a greenhouse, to grow plants in the winter months. Since the adoption of the orangery as a popular contemporary extension for the modern home, the introduction of temperature-controlled glass has made them a comfortable space to be enjoyed all year round. But what are the key features that make an orangery what it is today making them a popular glass extension choice?
Key features of an orangery
1. Garden room or extension: Orangery extensions can be built as a standalone garden structure to create a separate space, or as an extension that feels fully integrated into your home.
2. Brick walls: The orangery uses a solid brick structure with any combination of full height walls, dwarf walls as well as stone or brick pillars. The brick or stone can also be matched to the original masonry of your property to create a structure that blends seamlessly with the existing building.
3. Frames: You can choose to have your orangery frames manufactured in sustainable quality timber, modern and energy-efficient aluminium, or low maintenance uPVC. They each have their own benefits and offer a range of colours and finishes. The frame material you choose will also influence the overall cost, with timber usually being the most expensive, but it is so worth it.
4. Large windows: One of the most stunning features of the orangery is the large windows that let in so much light and help to connect your glass room with the garden beyond. In traditional orangeries, they would often include full height arched sash windows with a dwarf wall and pillar configuration all the way across the south-facing aspect. There are a variety of orangery glass types on the market and it’s worth doing your research as not all are created equal. To get maximum enjoyment from your new room, you want to find a superior temperature and light controlling glass. You can even have specialist non-stick coatings applied to keep the windows sparkling clean for longer.
5. Door styles: You can choose to have your orangery fitted with a variety of door styles including French doors, single doors, or even bi-fold doors that open up one aspect of the structure to the garden or even open the orangery up to your home to create an open-plan space, that can still be closed off from the home as required.
6. Open plan living: If you choose to create an orangery extension rather than a standalone room, you could consider the option to open up the exterior wall that joins to your new structure to open it up to the current property creating a larger open-plan space. This may require some additional work and a lintel to be installed to ensure the integrity of the external wall.
7. Flat roof and lantern design: Commonly an orangery will have a flat roof which creates a pelmet ceiling inside and customers often choose to have spotlights installed to add atmosphere to the room. The main feature of the orangery roof is a central glass lantern that can span almost the entire roof or just a portion of the roof. The glass lantern creates a sense of grandeur as it creates a stunning focal point for the room and brings in lots of light to create a fresh and airy space. Again, choosing the right glass is important to create a comfortable room.
8. Integrated heating: Like with any room in your home you can choose an integrated heating system that works for you and how you use your glass room. It is recommended that you install heating that can be independently controlled from the rest of your home. Heating options include central heated radiators, underfloor heating, electric fire or even a wood-burning stove.
9. Wooden shutters and window treatments: To keep the room cool in summer and maintain warmth at night and in the winter, shutters could be a great option. You can also choose from a whole range of other window treatments such as roller, sail and roman blinds. Each offers the practicality of reducing light and conserving or blocking heat, but also adds style to the room.
10. Luxury indoor/outdoor living: The nature of the orangery is perfect for extending the kitchen, dining, and living areas creating a luxury living space that is indoors but makes you feel more connected with the outside. They can also be used for a wide variety of purposes such as a studio, gym, guest accommodation, music room or even to create a professional home office.
11. Traditional design: The orangery can offer a traditional aesthetic that blends seamlessly with listed building architecture and is highly suitable for installation in an area of outstanding natural beauty.
12. Modern extension design: An orangery can also be designed to offer more of a contemporary style that will fit in with modern life and luxury living.
The modern orangery is a truly versatile living space that can be designed to your exact style preferences and practicality requirements. To get further advice on designing and building your dream orangery, submit a quote request form, then one of the specialist teams will be in contact to discuss your project further, answer your questions and provide a no-obligation quote.