You want to relax on your terrace in the sun. You pull out your lounge chair and as you sit down, you see your neighbor, curious, constantly looking in your direction. How then can you protect yourself from his prying eyes? Because a separation could not only protect you from prying eyes but also from the sun, wind, rain, and even noise. In this way, you would feel more sheltered, calmer and more secure. What would be the most suitable material to create a cocoon in which to spend pleasant moments of relaxation? There are so many! Plants, wood, plastic, glass, fabric, metal, stone… and these are just examples.
Vis-à-vis composed of plants
For a vegetal counterpart, install large planters at the edge of your terrace and place bamboo, reeds or climbing plants there. If you go for the latter choice, be sure to give your plants direction, help them grow in the right direction: a nylon thread or a thin steel wire will do. You can also use stainless steel rods, or even a grid or mesh. Plants such as clematis, wisteria, or climbing roses are ideal varieties to hide the view from your neighbors.
If you can afford to wait a bit, choose to plant a hedge or some bushes. While annual climbers are inexpensive and grow quickly, you need to be a little more patient with hedges. Boxwood and yew are considerably more expensive and grow very slowly, but evenly and densely. Unlike a wall or other fence, with their 60 to 80 centimeters, they are also much wider. The advantage of the hedge is that it is green all year round. Shrubs can also be an airy solution for protection, but they need large areas to grow sufficiently dense foliage.
You can also opt for “fake” plastic bamboos. These dress the balustrades very well. They must be well maintained otherwise the wind and bad weather may destroy them over time. You can choose a plastic screen, some perfectly imitate natural materials and have the advantage of not needing to be maintained. In addition, the high-quality synthetic fibers are absolutely UV and weather resistant. Some privacy screens mix natural fibers and plastic. These mixed materials combine the natural look and feel of wood with the weather resistance of plastics. They have the advantage of existing in many shapes and colors.
Another possibility to create a privacy zone is to install a protective wooden fence. These are available in different shapes and colors, whether painted wood or left natural. You must make sure that the wood never comes in permanent contact with the ground. If you want a varied solution, you can combine planters and screens. You can fix these directly on the planters if they have a significant weight. In wood, there are pretty screens with contemporary cutouts, openwork screens that hide the view from your neighbors and prevent all vis-à-vis. The wood has a natural look which creates a warm atmosphere. Painted in the latest fashionable colors, wooden screens are also a solution for you if you have a very modern terrace. But that does mean that your wooden privacy screen is maintained. Refreshing its color or repeatedly applying a varnish is essential to ensure that the wood remains weatherproof.
With respect to fabric
Nothing could be simpler than installing a curtain that can be pulled back if necessary to protect itself from the vis-à-vis. An awning or canvas is also suitable if you want something more opaque. If you like airiness, go for a lightweight cotton fabric. To protect yourself from the sun and neighbors, install a curtain rod or equivalent system with rails. If you are a tenant, be sure to ask your landlord for permission because if you change the design of the facade it has an impact. And making it completely opaque is not allowed. You also have the solution of investing in one or more parasols which can give you some privacy on your terrace.
If you prefer something more sturdy, you can also build a wall around your patio. And in this case, there are many materials to consider, you can build a brick or exposed concrete wall or even stone. A wall protects against noise and can later be used as a supporting wall for a pergola. Planters or large tubs with bamboo can be particularly beautiful in this context. If the wall you are considering is to be on the property line, local regulations should be followed. In most cases, the wall should be between four and six feet high. You need to be aware of applicable local and national building regulations and ideally you should discuss your project with your next door neighbor.