Living in Florida comes with many perks: a fairly mild climate, hundreds of miles of shore access, plenty of natural habitats for wildlife, and architecture that is designed for kicking back, relaxing, and enjoying everything the Sunshine State has to offer. A great way to ensure that you are getting the most out of your home in Florida is to maximize your lanai space, which comes standard with many homes. What is a lanai? Simply put, it’s an outdoor patio, typically covered. It can be open-air or enclosed with screens over wide windows. A lanai serves as an extension of your living room, and in Florida homes, it is perfect for entertaining, relaxing, or even dining. Here are five ideas for making the most of your Florida lanai: Turn it into a breakfast nook. Get out and enjoy your lanai during the coolest part of the day in Florida! Turn your lanai into a breakfast nook that’s perfect for kicking back with a copy of the local paper and a cup of fresh squeezed Florida orange juice. Place a plush rug under a seating area, add some decorative elements, and indulge in your morning coffee while your feet also enjoy a special treat. Go green. Incorporate Pantone’s color of the year, greenery, by not only selecting some design elements that have hints of this color, but by incorporating lots and lots of live plants. Trees, air purifiers, ivy, vines, roses, orchids… you name it, it can probably grow on your Florida lanai. The more greenery on your lanai, the better! Consider some upgrades. Stucco walls and vinyl siding are fine for a starter lanai, but if you really want to turn yours into something special, consider upgrading to a type of material that suits your home’s aesthetic. Rejuvenating the color can also do wonders and go a long way toward making your lanai your own. You could also opt to have the walls removed entirely, turning your open air patio into a veranda. If inclement weather or fear of pests makes the thought of taking away the walls unsavory, then consider upgrading the ceiling with some lazy leaf fans, or other stylistic elements, that will help to move the air throughout the space. Think thematically. Do you dream of a tropical jungle? Turn your lanai into an at-home version of your dream vacation destination, with vibrant colors and natural, organic elements like driftwood or shells. Make your lanai a proper “surf shack” style slice of paradise right in your backyard, complete with bright colors and some coconut shell accents. Or, perhaps an English tea room is more your style. In that case, invest in as many fresh flowers as you can possibly find, including lots of tea roses and pale pastels. Get some porcelain pieces to use as display items, and start collecting ceramic teapots. Whatever the use you decide on for your lanai, giving it some bright plants, a decorative ceiling or walls, and a theme will help turn into a one-of-a-kind place for relaxation in your home.