This late-1940s home in the historic Mar Vista tract of Los Angeles has a 3,000-square-foot, fully fenced, totally private outdoor living space. Landscape architect Sasha Tarnopolsky removed a small lap pool, which was located just a few feet from the back door, and in its place installed a simple concrete patio that acts as an extension of the dining and living areas. She added a concrete bench at the end of the patio to provide built-in seating and placed a discreet water feature nearby (water bubbles up through gravel from a cistern hidden below). Tarnopolsky filled most of the remaining space with lawn, providing a soft contrast to the hard geometry of the concrete forms. The rest of the landscaping consists of simple, low-maintenance plants.
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Resources: Bertoia side chairs from Design Within Reach ($384 each; www.dwr.com or 800/944-2233). Montego ipe 60- by 35-inch table from Room & Board ($899; www.roomandboard.com or 800/301-9720). Similar teak lounge chairs (Trovata; $768) and ottomans (Trovata; $349) with Sunbrella cushions available from Crate and Barrel (www.crateandbarrel.com or 800/967-6696).