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How to Plan for a Recreational Bar In Your Home

by Preservation Properties

This post comes from our friends over at FresHome.comabout how to build a recreational bar in your home.  Click the link below or read on below:

Wouldn’t you love an area in your home to relax with friends and family, share in beverages and conversation?  Then a recreational or home bar is exactly what your home needs.  Planning a home bar can be exciting and rewarding once done.  Determining what your entertaining lifestyle is will dictate how much you will use the bar, and what amenities you would like it to include. Here are tips to help you plan your home bar that may make you entertain more!

Entertaining lifestyle: Do you like having a group of people over for the big game every weekend and invite coworkers over during the week? For you the need for a home bar may include a larger seating area with the ability to wash glasses and refrigerate beverages behind the bar, this is called a wet bar. While if you only use the bar area at the holidays for 2-3 people a movable bar may be for you that isn’t connected to water supply for a sink nor electricity.

Assess your space: Once you’ve decided how much entertaining your household does, determine how much space you have for a home bar.  For larger spaces, a back wall is essential for storage of beverages, and supplies as well as display for a television and/or artwork.  The physical counter behind the bar can include ample counter space, sink, refrigerator and preparation area. For smaller spaces, a portable bar may only include an area to serve drinks but preparation will occur in the kitchen or other remote space.

Get inspiration: If you need ideas for how you want your bar to look, grab inspiration online, magazines or go visit real sports, or recreational bars in your area. Although these bars will be of larger scale, you can get an idea for lighting, functionality and amenities. For your home you can scale back on the quantity and space but implement the same ideas for your perfect home bar.

Serving requirements: If you plan on only having canned and bottled beverages, make sure you plan on a storage area.  This can include a display area for bottles, but can also include upper and lower cabinetry in addition to shelving. If you plan on having a full beer draft system, research how to have one installed as well as the space requirements. Planning out these functions will leave you satisfied with your home bar when finished.

Materials and finishes: For the seating area consider if you want comfortable high back stools, or a sports bar type seating such as a no-back stool.  This decision can be made from the style of your décor to how formal/casual your entertaining needs are. Countertop materials can range from plastic laminate to granite. For mobile bars, the finishes will come already pre-made and you will have a catalog of choices to choose from. If you consider using a mobile bar look online for recreational designers that specialize in home bars, and billiards rooms.

Planning a home bar is exciting when you think of all of the fun entertaining that lies ahead.  Once you assess your entertaining style do your research on amenities that are necessities and luxury items. If you are trying to save money, leave room to expand in the future for the luxury items.  Building a home bar doesn’t have to be expensive, but should be planned carefully to avoid disappointment in the future. Your home can have a great home bar that your friends and family will enjoy for years to come.

Green Low Impact Construction

by Preservation Properties

Not all architecture is made with bulldozers, contractors and cranes — there are actually some buildings that are carefully and thoughtfully crafted together by hand. These structures have a very unique, handmade aesthetic and are inherently earth-friendly through their low-impact construction and recycled materials.

These three houses are perfect examples of beautiful homes that were built painstakingly by hand. Many of them use recycled and uncommon building materials, and all of them have a whole lot of love.

Earthships (ROW 1)
Earthship Biotecture, based in Taos, New Mexico, markets and designs these homes, which are most notably constructed using rammed earth recycled tire exterior walls and alumninum can and glass bottle interior partition walls. The strong building philosophies of these structures include building with recycled, local and easily accessible materials and utilizing active and passive solar power. Plans can be bought by Earthship Biotecture and adapted to the local environment and assembeled by teams of people — Earthships are currently located all over the world including Europe and Africa.

Eliphante (ROW 2)
Cobbled together over the course of more than 28 years using found materials, Eliphante is what originally began as a sculptural piece. Artists Michael Kahn and Leda Livant have been working on what is now a series of structures, which sprawl in free form over three-acres in Cornville, Arizona. The tunnel-like structure is covered in handpainted brush strokes and a variety of glass, metal and ceramic mosaics. The walls are punctured by beautiful stained glass windows. Driftwood branches were taken from a nearby creek and are used throughout as structural elements, window divides, sculptures. While there is no bathroom on the property, there is a piano built right into a wall!

Low-Impact Woodland Home (ROW 3)
This home has made it around the Apartment Therapy sites a couple of times — for good reason! This hobbit-like house was built by Simon Dale, with the help of a few friends and family members, using common household tools, all in just a few months time and around £3000. Dale wanted the house to be as close to nature as possible, and did so both literally and figuratively — the house was built into a hillside for minimal impact on the land and minimal visual appearance. The house is made from tree trunks, strawbales, plaster, shipping pallets, a variety salvaged building materials, solar photovoltaic panels, and uses harvested rainwater and a composting toilet.

(Images: House Tour: Eliphante & Hippodome, Earthship Biotecture, A Low Impact Woodland Home)

(article from:

"E" Inc. Opens Storefront Museum - The Learning Room

by Preservation Properties

“e” inc., a Boston-based non profit that promotes environmental science literacy, just opened a storefront Museum this month.

The Learning Room will be a warehouse space to teach students – and the general public – about the science of sustainability with the goal of sparking community action in urban communities.

The group already works with more than 800 students in after school and summer programs.

The storefront museum is designed to teach environmental science to children, youth and families, inspire civic leadership, and train teachers and adults to create and carry out projects to help the environment.

The free opening is on Friday, October 1, from 4 to 6 p.m. at “e” inc.’s headquarters at 337 Summer Street. Afterward, a visit will cost $5 per child for the public and schools will pay a fee for field trips.

“Our aim is to reach every child, teen and family in the Greater Boston area and help them learn about how the Earth works and what they can do to protect it,’’ said “e” inc. director Ricky Stern. “The room is really such a wonderful opportunity for kids to really try things and ideas on and see how they are made or related -- we have them go outside and unroll a 100 foot rope just to see how huge a blue whale is.’’

This article is brought to you by's Green Blog:

Rallying for Energy Efficiency

by Preservation Properties

An estimated 300 residents and union members from across Massachusetts ralled last week for utilities to ramp up access to and accounting of energy efficiency programs.

The Jamaica Plain rally comes as winter approaches and several groups work to make the state’s weatherization program accessible to all residents. These programs help residents identify and fix drafty windows and doors and ensure their home is as energy efficient as possible to save on heating bills.

The Green Justice Coalition, a community-labor group with more than 50 organizations as members, says that working class communities are not able to access energy efficiency programs as well as wealthier communities even though they help pay for them.

Massachusetts is in the first year of a three-year plan to improve energy efficiency in the state, a $1.4 billion effort largely paid for by electric and gas customers, according to the Green Justice Coalition.

“With winter coming and the economy still in crisis, we really need the state’s home weatherization program,’’ said Mimi Ramos, Executive Director of New England United for Justice. “Many of us live in old, drafty houses and apartments and pay high heating bills that we can’t afford.”

Ed White, vice president, Energy Products for National Grid gave this response:

"We're pleased the Green Justice Coalition is working so closely with us through the statewide process. It's input has been very valuable to the evolution of our program design and offerings to customers. We're excited about the opportunities to expand our contractor networks and to work closer with the communities we serve on energy savings and alternative energy opportunities that best fit our customers' needs. We will continue to engage broader audiences through a collaborative process as we grow the programs across the state."

This article is brought to you by's Green Blog:

Home Depot and Habitat to Build 5,000 Green Homes

by Preservation Properties

The Home Depot Foundation and Habitat for Humanity have announced the national expansion of Partners in Sustainable Building (PSB), a five-year $30 million green building initiative that will help incorporate sustainable building practices in 5,000 green homes nationwide. More than 135 Habitat affiliates across 42 states will receive 3,000 for each home built to ENERGY STAR standards and up to $5,000 for each home built to a higher green standard. The Home Depot Foundation president, Kelly Caffarelli, states that she hopes their partnership with Habitat for Humanity is able to bring the "practical financial and health benefits of green building and maintenance to families of modest incomes."

From the official release:

Through the sustainable building program, participating Habitat for Humanity affiliates have already certified nearly 1,500 sustainably built homes nationwide. By incorporating practices such as creating a tight building envelope and using efficient, durable materials in the construction process, many of these homes achieved green building certification with little additional cost. In many instances, the homes also benefit from landscaping projects that feature native plants, trees and other features that provide valuable shade and ground cover. The homes also include features that help them operate efficiently, including:
  • High-efficiency appliances
  • Water-conserving plumbing fixtures
  • Programmable thermostats
  • Low- and No-VOC paints
  • Quality insulation and ventilation systems
Results from the first year of the program show energy savings, lower utility bills and health benefits for the homeowners. According to the U.S. EPA, by following green building standards, homeowners can potentially see a savings of 30 percent or more in their utility bills.

Green Decade September-October 2010

by Preservation Properties

Please click here to check out this month's Green Decade newsletter from Newton's Green Decade at

Green Decade's mission is to create an environment in better balance with the natural world by making significant, measurable improvements in the way we use resources. Goals include helping households, businesses and institutions to:

  • Increase energy efficiency and seek alternatives to fossil and nuclear fuels  
  • Use IPM and organic alternatives to pesticides
  • Promote high performance (green) building measures
  • Prevent pollution through source reduction and reduced consumption
  • Promote reuse and recycling practices
  • Improve waste disposal practices
  • Conserve water and other resources

-The Team at Preservation Properties

Displaying blog entries 1-6 of 6

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Preservation Properties
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Newtonville MA 02460
Office: 617.527.3700
Fax: 617.527.2050