Basements Are Evolving

Modern basements aren’t just used for additional storage and children’s play areas anymore. They can present some design challenges, but they also are a great opportunity to expand your living space to include a play area for adults and children and to add a home theater or game room complete with a wet bar.

Your basement remodel doesn’t have to mirror the design of the rest of your house. If you want, you can create a whole different look and feel from the rest of your house.  

The best adult basements are fun and functional spaces that can be enjoyed by the entire family. Done well, they can also increase the value of your home. 

Wet Bars Are Coming Back

Basement wet bars were very popular in the past and have made a comeback in recent years. A wet bar is essentially a galley kitchen with a bar. It should complement the rest of your space and make it a fun place for everyone to congregate and enjoy.

If you are planning to create a wet bar for your basement, here are six design ideas trending in 2022 that you might want to consider.

1. Space for Under Cabinet Appliances

Basement dry bar designs used to feature modest built-in cabinetry with a countertop and an area for drink and snack storage. In 2022, things are getting serious with the addition of under-counter refrigeration units and built-in microwaves. Homeowners are adding wine chillers, beverage centers, beer kegerators, and ice makers. These additions provide more functional storage and ensure you always have an adequate supply of chilled beverages when entertaining.

There are different kinds of wine refrigerators and beverage coolers available in the market. To bring your entertaining up a notch and eliminate running up and down from your kitchen, consider a built-in microwave to make popcorn or hot beverages.

2. Simple Designs that Add Elegance

Creating a simple yet elegant bar in your basement is easier than you think. Gone is the dark, heavy feeling from the basements of the years ago. Today’s designs are streamlined and focus more on the base cabinets only. Wall cabinets are used sparingly if at all. Floating shelves on the wall are often used to showcase liquor, wines, stemware, and more. Many homeowners still want high-end designs and features in the space including painted cabinetry, natural stone or quartz countertops, and eye-catching backsplash designs.

3. Open Shelves

Many basement bars are moving towards a modern design where homeowners eliminate wall cabinetry in favor of base cabinets with floating wall shelving. Installing open shelving has two advantages:

  • It creates a low-profile look perfect for a modern basement bar while providing a place to showcase your liquor, wine, and stemware.
  • Unlike wall cabinetry, floating shelves provide a sightline to the wall that can become a focal point of your design by adding tile, stone, or even a mirror.

With open shelves, you can create some cool effects with lighting. You can add small LED light strips to illuminate the underside of the shelf or position the main light fixture so it shines a light on the objects above.

4. Incorporate Stylish Tiles and Countertops

Basement bars are smaller than the average kitchen. This is a great opportunity to utilize a different material for your countertop. You can find some great remnants when you go to a supplier. Maybe that very expensive granite or quartz you loved but couldn’t afford to put in the whole kitchen can now find its way into your home in the basement. Remnants are quicker to acquire and less costly than a whole slab.

If you’re looking for a unique countertop material, you could try something different like wood, stainless steel, or even concrete. These alternative options give character to the space.

  • Wood makes the bar feel cozy, warm, and authentic.
  • Steel is modern industrial with a sleek, clean look.
  • Concrete has that industrial feel and is a great look if you are going for a transitional design.

People often want their bar to create a statement and stand out from the rest of the house. Some of our clients have told us they want their bar to feel fun, while others want an artistic, elegant, and even refined feel to the space. Walls are a great way to create the look you’re after. You could, for example, go with a bold artistic tile or create a pattern with tile on the walls. You could choose a bold color or pattern that really stands out. The backsplash is a great place to forgo the traditional look and instead create a visual focal point. Let can let your imagination run wild because the options are endless.

5. Family or Entertainment Space

The last few years have retrained us to be homebodies. Many people are recreating the feel of their local bar by incorporating music, TVs, and the latest games into their basement remodel. This is a trend that will continue to be very popular in 2022, as homeowners look to expand their living space by making the basement a fun space. You don’t need huge TVs on the walls and expensive music systems. Simply adding a TV, Bluetooth speaker for your favorite tunes and a gaming system will do the trick.

Remember that this space is about enjoying time together. You don’t have to have traditional bar stools. Invest in more comfortable seating such as a sofa or lounge seats. Make it enjoyable so people want to stay, watch a movie, play some cards or just hang out and catch up.

6. Manipulate the Mood by Controlling the Lighting

Lastly, it can be easy to overlook the importance of good lighting. We love to recommend using low-voltage, in-cabinet accent lights for a decorative effect. Recessed lighting and puck lights are also great at adding light without having to sacrifice the look. If you are trying to make a statement, hanging lights with a touch of drama will do the trick.

Taking the time to plan the lighting in your new space is essential. Task lighting can be placed in areas that need brighter light. You can highlight such areas as where you are mixing drinks, playing cards, shooting pool, or throwing darts.

Lighting has a huge impact on how you use the space not to mention the ambiance of the space.

Plan Ahead

So you have lots of options to think about and that can be overwhelming. Feel free to stop by our showroom if you’d like help picturing how all this could come together. We have software we can use to mock up a design that will help you envision your options and decide what is best for you and your family.