The balcony and terrace alike, are spaces used to connect the interior space with the outdoors, a transition we all enjoy. Take note though, one does not equal the other, between a balcony and a terrace there are differences, some of them major and the terms should not be miss-used, they`re not interchangeable. Learn the difference between terrace and balcony today in the article that follows.
The term terrace originates from the Latin “terra”, term that translated into “earth”, a clear indication that the terrace is actually built on a raised plan, above ground, constructing a flat surface that today is more often than not at the top of a building or residence but it can also be found as a natural extension of the living room at the ground floor, covered by a pergola.
An oasis of relaxation and serenity should be the main function, a terrace can hold a Jacuzzi, a pool or an immense garden. In the urban environment terraces are retreats, often used as dinning or meeting areas. The modern terrace happily evolves into a green state, embellished in vegetation, that even potted can be used to refresh and rejuvenate the dense urban environment.
A terrace is very different in terms of accessibility when compared with a balcony as it describes a bigger surface, one that can have a single access way through a staircase on the roof for example, or multiple as two or more building volumes open towards it. The private terrace in the urban environment often resides at the top floor, serving immense apartments or a single penthouse.
In a private home the terrace can be accessed from multiple spaces depending on its position and surface, no rule being defined.
The term balcony originates from the Latin “balcone” the term signifying a large window. Today the balcony is an extension of the indoor floor space, a console that pierces the facade plane. It can be attached to a single room or multiple spaces and it creates a private transition between one or more rooms and the exterior.
Image via flickr.com
The balcony is naturally an extension of the indoor living space outdoors and its presence is dense in apartment buildings, as this console simply breaks the volume of the apartment, of the box, allowing the inhabitant to experience the exterior on its own floor-space. In small apartments and countries that experience heavy winters this floor-space is often used as an extension of indoors, the balcony is enclosed with windows and the wall separating the spaces destroyed. This allows the inhabitant to use the balcony throughout the year as a small garden where potted plants can grow through winter. An oasis of vegetation separating your indoors from the outdoor environment can emphasize your living through its simple presence but furthermore it can shield you from unwanted views or simply a grim perspective. In cases in which the balcony had access from the kitchen, this space can also contain vegetables and fruits fresh at your grasp, the slight difference in temperature favoring this .
The balcony is always connected to at least one room of the apartment or house and the access is in most cases, private in residential buildings, rare being the case in which the access is done through a common hallway. In office buildings most often the balconies are naturally commonly shared by its users, the private-public relation being different entirely.
Differences and results
- Terraces and balconies are very different as you`ve surely noticed. One of the first things we ought to point out is the surface; terraces are far larger than balconies usually.
- They have a different floor plan, where a balcony can be an described as a line, whether is straight, curbed or L shaped, the terrace is more often than not, more rectangular offering the individual more liberty in furnishing and possibilities in general.
- The balcony is always horizontally-attached to an indoor space regardless of its nature where a terrace can reside in your garden isolated or at the top of the building accessible only though a staircase, vertically.
- Last but not least balconies can be enclosed or open, with the inner wall demolished or not in either case. The terraces cannot be covered that easily, few being the cases in which the authorization is released for modifications.
What do you think? How do you use your terrace or balcony? We would love to hear your valuable feedback on the subject in the comment section below.