Before beginning to design or renovate your home, it’s important to consider the different types of balconies available.
We’ve created this comprehensive overview to help you find the balcony type that best fits your needs and style so you can make a well-informed decision. Here we’ll be exploring seven different types of balconies, examining their characteristics, pros and cons, ideal location, and aesthetic style.
From tiny balconies that provide an extra corner in a bedroom to grand wraparound balconies perfect for entertaining guests, this guide is sure to assist you in deciding which balcony type is right for you. So, let’s look at each balcony’s offer and find your perfect one today!
Table of Contents
1. Juliet balcony
A Juliet balcony is a small balcony attached to a window or a French door, named after the balcony in Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. It is essentially a decorative feature rather than an outdoor space, as it doesn’t offer much additional floor space. Typically, a Juliet balcony consists of a balustrade or railing across the window’s opening, with a small balcony platform that protrudes only a few inches.
|Pros of Juliet Balcony||Cons of Juliet Balcony|
|Adds elegance and architectural interest to a building’s exterior.||Provides a limited amount of outdoor space that may not be suitable for larger items like plants or furniture.|
|Provides a small outdoor space for fresh air and natural light.||It does not offer the same level of privacy as a traditional balcony, as it does not provide a physical barrier between the inside and outside of the building.|
|Increases natural light and ventilation that enters a room.||It may not provide the same aesthetic appeal as a larger balcony or outdoor space, particularly for those who value outdoor living.|
|More cost-effective than traditional balconies as it requires less construction and materials. The estimated cost is $500-$2000||It can be difficult to clean or maintain, especially if it is located on an upper floor or in a hard-to-reach area.|
|It offers a level of safety as it prevents falls from open windows.||It may not be suitable for those looking for a true outdoor living experience or wanting a space to entertain guests.|
Juliet balconies are particularly well-suited for small apartments, condominiums, or hotels with limited outdoor space. They are also commonly found in Mediterranean-style homes and modern and minimalist buildings. Overall, a Juliet balcony is a charming addition to a building, bringing in natural light and the fresh air without requiring significant space or investment.
2. Wraparound balcony
A wraparound balcony, also known as a continuous balcony or full balcony, extends around the entire perimeter of a building or a significant portion of it. It is designed to provide a larger outdoor space for entertaining or relaxation and can be found on the upper levels of a building.
|Pros of Wraparound Balcony||Cons of Wraparound Balcony|
|Provides a large amount of outdoor living space that can be used for entertaining or relaxing.||It can be expensive to construct, particularly for large or complex designs. The estimated cost of the wraparound balcony is $20.000-$60.000|
|It offers panoramic views of the surrounding area, especially if the balcony is on the upper floor.||It requires ongoing maintenance and cleaning to keep it in good condition, especially in a harsh climate or near salty water.|
|It enhances the curb appeal and aesthetic value of a building’s exterior, especially if the balcony is well-designed.||It may not be suitable for households with young children or pets, as the open design can pose a safety hazard.|
|Increases natural light and ventilation that enters the building, which can improve indoor air quality.||It can be noisy, particularly if the balcony is near a busy street or another noise source.|
|It provides privacy and seclusion, particularly if the balcony is surrounded by vegetation or other barriers.||It may require permits or approval from local authorities|
particularly if the balcony encroaches on setback requirements or other zoning regulations.
A wraparound balcony is ideal for various buildings, including larger homes, luxury apartments, and hotels. It is commonly found in beachfront properties or buildings with scenic views, allowing residents to enjoy the natural beauty. The balcony can be designed with various materials, including wood, concrete, or glass, allowing for a custom look that complements the building’s style.
3. Skylight Balcony/Roof Window Balcony
A skylight balcony is a type of balcony that is built on the roof of a building and features a skylight or a glass roof. The balcony is often accessed via a staircase or ladder attached to the building’s exterior.
|Pros of Skylight Balcony||Cons of Skylight Balcony|
Skylight balconies offer panoramic views that can be breathtaking, especially in urban areas.
Building a skylight balcony can be expensive due to the structural requirements, waterproofing, and insulation needed. The estimated cost is $20.000-$50.000 with installation—the balcony roof window is around $5000.
The skylight feature allows natural light to enter the space, making the area more open and inviting.
Skylight balconies require regular maintenance, including cleaning the skylight or window and ensuring proper drainage to prevent leaks.
|Additional outdoor space|
Skylight balconies can provide additional space in areas where space is at a premium.
Skylight balconies may not be usable in all types of weather or at certain times of the day due to the position of the sun or weather conditions.
Because skylight balconies are often on the roof, they can offer more privacy than ground-level balconies or patios.
Access to skylight balconies can be difficult, especially for those with mobility issues, and may require the installation of a separate entrance or elevator.
The skylight balcony maximizes space in urban areas where outdoor space is limited while allowing natural light to enter the room below. This type of balcony is typically small to medium-sized and is made of weather-resistant materials such as steel.
Skylight balconies are most suitable for urban properties with flat roofs and work well in modern and contemporary styles of architecture.
4. Stacked balcony
A stacked balcony is a type of balcony built on multiple levels, with each level supported by a vertical post or column. The stacked balcony can be designed to either be partially or fully enclosed and is typically accessed through a door or window from inside the building. This type of balcony is often found in multi-story buildings or high-rise structures and is becoming increasingly popular in modern architectural design.
|Pros of Stacked Balcony||Cons of Stacked Balcony|
|Increased outdoor space|
Stacked balconies provide additional space in areas with limited ground-level outdoor space. This can be especially beneficial in densely populated urban areas.
Stacked balconies can be expensive to build and maintain, requiring structural support and proper waterproofing to prevent leaks and other issues.
Stacked balconies offer more privacy than ground-level outdoor spaces, as they are located above street level and provide a more secluded and private environment.
Stacked balconies require regular maintenance, including cleaning and upkeep of the balcony and its supporting structures. They may also require specialized contractors for repairs or upgrades.
Stacked balconies can provide better views than ground-level outdoor spaces, as they are located at a higher vantage point. This can be especially beneficial in areas with scenic views or urban landscapes.
Stacked balconies may be inaccessible for those with mobility issues or disabilities, as they may require the use of stairs or elevators to access them. This can limit their use and accessibility.
Stacked balconies can add a unique and modern design element to a building and enhance its overall aesthetic appeal.
|Safety concerns |
Stacked balconies can pose safety concerns, as they are located at a higher elevation and may require safety features such as guardrails and fencing to prevent falls or other accidents.
Ideal Location and Style for a Stacked Balcony:
- Multi-story or high-rise buildings.
- Modern or contemporary architectural designs.
5. Hung balcony/Suspended balcony
A hung balcony is a type of balcony suspended from the side of a building without any support from below. This type of balcony is often made of steel or other strong materials to ensure stability and safety. They are commonly used in modern architectural designs and can be used for residential and commercial properties.
|Pros of Hung Balcony||Cons of Hung Balcony|
Suspended balconies are visually stunning and can add a unique and stylish look to any building.
Suspended balconies are typically more expensive to install and maintain than traditional balconies, as they require special engineering and safety measures. Estimated cost: $10,000 – $50,000
Hanging balconies can offer breathtaking views that are not obstructed by buildings or trees.
Suspended balconies require rigorous safety measures to ensure they are secure and stable, as they are exposed to weather and wind. Sometimes, they may not be suitable for high-wind or seismic areas.
Suspended balconies do not take up any floor space in the building, which can be especially useful in areas where space is at a premium.
Because suspended balconies are exposed to the elements, they may require more maintenance than traditional balconies, which can be costly and time-consuming.
Because suspended balconies are usually not accessible from the ground, they can provide privacy and security for those using them.
Suspended balconies are typically smaller than traditional balconies and may not offer as much space for outdoor activities or furniture.
Ideal Location and Style for a Hung Balcony:
- Modern or contemporary architectural designs.
- Urban areas with limited outdoor space.
6. Cantilevered balcony
A cantilevered balcony is a type of balcony that extends from a building without any visible supports or columns. This balcony type is supported by a projecting beam or bracket anchored to the building’s structure. Cantilevered terraces are often used in modern architectural designs and can be used for residential and commercial properties.
|Pros of the cantilevered balcony||Cons of the cantilevered balcony|
|Increased natural light|
Cantilever balcony windows can provide more natural light to the interior of a building, as they allow for more sunlight to enter the space from different angles.
Cantilevered balcony windows require careful engineering and structural support to ensure their safety and stability, which can increase the installation cost.
These windows can also allow for increased ventilation, as they can be opened to let fresh air into the building.
These windows may require more maintenance than traditional ones due to their unique design, and cleaning them can be more challenging as they are located outside the building.
|Increased outdoor space|
Cantilevered balcony windows can provide an additional outdoor space for building occupants to enjoy, which can be particularly beneficial for buildings with limited outdoor space.
|Increased energy costs|
Cantilevered balcony windows can increase the energy costs of a building due to increased heat loss in the winter and increased heat gain in the summer, which may require additional insulation or shading devices.
These windows can also add a unique and modern aesthetic to a building, increasing its overall visual appeal.
These windows may limit the privacy of the occupants of the building, as they provide a direct view into the interior space from the outside. This can be mitigated by using blinds or curtains, but it is still an important consideration.
Ideal Location and Style for a Cantilevered Balcony:
- Modern or contemporary architectural designs.
- Urban areas with limited outdoor space.
7. Loggia balcony
Architects enclose a balcony on one or more sides with a series of arches or columns to create a loggia balcony, which may be partially or fully open to the outside. A loggia balcony typically sits on an upper level of a building, and people can access it by a door or window from inside the building. Classical or traditional architectural designs frequently employ this type of balcony, which is suitable for residential and commercial properties.
|Pros of Loggia Balcony||Cons of Loggia Balcony|
Loggia balconies provide shelter from the rain, snow, wind, and other weather conditions, allowing you to use the space more frequently throughout the year.
Loggia balconies are generally more expensive than open-air balconies or traditionally covered porches.
|Increased living space|
Loggia balconies expand the living space of a home, providing an outdoor area for relaxing, dining, and entertaining.
Loggia balconies may require more maintenance than other outdoor living spaces due to their enclosed nature, which can trap moisture and debris.
Loggia balconies add visual interest and architectural detail to a building’s exterior, enhancing its overall design.
|Limited natural light|
Loggia balconies can be darker than other types of outdoor living spaces due to the enclosed nature of the space.
Loggia balconies can provide a sense of privacy from neighbors or passersby due to the enclosed space.
|Limited flexibility in the use of space|
The enclosed nature of Loggia balconies may limit your ability to rearrange furniture or use the space for other purposes, such as gardening or outdoor cooking.
Comparison of balcony types
When choosing the right type of balcony, it is important to consider the options available and their respective advantages and disadvantages. The following table provides a comparison of the various types of balconies, highlighting their key characteristics, pros, cons, and the estimated cost of installation:
|Balcony Type||Characteristics||Pros||Cons||Cost of Installation (Estimated)|
|Juliet Balcony||Small, narrow, and usually made of wrought iron.||It can provide a decorative touch to a building.||Offers limited outdoor space and privacy.||$500 – $2,000|
|Wraparound||Extends around the perimeter of a building.||Offers expansive outdoor space and unobstructed views.||It can be costly to install and maintain.||$20,000 – $60,000|
|Skylight||Built on the roof of a building and features a glass roof.||Maximizes outdoor space in urban areas.||It can be costly to install and maintain and requires appropriate waterproofing.||$20,000 – $50,000|
|Stacked||Composed of multiple levels, with each level supported by a post or column.||Provides multiple levels of outdoor space.||It can be costly to install and maintain and requires careful consideration of weight distribution.||$15,000 – $50,000|
|Hung||Suspended from the side of a building without any visible supports.||Offers a unique and visually appealing addition to a building’s exterior.||It can be costly to install and maintain and requires careful consideration of weight distribution.||$10,000 – $50,000|
|Cantilevered||Extends from a building without visible supports or columns.||Provides a unique and visually appealing addition to a building’s exterior.||It can be costly to install and maintain and requires careful consideration of weight distribution.||$20,000 – $50,000|
|Loggia||Enclosed on one or more sides by a series of arches or columns.||Protects from the elements and offers more privacy than other types of balconies.||It may not provide the same level of outdoor space as other types of balconies.||$20,000 – $60,000|
It’s important to remember that these are estimated costs, and the actual cost of installation may vary based on various factors, such as the size of the balcony, the materials used, and the property’s location. Getting a detailed quote from a reputable contractor is important before deciding the type of balcony to install.
In conclusion, this article provided a comprehensive overview of the different types of balconies, including the Juliet balcony, wraparound balcony, skylight balcony, stacked balcony, hung balcony, cantilevered balcony, and loggia balcony.
Every kind of balcony has its characteristics, advantages, and disadvantages, which should be carefully considered before deciding which type to install.
Factors such as the location and style of the building, the available outdoor space, the level of privacy desired, and the estimated installation and maintenance cost are important considerations when choosing the right balcony type.
By weighing these factors against the benefits and drawbacks of each type of balcony, readers can make an informed decision that suits their specific needs and enhances their property’s aesthetic appeal and functionality.