Tag Archives: casteloconstruction.com

Gazebos, sun shades and garden rooms, garden structures, build in Portugal, discuss the project, structure, outside dining room, Garden shade structures, pergolas, bamboo roofed, straw roof, grass roof, roofed structure, pillars, timber shingles, roman roof tiles to glass, outside dining rooms, Moroccan style, Japanese tea houses, sit and relax, reading or chatting with friends, prevailing wind, dappled shade, very special relaxing hideaway, screening and shade plants, ultra-modern design, ancient reclaimed chestnut beams, cartwheels, old olive jars, hand-carved stone troughs, planters, changing seasons, Gazebos, alpendres, waterproof roof, roof beaten copper, glass, natural bamboo, cloth under the roof, Caribbean feel, Walls, rendered bricks, stone, timber, sailcloth. colours and textures, glass bricks, subtle lighting, fire pits, chiminea, Fountains, fish ponds, cascades, daybeds, hammocks and built-in furniture, like bookcases, fridges, wine cabinets, barbeques, wood oven, smoker, Castelo Construction, Kelvin, 00351 927168247,@casteloconstruction.com

Gazebos, sun shades and garden rooms

Gazebos, sun shades and garden rooms are very popular garden structures that we are asked to build in Portugal by our customers in Portugal.

One of the interesting things for our craftsmen to work with is the different designs that our clients come up with.
We are often given sketches ranging from a page out of a notebook to ripped out photographs from fancy coffee table magazines.

Our job is first to talk through the design with the client so that we fully understand what they are trying to achieve. We then discuss the project thoroughly so they don’t miss any features which could be expensive to install later. We talk about the use that the structure is going to be put to.

It could, for instance, be an outside dining room so the water supply and drainage for a sink would a nice addition then, of course, there is lighting both inside and out and even planting of shade and windbreak areas.
As you can imagine it’s a pretty long list but because we have built many of these structures the process for us is straightforward.

Garden shade structures fall into three main types.

1, Structures with post or pillars and no waterproof roof. These are pergolas which will have plants or vines growing over them or straw, shade membrane or bamboo roofed so that they provide shade only.

2, Then there are the waterproof/ weatherproofed roofed structures which can also be on pillars or be surrounded on 3 sides by solid walls with roof materials ranging from timber shingles, roman roof tiles to glass.

3, The fully walled buildings with solid tiled roofs can be used as outside dining rooms, Moroccan style living spaces, Japanese tee houses. Ideal to sit and relax reading or chatting with friends. The goal is to keep out the weather rain, wind and sun.

More on the three types of garden structures

Pergolas are usually employed where the client wants to keep out of a prevailing wind, have dappled shade but are not interested in sitting out in colder weather or in the rain.
They do allow a skilful gardener to make a very special relaxing hideaway with the use of screening and shade plants, They can be of an ultra-modern design or as traditional as you like incorporating ancient reclaimed chestnut beams, cartwheels, old olive jars and hand carved stone troughs as planters. There will occasionally be times when due to the foliage being affected by changing seasons the pergola will not provide enough shade.

Gazebos and alpendres with a waterproof roof.

The roofs can be tiled made of beaten copper, glass, in fact, anything that you can imagine one of my favourites is natural bamboo underneath the tiles as it reminds me of Bali. You can also hand linen cloth under the roof to give a Caribbean feel.

Walls can also be made of all kinds of materials from cob (a mixture of earth and straw) rendered bricks, stone, timber or even sailcloth.
The important thing is to choose the material to suit the purpose that you are going to put the structure too.

Oh and don’t forget the colours you can incorporate into the design. Not just in the furnishings but in the structure. You can use whatever colours and textures you like for instance opaque glass bricks or bottles set into the wall to provide a little subtle lighting

If you are looking at year-round use you want to consider fire pits, chiminea to keep warm on winter nights.

Fountains and fish ponds, cascades, day beds hammocks and built-in furnitures

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outside entertaining area
like bookcases, fridges, wine cabinets, barbeques and wood ovens
Whatever design you are thinking about Castelo Construction are here to help

Call Kelvin on 00351 927168247

Or contact him on email at kelvin@casteloconstruction.com

Portugal’s coastal climate, casteloconstruction, dampfix portugal,

Portugal’s coastal climate

When you are sitting in the shade on your holiday it is almost impossible to comprehend that Portugal’s coastal climate could be bad for your home.

With high levels of humidity, constant sand, sun and salt attack you may be in for a shock when you return to your holiday home.

Last weekend we went to the coast admittedly it is January and the sea was very rough.

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coast in winter

Although there were none of the enormous surfing waves that the area is famous for there were plenty of large, heavy, crashing waves that you could hear before you arrived at the sea front.






In fact the waves, rain and wind had already eroded several areas of land around the cliffs.

Before lunch we walked around the village as it was quite and it gave us the chance for some pre lunch exercise. I was telling my friends about when I lived close to the sea in the UK. I dreaded the winters and how they would degrade the finishes of the house requiring re painting every year. Steel railings where a nightmare to keep in good condition they almost rusted in front of your eyes.

Portugal’s coastal climate, casteloconstruction, dampfix portugal,
Portugal’s coastal climate

Then we came across this satellite dish and I must admit that I laughed out loud.

Normal metal meets Portugal’s coastal climate conditions. It is of course not just steel and paintwork which is effected and damaged it is almost anything like bricks and lime render and normal timber.


In fact you have to make certain that you are using the correct type of stainless steel and fixings or they will rust and look a mess and ultimately have to be replaced like the TV dish.

So how do you make sure that you are not constantly refurbishing and replacing parts of your home. Think tough external finishes. Not just hard wearing but suitable for a marine environment.

Although your aluminum or UPVC windows wont rust the fixings certainly will particularly if you have steel screws fitting hinges and handles to your windows and doors in fact it is best to use fixings in the same metal as your hinges to stop electrolysis.
Verandas and patios are going to move a lot with the summer time heat causing expansion and the winter causing contraction so ask your architect to specify in a drawing how your builder should construct outside stairs, verandas and terraces so that they will not let rain water into your home in the winter. You can bet your bottom dollar that if the builders are left to do “what they always do” you will sooner or later have a problem.
Do not used polished finishes such as stone or high gloss tiles outside because they will become dull and patchy in appearance very quickly. If you going to use timber make sure that its fixed from behind or glued because the screws or nails will very quickly rust through.

In conclusion it is harder to say what to do than what not to do.

Here goes !   – external finishes in natural stone even if it is only suspended cladding.
Windows and door would be in powder coated aluminum and all fixings would be in the same grade of aluminum.

Glass would have UV protection and easy clean coating.
All external metal trims and railings would be either glass or marine grade stainless steel.
Roof tiles would be fixed down and fired clay.

External drains would be large diamiter to cope with the wind blown sand.

Roof Problems Get Worse

Roof Problems Get Worse – The sorry end to a sagging roof
In the previous blog we talked about a soundly constructed house with a sagging roof was a disaster waiting to happen.

Roof Problems Get Worse It is truly amazing just how quick a house can go from this:-

On the edge of disaster

To this:-

Roof fallen in, rain soaking the floor allowing the rot and woodworm to break the first floor. The problems don’t stop there. Roof Problems Get Worse The rain falls onto the floor timbers through the gaping roof. The water runs down the timbers and starts washing away the soil used as jointing between the stones at the base of the wall making the whole structure weak.

Roof ceiling and first floor broken through

The whole house had to be cleared of all damaged timber leaving just the four walls.

All is not lost as we can refurbish and renew most Portuguese damaged properties.

 Roof Problems Get Worse