19 October 2015 Create your own entertainment hub Every home needs a space dedicated to fun – so why not create your own entertainment quarter for family and friends to enjoy. Games room, rumpus, pool room or man-cave – these are the ultimate spaces for entertainment and relaxation – and every home should have one! It’s a place you can watch movies, listen to music, play pool, or enjoy a drink with friends. In many modern homes, the living area takes on this role, but if you do have extra space, why not create a dedicated entertainment zone for your family and friends to enjoy. Some homes have underutilised space that can be transformed easily –think granny flats, garages or basements. Here are some tips for creating your very own in-house entertainment haven. Purpose Before you begin, ask yourself some simple questions: who will be using the space and what will it be used for? If you’re a family of movie buffs, a large TV and surround sound may be on the wish list, however a young couple may prefer a bar and a pool table, perfect for entertaining friends. Think about the types of activities you enjoy and go from there. Furniture + storage The entertainment hub in any home should be somewhere you can relax and enjoy yourself. Therefore, don’t underestimate the value of comfortable furniture when planning your space. A big sofa, recliner chairs or beanbags might work well for watching movies, whereas a high bar with comfortable stools could be a better choice for catching up with friends over a few drinks. Storage is also key in any entertainment area. Having fun can involve lots of stuff: DVDs, board games, consoles, headphones, snacks and drinks. Be sure to include cupboards, shelving and joinery so everything can be put away when it's not being used. Light + sound Lighting is important in any space used for relaxation; it sets the mood for the occasion. Include dimmers on overhead lighting and lamps to create the right ambience. Whether it’s watching a movie, playing a game or catching up with friends, the right amount of light makes all the difference. Sound is also an important part of the overall package in the entertainment hub. Surround sound delivers a totally immersive music and movie experience, so it’s worth investing in a set of good quality surround speakers. Also think about sound insulation; hard surfaces will bounce sound around the room so stick with carpet or rugs to ensure better sound quality. Sound proofing the walls to insulate the rest of the home from the noise is also a good idea. Smart technology Smart technology allows you to access content and share it wirelessly between a host of devices including phones, laptops, tablets, televisions and speakers. Take advantage of the huge range of online content from movies and TV shows to music and games and stream them directly to your smart device. Always invest in hardware featuring Wi-Fi or Bluetooth capabilities to eliminate cable clutter – this is particularly important for portable devices like headphones, speakers and gaming consoles. Another great way to simplify your set up is to use a universal remote. Universal remotes can perform multiple commands with a single click, saving time and making life a lot easier. Watching a movie might normally require switching channels with the TV remote, switching AV sources, adjusting the volume etc. A universal remote can do all that with a single button! Bar A home bar is a popular addition to any entertainment space. Any good bar should include a high bench and comfy stools, sink, bar/wine fridge to keep snacks and drinks cool, and storage or shelving for bottles and glassware. And for the beer fanatics out there, you could even install your favourite brew on tap! Old-school fun When it comes to entertainment don’t forget the stuff of legend – many great nights have been had over a game of Pictionary, Poker or Pool – so stock up on old-school entertainment. Card tables, dart boards, board games, foosball and pool tables are always a hit.