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Syzygy Pergolas & Pool Covers in Palm Beach
Syzygy Pergolas & Pool Covers in Palm Beach

Cabanas Have Transitioned from Simple Huts to Modern Aluminum Outdoor Living Spaces

News   >  Knowledge Base   >  Cabanas Have Transitioned from Simple Huts to Modern Aluminum Outdoor Living Spaces
Jason Herring
May 26 2022

If you ask someone to envision a cabana, their thoughts will likely drift to an isolated beach bathed in sunset. Certainly, when most of us hear the term cabana, we’re instantly aiming for relaxation mode. Whether your vision of a cabana is on a long strip of sand, on the pool deck of a luxury hotel, or closer to home in your own backyard, today’s modern cabanas have come a long way from their rustic beginnings.

What defines a Cabana?

In its most basic form, a cabana is a free-standing outdoor structure designed to create privacy and protection from the sun. Most cabanas feature a solid roof and three walls, with an open front that faces the coastline or opens onto the pool area. The roof of a cabana can have a solid fixed roof or be clad in canvas or fabric. For a commercial hospitality setting, like a Palm Beach restaurant or hotel, the cabana roof is more often fabricated from durable aluminum to ensure longevity. Most high-end hospitality properties offer cabanas for daily rental to give guests private spaces to relax and get away from the crowd. Cabanas are also popular additions to residential backyards and pool decks throughout South Florida.

Cabanas – A History

Cabanas can be seen as far back as ancient Rome in the city’s famed bath houses. Long before modern plumbing, the Roman baths were more than just a place to cool off and practice some personal hygiene. They were also an important part of Roman social life. While Romans of all walks of life used the bathhouses, those frequented by the well-to-do were often gilded masterpieces of style. The mastery of Roman engineers brought heated water into the bath houses which also featured small changing rooms off the communal bath spaces. As more Romans started building their own personal bathing spaces at home, the social element of the community bath house shifted. Cabana spaces transitioned from simple changing rooms to luxurious private relaxation spaces. Many business deals or political arrangements were made on Roman cabanas.

hotel traditional cabanas

In America, the cabana is most-often associated with luxury resorts or up-scale beach destinations. Though, homeowners looking to create that luxurious feeling at home can also look to add a cabana to their backyard, patio or pool deck to really enhance their outdoor living space. Basic DIY cabana kits can offer the shade covering some homeowners want, but most of our clients here at SYZYGY Global are usually looking for something that better suits their home’s unique style. Our commercial customers often request cabana projects that provide flexibility in use for their guests as well.

The Flexibility of the Modern Aluminum Cabana

Thanks in large part to modern materials and fabrication techniques, today’s advanced cabanas offer massive flexibility compared to alternatives made of wood. Not only is aluminum constriction more durable, making it ideally suited for the constant storms in South Florida, but it allows for modular designs scalable for each individual project. Since the extruded aluminum structure is hollow, we can incorporate unique options. For example, the K-Bana Cabana we source from our manufacturing partner, Azenco, maximizes aluminum construction to eliminate the need for traditional footings or foundations. The cabana features self-leveling post bases that adjust to uneven ground. Without footings, the K-Bana fits a separate section of local building code than most outdoor living structures, so we can often erect the cabana without local permitting. This obviously helps streamline your cabana project. In addition to the structural advantages aluminum brings to cabana design, it also allows for massive flexibility in how homeowners or commercial customers use their cabanas.

what is cabana

Design Flexibility in Luxury Cabanas

If you are looking to create a truly luxurious getaway in a backyard, pool deck or garden, then we can fully customize your cabana project to meet your vision. The K-Bana is a fully-modular design, allowing us to mix-and-match panel segments of varying sizes to create the footprint that suits your outdoor space. Its modular design allows the K-Bana to easily scale from small pool-side changing station to massive outdoor dining space. Some of the additional customizations we can add to your cabana include:

  • Sliding telescopic walls with fixed or adjustable louvers to balance privacy and airflow
  • Adjustable roof panels fabricated from either solid panels or louvers
  • Hidden internal drainage system to maintain clean exterior lines while managing rainwater
  • Embedded privacy screens with sheer materials to defray the sun or dense material to block the view into the cabana
  • Convenience features such as embedded power or infrared heaters
  • Customizable flooring to match the surrounding deck, patio, or pool deck ( the cabana floor can create an accent to the existing outdoor space with manicured grass or other unique material).


Cabanas have evolved immensely since they first appeared in the Roman bath houses. Modern cabanas have become truly flexible, all-weather relaxation areas equally suited to the pool deck at a luxury resort or the residential backyard. If you would like to explore the possibilities for a customized cabana project, our SYZYGY Global design team is here to assist.

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