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How to Build a Paver Patio on a Slope in the East Greenwich and Newport, RI

Updated: Sep 18, 2021

How to Build a Paver Patio on a Slope in the East Greenwich and Newport, RI

Creating usable and beautiful space in a sloped backyard can be a challenge; but with some planning and design creativity, you can build a paver patio on a slope in the East Greenwich and Newport, RI area. Any sloped backyard is actually an amazing opportunity to create multi-level living spaces that can take advantage of views, where each space is separate and yet joined, and there is no shortage of visual interest.

A multi-level patio is far more interesting than a flat patio. Each level is a separate living zone: one may be dedicated to an outdoor kitchen/dining space; another to a comfortable lounge; another to a fire pit area or pool.

Retaining Walls

The key to multi-level patios is the humble retaining wall. Anywhere from six inches to several feet tall, walls could be used to support many terraced levels of outdoor living. For this application, the best choice is concrete wall blocks (decorative blocks or blocks that are clad in stone veneer).

Different shapes can be used for each level, organically following the natural contours of the backyard for a more naturalistic feel; or stark straight lines could be used to give each patio a minimalist modern feel.


If you love to entertain and your property showcases a view, place the most high-impact spaces on the upper level: usually this is the outdoor kitchen. Position bar seating or a dining table to allow people to take advantage of the view; if the dining table is perpendicular to the view, nobody will have to turn around or crane their necks to enjoy the view.

If your main use for a patio is relaxation, you could place a couple of lounge chairs on the upper level so you can enjoy the view; and place an outdoor kitchen/dining space on the middle or lower level, where the focus is on each person and good conversation.

Transitional Spaces

Broad steps create an elegant transition between more formal, structured spaces while narrow stairs bring to mind terraced Old World gardens.


Today, many patios are constructed using concrete pavers; some mimic the look of natural stone, and some are unapologetically concrete. Pavers and natural stone add visual interest to a multi-level outdoor living space. You can add even more character to each individual level by mixing materials, for example using wood or composite decking on the hot tub level for a spa-like feel; pavers on the outdoor kitchen/dining level; and natural stone on the fire pit level. Any elevation change is an opportunity to mix and match materials that give each level (even if you only have two levels) a completely different feel.

Water and Fire

Water and fire may be opposites in one sense, but they actually work exceptionally well together in creating a peaceful backyard oasis. A fire feature such as a fire pit or outdoor fireplace will become the favored gathering spot. Its placement will depend on whether you prioritize sitting around the fire and enjoying the view… or cooking and eating while enjoying the view.

When it comes to water, you could create a series of waterfalls that cascade from one level of the terraced patios to the next… and the next. The sounds of running water will create a soothing yet visually dynamic space that becomes a true retreat from the stresses of daily life.

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