Since time began, men have needed personal places to relax, hide away from the world and have a drink or three. And, while these first man caves were likely literal caves, gents-only spaces have evolved over time and are now filled with the most exciting gizmos and gadgets we can buy. Here are ten of the best, and some top cave-creating tips that they can teach you…
Make sure you balance the areas
If you want a central games table – be this table football, pool or even air hockey – then go right ahead. But don’t let that overwhelm the room. Balance is key in a man cave, as it should be a room of many activities. Throw in a bar, a cinema, a sound system – you want options.
They present a rare instance of acceptable neon
Neon, for the most part, is a no-no. From garish 80s cocktail clubs to seedy table-dancing bars, the connotations are of sleaze rather than style. But, for some reason, man caves are exempt from the neon ban. Go as fluorescent as you want, from your name to your favourite drink.
Show your love for sports
Your love for sports is often kept under check by your significant other, who’d rather buy nice curtains and throw cushions than team-branded wallpaper. Your man cave, however, gives you the option to show just how deeply you care for your favoured team – whilst creating an atmosphere and area where you can enjoy them winning.
Don't be afraid not to go with a 'theme'
Framed photos of sportsmen and glowing signs are all well and good, but if you’re an understated person, don’t push your man cave to be something you’re not. If you just want to enjoy a few drinks, watch television and occasionally entertain, keep it simple, chilled and include just touches of yourself in the decoration and furniture.
Don't be afraid to go gimmicky
We’d never condone putting a full-size Pac-Man machine in your living room, or tucking a pinball machine in your dining room, but the man cave is a place where you can let your wildest dreams run wild. In fact, 75% of people want to do exactly that – so if you want to put a full-wall virtual reality golf simulator in your man cave, do it.
Adjoin your garage for extra space/sophistication
Man caves tend to be somewhere a little out of the way of your main house. Sometimes, this means converting the garage – but, if you’re lucky enough to have both, why not knock through and supersize your man cave, making your car a centrepiece of the whole space. Unless it’s an ageing Skoda, then probably best not…
Go big or go home
Clearly, at some point money will come into the construction of your man cave. But, if you have the funds to have some fun, then don’t hold back. Better install a full bowling alley into your basement than just move a sofa and flat screen television into your cellar. Have some ambition.
Don't be afraid to borrow your decor ideas
Iconic bars and clubs around the world are iconic for good reason. So don’t be afraid to borrow ideas and designs from other establishments. Be that in colour scheme, furniture, or hanging a huge picture of Winston Churchill on the wall, you can’t go wrong if you follow in the footsteps of the professionals.
Cinema screens are best when hidden
Calling back to our very first point, if you do decide to install a cinema – which is a great idea – try to hide your screen away as best as possible. You don’t want your entire man cave to look like a cinema the entire time, so maybe invest in a projector and a plain wall. A man cave should be a multipurpose room.
Pick your style and stick to your style
As it’s just one room, you don’t want your man cave looking too patchwork. If some of your furniture is made out of a light oak, don’t buy a mahogany desk to go in the corner. Your room should feel like a united space, so approach design with an eye to make a room that is identifiably you – and in which everything matches.