Pavilion vs Pergola

pavilion vs pergola colors

Having the perfect space in your backyard is an important aspect of being a homeowner. Whether you’re the go-to home to hold family events and gatherings or are just starting on your outdoor design journey, there are many different options of structures to choose from. We know that it is generally going to come down to two things. Cost & Appearance. 

Pavilions and pergolas are two of the most attractive outdoor structures you can have in your backyard. Yet they’re the most commonly confused backyard structures, so we wanted to create a helpful guide as you begin to design your space. So which is better? Pavilion vs Pergola? Let’s find out.

What Is The Difference Between A Pergola And A Pavilion?

The main difference between a pergola and a pavilion is the roof. Vinly and wooden pergolas are often found with lattice roofs, while pavilions have solid roofs. 

Pergolas can let in natural light from above, which can be great for laying out or growing plants. You can still have the structure to enhance your space but keep a majority of the warmth from the sun. For this reason, pergolas are generally fair-weather structures. 

Pavilions allow you to be outdoors, even in the rain. You can cook underneath these structures or use them as poolside shade. Want an outdoor bar? Pavilions are a great way to bring the party outside while still maintaining a classy and stylish look.

Pavilion Features & Uses

  • Roof Pitch Varieties
  • Roof Material Varieties
  • Wood & Vinyl Options
  • Heavy Duty Rafters
  • Electrical Package Upgrades
  • Serves as a great entertainment outlet
  • Great for Grill area
  • Great for a picnic area
  • Great for a lounge or pool area

Pergola Features & Uses

  • Roof Overhang Varieties
  • Roof Material Varieties
  • Wood & Vinyl Options
  • Post Options
  • Lattice Options
  • Great For Plant Life
  • Good for Hops, Wisteria, Ivy, Clematis, or Grapevines
  • Great For Sun/Shade
  • Canopy Option For Rain Protection

Pavilion vs Pergola Cost

Pergolas are generally less expensive than pavilions. This means the same size, materials, and add-ons will lead to a less expensive pergola. Here is a table with the pavilion vs pergola average cost. Price will change depending on what you add and the choices you make if designing your own. These prices reflect wood and not vinyl.

Pavilion Average Cost


Pergola Average Cost


Pavilion vs Pergola Similarities

While these structures are different, there are a few similarities between them. If you still aren’t sure which structure between the pavilion vs pergola to choose, you may be okay with either if you are simply looking for something to fulfill this list!

  • Both structures are typically free-standing but ask about attaching to your house.
  • They can both increase home value. 
  • Both structures will most certainly create a space to entertain
  • You can add drapes or curtains to both for more privacy
  • Both have a variety of styles to choose from
  • Variety of color choices

Pavilion vs Pergola Ideas

  • Kitchen – Cooking outdoors can be a lot of fun, especially for big groups! A pergola or pavilion can be the perfect home for your outdoor oven, stove, sink, and more! Why not try to take your entertaining skills outdoors.
  • Poolside Structure – We have said it before, and we will say it again, these are some of the best poolside relaxation spots. Take five or an hour to lay down and give yourself a much-needed break. Try some of the different options and features for even more relaxation bliss.
  • Outdoor Bar – If you don’t want a full kitchen outdoors, why not try an outdoor bar. With one of these, it’s no longer pavilion vs pergola, but pavilion and pergola! Could you utilize both structures? One for overtop of a bar and one for overtop of a seating area.
  • Outdoor Dining Area – Eating a delicious dinner while feeling the warm breeze can make for a wonderful night. Structure your pavilion or pergola in such a way that it provides the perfect home for a dining room table and chairs. Enjoy countless dinners outside with friends and family.
  • Outdoor Movie Theatre – You no longer need to go to the movie theatre to experience motion pictures on the big screen. Set up your outdoor structure to provide you with the space and shade you need to watch movies in style. Grab a projector, or hang a TV with movie theatre-style seats under your expanded pergola or pavilion.
  • Hot Tub Cover – Take a break from the daily chores of life and relax in your covered hot tub. Install lights in your outdoor structure to create a space you can use any time of the day or night. A pergola or pavilion will keep out unwanted rain and keep anything underneath with your h.ot tub from fading.
  • Outdoor Living Room – Maybe you just need a little more space to rest. Sitting outside in a comfortable chair can make it feel like you are on vacation. Grab a drink, sit back, and relax underneath your brand-new pergola or pavilion.

Pavilion vs Pergola: Property Value

We all love it when our homes increase in value. Do these structures play a part in making that happen? Yes! Adding one of these outdoor structures can yield great results in the long run. You can expect to see about 50%-80% ROI from what you paid.

A pavilion or pergola is an investment into the life of your home. You will now be able to get years of entertainment out of them and also have them increase the dollars in your pocket if you ever decide to see your home. To the right buyer, an outdoor structure can even increase the value more!

Pavilion vs Pergola Conclusion

Making a big investment does not have to be a stressful or confusing time. You deserve to get real value out of your hard-earned money. And that’s why here at Hometown Structures, we want you to take the lead and create something that you really want.  We want to make sure that you have an easy and frustration-free experience. If you still have questions about the differences between pavilion vs pergola features and price please give us a call! 

We have a few in-stock pavilions and pergolas as well as builders to design your own. Whether you are looking for a specific size, shape, material, or add-ons…we are here to serve you! If you are ready to take your next step, simply hit one of the buttons below. Happy Hunting!