There is no better way to enjoy an extended outdoor season than with a chimenea. Chimineas date back to 17th century Mexico, where they were used as ovens to bake bread and also as outdoor fireplaces.
Today, these outdoor fireplaces are perfect located around a pool, deck, or patio. Most offer more than just a warm fire outdoors. In fact, most come with a removable neck and include a grill for cooking. There are usually 3-sizes to choose from: small, medium or large. Consider buying a medium or large one for ease and convenience as these tend to fit standard cut wood so you won't have to do exra work cutting smaller pieces of firewood.
Difference between a Chimenea and a Firepit?
A chiminea is defined as a fireplace that has a chimney. The chimney enables fresh air to fuel the fire, efficiently. Compare that to a fire pit, which is a bowl or a 360 degree firepace. Both are popular, but for that special focal point, just like a home fireplace, the chiminea is the better choice.
Types of Chimineas
Chimineas are available in cast iron and cast aluminum predominantly. They are also available in copper and clay. However, if you are looking for the best choice, go with a cast aluminum chimnea. These structures are rust-resistant, and if made well, require very little maintenance. This is not the same unfortunately with the popular cast iron chimineas, which are great because they are the most heavy duty and provide long lasting heat retention, but if left outdoors will eventually rust and paint will peel. To prevent this you should use a chimnea cover during the winter and off-season. Occassional repainting may be necessary as the finish wears away, but this is easy to do. If you have a location already in mind for your chiminea, one that is permanent, a cast iron chiminea can be a great choice.
If you plan on keeping your chiminea outdoors year round plan on buying a chiminea cover. These are water-proof, usually made of vinyl, and are available online from $25 to $35.
For quality, expect to spend from $200 to $500. For a large chiminea with gas kit, like brand: Blue Rooster, expect to spend $300 to $400.