We were pretty impressed by GazeBox, which is a gazebo and garage in one. The idea is that when your car isn’t parked in the iron-and-polycarbonate structure, you can use it as a gazebo.
While the Garden Igloo doesn’t pull double duty as a garage, it does offer protection from the elements. In the summer, it’s meant to be used as a gazebo, with a canopy cover to protect you from the sun. In the winter, a transparent cover helps transform the geodesic dome into a “winter garden.” The shape of the structure helps maintain air flow and heat distribution. “Sunlight is always transmitted at right angles throughout the day for four seasons, delivering maximum radiant energy into the dome and creating an optimal growing environment for plants,” according to the company.
The dome is nearly 12 feet in diameter and just over 7 feet high. Made with recyclable PVC, it’s fairly portable and takes a little over half an hour to assemble. You can anchor it to the ground with metal clamps and plastic poles, but it’s not suitable some landscapes, like grasslands or mud. You can’t really leave it on a beach, basically. With the anchors in place on level ground, though, the igloo should be able to withstand wind, thanks to its shape.
The structure is definitely going to attract some attention if you stick it on your lawn, especially if you bring in lights to illuminate it at night.
The cost isn’t cheap — it’s $1,023 for the structure and $397 for the canvas cover, which you’ll want if you plan to use it during the summer — but it’s cheaper than building a conservatory. (Though it will probably do in a pinch during your live action role playing Clue games: It was Mr. Green with the wrench in the Garden Igloo!)