Some Juliet balconies offer enough space for a chair or potted plant, while others are more decorative than functional, just offering enough space to lean onto the railings and get a better view outside. A Juliet balcony will always feature an entrance and railing to protect residents but aren't long enough to be considered a standard balcony.
The name Juliet balcony comes from the classic Shakespeare play Romeo and Juliet. In one of the most iconic scenes in the play, Juliet stands out on a similar type of balcony and recites the famous line "O Romeo, Romeo, wherefore art thou Romeo." This type of balcony was popular in Europe when Shakespeare wrote the play. The style eventually found its way to New York City, where it's frequently referred to as a Juliet balcony.
A Juliet balcony can add curb appeal and a bit of romanticism to an apartment, making them very popular, especially since they are cheaper to build than traditional balconies.
It depends on the size and construction. Some Juliet balconies offer a few feet of space, allowing residents to stand on or even drag out a lawn chair to sit on. Others are too shallow for residents to stand on but offer space to store your bicycle or hold a lawn ornament. Some are too narrow or old to place anything on but offer a way to open up the room on nice days.
A Juliet balcony does not provide the full range of functions that a standard balcony would – so don't expect to host a dinner party or barbecue on one. But they often offer enough room for residents to stand and watch the world go by or enjoy a drink after work. Or at very least let in some air when it gets stuffy inside.
Juliet balconies are mainly designed to add curb appeal to an apartment, making the building look more attractive and prestigious without a regular balcony's construction or safety concerns. Plus, they give the apartment interior an added sense of luxury and sophistication that many residents look for in an apartment.
So, in that regard, they don't have a particular functional purpose, but tenants have utilized Juliet balconies in many different creative ways. You can use them to store outdoor items like a bicycle or sports equipment or as a place to enjoy a cigarette (as long as the landlord allows smoking). Many residents decorate them with Christmas lights or potted plants to give the unit a more festive look. Or you can step out onto your Juliet balcony when you want some air, or you want to do some people-watching in the streets below.
A Juliet balcony doesn't offer the full range of activities that a standard balcony does. But it is an additional stylistic element that many tenants and homeowners like because it provides a touch of romanticism. So, if you are a landlord who owns a unity with a Juliet balcony, be sure to include it in the listing because it's a feature that often drives interest.