Patio Materials for the Long Term
We are having a difficult time deciding on what type of material to use for our patios. This is our home that we will live in for the remainder of our lives (hopefully 40+ years).
There will be about 1000 sq' of hardscaping (walkways, steps, and patios). Most of the hardscaping will be done in the back that has limited access.
We like the smoothness and simplicity of concrete but the problems that seem to abound with concrete give us great pause. The thought of EVER having it redone and the cost and hassle of removing all that concrete could be nothing less the gruesome.
I know patio pavers are the big rage now, but we prefer a more contemporary look. We're also concerned about the uneveness since many will be going barefoot in the backyard (which will consist of patio, beach and water).
Flagstone is a possibility too but we have noticed some cracks in the neighbors' patios. We'd hate to spend that type of money only for it to crack. Again though flagstone is gorgeous, it's not quite the simple look we are going after.
Decking was a possibility but we already have a huge deck and HATE the maintence on it.
Is there anything left? What would you do and why?