Orangery or Conservatory?

If you are looking to upgrade your home or need extra space. You may be deliberating between a conservatory or an orangery.

So, what is the difference between the two? Both an Orangery & Conservatory have similarities in their construction. As they are both built on a solid concrete foundation and will usually incorporate some form of a brick base. They are both used for very similar purposes. An extension to a home which provides a bright and elegant extra living space.

The main differences between an Orangery and a Conservatory are the frame construction and the roof.


A conservatory typically has over 75% of the roof glazed, whilst an orangery has less than 75%. Conservatories by definition have over 50% of their wall area constructed of glass using less framework/brickwork. Whilst an orangery frame often has brick pillars at its corners, or shorter wooden pillars to support the roof.

What is an Orangery?

Orangeries date back as far as the 17th Century, and up to the mid-1800s were typically found on wealthy estates & high-value properties. This is because they were fashionable amongst the wealthy elite to grow citrus trees that required warmth and light. However, by the approach of the 20th-century international travel and cargo shipping made citrus fruits much easier to obtain. This meant that Orangery structures were increasingly used as living spaces as well as a place to grow other plants and vegetables.

Orangeries can either be attached to the property or constructed as a separate building. They can be created to feel like an additional room that compliments the house. Or have their own design that sets them apart from the rest of the building. Orangeries typically offer more privacy than traditional glass conservatories. As more brickwork is involved in their construction. The roof of an Orangery tends to have a solid perimeter with roof lanterns to allow light in. It can also include a range of different design ideas which set it apart from a conservatory roof. A substantial roof also allows for lighting, which is beneficial when the room is being used in the evening.


If you are the owner of a more traditional or period building you may find that an orangery is more complementary to the style of your home. Therefore, if it’s a more substantial extension that you’re looking to add to your home, then an orangery may be the perfect addition.

See what Orangeries look like by looking at our Orangery Gallery.

What is a Conservatory?

A conservatory is a glass room with a pitched roof that usually connects to a house from one wall. Conservatories are thought to have been inspired by the orangery and have been popular in the UK since the 1970s. This is mostly due to the abundance of light coming into the glass structure. A perfect area for entertaining guests and relaxing. Conservatories normally reflect the design and features of the property. Making it feel like an extension of the home rather than a separate building or extension. Conservatories often use less brickwork than orangeries and feature a glass ceiling and walls. Conservatory frames minimise the components needed to hold the glass. Allowing for uninterrupted views of the garden and surrounding areas. See what Conservatories look like by looking at our Conservatories Gallery.


Modern conservatories are manufactured using UPVC which allows for very affordable manufacture, supply and installation costs. However, many property owners choose Wood over UPVC for its natural aesthetic properties. Both Orangeries and Conservatories use double/triple glazed window units to maximise energy efficiency. A choice of patio/French doors is most common in conservatories whilst orangeries tend to feature folding door systems.

How does it all stack up?

Orangeries tend to be more expensive than Conservatories due to their size and the construction involved. Conservatories are typically priced from £10,000 for a standard UPVC model. Whilst a 4×4 Orangery is typically around £19000. The cost of your conservatory or orangery will entirely dependent upon the size, materials and features which you choose.

According to a recent article in the Telegraph by property guru Phil Spencer.

“A well-built conservatory can add at least 5% to the value of your property”.

When looking to extend your property bedroom space is desirable, however, “living space is worth more per square foot than bedroom space.” the addition of an orangery to your property can add up to 10% in extra value.

What if you already have a conservatory?

“Too many conservatories built 40, 30 or even 10 years ago are not fit for purpose today. When you bought yours, you wanted an extension you could use throughout the year: somewhere warm in winter and cool in the summer. In hindsight, what you ended up with was a conservatory that left you sweltering in summer and freezing in winter.” Writes Tim Adler here

Modern conservatories have overcome this problem with dramatically improved thermal ratings. Better design means they can be enjoyed all year-round. Replacing the glass in your existing conservatory with new units will immediately make an improvement. Our double glazing is manufactured using heat-saving low emissivity glass which will ensure great thermal performance all year round. Keeping your conservatory cooler in summer and warmer in winter.

Each Abelglass conservatory and orangery is individually designed, and with over 30 years of experience, we can ensure that your conservatory or orangery is the best match for the rest of your property.

Designed and built to last in either uPVC or aluminium our double-glazed units are installed and secured into each frame. Ensuring your home is safe and secure. We have a wealth of conservatory and orangery ideas. You can trust us to help you make the right decision for you, your home and your budget. We can project manage the entire build, or work alongside your own builder, the choice is yours.

Whatever you choose, Abelglass will ensure that your project is built to our high standards with deposit protection and insurance for up to 10 years.

Talk to us about your project today on 01253 893355 or email us at

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