My wife and I live in very rural upper north east of the US. We learned the hard way that concrete eventually crumbles due to the harsh weather conditions (especially the extreme cold).
We are planning on building a smallish rectangular ramada.
At one end of this structure we'd like to have a large fire pit (not a fire place nor chimney to avoid all the cleaning) with a way to reflect the heat back at us.
The general idea here is function. A place to sit outside, stay out of the rain, snow, or sunlight with a large fire that won't be put out by rain or snow.
So, what materials and/or design would you suggest for the fire pit? Do you have any further advice for the ramada?