Dear Dazed and Confused,
There are so many window treatment options out there. It certainly can be confusing. While shutters are lovely they will still look much like blinds. My suggestion is a Silhouette, by Hunter Douglas. They are very functional. When the louvers are open there is a sheer fabric to soften the view and give semi-privacy. Close the louvers and you have total privacy or raise the shade and the view is totally open. There are some other new products on the market that might also be excellent solutions to your situation as well. There is a showroom in your area where you can see the products I am referring to. The best way to know what will work for you is to see an actual working sample.
Photo: Hunter Douglas Photo Gallery