Topic All Topics


Perfect Pools

Perfect Pools

Dolphin Pools

Just like a home or a car, a swimming pool is an investment, and the same rules should apply when considering your options. We take a look at the different design elements that combine to make pools that are both functional and visually striking. 

Narrow Escape
An outdoor space that tapers at one end proved no challenge for Dolphin Pools, who designed a 23m lap pool to run along the width of this beachside property.

Two step areas in the shallow end of the pool are fully tiled in natural stone, while two resting areas provide spots to sit back and relax.

A Gemtex interior was chosen  (a glass-bead Onyx) in order to give the pool  a natural dark colour, while a coral-coloured reflecting tile was also used to throw  back the multi-coloured lights at night.

Once again confirming that no pool  is complete without a water feature, an LED water blade was installed in the  wall of the house.

So that the pool can be used all year round, solar heating works in conjunction with gas heating and a pool blanket to keep the heat in for longer. 

Tiler Made
Drawing inspiration from the colour and vibrancy of the Coral Sea, this pool is an example of the striking effect of the right choice in tiling.

The owners of the home chose shaded mosaic tiles that go down to a sand colour – similar to what would be found at the bottom of a coral reef – and matched the plaster interior for a completely seamless look.

Water falls from a sheer descent into mini pools, before cascading into the main pool, with the same effect reflected in the spa area. 

The whole design is a water feature in itself, providing the ultimate space in which to unwind and relax.

For more information on Exclusive Pools click here.

Step Into It

In a rear landscape that had to accommodate terraced areas for children’s play, this pool was designed as an integral part, with a number of elements to keep both swimmers and guests interested.

A timber daybed is the perfect spot to soak up some rays and relax to the soothing sound of splashing from the simple yet effective water feature.

The clever addition of travertine steppers across the water allowed the fence to be closer to the edge of the pool, and the extension of the pool wall on one side creates a planter to soften the scape.

For more information on Cultivart click here.

Blue Lagoon
What better way to reflect the ambience of Bali than with a beautiful, resort-like pool surrounded by exotic plantings? Working closely with Matthews Architecture, who designed the new outhouse building, Newforms Landscape Architecture and Phase3 Landscape Construction created a striking pool, spa and outdoor entertaining space.


While blade walls were used to create depth and interest in the garden, a combination of sandstone and fire-engine red was used to invigorate the space through contrast with the dense foliage.

One of these walls sits on the pool edge and forms a water feature, defining a small deck for entry and exit to the pool. To create the look and feel of a natural rockpool, it was colour-coated a deep blue. Frameless glass fencing was used to ensure views of the beautiful pool area from the house were not compromise.

For more information on Newforms Landscape Architecture and Phase3 Landscape Construction click here.

Art of Layers
The owners of this home had already engaged a pool contractor prior to enlisting the help of eScape Landscape Architecture. The aim was to create a contemporary native garden with a series of passive useable spaces that connect to the main alfresco area, pool and spa. During excavation, however, a significant amount of rock was uncovered; as a result, the pool was put in above ground to minimise costs.

During the design and construction of the pool, however, this same rock proved useful. The levels and angles of the retaining walls were planned to incorporate the existing natural site features and geology into the design. Also, the pool equipment room was now able to be tucked under the deck, to save space and avoid high screening walls.

Materials such as jarrah timber decking, alpine dry-stacked cladding, Australian porphyry cobbles, Summerstone Fines, travertine paving, honed in situ concrete, ACO strip drains, and gabion baskets with laterite rock were selected to enhance the design themes, and for their ability to improve over time.

The challenges encountered during this project highlight the importance of hiring professionals, particularly for the initial planning stages of the pool design process.

Deep Impact
While it’s always important to have a well thought-out design and selection of appropriate materials for each site, this becomes essential when working with smaller landscapes.

There are a number of elements within this landscape that, simply put, just work together. Positioned facing north and in full sun, the dark render of the pool makes it appear cooler. It isn’t something that would work in a more shaded area, but here it was an effective decision.

L-shaped Bluestone capping gives the pool a heavier edge compared to traditional capping, while broad leaf tree species ensure fallen leaves don’t interfere with the pool filtration equipment.

For more information on Tim Davies Landscape Architecture click here.

Great Wall
With the clients requesting a swimming pool that created the main focal point of the outdoor area, Denise Staffa of Outside In began to think completely outside of the box to create not only a swimming pool but an amazing water feature as well.

While it took the clients a little while to adapt to the idea of raising the pool out of the ground, the result is nothing short of spectacular. Denise engaged Sam from Future Pools for the build, which also features ledges to sit on, and an outdoor shower to rinse off, post-swim.

Mosaic tiles for the pool and an infinity edge were sourced by the client for a polished look, while timber decking around the pool area finishes the seamless, resort-style look and feel.

For more information on Outside In click here.

Light Show
A great example of how the effective design and use of lighting can completely transform a space at night, this outdoor space by Tim Davies Landscape Architecture is a feast for the eyes.

Highlighting the different materials and colours used within the landscape, a variety of lighting opportunities were taken up in the deck, tree uplights and side lighting to the timber screens, as well as a light installed above the pool.

While this suspended light is a feature in itself, the glow of the pool, reflection of the tree on its surface, and the wash of light over the timber screen is what it is really all about. For more on Tim Davies Landscape Architecture click here.

comments powered by Disqus