Silver Winner – SPASA Queensland 2018 – Pool Renovation Over $25,000


The Customer’s Brief

We have completed our house renovation and now we need the pool restored. As the pool is in our front yard, it is a welcoming feature and needs to be attractive. The finished product needs to be impressive yet understated to compliment our house and personalities. It is also important to be able to play cricket and perform classic catches into the pool.

Description of Works

Design – The landscape concept of the project was to unite the area by combining the pool with the retaining wall bordering the space. To do this, a section of the wall is constructed on top of the pool shell with the waterline mosaic extended up the face of the wall and around the entire perimeter wall of the space. The pool surrounds then feel as if they are sunken garden within the pool.

Complexity – The bordering wall challenged our options to fall the surrounds away from the pool. We spent some time setting levels and drains at the bottom of the wall prior to concreting. We then constructed a block wall and set the final heights to full tiles up from the waterline tile. The mosaics are cut to the falls in the surrounds.

Workmanship – Central curve: The pool shell had a central curve protruding into the pool space that was constructed without the symmetry expected of a pool with such a formal design. It is unknown if this was intentional or accidental, but as it was too expensive to make the pool shell symmetrical, we decided to exaggerate the differences. To do this we highlighted the curve of one corner and sharpened the angle of the opposing corner. We also pulled the curve into the pool and pushed the sharp corner away from the pool. The final step was to extend the tiling pattern of the coping into the surrounds tiling at the sharp corner. When seen from the house, this has the appearance of a ribbon-like swoosh that starts at the edge of the pool surrounds, shoots toward the pool, then wraps around the space and joins back up with itself.

Coping tiling pattern: We needed to fit contemporary tiles onto a pool shell designed for a completely different product. To do this we have refined a technique we call ‘Offset Brick Bond’, whereby the required cut to make the difference behind a coping stone, is cut from the next coping stone. The larger piece now required behind the second coping tile is cut from body tiles. I hope this makes sense! This technique reduces wastage, cutting time and makes it easier to cut curves. Looks great too.

Steps: We constructed some steps to connect the pool to the house. This was a particularly complicated detail as we had to return the retaining wall toward the house and inlay our 30mm stone to achieve a level height with the 10mm porcelain of the house patio.

Amenity – The extensive work on the surrounds provided an opportunity to install a new light to the pool shell. Although this is a large pool, we only needed one light placed with emphasis at the centre of the imposing pool curve. The extended surrounds provide space for entertaining and relaxing. As an entry statement, this pool is now a wow factor to return home or to visit.