- In-Ground Vinyl Liner: the most cost effective option, liner pools get their name from the line put in connecting the steel form and concrete base to the top of the pool. Many people also like the fact that liner pools allow for a custom shape, which can be a big benefit in smaller or irregularly shaped backyards. Technological and design development in recent years has allowed these types of pools to effectively mimic high end gunite at a fraction of the cost.
- Solid Fiber-Glass: this type of pool is entirely finished when it goes in, which means there is very little on-going maintenance required (ie replacing the liner or refinishing with tile or marcite). However, the trade-off is that there is no flexibility as to shape.
- Gunite: these are typically high-end pools and the most solid construction-wise (a framework is sprayed with a gunite/concrete mix). Gunite allows for customization and high aesthetics allowing a variety of finishes, including tile. It also has the benefit of being versatile enough to accommodate a variety of shapes and elevations.
There are many factors to consider when choosing the type of pool which is best suited to your needs: budget, shape, maintenance requirements, aesthetics, etc. In Michigan, there are three types of pools:
Pergola-like structures have been used by people for a multitude of reasons since prehistoric times. Variations in style emerged during the Medieval period, with Italian structures made of wood serving as platforms for lush greenery, creating walking corridors held up by columns. Similar structures in the area today categorized as the Asian continent were more curved in their structure, mimicking pagodas.
Many people today consider adding pergolas to their outdoor landscaping, as these serve many design functions. A pergola incorporates vertical dimension to a flat space in a visually appealing manner. They can be a beautiful way to delineate an outdoor room of sorts, providing shade and diffused lighting in an area to put comfortable furniture for relaxing, reading, and socializing. Other use them over an outdoor kitchen to shield from sunlight and providing privacy for both food preparation and entertaining.
Though pergolas are generally made of durable wood and stained or painted, there are many ways to customize these structures to add personal flair and better incorporate them into your existing outdoor environment. These include adding brightly colored or patterned curtains, intertwining lush green plant life, or incorporating planters of colorful and fragrant flowers. For more ideas and inspiration, check out this HGTV article:
One of the biggest growing trends in personal pool design in recent years has been the addition of swim up bars. Not only do they lend a resort feel to the outdoor space, they are beautifully functional and allow the pool area to take on multiple purposes and become the focal point of outdoor entertaining and relaxation.
Here are the top 3 considerations for including a swim up bar in your pool design:
The swim up bar allows for the best of both worlds: the ability to eat, drink, and socialize while remaining in the water. As such, the placement of the bar needs to be adjacent to the outdoor kitchen or food preparation area. Consider carefully how you and your family and friends will be utilizing the space to maximize functionality through careful placement of the bar and a well thought out plan for the layout and utility of the outdoor food preparation/serving area.
The bar is another area where you can add flair and expression to your pool. Think about what you want the seating to look like: round or square? Tiled? A more rugged brick type finish? Does the seat blend in or contrast with the base of the stool? What color do you want the materials to be? Should they be entirely submerged or partially exposed? What about the bar? Should it be the same material as the stools or contrast? Granite? Tile? What colors would you like to incorporate?
When planning your pool and bar area, keep in mind that the placement of the stools must allow for those sitting to remain partially submerged in the water, but the height of the stool also needs to leave adequate leg room around the bar. At the same time, the bar needs to be wide enough to accommodate glasses, plates, napkins, etc. These same conditions should also hold for the "dry" side of the bar if you plan on having seating available on that side as well.
At Tango, we believe the outdoors are an extension of the home-- a space to relax, to get together with friends, where our children grow up, and where memories are made.
Tango Group, Inc. is a family owned and operated business based in Oakland and Macomb Counties in Michigan. We work individually with each client combine the essential elements of pools and landscaping to design beautiful, creative, and functional custom outdoor living spaces.
We are excited to use this blog as a tool to explore the various design elements which can make the backyard of your dreams a reality and to provide ideas and inspiration for those considering investing in the creation of an outdoor living space.
Thank you for joining us!