• Brilliant Disguise

    by Barrett Kilmer July 2006

    Over the years, AQUA's covers and feature stories have showcased some of the most breathtaking and envyinducing backyards in the world. These pricey pools, high-end hot tubs and gorgeous water gardens run the gamut in size, shape and composition, but one trait nearly all of them share is their backyard location. Last year, two prominent designers teamed up to design a project for a Greenwich, Conn., customer's front yard. (There was already a pool in back, of...

  • Weather Or Not

    by Lindsay Renick Mayer June 2006

    As pool designs become more and more complex — with vanishing edges, waterfalls and raised spas — so too does the homeowners' ability to cover them completely during the winter months in an effective and attractive way. Thanks to a host of innovative winter pool cover products, however, not only can homeowners open their pools in the spring with little...

  • Rock On!

    by Kirstin Pires June 2006

    It used to be that consumers had to go to Disney or Sea World to see elaborate, authentic-looking, artificial-rock water environments. But over the last 20 years or so, as the popularity of resort-, hotel/motel- and destination waterparks has grown, homeowners have had more opportunities to ponder the idea of having a little bit of waterpark resort in their own...

  • Clearly Beautiful, Too

    by Greg Andrews June 2006

    Last month, award-winning tile contractor Greg Andrews discussed the requirements for preparing a pool shell to receive glass tile. Once the pool is waterproofed, .oated, and the fittings are set, it's ready for tile installation. — Ed.

    Glass mosaic refers to small-size glass tiles — generally speaking tile that's less than 2 inches. To make installation easier, the small tiles are assembled into foot-square sheets so that the entire sheet...

  • Economy Of Space

    by Karen Erstad June 2006

    Fitting attractive pools and spas in small backyards is a skill many builders have had to hone over the last few years. Lewis Aquatech Pools in Chantilly, Va., transformed this tight space in Fairfax, Va., into a fully equipped outdoor living area. "The design was entertainment-driven," says Don Gwiz, vice president of design and construction at Lewis Aquatech....

  • Floors That Touch The Soul

    by Karen Erstad May 2006

    At 20 by 40 feet, this pool in Brentwood, Calif., is a standard size, but there is nothing standard about its beautiful tile bottom, designed and painted by Sergio Furnari, a New York-based artist originally from Caltagirone, Sicily, Italy.

    Furnari's skills, which he has honed since boyhood when he worked at the Caltagirone Sculpting Foundry, are evident in...

  • Flourishing Vinyl Builders

    by Karen Erstad May 2006

    Many factors figure into the equation of whether a vinyl-liner pool business will sink or swim. You have to be able to build quality pools, but a lot of people can do that. And great customer service is essential, as well, but what exactly does that entail. Following, three thriving builders share their insights on the keys to success as a vinyl pool...

  • Clearly Beautiful

    by Kirstin Pires with Greg Andrews May 2006

    Glass tile is hot. Page through shelter magazines from Dwell to House Beautiful , and you'll be mesmerized by sparkly, jewel-like glass tile installations in cutting-edge kitchens and baths. Ask any design-forward pool builder, and he'll tell you more clients are asking for glass tile than ever before.

    In addition to its unquestionable design advantages — it's just plain beautiful — glass tile is a good choice for a pool or spa because it's durable...

  • Scratching The Surface

    by Karen Erstad April 2006

    For years pool industry professionals have argued over the cause of plaster deterioration: did chemicals cause etching and cracking or was it something about the plaster or how it was applied? Or did all of this contribute to the problem? In an effort to find solutions to pool surface related issues through scientific research, in 2003 the National Plasterers Council...

  • Hill Country Haven

    by Karen Erstad April 2006

    Creating a vanishing edge like this that sits 16 feet above grade may be a huge challenge to some builders, but not to Tib Scallon, owner of Scallon Custom Pools in Austin, Texas. "Most people think of Texas as flat area, but we're actually in a real hilly, pretty area," says Scallon. "And almost every project we do has some sort of vanishing edge on it....