According to house hunting website Domain, searches for homes with a pool are sky high. With so many of us spending more time at home, it’s no wonder that we’re looking to recreate that holiday feel in our own back yard. A cooling dip in a saltwater swimming pool, or a long indulgent soak in a bubbling spa? Yes please!
But to get that luxurious every-day’s-a-holiday vibe, you need to think outside the pool. What surrounds it is just as important. Whether that’s a sun-soaked patio, a charming tiki hut or a family friendly pergola, what you choose will depend on your lifestyle. Here are some ideas to get you started and suit any household.
Is your swimming pool area the hub of your social circle? Are you envisioning long lazy weekends with friends and family? Then make sure your set up is right for entertaining.
Invest in comfortable seating with a focus on flexibility. Small coffee tables, movable chairs and light outdoor sofas are ideal for entertaining, as they allow people to move between groups and still have somewhere to put their drink.
Keep the focus on fun with colourful beach towels and interesting lighting that showcases the pool. And of course, it’s not a party without some music. Consider installing a sound system to really highlight the mood!
The Family Fun Zone
Swimming pools are great fun for the whole family. With a few extra touches poolside, you can make it even better. Get out the inflatable toys and water guns and get ready for a good time!
For a family friendly pool, make sure there’s plenty of shade. Young skin burns very quickly, and children aren’t always responsible about staying out of the sun. A pergola near the pool is a great idea for when you’re taking a break from the water, but fencing rules limit how close to the edge a pergola can be. Add shade to the pool itself with cantilevered umbrellas or a shade sail so you can protect yourselves from the direct sun.
When it comes to furniture, comfort is key. Sun loungers, day beds and sofas are perfect for flopping down after a few laps. Add in an outdoor kitchen, even if it’s just a humble barbecue and a bar fridge for drinks, and you have the recipe for a great weekend – every weekend!
The True Romantic
What’s more romantic than the gentle lapping of waves or the burbling of a brook? You may not be able to escape to a tropical island with a loved one this summer, but you can certainly recreate some of the romance.
If funds allow, consider a spa to complement your pool. Imagine soaking in the warm water, icy champagne flutes on the side, letting your cares float away… As a bonus, a spa can tempt you outside even on chillier evenings when it’s too cold to swim, meaning you’ll get more value from your outdoor area.
Garden features can set the scene for your romantic pool setting. Consider a rockery studded with plants, a pretty water feature or even a gazebo covered in wisteria.
Keep lighting soft, with fairy lights wound through the branches of a tree, or pretty lanterns dotted around the patio. Use coloured LED lights in purples and blues to help set the scene.
Seating should be intimate. Try a pair of papasan chairs or hanging egg chairs for your tete-a-tete. Keep fluffy towels handy so you can wrap yourself up after you come out of the pool and keep that cosy warm feeling.
And what could be more romantic than an open fire? A fire pit, chiminea or brazier offer warmth as the sun goes down, and the flickering lights of the flame will warm your little oasis. As long as you adhere to fire regulations in summer, this is a simple touch that will make all the difference.
Spend some time thinking about what you want your pool to be and create the poolside of your dreams.