It's official: the days of unimaginative turquoise pools in backyards are truly over. Nowadays, home owners are ditching the traditional look for a much sleeker one. Whether it's a streamlined lap pool, an infinity edge pool or, in Bill Gates' case, a high-tech pool (fitted with underwater music system), the swimming pools of today are integral elements of modern house design both - internally and externally.
The pool created by Munkenbeck + Marshall for a family home in North London, England is in a self-contained wing of the house, accessed through sliding doors from the far end of an open kitchen and family room. The lengthy pool integrates a hot tub at a corner and spouts at one end to provide high-pressure water for a good massage. Sliding door panels can be pulled back across one section to separate the interior from the exterior during winter time. Clever.
The view offered by means of the location of a pool is often as important as the design of the pool itself. In this stunning example, the owner of this house (construction journal editor Dominique Boudet wanted a modern glass house with a swimming pool at the top. Rem Koolhaas, one of the world's most influential architects, gave him just that - in addition to a strategic view of Paris.
Rainbow Pools has a tranquil atmosphere, and was designed to be used as a sanctuary away from the bustle of life. The dark Portuguese limestone helped create an intimate environment in which one can truly relax in, while the 3 Buddha heads further that sense of calm. In one of the recessed niches, a spa tub area has also been created.
Swimming pools are taking center stage in many houses. One example can be found in ACQ's Dulwich Pool House. The architects integrated wide spans of clear glass on the facade to allow the occupants to be able to view the pool (and the garden beyond) easily from any corner of the formal areas. As much a breathtaking lighting feature that comes to life at night as it is a recreation spot for the family, this project was shortlisted for a AJ Small Projects Award and picked as a finalist for the FX Awards.