By Jason Cramp
This unique pool and spa project incorporates many different features to provide an overall outdoor experience fitting of this multi-million dollar private estate. Designed and constructed by Hampton Pools in Kelowna, B.C., the project took more than four months to complete to ensure everything was just right.
Located in the Okanagan Wine Country, the kidney-shaped, 1.8-m (6-ft) deep pool is the focal point of the backyard and is surrounded by a variety of elements to create a natural outdoor living space for the homeowners. Originally designed to be a standard concrete pool, the project soon evolved, as the owners wanted to add several layers of enjoyment. As such, Hampton Pools installed an infinity-edge design with swim up bar, waterfalls, lounge pool, in-floor cleaning and geothermal heating systems, light emitting diode (LED) lighting and a remote controlled salt-chlorinating system.
These features were integrated with shotcrete faux rock to give the appearance everything was part of the natural landscape. One of the project’s more unique features is the spa waterfall into the pool. Typically this would be a complete hydro circuit, where the spa water would flow into the pool; however, in order to be more environmentally sound, the spa waterfall is created to provide the appearance of an inter-connected system, but only uses water from the main pool. This reduces the heating and cleaning components, yet gives the cascading effect required.
A bar/cabana was also integrated into the pool design. Dropping the bar down and inset next to the pool, allowed Hampton Pools to create a swim up bar serviceable from a full outdoor kitchen on the opposite side of the pool wall.
The project’s location, situated next to the edge of a steep slope of clay and silt, presented the main challenge. To work with the landscape, Hampton Pools’ designer and engineers configured a shell system to protect the primary components, as they were unable to build retaining walls in the environmentally sensitive area. As such, a super structure was built around the pool shell and components to contain any possible overflow and provide a solid footing for the project.
Once the primary elements were in place, a wide variety of natural plants and trees were spaded to provide a seamless transition from the existing green space adjoining the property, while the combination of travertine decking and natural stone elements around the pool created a balance of elegance and naturalism.