Garden Pool: Design ideas, inspiration & pictures

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What are the characteristics of a garden pool?

Garden pools are exquisite features of every garden – big or small. The shape and size of these waterbodies are flexible and often dictated by the availability of space on your backyard. You can use them to have a splash in the sweltering heat, create a lotus pond, build an artificial waterfall to beautify the exterior of the house or organise garden parties around it.

Different shapes and materials of garden pools

Pools resembling the classical style almost always possess a rectangular shape. Sometimes the edges are carved to give them a proper Romanesque feel. In the contemporary homes however, freeform designs are more popular. They are easy to accommodate in a constrained space. Oval and round ponds are built to grow water lilies or create an artificial habitat for colourful fishes. Many of these fish ponds are also built with stylish fountains.

Swimming pools are built using a combination of ceramic tiles, stone, fibreglass, vinyl and mortar. Instead of your garden, you can also build a swimming pool on your terrace or basement. Garden ponds are designed with organic substances like sod and bamboo fencing. Materials like these encourage the spread of aquatic flora and fauna. 

Pros and cons of inground and above ground pools

Swimming pools can be broadly segregated into two types – inground and above ground. The nature of the installation differs vastly from the inground pools to the above ground ones. In case you are wondering, the following will help you decide which one to opt for.

Inground pools are built to last. They are permanent features of your house. They can be built as large or small as you wish them to be. Inground swimming pools also boast of greater flexibility in shapes and styles. However, they are very expensive. You need professional help to build inground pools in your home. So this may not be the right choice for you if you are not an avid swimmer or you plan to use the house only for a few years before relocating to a different part of the world.

Above ground pools are semi-permanent in nature. They are not built to last the entire lifetime of your house. This type of pool is easy to install and very affordable. Maintaining a pool like this also needs less time and effort. They are generally small in size, so can be easily tucked in cramped areas of your house. This is a perfect solution for you if you are an infrequent user of the pools. You can have above ground pools specially designed for kids. This is also an ideal option for those living in rented accommodations.

How to plan pools in small gardens?

Assess the area where you are planning to build a pool. If you are installing above ground pool, you can simply order one with the dimension suited for the space. Otherwise, plan a design according to your usage pattern and wishes. Seek professional help to build a pool of your choice. You can consider having additional features like counter current jets and enjoy a bubble bath or underwater massage. 

How to have a small pool, Jacuzzi or spa in limited spaces?

Due to huge space crunch, not all houses in Singapore can be designed with an Olympic size pool. If sufficient space is not available in your garden, consider installing the pool on your terrace or basement area. You can also add such exciting features like Jacuzzi and saunas. You will then have the liberty of the most relaxing spa treatment without stirring anywhere from home.

How to make your pool area safe for children?

It is best to have shallow pools or separate swimming pools for children. Don’t plan a diving area in shallow pools. Install fencing around the pool area. The fencing should be at least a metre high. Keep the pool covered when not in use. Install safety alarms in the doorway and pool area. Keep children under adult supervision.

Swimming pool regulations in Singapore

The prospective owners of public swimming pools in Singapore must apply for a pool license. This is issued by the National Environment Agency (NEA). The water quality and cleanliness of the area are also regulated by the same governing body. Periodic inspections are carried out to check the bacteriological and chemical qualities of the water.

Only trained professionals are permitted to handle the chemicals as well as manage the entire system. No person with open injuries is allowed to use the pool. No such strict rules exists for domestic pools though. But you must closely follow these regulations to avoid any health hazards of your family members.

Pool design and maintenance costs in Singapore

The cost of building an inground pool can exceed SGD 100 per cubic metre in Singapore. If you are planning elaborate water features, a deck area and pool building for occasional parties this cost will easily exceed SGD 150 per cubic metre. The above ground designs can be bought in less than SGD 1000. You can also get a kid’s pool in less than SGD 300.

You must also have a yearly budget of SGD 750 to maintain the health of your garden pool. The plumbing system and electrical fixtures need regular maintenance. You must also regulate the quality of the water by using inorganic or organic substances sold for the purpose.