Swimming Pond: Design ideas, inspiration & pictures

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What are the characteristics of a swimming pond?

Natural swimming ponds mimic conventional ponds in style. This beautifully designed body of water is a much desired feature of a modern garden. Even those living in densely populated areas of a city can enjoy constructing a natural pool in their tiny gardens and enjoy the benefits of being closer to nature. 

Swimming ponds allow you to enjoy splashing in clean and chemical free water. These pools use biological filters to maintain the water quality. The swimming area is often separated with a wall and is built slightly lower than the other part of the pond. The bio-filtration mechanism is in tune with modern time, but not detrimental to the environment. The swimming section is also built with water pumps.  

Natural Swimming Ponds or NSPs are part of your garden ecosystem and their presence promotes the growth of your garden flora and fauna. Often, you will see unexpected visitors like birds taking a bath in your natural pond. Sights like these will fill many happy hours of your life.

Styles, designs and decoration of a swimming pond

The shape and size of your swimming pond depends on your taste and availability of space in your garden. The depth of the pool also depends on your comfort level. Generally residential swimming ponds have a depth of around 1.8 metre or less. Flat bottomed designs are preferred for ease of construction and maintenance. These rules would not apply if you are planning to build a pool with a diving area.

For decoration and giving a feel of a natural pond, bring home some aquatic plants. You will need three types of plants for this space – floating plants, oxygenating plants and biological filters. Sedges, water lilies, bulrushes and duckweed are some of the most popular plants used for these purposes. You may also have fishes and give your swimming pond a feel of an open air aquarium.

Materials and supplies for a swimming pond

You will need stones and sand bags to line up the walls. You may also use a combination of stone, mud and bamboo to reinforce the structure. You will need to plan your plumbing, filtration and drainage system well. If you need assistance in any of these areas, don’t hesitate to seek guidance from our pool and spas experts.

For aesthetic reasons, many people prefer building a wooden deck by the poolside. You may use teak, cedar, spruce or oak for this purpose. Alternatively, you may go for engineered wood flooring. Stone and terracotta tiled flooring are two other very popular options.  

How to build a DIY swimming pond?

If you are planning to invest in a DIY swimming pond, consider buying one of the pool kits for this purpose. You will get the essential materials and tools for the job in the kit itself. Determine a size and style that suits your garden. Install stones or a combination of stones and sandbags to build the wall. 

Use brown or black liners to cover the interior space. In the filtration area, use loam, gravel and lime to create a fertile bed for the aquatic plants. The root of the aquatic plants will act as bio filters. Have a circulation pump installed in this area to collect water and discharge it to the pool once again. The second pump should be installed in the area designated for swimming.

Avoid using chemicals to sanitise the water. Water hyacinth, swamp hibiscus, water celery, Ipomoea aquatic and umbrella papyrus are some of the popularly used plants for this purpose. Take care to decorate the deck area in style. Place reclining chairs and a small coffee table to enjoy the hours in the best possible fashion. 

What are the costs of building and maintaining a natural pond?

The cost of swimming ponds is closely matched to conventional swimming pools. A natural pond would cost you around SGD 35,000 in Singapore. The cost of decorating the poolside and growing aquatic flora should be added to this. The maintenance cost is relatively lower in case of swimming ponds than in conventional pools. The maintenance of the pool area would cost you SGD 300 to SGD 450 per year.

Pros and cons of having a swimming pond

Swimming ponds are more environment-friendly. They encourage the growth of various plant and animal species in your garden. Besides, with a pool like this in your garden you can easily have a cool dip in the hot summer months. The poolside is undoubtedly the most enchanting place around your house to sit down and relax.

If you are allergic to chlorinated water, you will have no reasons to worry while swimming in a natural pool. It also consumes lower energy than the traditional pools. Besides, the cost of maintenance and the hassles of doing the same are also lower in case of these pools. 

On the negative side, this type of pools need greater amount of space as they combine a natural garden pond and a swimming area. They cannot be tucked on your terrace or a corner of your basement. They are inseparable parts of your garden. Regulating the water temperature in this type of pools can be difficult. However since Singapore experiences only a mildly cold winter, this would not pose too big a problem for you.