With temperatures warming up, lots of homeowners might be thinking of ways to spend more time enjoying the longer, sunny days. If the warmer weather has you thinking about lounging poolside in your own brand new backyard pool, landscape architect and veteran pool designer Michael Shawn Kelly has a few tips before diving into the process.
“Remember that most families spend 90 percent of their time around the pool and not in it,” Michael says. “With a good design, the swimming pool becomes a part of your landscape that supports outdoor living and entertainment.”
Michael, who’s been designing and installing pools for 40 years, owns Mirror Lake Designs, a landscaping and pool installation company. Michael stresses the importance of keeping quality design a priority when installing a pool in your backyard.
“Mistakes in pool design and construction are always costly,” Mike says. “In this case, it’s too expensive to go cheap. A quality design considers how a pool is integrated into the garden.”
Patios, seating walls, plants, shade structures and outdoor lighting are essential to develop a beautiful, livable outdoor space - not just the pool. Most of the families seeking Michael’s services fall into three main groups: those with small lots who want courtyard pools; young families on a budget; and those looking for a more elaborate estate-style pool. No matter the situation, Michael takes the time to first learn about a family’s intent for their backyard space before ever he ever starts a pool design.
“Deciding which category matches your intent is the first step in adding a great outdoor living space to your home this year,” Michael says. “With the assistance of an experienced landscape architect, you soon will be living the garden lifestyle.”
19022 Mirror Lake Dr. Spring, TX 77388 MirrorLakeDesigns.com 281-350-0515
PULL QUOTE “The ultimate goal of a pool and garden design is to provide a wonderful environment for outdoor living.”
BUDGET POOL Ideal for young families looking to save costs, this simple pool design allows for a fun, safe area for kids to enjoy the outdoors. Homeowners may choose to forego things like automatic controls, upgraded plaster or fountains with fire as a way to cut back on costs.
COURTYARD POOL Commonly also called a garden pool, this size design is best suited for tiny lots with owners who appreciate smaller, intimate gatherings. Elevated planters and water walls enhance the pool while surrounding patio seating seamlessly connects the backyard to the home. Add landscaping and lighting to make this a cozy focal point of your home.
ESTATE POOL This more elaborate pool design is ideal for the homeowner who wants their home and pool to be the center of holiday or family celebrations. The patio is set to accommodate larger groups with areas for outdoor cooking and mingling.