STRAIGHT AHEAD: Clean-lined, straight-edge rectangular pools now rule the day, says John Collier of Waterscapes Pools & Spas, and many incorporate vanishing-edge spas with water that cascades into the pool. Glass tile mosaics are the finish of choice in high-end pools, says Collier, in shades of blue, or grays and blacks for people with modern taste. “They used to be cost prohibitive, but have become more affordable,” he says. And the hydrazzo interior finish is very popular; it’s likened to terrazzo became it’s polished and very smooth. “In spas where people like to sit a lot, it’s beneficial,” he says.
FIRE AND LIGHT: “We’re doing a lot of fireplaces and fire pits attached to the pool,” says Phil Hess of Pool Design Concepts. “And fire urns, too; sometimes one on each side of the spa as a focal point.” There’s a new emphasis on lighting design, he reports. “We’re using IntelliBrite lights that you can program to change colors and create light shows, like an all-American Fourth of July, a Caribbean light show.” And pool lighting has gone LED; those old, 12-inch, incandescent underwater pool lights are now just two inches in diameter with a pure white light. “They’re brighter, but you hardly notice them anymore,” says Hess.
ALL NATURAL: Lucas Congdon of Lucas Lagoons, whose extravagant pools have earned him his own hour-long reality show on Animal Planet—Insane Pools is airing Friday nights through April 3—says he’s still using natural rock waterfalls, but they’re more minimalistic, straight-edged rectangular pools with perhaps one monolithic boulder as a “singular piece of art.” “I call them my modern Zen pools,” he says.
For this week's collection of iShots, photographer Robert Castro took a stroll around downtown Sarasota's Rosemary District. Take a look at what he saw.
All photographs by Robert Castro, enhanced with Instagram.