Infinity pool: styles, architecture and inspiration.
What is an infinity pool?
Picture yourself lazing on a pool chair on a hot day, clutching an icy beverage and enjoying the breathtaking views highlighted by the infinity pool in front of you. Above you are skies as clear as the water in front of you, and the only sound you hear is the clinking of ice in your glass. The thought alone is captivating, and the good news is, you can do more than daydream about that view. When it comes to swimming pools, the infinity pool sits comfortably as a luxury garden pool design, and it's not hard to see why. Made to perfectly merge with its surroundings, the definition of an infinity pool is found in its name. Infinite means "endless" and "unlimited," which is what an infinity pool portrays in its design. It is a swimming pool where the water flows over one or more of its edges to give an illusion of a sheet of water dripping off over the property, like a waterfall. It is often designed so that its edge appears to merge with a larger body of water, such as the ocean, river, or with the sky. Also known as an infinity edge pool, vanishing edge pool, negative edge, zero edge, or disappearing edge pool, the infinity pool originated in France in the 1400s, and one of the first vanishing edge designs was used in the Stag Fountain at the Palace of Versailles. In the past, the infinity pool design was reserved for luxurious hotels and resorts, but here in America, they are a common feature in most 21st century homes.
How does an infinity pool work?
Because an infinity pool is custom made and often built on places such as hillsides to highlight the view, constructing one requires structural, mechanical and architectural detailing. The detail that makes infinity pools different from every other pool is the "infinity edge." This is the part which forms the illusion of water with no boundary. The edge is laid out below the water level to allow water to flow out into a waterway that leads the water back into the pool. This is done by terminating the water in the pool at a weir that is 1⁄16 to 1⁄4 inch lower than the required pool water level. A catch basin is then constructed below the weir, allowing the water to spill into the catch basin, from where it is pumped back into the pool.
How do I design an infinity pool?
The beginning of a great infinity pool starts with careful planning. Here are the steps to design your own.
Location, location, location: Choosing the location on your property is the first step of designing your new infinity pool. Because an infinity pool has three sides, with the fourth side being the infinity edge, place it in front of a beautiful view to get the most out of the dramatic effect.
Select your materials: Once you've chosen the perfect spot for your infinity pool, the next step will be to choose materials for your pool design. Various materials can be used to create unique results.
How much does an infinity pool cost?
It has been said that beauty comes at a price, and when it comes to infinity pools, the statement is true. The spectacular view of water with no end comes at a price, and because all infinity pools are different, the cost to build one depends on the following;
size of the pool, type of finishes, lights in the catch basin, size of the infinity edge, basin and collector tank and additional equipment. The cost for a 12-by-24-foot regular pool starts at about $35,000 and goes up to $50,000 or more depending on what’s included. An infinity pool, on the other handt, costs 20% more than a regular pool if you have the infinity edge on one side.
How do I maintain an infinity pool?
You have to agree that an infinity pool is something special, but thankfully, it doesn't come with special maintenance needs beyond those for a traditional pool. Here are some helpful tips to keep yours working swimmingly well.
Catch the catch basin: Beyond the edge of your pool, there's a second basin to catch the water that runs over and then feeds it back into the system. This catch basin needs the same cleaning routine as the rest of the pool to keep it in good shape and prevent buildup.
Keep the drain clear: The catch basin's suction system needs special attention to keep it from getting clogged. As water circulates, debris will tend to accumulate here, blocking the system.
Top it off: As water flows over the infinity edge and into the catch basin, it evaporates more quickly than in a traditional pool. The infinity pool design is meant to keep flowing continuously, so you'll need to add water frequently to keep it at the right level.
Watch the water chemistry: Because your water will evaporate so quickly and be refilled so often, you'll need to pay extra attention to your pool's chlorine content and pH. You should test your pool water twice a week to keep it in the right range.
Keep an eye on the pump: The pump is a vital part of infinity pools. It keeps the water flowing from the catch basin.
Before taking the plunge, get professional help from an architect, and don't look further than homify for tons of pictures to inspire you.