Friday, August 12

Swimmingly: Nest by Tamara blog's Favorite "Hamptons Style" Swimming Pools

Our Favorite Swimming Pool Design 
Is the "Hamptons Style" 
Simple Yet Elegant 
With a Natural Touch To Boot!
our Standard Poodle Bridget at our swimming pool's edge--
we laid those blue stones ourselves
(this photo is five years ago when Bridget was a younger pup)
This summer, we added a Black Swan floating toy to the pool,
and it's everyone's favorite!
A swimming pool post has been on our minds for quite some time.  Having written eight years of content here on the blog--from landscaping to antiques to interior design--it is odd that we have yet to write a swimming pool story.  Funny thing for me is that I've been enamored with swimming pools most of my life.  My uncle owned a  pool company while I was growing up and during a typical summer, my cousin and I would hop from pool to pool daily in his showroom to sample the goods.  We had our pick of all the best pools and the latest on the market.  We knew all the lingo for the materials from tile to concrete, but mind you this was many moons ago, and boy have swimming pools grown up.  In today's market, there are many to choose from but my very favorite swimming pool is what I refer to as the "Hamptons style" swimming pool.  This is a grey concrete material with a blue stone coping surrounded by luscious green grass.  No deck, not a lot of fancy adornments except for beautiful inlaid stones or blue stone steps leading to the simple crystal clear swimming pool.  If you can stave off deer, there would ideally be a beautiful cascade of cobalt blue hydrangea and lots of green topiary and privet surrounding.  This is perfection!  Sixteen years ago when we had the opportunity to create our own swimming pool, I dreamt of this type of pool.  We built our home, er, bought it from the builder almost complete but still in need of all the finishes, landscaping and the pool.  I had the chance to design my own dream pool (budget style).  First thing I quickly learned was that a grey concrete pool called a Gunite pool was very expensive, so we custom designed a dark grey liner to give us that same aesthetic but with a nice, smooth finish on our feet (no scratchy concrete), and a lot less pricey.  Next, I learned that a dark grey pool produces a lovely, aqua colored water.  I am completely smitten with this beautiful color, and sitting with my morning coffee by my pool is the highlight of many summer days.  This year, we replaced the liner in our pool and with the new dark grey color, it is feeling more luxurious than ever.  So, here's to basking in the sunshine, and the luxury of swimming in a crystal clear swimming pool.  To me, it is one of summer's biggest indulgences, and it takes many of us back to our childhood. So, what makes a pool, Hamptons Style?  Come take a look...

Five Tips That Make A Swimming Pool HAMPTONS STYLE...
1. Natural Stone--Hamptonites love their stonework and these pools have an inundation of that natural aesthetic and fine hand crafted stonework such as simple coping, blue or field stone stepping stones and other natural materials surrounding and edging the pool, with just enough of it without overwhelming because a Hamptons Style pool is all about the connection with the rich and green grass.
2.  Saltwater--this is a relatively new addition to the Hamptons Style pool, but saltwater pools are raising in popularity--they have soft feeling water, with less harsh chemicals making for a more natural experience, and cost less to maintain.  
3. Close To Home--A Typical Hamptons Style swimming pool is near the house, close enough to the outdoor shower that one can literally come home from the beach, jump in the pool, then hop in the outdoor shower without many steps.  The pool/outdoor shower are often close to the grill and other entertaining necessities in order to create a full swimming and living experience.
4. Part of the Garden--These pools are often literally a part of the garden and landscaping. Most Hamptons Style pools do not have decking, instead they are part of the garden experience with flowers and bushes like hydrangea surrounding with lots of greenery, hedgerow, privet and boxwood edging and an integral part of the design.
5. American Style Architecture-- a popular, typical style home in the East End of Long Island is the cedar shingle shaker style home.  This architecture style is uniquely American in style.  The shingle style homes first became popular in the late 1800s, and were mostly built along vacation coastal areas.  The shingles are often left untreated so they turn a lovely shade of grey that takes on a nice patina over time, adding to the natural beauty.  The Hamptons Style swimming pool follows the same edited, elegant form with an emphasis on nature.  Of course there are many twists to this style, but the typical swimming pool form goes hand-in-hand with this architecture style.

examples of other Hamptons Style pools 
sourced in our Swimmingly Pin Board

picket fencing, simple design, and surrounded by privet hedge!

lots of greenery, and not a lot of fuss!

textural, natural and simply gorgeous -- these inlaid stones are spectacular with moss or grass growing in between instead of grout.  

another beauty with a checkerboard design steps and an Italian-esque garden 

You can never go wrong with cascading Hydrangeas in the Hamptons!

long and skinny, as shown in House Beautiful magazine
Happy Summer!
Happy Nesting
XO Tamara