The Best Swimming Pool Designs for Your Home: From Simple to Extravagant

Swimming pools add value to your home—today’s estimates predict a pool could increase your home’s value by 5-8%. But before that day even comes, homeowners who install a pool in their backyards can enjoy long, luxurious days of relaxation and host fun outdoor get-togethers for friends and family. If you’ve decided it’s the right time to add a pool to your property, take time to enjoy the design process.

Today’s homeowners can choose from a wide array of materials, styles, and features to create the perfect backyard oasis. Come home to a tropical lagoon with a built-in waterfall and plenty of shade, or relax in a chic marble or concrete pool with crisp lines and custom lighting. The possibilities are endless, with dozens of options to explore.

Start by considering all the factors that will help shape your final decision on the best swimming pool for your home, and then imagine these top eight pool designs and what other luxury installations will make your poolside outdoor oasis complete. Let’s jump in!

What to Consider Before Choosing the Ideal Swimming Pool Design for Your Home

Step into your backyard and visualize the specific spot in your yard that will be devoted to your pool. Start by measuring the space and its distance from any other features in your yard (the fence, your patio, a shed or detached garage, or any utilities or easements). This information can help you choose the right shape and size for the other. Other considerations to keep in mind include:

  • Budget: Pool materials range from inexpensive to extravagantly expensive. What’s your pool design budget? This will determine the pool shapes, sizes, and types you’ll want to explore. Regardless of your budget range, you can find the perfect design to fit your space. An experienced pool builder can help you narrow down your options.
  • HOA requirements and local regulations: Every neighborhood is different. Before committing to a pool design, check with your HOA and make sure your contractors will properly handle permits. For example, some cities will require a minimum distance between the pool’s edge and your fence line, while some HOAs may require installing a pool fence.
  • Seasonality: Are you happy with a pool that operates only during the summer season? Do you want to extend your pool’s functionality to include cool-weather pool use? Account for this in your design planning. Consider a robust heating system for cooler temperatures or even indoor/hybrid pool options. For hotter months, you may want to install shade fixtures like a pergola over the part of the pool that is in direct sunlight.
  • Complementary Outdoor Elements: Creating backyard features that complement the existing architecture is essential for creating a cohesive, relaxing space. Look into pool designs with the same color palette and angles as your home’s design. You can also remodel patios and outdoor kitchens if their style is the odd one out.

Visualizing the final design, including the pool’s placement and the total budget for your pool installation, can make your entire project exciting and less stressful. Once you have these guiding factors in mind, it’s time to explore all the beautiful swimming pool designs for homes and pick the perfect one that fits yours.

Related: Essential Tips for Designing and Planning Your Pool

8 Swimming Pools Designs That Will Bring the Resort to You

From traditional kidney-shaped pools with a circular hot tub to modern L-shaped pools with crisp angles, you can find the right swimming pool for your vision of a perfect backyard oasis. Here are eight popular swimming pool designs—built for a range of budgets and style aesthetics—so you can imagine the possibilities.

1. Kidney Shape Pool + Hot Tub
This classic duo is the time-tested swimming pool combo that homeowners have built into millions of backyards. Imagine a pool with rounded edges, swim-out benches, and a range of floor depths, ready for swimmers of different ages, heights, and comfort levels. Customize it with stucco sides, a cobblestone edge, or ribbons of intricate tile. It’s the traditional go-to pool because of its ease of access, range of material options, and budget-friendliness.

Of course, no kidney-shaped pool setup is complete without its hot tub. This is the perfect place for more therapeutic relaxation. When it’s too cold to swim, a hot tub is a perfect way to reclaim your backyard for year-round use. Get fancy with upgrades like remote control hydro jets, fine-tuned temperature controls, and LED lighting options.

2. Infinity Pools
Once reserved for hotels with sweeping nature scapes or skyscrapers with luxury recreation centers, infinity pools are now a possibility for your own backyard. Builders can create chic elevated pools that are wrapped on three sides with a custom deck and open to a sleek, sheer “drop” on the fourth side. This gives the pool a smooth, glass-like finish and the optical illusion of a pool that extends to the horizon. Whether you have a steep backyard or property with low grading, you can come home to a gorgeous custom infinity pool.

3. Indoor or Enclosed and Covered Pools
Maximize comfort and protection with an enclosed or indoor pool. Build a partial structure with a roof and open walls or a completely finished structure to house your pool. A finished structure gives you complete climate control so you can swim during the winter, when it’s raining, and when the sun’s heat is too much to relax outdoors. Indoor pools can be as small or as large as you like. They’re also a perfect choice for backyards with lots of leafy green trees.

4. Geometric Shape Pools
Shake things up by choosing a geometric shape for your pool. Opt for a unique design with crisp angles, novel step designs or a modern L-shape that allows you to enjoy one side of the pool with friends while your kids splash and play on the other side. Today’s pool builders can create more varied, custom shapes that will seamlessly fit your space.

Related: Top Pool Ideas for Small Backyards

5. Multi-Level Pools With Waterfalls
Add some exciting water features to your backyard with a multi-level pool—it’s like getting two pools in one! An elevated pool and a lower pool can create a resort-like flow in your space, while giving you room for both water games and relaxation. When you connect the two levels with a waterfall feature, your design becomes a cohesive paradise. Consider a tropical theme with the sound of rushing water cascading over the upper pool’s edge into the lower pool, or opt for spa elegance with a soothing sheet of falling water.

6. “Waterpark” Pools
Want to turn your backyard into a play space for family get-togethers or fun evenings at home? Build out your swimming pool with waterpark features that make your pool a blast. Water slides that have waterfalls built directly into them for a more authentic waterslide experience, spray jets that shoot water from each side of the pool, and rain walls that trickle down are all kid-approved options that will offer hours of fun. These features can look more inviting and stylish when they’re built into your pool’s design from the start.

7. Swimming Pools with an Outdoor Kitchen and Swim Up Bar
Alternatively, build a pool that’s a trendy hangout spot for adults, with a resort inspired, partially submerged outdoor kitchen along one edge of the pool. This allows swimmers to come right up to the bar. Well-crafted designs have the perfect depth with an elevated counter space so there’s no risk of splashing or pool water in the prep area. For an extra chic feature, install submerged barstools on the pool side of the counter so you can comfortably lounge.

8. Black Bottom Pools
Today’s pool designs are playing more with materials and aesthetics than ever before. For a pop of unforgettable style, opt for a black bottom pool. This provides a trendy contrast against stark white concrete, especially if you have a square or rectangular pool. The dark color also helps heat up the water so it’s more comfortable in chilly weather.

Chic Extras That Enhance Your Swimming Pool Design for Your Home: Create a Complete Outdoor Oasis

Elevate your backyard oasis with fun or extravagant features that make lounging in your backyard pool even more luxurious. Some popular installations you can add to your pool project include:

  • Poolside seating
  • Verandas
  • Rock features
  • Chic concrete patios for deck-to-pool footpaths
  • Outdoor kitchens and dining tables
  • Showers for saltwater pools

Adding these modern and elegant extras into your plans from the start will ensure the whole design is cohesive and built for your ideal day outdoors.

Relax in Luxury With Any of These Swimming Pool Designs

Whether the pool design you choose is simple or extravagant, exploring all the possibilities can help you envision the perfect shape, layout, and features to ensure you have the pool of your dreams. Once you have a vision for your ideal staycation, contact the experts at California Pools for an onsite consultation and guidance through every step of the design process.

Good times guaranteed.
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