From pool finishes and lighting to additional features like water slides, fountains, and even heaters, there are a lot of factors to consider when designing your dream pool. The combinations are virtually endless—once you have your budget set and ready to go, it’s time to start dreaming! Need some help? We have your checklist of all the features to consider when designing your perfect backyard pool!

Size & Shape
Deciding on the size and shape of your new pool is the first step to designing the overall look of the space. It’s important to note that the size of your new pool will be heavily influenced by both the available space and your overall budget. The base cost of building a new pool is heavily contingent on a per-square-foot basis—the larger the structure, the more expensive the project.

Additional factors like existing plumbing infrastructure and topography may also affect where you are able to lay the pool, changing the overall size and shape. The two factors go hand in hand—you may be able to have a larger pool if the shape can accommodate areas where you can’t build and vice versa.

Do you like a more angular, clean look or plan to use your pool for lap swimming? Go for a rectangle shape. If you are keener on a natural and relaxing vibe, a pool with rounded edges and a more organic shape may be the right call. The size and shape of your pool will serve as the foundation for the project—then it’s time to add the fun stuff!

Special Features
When it comes to adding features to your pool for a unique design all your own, there is certainly no shortage of options. Common additions you may want to consider include:

  • Lighting: Adding lighting to your pool can be as much a design element as it is a practical and safety-oriented one. Change up the color for a more stylized and dramatic look or keep things simple with a few bright white lights to help illuminate night swims.
  • Pool Finishes: Another great way to add a pop of color to your design is with pool finishes. Are you looking to add some luxurious sparkle or a unique color to enhance your backyard’s overall aesthetic? Pebble Technology International® (PTI) has four stunning lines of pebble pool finishes for you to choose from! Use our online water color tool to help you find the perfect product for your new design!
  • Fountains: Whether you love the look of a luxurious spillover fountain or want to add a bit of playfulness with a sprinkler, there is a wide variety of choices to browse. Adding a fountain feature can take your pool from a simple outdoor splash zone to a full-fledged home resort!
  • Slide: A favorite for younger pool-goers, pool slides come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and materials. From metal and fiberglass to rock and tile, you can craft the perfect pool slide for your needs and aesthetic! Try incorporating a combined fountain and slide feature for a more cohesive and luxurious design.
  • Spa: Are you planning on adding a spa feature to your new pool? The first choice you’ll have to make is whether you want it to be an attached feature or a standalone one. If you opt for a pool design that includes a spa feature, building both elements at the same time allows you to connect plumbing for an easier and cheaper installation. While you can add a spa after pool construction, it will likely result in a higher overall cost.
    Diving board: Do you plan on showing off your best diving skills in your new pool? It’s important to factor in depth, shape, and other factors of your design when planning for a diving area to help create a safe and cohesive layout!
  • Heater: Are you going to be closing your pool for the winter, or do you plan on splashing your way through the winter months? While adding a pool heater can help extend your pool’s open hours throughout the year, it can also be a pricey feature. Deciding on a budget for your new pool’s maintenance and operation will help you select the right features for your needs.

Surrounding Area
The area surrounding your new pool can be as important as the design of the pool itself in creating the look and feel you’re going for in your backyard paradise. This is your opportunity to create the home resort you’ve always dreamed of. Consider enhancing your overall design with elements like:

  • Fences: This safe and stylish addition to your pool space is a great opportunity to show off your unique aesthetic. Choose from various materials, colors, and styles to create the perfect look to frame your pool and provide peace of mind—this is especially important for families who either have or watch young children.
  • Pool Deck: Both the material you choose and how big of a space you want will affect your pool deck design. Do you want to be able to lay out by the pool or add poolside furniture? Opting for a larger deck area may be a priority for you. However, if all you plan on doing is diving in, you may not need to dedicate much space for a lounge area.
  • Design Elements: Adding unique design elements, like outdoor fire pits, planters, and water bowls, can help create a cohesive look for your pool and the rest of the backyard.
  • Landscaping: Incorporating trees and other green elements is another great way to both spruce up the design of your backyard pool area and add some much-needed shade for those hot summer days spent splashing away.