Dive into the latest trends in in-ground swimming pools

Written by

15 October 2023

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5 min read

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With over 25 years experience in the pool industry, Auckland Inground Pools has a keen eye on the trends and technological developments revolutionising New Zealand’s swimming pools.

While trends come and go, the one thing we know for sure is that Kiwis will always want swimming pools. As a nation raised around water, the desire to spend sweltering summer days splashing about the backyard pool is inherent. Pool specialists, Auckland Inground Pools, have been constructing concrete pools for over 25 years — present for every iteration and innovation in the pool industry’s recent history, and as such, developing a wealth of knowledge and experience. They have also recently become the first New Zealand concrete pool builders to be Climate Care Certified (CCC). CCC endorses businesses that are dedicated to positive environmental impact, empowering consumers to choose certified sustainable products, systems, and installations proven to reduce energy, water, noise, and other offsetting measures.

ArchiPro spoke to Auckland Inground Pools to learn more about recent trends and technological developments, and received some expert advice for homeowners considering a pool for their backyard.

There has been a recent rise in natural and eco-friendly pool designs that blend in with the landscape, often including sustainable pool equipment.
There has been a recent rise in natural and eco-friendly pool designs that blend in with the landscape, often including sustainable pool equipment.

Recent trends in residential swimming pools

As with homes, ‘smart’ technology has been embraced by the pool industry, integrating pool systems to control various aspects remotely. 

“Pool and spa heating, lighting, water chemistry monitoring, maintenance, and even robotic cleaning schedules can all be controlled remotely. You’re also able to add backyard lighting to the automated systems to run a complete backyard system,” Donna Richmond of Auckland Inground Pools explains.

“We’ve also seen an increase in natural and eco-friendly designs that blend with the landscape. These often include sustainable pool equipment and solar energy to save on running costs and conserve water.”

Homeowners are opting for low-maintenance set-ups that include automatic dosing systems, robotic cleaners, and efficient filtration systems to reduce the need for human interaction.

Concrete pools are popular for their endless customisation options.
Concrete pools are popular for their endless customisation options.

The influence of technology on pool trends

Alongside the introduction of ‘smart’ technology, Donna says designers are now able to provide clients with realistic 3D renders so they can visualise the final outcome before any construction begins. 

“Technology has allowed the industry to make significant advances in water filtration, chemical dosing systems, pool covers, and variable speed pumps — helping to reduce water and energy consumption, and the overall expenses associated with maintaining a pool.”

Developments in construction tools mean laser measuring devices that use GPS technology to allow for precise installation with minimal margins for error are now commonly used. 

Building materials and pool maintenance

Auckland Inground Pools work exclusively with concrete, which is known for its longevity compared to other pool building materials — though, Donna says, it’s important to note that regular maintenance is the key to a beautiful, long-lasting pool. 

One of the main maintenance requirements for concrete pools is regular cleaning. Just like brushing your teeth, regular cleaning of your pool walls and floor removes any bacteria or algae that has built up on the cement-based plastered surface. Brushing of the pool walls and floor is essential, any 'nasties' will fall to the pool floor, then set the robotic cleaner in motion to do the rest of the work.

A custom built 10m x 3m pool with a volume of 45,000L is nestled among the tree tops in suburbia as part of a greater landscaping project to make good use of a redundant space.
A custom built 10m x 3m pool with a volume of 45,000L is nestled among the tree tops in suburbia as part of a greater landscaping project to make good use of a redundant space.
This well planned outdoor living area, featuring a custom 10m x 5m horizon edge pool, is a welcome addition to the family home, providing many hours of entertainment.
This well planned outdoor living area, featuring a custom 10m x 5m horizon edge pool, is a welcome addition to the family home, providing many hours of entertainment.

How property size, shape, and soil composition influence design

Concrete pools are popular for their endless customisation options. “The only limitations are the available space and the client’s budget,” Donna explains, adding that their typical ‘family sized’ pools are 8m x 4m, which provides plenty of room for fun.

“Ultimately, a pool needs to be functional and fit harmoniously into the existing surroundings. The size and shape of the property greatly dictates how big the pool can be, so designers work with the existing land contours, local zoning and regulations, pool fencing, and the home’s architectural style and views to strategically place the pool so it’s not only in symmetry with the home, but looks pleasing from both indoor and outdoor spaces. Accessibility around the site, sun exposure, and privacy are also important considerations.”

As New Zealand has a vast array of soil types, the proposed pool site should also undergo a geotechnical investigation to understand how the soil will impact the structural design of the pool. This process also provides valuable information regarding the site works and excavation methods.

Common complexities in the pool design process

The pool design and installation process does have a number of complexities, so Donna says patience is key. “Everything, from geotechnical testing and structural design calculations to fencing compliance and building consent requires collaboration between a team of experts. Good planning and patience ensures a smooth building process and a pool that can be enjoyed for generations to come.”

Using the existing lay of the land, this above-ground rectangular pool and circular garden spa are embraced by flourishing native planting.
Using the existing lay of the land, this above-ground rectangular pool and circular garden spa are embraced by flourishing native planting.

Expert advice

For homeowners considering an in-ground pool for their property, Donna stresses the importance of planning. “Be sure to seek advice from trusted professionals, and do your research on each company. Word of mouth is often the best. Ensure the people you seek advice from align with your thoughts and offer practical solutions. Two great questions to ask are if they’re aligned with SPASANZ (Swimming Pool and Spa Association of New Zealand) or NZPIA (New Zealand Pool Industry Association), and how long they have been in business. Remember, the best price does not always mean the best work.”

Learn more about Auckland Inground Pools.