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The Pool Grotto: It's Your New Necessity

A backyard swimming pool.
Adding a pool to your home is a luxury in itself, and one that adds value to your house. However, modern homeowners don't typically have a simple rectangular pool installed and call it done. Most prefer custom designed pools with luxuries that augment their bathing preferences. Enter the pool grotto - a luxurious upgrade you may not have realized you need.

Grotto Basics

In nature, a grotto is simply a small, picturesque cave. You can find them on land or in the sea. Landscape architects also sometimes incorporate manufactured grottos in parks. Pool designers can also add a grotto to your swimming pool design.
Though grottos are relatively modern pool additions, swimming grottos date back to Roman times. Indeed, one of the most famous swimming grottos is the Blue Grotto in Capri, Italy. This natural grotto features glowing blue water and cave walls, which is produced from the way the light filters into the cave.
At its most basic, a swimming pool grotto consists of an overhang over the pool water. Typical dimensions for a simple grotto are four feet high by two feet deep. These minimum dimensions ensure you have enough space to enjoy the shade the overhang provides.

Grotto Waterfalls

One of the most common adaptations for the pool grotto is to combine it with a waterfall. After all, you already have a handy overhang. Why not have water spill over the lip, creating a little privacy behind the water sheathe?
Of course, from a contractor's point of view, the installation is a little more involved. Waterfalls involve reinforcing the wall and overhang. They also have to install piping for the water and a pump. Typically, the method for recycling the water is the same as for any waterfall.

Grotto Ideas

The classic material for a pool grotto is faux rock because the goal is to mimic a grotto found in nature. This style of pool grotto works well with lagoon-style and other naturalistic pools. To make such a grotto look even more organic, designers usually add tropical landscaping. Naturalistic grottos are commonly combined with a waterfall.
That said, you can add a pool grotto to a more modern style pool as well. Contemporary design often incorporates natural materials but with a man-made edge. For example, instead of using faux rock designed to mimic uncut stone, have the designers use cut stone that's been mortared for a manufactured effect. The lines should be cleaner than with a naturalistic grotto.
If you have any style of Mediterranean pool, consider replicating the Blue Grotto. Naturally, you'll need a blue pool liner, preferably one with an aggregate that makes it shimmer - crushed shells and glass beads are ideal. You may choose to have the walls lined in glittering tile. Underwater LED lights, in blue, will further promote this effect.
Finally, while a pool grotto is a simple overhang at its most basic, you don't have to stop there. If you have the space, consider expanding your grotto into an underground cavern. You can even add seating or a spa within the grotto.

Grotto Advantages

The main advantage of a pool grotto should be obvious - it provides shade, which allows you to enjoy your swimming pool even when the sun is especially strong. This benefit is especially true if you expand your grotto.
If you incorporate a waterfall into your grotto design, you have the added cooling factor of the water spray. What's more, you can enjoy the beauty of light and water from anywhere in your poolscape - including from behind the waterfall. Finally, you add the beauty of water music to your bathing experience.
Ultimately, because a pool grotto is a luxurious upgrade, you add value to your pool installation. A customized grotto, even at its simplest, adds a unique level of character to your swimming pool.
Consider incorporating a pool grotto into your swimming pool design. Consult with the design experts at Sequoyah Pools about your ideal pool grotto.
Sequoyah Swimming Pools
417 S. Northshore Dr.
Knoxville, TN 37919

Phone: 865-584-6801
Phone: 865-584-9302
Fax: 865-247-5490

Business Hours:
Monday-Friday, 7:30 a.m.-5 p.m.

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