Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Gorgeous spa by Oehme/Van Sweden

I realize that I have been neglecting one of my favorite topics, swimming pools and spas, so it is time to pick up the slack! I think that a lot of people work off of the assumption that swimming pools and spas are functional, and that means that they should be ugly mementos of the public swimming pool from our childhood. I don't know why ugly swimming pools are such a strong element of American culture, but I am determined to be a part of the movement to change that.

I have been lucky enough to get to know a few of the players in the Genesis 3 Design Group, a group dedicated to raising the design standards for the pool industry. If you have never heard of them, take a look at their website, and make sure to click through to the websites of their Platinum members. They are raising swimming pool design to an art form and you'll be amazed by what you see.

The spa I have shown here just blows me away. It was designed by Oehme, van Sweden and Associates (James van Sweden is an occasional lecturer for Genesis 3), who are high on my list of favorite Landscape Architects of all time. If you haven't read their book, Gardening with Nature (or any of their other equally amazing books), please go to Amazon and get it right now. You won't regret it- I'll even give you a link so you can get there easier!

I will try to make up for my sad neglect of swimming pools by showing off some of my favorites in upcoming posts, so keep an eye out!


  1. Thanks for featuring our work in your blog. We couldn't agree more that swimming pools and spas can - and should! - form an integral part of a beautiful landscape rather than standing out as ungainly add-ons!

  2. Absolutely! I would love to post more of your work if that is okay. I have at least one more swimming pool in mind with a gorgeous copper bowl that pours into a narrow lap pool. That image inspired a love of Kentucky Bluestone that I am still not over... and don't expect to be.

    Planning anything with Genesis 3 any time soon? If so, I'd love to tell people about it.

  3. That's a gorgeous pool spa! I certainly think that swimming pools are more than just an add-on in houses. My husband already contacted some contractors who would upgrade our pool's design for the summer. My parents from Chicago are coming so we're very excited. Thanks for sharing these, Kate. Where are the other photos?

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