Everyone always asks me the same question...
Why is the pool in the back of the house, and not on the ocean side?
Everyone always places their Caribbean pool on the ocean side of their Anguilla homes.
At first I believed the same thing, until after staying at a variety of villas around the island. For some villas, an oceanfront pool worked, for others, it was just too cold.
Our home is on the shoreline of the island's windward side. It's a great spot with the constant tradewinds keeping the air cool and fresh.
But what about when we don't want a constant gust of wind?
I always saw this Caribbean pool area as a focal point for our relaxation as well as for entertaining friends. So, I started envisioning what it would be like once our home was finished.
If our pool was on the ocean side, and the wind was blowing strong... There goes the paper napkins, plates and cups, the table umbrella would be spinning out of control, and our lips would be blue and chattering!
This is why we decided to build our Anguilla home around our Caribbean pool. The house partially shields the pool from the winds. We created a breeze way on the floor plan with two 20 foot spans of glass sliding doors that can be opened to be able to see and hear the ocean from the pool side of the house.
An oasis of tropical plants were integrated into the plans to make the pool area more of a sanctuary. We will have the Caribbean pool surrounded by lush vegetation opening up to the breeze way and then onward to the shoreline and beautiful ocean.
The breeze way was kept to a minimum 14 foot width to create an easy transition between the two outside open spaces. We tied the inside with the outside, and the outside with the inside.
A similar stone tile finish over all three areas will conclusively tie it all in together to give the desired effect!
Our biggest challenge was making sure that the house wouldn't cast too many shadows on the pool, depriving it of sunlight to warm the water, as well as our bodies basking on the pool chairs. ;-) I was confident that this scenario would work.
We had taken the time to conduct sun studies with a piece of software. We input the correct position and placement of our home. It showed us the shadowing effect it would have on the pool at different times of the day and year. We used the information to place the pool as close as possible to the house without any ill effects.
Mike and I tossed different ideas back and forth about the pool shape and size. I asked him if we would be able to cast a pool with three flat bottoms at different depths. One at children's height, one at average adult height, and one at a depth of 6' (so I can polish off my Olympic style diving and lapping techniques, ha ha!).
Many pools have a sloping bottom that can be somewhat uncomfortable to stand on. I was looking for three flat bottoms in one pool.
Mike and the team faced the challenge with a certitude of success!
This task may seem easy, but the pool is a concrete cast pool, and not a shotcrete style pool where the concrete is sprayed on a metal frame to create any shape or design wanted. In order to get this shape cast successfully, Mike prepared templates for steel forming, helping to maintain the accuracy required for this multiple stepping pool.
The team pulled it off! The pool turned out exactly the way we wanted.
Anguilla Pool Footings
Anguilla Pool Templates
Finishing The Pool Deck
The contract for pool lighting, plumbing, other equipment and wall finishing is awarded to Gareth Hodge, an expert in his field. He is constantly reading and visiting trade shows to learn more and more about pools and their peripherals, thereby solidifying his position as the on-island expert in the field.
Before he can come to do the finishing we have to pretty much wrap up all of the construction work around the house and the pool deck has to be completely tiled.
Cleophus at Anguilla Native Stone is laboriously preparing those beautiful stone slabs for us...