Smart Pools? Absolutely.

At Absolute Pools, we believe that every aspect of interacting with your pool should be a pleasurable experience. That’s why the right automation system is key. And our favorite system is the Hayward OmniLogic. While every luxury pool doesn’t need a high-end control system, we especially recommend the OmniLogic for our clients with spas, water features and elegant outdoor living areas.

First, we program a custom interface for each of our pools. Then we connect your pool control system to your iPhone, iPad or Android, as well as desktop. Finally, we teach you how to use it, but it won’t be long before total control of your pool is at the touch of your fingers.

Hayward OmniLogicControl your pool from anywhere in the world with an internet connection. Headed home from overseas and can’t wait to slip into your spa? No problem. Effortlessly turn on the heat in time for your arrival. Control individual items as you want, or create custom themes like “pool party” or “romantic evening,“ and transform your yard with the touch of a button.

OmniLogic can do so much more than give you the best user interface to control your pool. Designed to be salt-ready, and compatible with Sense & Dispense, let OmniLogic keep your chemicals perfectly balanced. Easily set schedules and maximize energy efficiency for cleaning and filtration processes.

OmniLogic is designed and engineered to advance with automation technology. The system’s unique architecture allows for effortless access to the latest software upgrades, new capabilities, or even restoration of previous configurations. OmniLogic also has the ability to integrate with select home automation systems.

So for our tech savvy clients who want the best in swimming pool automation, we are proud to use Hayward’s cutting edge OmniLogic. Click below for more information, or call Absolute Pools today to find out how to turn the pool of your dreams into a reality.

View the OmniLogic Video Here

Shotcrete or Gunite: What’s the Difference? Which Is Better?

People have spent almost a century arguing which of these two materials is better, but the truth is that only a qualified pool contractor can help you decide which one will work best for your specific situation. Each of these specialty materials has its advantages, but we have always used shotcrete because of its incredible strength and widespread availability in middle Tennessee.

Gunite was first invented more than 100 years ago. Gunite pools are created by shooting a dry concrete mix out of a hose with compressed air while simultaneously shooting water from a separate hose that is often mounted beneath. The concrete and water mix on contact and dry to form a very hard surface. Gunite is ideal for very challenging and time-consuming installations, particularly when it’s very hot outside. However, its strength is limited because it lacks aggregate rock in the mix, and it is often only 2,500 psi, as opposed to shotcrete, which is a minimum of 4,000 psi.

Shotcrete was invented after gunite but it’s very similar to it. The biggest difference is that with shotcrete, the concrete is premixed with water before being sprayed through the pneumatic gun as opposed to having separate water and concrete hoses. It also contains stone aggregate, which gives it much more strength than gunite. Shotcrete is often difficult to work with in extreme weather conditions, but that can be largely worked around by adding retarders or accelerants depending on the weather. The key is using an experienced shotcrete crew. At Absolute Pools, we use the best shotcrete crew and the best equipment.

All in all, despite its limitations, we feel that shotcrete is a better product which offers far more strength and durability than gunite. Call us today at 615-354-1840 to get started on designing your custom shotcrete pool.

Understanding the Use of Coping

There’s so much that goes into designing and constructing a new pool that every detail truly counts in terms of safety, functionality and appearance. From the size and shape of the pool to the coping, tile and grout selections, it’s important you make your investment uniquely your own.

One of the main features of an in-ground pool is the coping. This separates the pool shell wall from the patio or deck area. It can be made out of many different kinds of materials, including concrete, limestone and granite, to name a few.

Coping is used to top the pool shell wall and to make a visible distinction between the patio/deck area and the pool. It helps keep the water inside the pool. It also ensures the patio or deck material is long-lasting and doesn’t suffer from water damage, in addition to keeping water from getting behind your tile. Coping might not seem important, but it adds to the safety, functionality and longevity of your pool and its surrounding areas. It frames your pool like matting around framed artwork, and makes your pool the center of focus in your outdoor living space.

Pool coping can be made from all kinds of material including:

• Indiana limestone (custom made)
• Concrete
• Precast concrete
• Travertine
• Flagstone
• Bluestone
• Granite
• Other stone
• Brick

Concrete and natural stone are two good choices as they offer slip resistance – ideal for a surface that will often be wet.

Our all-time favorite, which can be seen in most of the pictures in our gallery, is custom-made Indiana limestone coping. It is the tried and true choice for most luxury pools in middle Tennessee and beyond because it is highly customizable and exceptionally beautiful.

The edge of the coping can have a bullnose, which is a perfectly rounded and smooth edge. Coping can also be squared off for a clean, modern look, or can have a chiseled edge for a more rustic look.

To learn more about pool coping or to choose the kind of material that will be best for your design, get in touch with Brad at Absolute Pools today by calling 615-354-1840.

Picking the Right Plaster for Every Pool

Pool PlasterThe most elegant pools require the most elegant finishes, and when it comes to plaster, you have TOO MANY options. But one of our jobs is to simplify the complex.

In short, there are four main types of plaster that Absolute Pools uses to waterproof your pool, each of which has many variations. They are marcite, Diamond Brite, Hydrazzo and PebbleTec.  Hydrazzo is by far our most common and popular plaster, and we typically use Hatteras Gray and French Gray.

Marcite

Marcite is white Portland cement and marble dust with your choice of colorant, if desired. This is the oldest and least expensive option, but, as a result, also the least durable. Marcite will typically last 5 to 10 years, and we generally recommend that you don’t use this option unless your budget doesn’t allow the other premium finishes. Marcite starts out bright white, but with colorant, it can be any shade of gray and even other colors. But with so many other, more modern options available, it just doesn’t have the durability that we insist on at Absolute Pools.

Diamond Brite

Diamond Brite is made with natural quartz – one of nature’s hardest and purest minerals. Diamond Brite’s insoluble quartz aggregate is unaffected by the harshest pool chemicals and resists permanent staining, as well.

Diamond Brite is an exposed aggregate, which means it isn’t smooth. With a life expectancy of 10 to 15 years, and with a stunning appearance, it is an excellent choice for some pools. This option provides the best bang for the buck – it is truly beautiful and durable, but it just doesn’t feel as luxurious as our all-time favorite plaster, Hydrazzo (see below).

For more information on Diamond Brite, visit sgm.cc.

Hydrazzo

The most beautiful pools in the world are surfaced with the hand-polished magic of Aquavations Hydrazzo. It’s the smoothest, richest and most luxurious surface available, formulated from time proven technology and the earth’s finest raw materials. Aquavations Hydrazzo combines naturally beautiful coarse graded crystalline and colored marble, along with white Portland cement and a host of other performance enhancing ingredients to create the ultimate pool coating.

The secret to the Aquavations Hydrazzo finish is the final step – polishing the surface to a brilliant luster, and thereby unlocking the marble’s natural beauty and its extraordinary strength. The finished color is breathtaking, achieving a soothing and color-intensifying effect. Aquavations Hydrazzo is the “smooth sensation” in exposed aggregate pool finishes, friendly to fingers, toes and swimsuits.

Hydrazzo is expensive, but it’s worth every penny. With an expected life of 15 to 20 years, along with a smooth feel and gorgeous looks, Hydrazzo is the right choice for most luxury pools.

For more information, go to aquavations.com.

PebbleTec

At the upper-end of the pricing range, Pebble Tec is for clients who have an over-the-top pool that requires an over-the-top pool finish. The only way you can make the pool fancier is to tile the entire interior (which we have never done but look forward to the day when one of our clients wants the ultimate in luxury pools).

PebbleTec provides a textured finish with large pebbles and stone aggregates. Available in a range of colors, this material provides a great non-slip surface and an earthy look and feel. The company also offers three new varieties – PebbleSheen, which uses smaller pebbles; PebbleFina, which uses exceptionally fine, almost sand-like pebbles and a smoother feel; and BeadCrete, which trades out the pebbles for smooth glass beads that catch and reflect light and offer a crystalline appearance.

PebbleTec will last 20 years or more, and is the most durable finish available. It’s smooth and insanely gorgeous, but we feel it’s generally not the best option for most of our clients.

Visit pebbletec.com for more information.

As you plan your pool, Absolute Pools & Waterscapes can walk you through these and other options to help you select the perfect finish for your pool as part of the design process. Serving Nashville and the greater vicinity, we design and build the best residential pools at reasonable prices. If you are in the market for a custom pool, call owner Brad Shuman today at 615-354-1840.

 

Long-Term Trends in Pool Design

At Absolute Pools, we aren’t into the trendiest, newest and most whimsical pool designs. We specialize in clean, classic and timeless designs that would look as good in decades past as they will well into the future. Part of our philosophy is that your pool should look great 365 days a year for decades.

That’s where we come in. At Absolute Pools, our expert advice will help you navigate the murky waters of pool design while balancing the needs of your budget, your space and your timeframe.

We have impeccable taste and we give great advice. Owner and pool designer Brad Shuman isn’t afraid to tell you what he thinks, even if it’s not what you want to hear. After all, when you want the best pool for a good price, you need someone with vision who tells it like it is. You need someone to help you figure out if a vanishing edge is worth the money, or if you’d be better off with a more modest pool and an enhanced landscape. You need someone who will tell you all the pros and cons of each decision so you don’t come to regret something that could have been easily avoided.

Building custom pools can be daunting to the uninitiated, which is why you turn to the experts. With all that in mind, here are a few suggestions for some of the hottest long-term trends that will look good now and well into the future.

Infinity Edge Pools/Vanishing Edges

Imagine beautiful crystal water flowing gently over the edges of a pool. A delicious, fruity cocktail with a colorful umbrella in hand. All is quiet as little puffs of clouds pass overhead in a blue sky … Did you picture yourself at a resort by the beach?

Infinity pools aren’t just for luxury vacations anymore. Perfect if you have a backyard with a scenic view, a pool with vanishing edges is a beautiful and elegant option. The perimeter overflow has a hidden basin that recycles water back into the pool – which also helps self-clean debris. Plus, the running water has a calming, peaceful sound, adding serenity to your new outdoor oasis.

Pricey? Yes. Gorgeous? Absolutely stunning. We can help you determine if an infinity edge makes sense for you.

Natural Bio-Pools/Swim Ponds

A bio-pool is designed like a pond or swimming hole, filled with rocks and plants that will naturally clean the water. This option is chemical-free – meaning no chlorine – and with this newly installed ecosystem in your backyard, you can expect to both enjoy wildlife while helping to preserve it.

We’ve been building ponds, water gardens, streams and waterfalls for almost two decades – and we were building swim ponds way before they were trendy. By fusing the building techniques of waterscaping and pool building with the power of nature and some of today’s most advanced pool technology, Absolute Pools can build a stunning ecosystem that you can swim in safely while enjoying the most natural elements of luxury pool construction.

Are they more difficult to maintain? Usually. Are they more environmentally friendly? Sure. Are they as elegant as our most modern designs? Not by far. Are they beautiful? We can create a natural aquatic paradise on your property. Will you have unwanted critters lurking in your pool? You might. (This is the kind of frank advice you need but most builders and designers wouldn’t dare talk about!) Let us help you determine if a swim pond or bio-pool is right for you.

Zero Depth Entry/Beach Entry

Everyone wishes they could live on or near a beach. There is nothing like unwinding on the beach while slowly drifting into the water, starting at your toes and wading in all the way up to your neck. If you’re looking to add a pool this year, why not consider bringing the beach experience to you?

A zero depth entry pool has a sloped floor that mimics that feeling of descending into the water at the beach. A beach entry is a great way to re-create some of the beach experience without the trip. Plus, these sloped pool designs are a great option for families with children who like to play in shallow water, giving you a nice low water level where kids can play without needing to jump into the deeper water of a conventional pool. You can still have a deep end, though – we can go as deep as you want. But clearly, honing in on the exact depths of every part of your pool is something we take very seriously. There’s nothing cookie cutter about any part of our pools.

Spools/Swim Spas

A “spool” is a pool and spa hybrid, and these and other small-scale pools are some of the biggest trends right now. Best yet, they won’t go out of style. This swim spa is ideal for someone who doesn’t have a big yard for a giant pool or is working with a smaller budget. You can switch between a pool or a spa depending on the season or your mood. And, with an automatic cover built in, the energy costs can be far less than one might imagine.

These small footprint pools allow you to take a quick dip, read a book, play with your children and simply relax in a more confined space. Choosing a pool that is also a space saver will save room in your yard for other fun outside additions and activities.

Whatever swimming pool and water features you choose, Absolute Pools & Waterscapes is ready to get started with the finest materials, the best equipment and superb craftsmanship. Serving Nashville and surrounding counties, if you feel like we are a good fit, give us a call today at 615-354-1840 to learn more or to get a quote for your project.

Pool Studio Helps Design Dream Pools

What’s the best way to ensure that the custom pool you plan to build will turn out the same – or better! – than in your mind’s eye? It’s our 3D pool design program called Pool Studio. At Absolute Pools, we have utilized Pool Studio for nearly a decade to create life-like designs that look so good, you’ll actually think you’re looking at a photograph or video of an existing pool.

Computer Pool DesignUsing 3-D gaming technology, Structure Studios created Pool Studio for the masters of pool design to create a stunning reality for their clients to see BEFORE even one scoop of dirt is dug. Each design is created from scratch, starting with a simple green square. From there, we add custom structures based on actual measurements, creating a digital rendering so realistic you’ll think you’re looking at your house. Then we design the swimming pool, spa, water features, pool deck, landscaping and other visual features to create an amazing virtual world that you can enter. Walk around, fly overhead, go underwater, look out the windows from your favorite chair. The idea is to make sure that what you have constructed is exactly what you want.

Textures, materials and colors can be easily changed for any surface. We can select tile, plaster, decking materials, pool coping and more with a few clicks of the mouse until it looks perfect. Once the rough design is drafted, major changes are easy to make. We can even make multiple swimming pool designs to allow you to compare different options side by side, giving you the ability to pick one and continue refining your design until you get exactly what you want. From there, we generate accurate building prints to ensure that the pool we design and the one you get are identical, down to a fraction of an inch.

We charge $75 an hour for the service, which usually takes 10-20 hours for a design depending on the complexity. Once you get a design, we encourage you to use it to get another quote or two so you can compare apples to apples. Best of all, if you proceed with the installation by Absolute Pools, we credit the entire amount of the design cost back to you.

If you love attention to detail, outside-the-box thinking, and the most cutting-edge technology, let Absolute Pools owner and master designer Brad Shuman create the dream pool you’ve always wanted. To get started with a custom design or a quote, contact us today at 615-354-1840.

Unique Features to Add to Your Pool

When designing a pool for your backyard, don’t forget to consider extra features you can add that will take your pool from a cool casual hang out spot to an incredible and relaxing getaway and entertainment area. Here are some ideas for unique features you can add to your pool:

Spa/Hot Tub

Gorgeous. Soothing. Timeless. Our custom spas and hot tubs are simply exquisite, and there’s no better way to massage away the aches and pains of the day than to dip into one of our stunning and comfortable custom spas. Staying cool with a pool is great in the heat, but the relaxing jets of an evening soak in the hot tub can truly offer an exceptionally relaxing experience year round. Though a custom-made hot tub is admittedly much more expensive, there’s simply no comparison when you look at our stunning creations versus prefabricated fiberglass hot tubs.

Waterfall FeatureWaterfalls and Water Features

If you want to take your pool from ordinary to extraordinary, consider a custom water feature by Absolute Pools. From natural waterfalls to elegant, contemporary water features, we do it all. In fact, before Absolute Pools was a pool company, we built nearly 200 of middle Tennessee’s most gorgeous water features. From ponds and streams to fountains and waterfalls large and small, we know how to build them all. Our waterfalls and custom water features provide not only a gorgeous visual aspect to your pool space, but also add a calming ambiance to your backyard living area.

Swim-Up Bar

When you imagine vacationing in a far-away resort, do you envision that they have a swim-up bar? Why not put one in your own backyard? You’ll have an amazing time throwing parties for your friends and family in your luxurious pool, complete with its own resort-like swim-up bar. Stepping out back will be like going on vacation.

Accent Boulders

Adding some accent boulders can go a long way to adding style and class to your backyard pool. Boulders are relatively inexpensive to install, but will have a big effect on the overall style, design and appearance of your yard. Whether you utilize boulders as rustic contrasts or as central features, they are a popular and attractive option to add to your design.

Consider adding these unique features to your backyard pool, and take your backyard from a typical entertainment spot to an unbelievable getaway. As a premier swimming pool designer and contractor serving middle Tennessee, we can help make your dreams into a reality. To learn more or to schedule a consultation, call Absolute Pools & Waterscapes today at 615-354-1840.

5 Reasons to Add a Custom Swimming Pool to Your Property

Absolute Pools & Waterscapes, located in Nashville, TN, specializes in the design and construction of gunite swimming pools and spas. Here are five reasons to add a custom swimming pool by Absolute Pools to your property:

1) Theyre an investment, really

Most people don’t know that in the right setting, a custom gunite pool is actually a good investment. Historically, gunite and shotcrete pools have added 8% to a home’s value. Most people, even real estate agents, are under the impression that pools have a neutral or negative effect on home value. As a general rule, the more expensive the home, the greater the negative impact from vinyl and fiberglass pools. Conversely, the greater a home’s value, the greater the positive impact from custom gunite & shotcrete swimming pools. The fact is, most million + homes have pools for a reason. Aside from looking great, they have a significant positive impact on value. Even though a pool isn’t the best investment out there, it’s nice to know that rather than losing money by building a custom pool, you can actually wind up breaking even or adding equity on top of the cost of a pool. Your home is one of your greatest investments. Building the right pool in the right setting is like having your cake, with frosting, and eating it, too!

2) We offer great bang for the buck

We use nothing but the finest materials and the best equipment, and we do it with superb craftsmanship. Absolute Pools are among the best custom swimming pools you can get. Paying attention to all the details, our high-end pools impress even the most discerning people. Yet, at the same time, we offer good prices. Our prices tend to be mid-range in the Tennessee pool market. What do you get when you mix the highest quality and craftsmanship with mid-range pricing? You get an amazing product for a great value.

3) They look great day 24 / 7 / 365

Our philosophy is that your pool should always look great. A big part of your enjoyment of the pool happens every time you glance at the pool as you go about life in your home. Whether you are eating dinner inside or outside, reading a book poolside, or having a pool party for family or friends, your pool should always be at its best. After all, if you are going to spend tens of thousands on a pool, it should always look fantastic. For that reason, as well as others, our pools are designed to take the rigors of nature year-round. Most of our clients never winterize their pools, and when they are home, not a day or night goes by where they don’t enjoy the beauty and peace that our pools bring.

4) Absolute Pools reflect… YOU

Absolute Pools puts the power of customization in your hands. You select tile, coping (the stone or concrete material used to cap the pool shell wall), pool interiors, water features, lighting, decking, landscaping and more.

Our custom designs are first done by hand and then by computer. Using technology, you can see what your virtual pool and waterscape world will look like before it’s constructed. If you want or need to change anything, the model gives you the opportunity to see it before it’s built and change it as needed. Because the pool is custom made, you can shape it in a way that makes it a functional work of art– a beautiful pool that reflects your personality.

We excel at customization. If cookie cutter pools are on one side of the spectrum, Absolute Pools are on the other side. Not only can we build anything you can imagine, we’re also really good at helping you figure out your best options. We give frank, honest advice, telling you the pros and cons of each decision. We are pool experts, and we aim to give you the most sensible advice out there. In short, we help maximize the money you spend to give you a pool that is the best reflection of yourself.

5) Theyre fun

While custom pools are, of course, luxurious, they’re also fun, especially for kids and kids-at-heart. Absolute Pools can build-in features that make your pool the place to be. Many of our clients build a luxury pool because they want to create a space for their children to hang out. The best way to keep tabs on your kids is to have them home, and one of the best ways to keep them home is to create a place where they, and their friends, want to be!

Call 615-354-1840 today to discuss your vision for a custom swimming pool to enhance your property and your life.