Give Your Family the Ultimate Gift – A Luxurious Pool Oasis!

A luxury pool is more than just a place to cool off from the summer heat. It’s also a smart investment, adding to the value of your home. The best modern designs embed pools into integrated outdoor entertainment and garden landscape areas, creating a haven of calm and relaxation. They’re a wonderful place to exercise and have fun while your family and guests escape the summer heat. So, give your family the ultimate gift – a luxurious pool oasis.

The First Step – Planning Your Design

Now that you’ve decided to proceed with a new pool, the fun and hard work now begin. Expect to make many decisions on budget, pool design, hardscaping, entertainment area details, landscaping, and finishing touches. If you’re looking for inspiration, an excellent place to start is through the completed projects portfolio of local pool design and build companies.

Before you settle on the design, materials, and other details of your pool build, you will need a reality check on the budget and the feasibility of your plans. Settle upon at least two or three pool designers, and don’t hesitate to ask for an on-site consultation.

Bringing the Design of Your Luxury Pool Oasis Together

By now, you should be starting to firm up on the primary goal of your design, the pool itself. What shape and size pool do you want? Will you opt for a classic kidney shape? Will the size of your backyard lend itself to a large rectangular or square shape? Will a customized pool design better suit the unique features of your home and landscape?

Pool Features

While you’re still at the design stage of your pool haven, this is the time to consider extending basic functionality. For example, adding a spa or hot tub section can extend the enjoyment of your pool area into the cooler months. Likewise, planning for lighting will let you party into the wee hours or enjoy a solo midnight swim.

Customized Pool Design and Aesthetic Choices

One of the most complex decisions in designing your luxury pool oasis is selecting the right mix of colors and materials. The wrong combination for your setting can create a jarring effect rather than a harmonious, relaxed, and sophisticated feel. Getting hold of color swatches and material samples will help tremendously in this area. Also, look at different combinations of pool tiles and hard surround materials, including concrete, pavers, and timber decking. A luxurious oasis effect is achieved by the careful design and crafting of all the pool components

However, if you’re unsure about your sense of color and style, asking for help from your pool designer is the way to go. In-depth knowledge of design aesthetics is the forte of experienced pool designers and builders. Selecting the exact materials, decorative elements, and finishing touches will be much easier with the aesthetic style for your pool and surrounds decided.

Safety and Pool Standards

Don’t forget about the safety aspects of your pool installation, and make sure your designer understands all relevant regulations and standards before the build begins.

Entertainment Areas and Landscaping

Artful landscaping and stylish outdoor furnishings and fittings will integrate your new customized pool design into its surrounds and give the impression of a seamless look and feel.

Plantings, whether into garden beds or pots situated at focal points around the pool and entertainment area, can set the overall theme of your oasis. Palms and leafy green heat-loving plants interspersed with clumps of flowers in bright hot colors provide a tropical feel. Hardy long-flowering herbs such as lavender, thyme, and rosemary can impart a Mediterranean atmosphere. Or geraniums, daisies, and roses can give a bright cottage air and lush feel.

Outdoor seating and carefully selected cushion colors that contrast or coordinate with the colors of the pool and surrounds provide additional decorative accents and focal points. Comfortable and smart-looking pool lounges and deck chairs complete the picture.

When you’ve finished, your family will revel in their lavish new surroundings and the vacation feel of the luxurious pool oasis.

Luxury Pool Design in Northern Virginia

If you’re considering a new pool installation in the Northern Virginia area, State of the Art Landscape can guide you through every step of the process. With 3D renderings of your design, you can be sure the result will match your expectations.

We can also help you with pool remodeling and repairs, transforming your existing pool and surrounds to a high-end level that will delight you.

Contact us to book an on-site appointment or discuss any aspect of your pool design requirements. 

How to Create the Perfect Entertaining Space in Your Own Backyard

With the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic that began in 2020, many people began flocking outdoors to enjoy themselves. Staying cooped up inside for a long period of time is challenging enough, so having the ability to entertain yourself outdoors is a great respite. 

Your backyard is the closest and most convenient way to benefit from all the outdoors has to offer. But how can you make your space a more entertaining space, whether it be personal or communal, like a family gathering?

If you’re wondering about how to improve your backyard space, here are 10 outdoor ideas to get you started. 

1. Patio or Deck

A patio is a perfect opportunity for backyard entertainment. Patios create endless choices for entertaining, no matter if it’s for a large or a small group. 

Your patio can be a flat pad, like stone or concrete, or a walk-out deck that connects to your house, allowing access to the interior of your home. Whatever you choose to decide, make sure you have a plan and a budget. 

2. Living and Dining Outdoors

One of the best ways to make a backyard entertaining is to provide a living room outdoors. Outdoor furniture like chairs, couches, swings, tables, and so forth can reflect the idea of having a living area outside. This is the perfect place for gathering, having drinks, hanging out, and just enjoying friends. 

If you love eating outdoors, consider investing in a large outdoor dining table. These tables are perfect for large gatherings and provide ample seating. Complete the indoor atmosphere with a TV and speakers!

3. Firepit

A firepit can be an amazing focal point of any backyard, and a source of entertainment! Not only can you roast s’mores and other foods, but cuddling up by the fire during the cooler months with friends and family makes many memories. 

You can purchase mobile firepits online, or you can have one built into your patio or backyard. Built-in fireplaces are typically permanent, so make sure you know exactly where you want them to go. 

4. Games

Do you love playing outdoor games like cornhole, ringtoss, or mini-golf? Why not have these available in your backyard for parties or get-togethers!

You can even create a game space in your backyard for all the outdoor games you love to enjoy. This makes it easy to use the games whenever you feel like it. 

5. Outdoor Kitchen

No doubt about it – having an outdoor kitchen is incredibly convenient, especially if you love entertaining outdoors with activities like grilling or making drinks. 

While many outdoor kitchens are impressive both in size and quality of materials, the truth is that you don’t need to spend a lot to have a functional outdoor kitchen. With a sink, grill, and a little extra countertop space, you’ll have a place to entertain and cook. 

6. Pool

While more on the costly side of backyard renovation, having a pool provides a wonderful opportunity to host parties or for relaxing. And with a variety of pool choices, ranging from inground to aboveground or even heating, you’ll find something that works for your family. 

Getting a pool can be a large investment because it requires labor, so make sure you’re staying within your budget. If you live in a warmer climate, it might be a great investment since you will get more use out of it. 

7. Garden Pathway

A garden pathway can be a tranquil space to visit and hang out. The best part of your garden landscaping is that you can fill it with anything you want: flowers, bushes, small trees, herbs, stones, sand, and anything you want. 

If you have the space, you may create a stone pathway to walk through and enjoy your garden. Vegetable gardens are particularly eye-catching and resourceful, though they do require upkeep. If you’re going to plant a vegetable garden make sure to plant vegetables that grow seasonally and in your climate. 

8. Hammock or Lounge Seating

Seating outdoors as a living room is nice when you have many people, but sometimes you may want a seat to yourself!

Hammocks or hanging chairs provide a calming space for reading, relaxing, or reflecting. Hammocks are fairly easy to install, especially if they’re mobile. Hanging chairs need an anchor from above, so they’re perfect for under a deck. 

9. Work Studio

Do you benefit from working outdoors? Setting up a workstation outside may not necessarily be thought of as entertainment, but if you have a hobby like painting or writing, it could be a place for inspiration. If you’re an artist, you could display some of your work outdoors to serve as decor for your space.

Your workspace should be covered in some capacity if you have tools or materials you use so they don’t get damaged by wind or rain. 

10. Movie Area

There’s no better way than enjoying a movie outdoors during the warm nights of summertime. Your movie area doesn’t even have to be anything fancy; a simple white sheet, along with a projector of sorts will provide everything you need to watch a movie under the stars. Pop some popcorn and cuddle up with a pillow to make it complete.  

Entertaining Space For You!

When you’re thinking about creating the ideal entertaining space, you have countless ideas and opportunities. The one thing to remember is to work the space so it’s convenient for both you and others. Your outdoor space will be a talking point for many years to come. 

Do you need assistance to create the best outdoor space? Our specialists are here to help! Contact us today to get started planning your outdoor entertaining oasis. 


Staycation Landscapes: Create a Resort-Style Backyard with Luxury Appeal

Rest and relaxation don’t always mean hopping on a plane and taking off. You can enjoy staycations any time, when you transform your backyard with resort-style features and ambiance. State of the Art Landscape specializes in backyard transformations with our comprehensive lineup of hardscape and softscape solutions. These include swimming pools, patios, outdoor kitchens, and more. In fact, you may love your backyard once we’ve transformed it but you might prefer to stay home more often. 

Swimming Pool

If you love your resort getaways, you can install a brand-new swimming pool into your yard, making it everyone in your household’s favorite palace to be. State of the Art Landscape installs custom swimming pools. We collaborate with our clients to achieve aesthetically pleasing designs that complement their property. Using 3D technology, we can map out each detail, ensuring that clients are able to bring their swimming pool vision to life. 

In addition to their swimming pool, our design-build team can install hardscaping around the pool or add decking and spa-like features to the design. We can create spa swimming pools that feature pool-hot tub combinations, plunge pools, and pools in virtually any shape. 

Outdoor Kitchen

If you love to entertain family and friends, an outdoor kitchen allows you to spend time with your guests while keeping cooking odors and messes outside. State of the Art Landscape designs and builds custom kitchen and dining spaces that are tailored to property owners’ needs. We can create spacious, open outdoor kitchens or outdoor roofed kitchen and dining spaces that offer protection from the sun. Tell us what outdoor kitchen features you want to include and we’ll create a functional and attractive design that suits your needs and budget.

Outdoor Bar

If you do a lot of backyard entertaining, an outdoor bar can become the focal point of your patio. State of the Art Landscape can help you design a bar and surrounding patio area that features a fun theme or complements the style of your home. After a long day at work, you can come home and relax in your backyard with drinks on your patio. We’ve constructed outdoor bars to fit both compact and open spaces. Like many outdoor features, an outdoor custom bar can enhance your home’s value. 

Outdoor Living Room

Why stay indoors when the weather’s so fair? Root for your favorite baseball team from the comfort of your outdoor living room, complete with sumptuous outdoor seating and a wall-mounted flat-screen TV. An outdoor living room is perfect for people who like to relax outdoors but still enjoy creature comforts like plush cushions and Netflix. These spaces are ideal for people of all ages. They make great entertainment spaces that are popular with adults, teens, and even young kids. 

Outdoor Fireplace

Ensure that you can enjoy your backyard oasis even when the weather is chilly with the addition of an outdoor fireplace. These features not only provide heat for chilly days but also light so you can gather in your outdoor living space in the evening. State of the Art Landscape features custom fireplace designs. We can build one that suits your patio or outdoor living room’s layout. We can also build custom fire pits in a multitude of styles to enhance your backyard living space.

Sports Courts

If your ideal vacation includes some fitness or sporting fun, you can add features to your backyard that allow you to enjoy many activities. If you have tweens and teens, they’ll love spending time at home and inviting their friends over to enjoy these sportive backyard features. Our design team can make the most of your backyard space by filling it in with the features you love best. 

Outdoor Structures

Add visual interest to your backyard with backyard structures that make use of the vertical space. Outdoor structures like pergolas and gazebos provide shade and focal point flair. Fortunately, there are many styles to choose from. We can add custom structures to your backyard setting that embody a certain architectural style. Whether your home is Mid-Century, traditional, modern, or cottage-inspired, we can design outdoor structures that blend seamlessly with your overall setting. 

Professional Landscaping

Resorts invest substantially in their landscaping to create the ambiance that vacationers are looking for. You can do the same with help from State of the Art Landscape. We landscape special features like swimming pools, patios, and pergolas, and can design an entire backyard landscape that suits your preferences. For instance, you can create a modern, upscale landscape with single-color plantings for a designer look. Or, you can create a relaxing Zen-inspired space, a hacienda-style garden, or a French-country-inspired setting completed with pots of lavender. 

We create highly personalized landscapes filled with plantings that complement your backyard and your aesthetic style. Our designers can incorporate shade features or privacy plantings that help divide the space. We can install water-savvy landscapes, low-maintenance landscapes, fragrant gardens, and more. 

Why Create a Luxury Getaway at Home?

Investing in your landscaping and exterior home features can actually add value to your home. In fact, did you know that a well-landscaped patio can actually boost your home’s value by 12 percent? Installing other features like an outdoor fireplace, pool, and outdoor kitchen can enhance property value even further. But value aside, how much enjoyment could you and your gain from a backyard that’s custom-designed with vacation-worthy features? When you partner with State of the Art Landscape, we can create a backyard home-resort that’s perfectly tailored to your perfect staycation! 

Contact State of the Art Landscape to discuss your backyard makeover plans. Please peruse our portfolio of completed projects. We create custom designs and feature a team of talented and experienced landscapers, masonry specialists, designers, and more. We can’t wait to help you transform your property into the backyard oasis you crave. 

How 3D Renderings Can Help Your Landscape Design Process

The landscape design process can be complicated, time-consuming, and exhausting. However, that doesn’t mean that the experience will be the same for homeowners and designers. While landscaping workers might have a tough time designing a backyard or patio space to fit the vision of a homeowner, it’s virtually a guarantee that the experience will be an exciting one for whoever owns the property being developed. That’s because, at the end of the ordeal, homeowners know that their backyard, outdoor kitchen, or whatever outdoor addition they’re making to their home is something that they’ve always wanted!

At State of the Art, it’s our aim to provide homeowners with a visualization of their dream landscaping outcome that’s as close-to-perfect as possible. We do this using 3D renderings, which will allow both homeowners and our own employees to see precise measurements and images of what we’re going for through our construction efforts. This is especially useful when building complex structures, adding onto existing construction pieces or removing/grading land for new projects. Below we’ll talk a little bit more about what we do and how we do it.

Designing & Building Dream Landscapes

Once scheduled for a consultation session, our experts will arrive to get a firsthand view of a homeowner’s property. This will allow us to fully map out an area, examine elevation changes, and take into account all areas that will be affected by construction. Once this information has been gathered, we’ll take it into account when designing homeowners their own unique 3D customized conceptual layout of what the area will look like after we’re all finished.

Not only does this give homeowners the ability to see their vision fully realized before construction even begins, but it gives us the opportunity to identify any possible issues with construction. Maybe the placement of a swimming pool isn’t ideal due to elevation, or an outdoor oven might be placed too close to neighboring property – whatever the problem, we’ll work to fix it so that homeowners are fully satisfied with whatever result occurs.

There are a number of issues that can arrive with different types of landscaping efforts. Below, we’ve listed the kinds of services we provide, along with some of the complications and workarounds that occur with them.

Hardscape Construction

Hardscaping refers to the practice of installing stonework into a natural landscape. This can be in the form of adding stone walls, stone patios, brick ovens, and staircases. Hardscaping can drastically raise the profile of your backyard or patio, but the downsides of it are that it is an expensive process, and it’s quite easy to blunder during installation. Shoddy masonry and unsafe builds are some of the main problems that occur during installation. However, both can usually be avoided by careful planning and the hiring of qualified professionals.

Swimming Pools

Swimming pools are often underestimated as simply being dug holes filled with water, but they’re quite a bit more work with that. The excavation and construction process is a detailed effort that requires intensive knowledge of the soil composition, location of pipes and power lines, proximity to the sewer and neighboring electric structures, and much more. Plus, once construction begins, expenses can quickly mount up depending on the chosen material to construct the surface and deck of the pool. Furthermore, if heating is required then that’s an entirely different issue that requires an electrical engineer, fuel supplier, and even more hands-on deck.


A quality deck can drastically elevate a landscape, and many modern homes are adding them into their landscaping plans. They can be constructed using a wide variety of materials, including elegant hardwoods, masonry, and brickwork. Their construction obviously needs to take into account the space they’re working with, along with safety as a priority. Load-bearing decks might need to be able to support 10-15 people at once, which is something that the design team will be inquiring about throughout the design and installation process.

Pavilions and Pergolas

What can be a whimsical and practical addition to any home can also be a tedious endeavor for designers and construction workers. Pavilions and pergolas can be an immersive way to enjoy the outdoors, providing only the barest shelter from the elements. These are usually quite simple to construct, but depending on homeowner specifications, can be made to be quite complicated and intricate structures.

Sport Courts

Homeowners looking to incorporate more exercise and team play into their lives may wish to install a sporting court for basketball, tennis, or shuffleboard. All of these courts can be constructed to match the exact regulatory standards of the sports themselves, and incorporated into the existing environment as naturally as possible.

Fire Pits

There’s nothing quite like enjoying a bonfire with friends and families once the weather starts getting a little bit chilly, or on summer nights once the day’s heat has passed. Fire pits can be constructed in a number of shapes, sizes, and materials, and designers at State of the Art will work with homeowners to identify their dream fire pits so as to make those dreams an exact reality.

Boulder Work

Pre-existing boulders on a home’s landscape can be viewed as both a blessing and a curse. Depending on perspective, homeowners might see them as a natural wonder or a random obstruction. At State of the Art, we incorporate boulders as naturally as possible into a landscaping vision if possible – otherwise, we’ll do our best to remove them from the picture entirely.


Whether it’s more room for the pets or kids to run around safely in or just more privacy overall, we can work with homeowners to address all fencing needs that might be required.

Outdoor Kitchens

Every dream outdoor setup as an outdoor kitchen, complete with a floor of stone or wood, a brick oven, roasting pit, etc. Whatever amenities you could want in your outdoor kitchen, at State of the Art we’ll work to make it happen.

10 Gorgeous Landscaping Ideas for Pool Areas

Why travel hundreds of miles to the nearest resort when you can turn your backyard into a beautiful oasis? Landscape architecture is a form of art that dates back to the ancient Egyptians

In ancient times, geometric patterns ruled landscape designs following strict plans to create more symmetry. But in modern landscapes, there are far more options to transform your backyard into a gorgeous work of art.

Consider These 10 Unforgettable Landscaping Ideas For Pool Areas For Your Next Outdoor Renovation 

1. Tranquil Rock Garden

Not every garden is green. Many homeowners contrast the backyard pool landscape with an alpine, or rock garden

Rock gardens are a great way to complement modern home styles especially in backyards where grass won’t grow. Opt for colorful succulents if you want to add visual interest to your rock garden.

Rock garden beds are made of gravel providing more texture to the landscape. The placement of the rocks is important in creating a well-designed landscape.

Many landscape designers start with large rocks and fill in spaces to create an attractive look. Plants, if used, are placed last to fill in spaces around the rock formation. 

2. Dining Alfresco

Dine al fresco with a manicured seating area next to your pool. Define your seating area with an open-air pergola that matches the style of your home.

An outdoor fireplace can serve as a ‘wall’ to section off the eating area outside. Use paved surfaces sparingly around the poolside seating area to give the feel of carpeting in the space.

Wood plank flooring makes the dining area more inviting when entertaining. Guests can relax on the wooden pool surround after a swim without fear of burning their feet as the pavement heats up in the sun.

Make sure there’s a solid surface path in place as an alternative to walking on the planks. During more formal occasions, you want an option for guests to enjoy a view of the pool while wearing heels.  

3. Lush English Garden

English gardens are somewhat of a rebellion of the symmetrical patterns loved by the ancient Greeks. The mix of shrubs and flowers brings texture to the area surrounding your pool. 

Mix a variety of pastel-colored flowers for an elegant touch. The key to creating an eye-catching English-style garden is layering.

You’ll want dense foliage that fills the space alongside your pool to create a picturesque backdrop while you swim.  

4. Lighted Stairwell

If you have stairs leading to your pool, it’s a prime opportunity to use accent lighting to create a chic look. Upgrade your stairs to double as stadium seating and planters surrounding your pool.

Both grass and gravel work well to fill rows of stairs on a hillside. Add succulents to gravel to give your accent lights more layers to work with. Solar-powered accent light creates an energy-efficient solution that won’t need complicated electrical wiring.

5. Minimalist Garden

Well-designed swimming pools should always be the star of the show. Keep your swimming pool the center of attention with a minimalist garden.

Symmetry is an important tool in minimalist designs. Repeat symmetrical patterns throughout the garden using dark-colored slate gravel or grass. 

Think straight lines, not curves when attempting a minimalist aesthetic next to your pool. 

6. Calming Fountains

Fountain statues are a regal touch to traditional-style homes. If you live in a Victorian or Tudor-style home, your architecture is perfect for a series of statues along the poolside. 

Choose statues that provide a calming trickle of water into the pool to create a serene escape. Majestic animal figures like lions make great options for concrete statues, especially when combined with colorful flowers. 

7. Grassy Nature Surround

Plant grass up to the edge of your pool surround. The grass reflects less heat during the summer while providing a soft place to lounge.

The unexpected foliage surrounding the pool makes it appear to happen naturally in your backyard. Add other features like boulders and dense groundcover that make your pool look like a pond in the middle of a park. 

8. Posh Pergola

Aside from being stunning in a landscape, pergolas also add the benefit of defining spaces in your yard. If you’re looking to create ‘rooms’ outdoors, the best way to do this is to add a pergola to various seating areas near the pool.

Pergolas are also great for providing partial shade. Think about hanging gardens when choosing ways to decorate your pergola. You can add lush plants and vines to your pergola to increase your sun protection and give the structure a posh look.  

9. Full Kitchen

Consider a full outdoor kitchen complete with a bar for entertaining. Full kitchens can be built on patios or detached from the main house. 

Think of fun upgrades the entire family can enjoy like installing a wood-fired pizza oven or a birthday party pavilion. A party pavilion is an open-air space with flexible seating to accommodate a variety of games and activities. 

Don’t give guests a reason to long for the indoors. Bring the living room outside by mounting TVs or installing a fireplace in your outdoor kitchen seating area.  

10. Majestic Topiary

Boxwood hedges are the best option for manicured topiary designs. Large plant sculptures make instant focal points for modest backyard pools.

Use tall boxwood hedges as a fence surrounding your pool with a custom topiary centerpiece in the center of your yard. White concrete planters provide contrast to the rich green of boxwoods. 

Stepping stones surrounded by bright green grass complements this formal garden style. Repeat the topiary pattern throughout your seating areas using ball topiaries in white concrete planters. 

Choose the Right Luxury Landscaper for Pool Areas in Northern Virginia

It’s natural to want to copy landscaping ideas for pool areas found on the internet. But not every landscape design works in every backyard.

Factors like the amount of sunlight in your area, soil drainage, and the size of your swimming pool influence what looks best in your yard. Consult with our experienced team of landscape designers to find the right fit for your property.

For more information and pool design tips, set up a consultation today. 

Inground Pool vs. Above Ground Pool

When you’re getting a new pool for your home, your most significant choice is whether you’ll get an inground or above ground pool. Whichever you choose, the look of your yard, and your experience in the pool, will be significantly different. You’ll also see differences in cost, lifespan, maintenance needs, and much more. It’s a big decision, so how do you choose?

First, you need to understand the full differences between these two types of pools. An inground pool is just as it sounds, a pool that is installed in the ground, so it’s flush with your yard. It can be made from a wider range of materials than an above ground pool, but it also is more expensive and not suitable for all climates.

An above ground pool is installed above, so it may stand four or more feet off the ground. To make up for the height of an above-ground pool, many people install tall decks around them so that they can be level with the pool. Those in colder climates and with tighter budgets tend to prefer above ground pools. However, that’s not all you need to know to choose between these two types. Here is a comparison of the features and benefits of inground pools vs above ground pools.


Of course, the first thing you likely want to know about your new pool is how much it will end up costing. While you can get fairly inexpensive inground pools, especially if you choose basic materials and basic shapes, they do tend to cost more. The reason is simple, if you’re getting an inground pool you’ll need to have a significant portion of your yard excavated to fit it. This costs in equipment and time during the install.

Above ground pools tend to be cheaper but be careful not to opt for an above ground pool that’s too cheap. The materials in an above ground pool still matter, and if you opt for something that won’t last for too long, you may end up spending more than you want to replacing the liner, or even the shell. Still, no above ground pool is going to be expensive as the best, most unique inground pool.


Thinking of getting a unique design for your pool? Or, is your backyard in a unique shape? Then an inground pool might be your best bet. You can get many more shapes, designs, and sizes in a custom inground pool than are typically available in above ground models. It is easier to incorporate water features, unique coping, and elegant decks with inground pools.

That said, you may be able to find the design you’re looking for in above ground pools. If the cost savings are worth it to you, you might try looking into what designs are available before you choose a custom inground pool.


The installation process for each type of pool is different. Inground pools take longer to install and add more disruption to your life, with more equipment. There is some preparation work that needs to be done before an above ground pool installation too, just not as much as for an inground pool.


While installation is a temporary concern, maintenance is a long-term issue, so you’ll probably place more importance on this issue. Typically, inground pools and above ground pools require about the same amount of maintenance, assuming that they are the same size. Although, it’s possible that an above ground pool may scratch more easily, which might mean it requires more maintenance.

ROI & Lifespan

It’s also wise to consider your pool as an investment in the value of your home. If you decide to sell your home, inground pools are generally more appreciated than above ground pools (although it may depend on your market). Inground pools also have a longer lifespan, assuming you’ve invested in the right materials and kept up with maintenance. So, you can also expect to get more longevity out of an inground pool, which may be important for you if you intend to be in your home for a long time. If longevity is a big concern for you, you can get inground pools made of the best materials to get the longest lifespan from your pool.

Energy Use

The amount of energy that your pool uses is mostly dependent on your climate. However, there are a few things to consider about your specific energy usage. Above ground pools may be easier to heat if they will be in direct sun and not covered by a deck, but only on days when the sun is out.

Need some expert advice about whether an in ground or above ground pool works best for you? Reach out to us at State of the Art Landscape.

5 Elements of a High-End Pool

Dreaming of summer heat, cool refreshments, and relaxation around the water? For those considering upgrading or adding a pool to their property, here are five of the most popular pool design features for high-end pools.

1. Elegant Water Features

Including water features in a pool design helps to add elements of visual interest, create an ambiance of soothing background noise to drown out neighbors or nearby traffic and provide a cooling factor to the air around the pool. There are many different kinds of water features, including:

  • Fountains, water misters and waterfalls
  • Bubbler jets, canon jets, and laminar jets
  • Sprays, weirs, and sheer descents
  • Rain curtains and spillways
  • Fireplaces and pits

While waterfalls and fountains are examples of elements that create eye-catching visuals, fireplaces offer a striking contrast to complete your property design. Combining certain design elements will help extend the outdoor season into the fall and early winter, and is certain to always draw a crowd when entertaining.

2. Automation, Technology and Energy Efficiency

Technological capabilities of controlling, monitoring and maintaining a swimming pool have become much easier with the use of a smartphone or tablet. With apps on your iPhone and iPad, you can easily control and turn on spas, lights, fountains and other aspects of your pool on-demand and from anywhere.

Energy efficiency has also come to the forefront of swimming pools and equipment. With the advancements of LED pool lighting, variable speed pumps, and more efficient heaters, the power demands to run a pool are greatly reduced and can help impact that monthly electrical bill. The color capabilities of LED lighting can also allow you to tailor the color of the pool to any mood or for any party setting.

Since the swimming pool is an attraction and gathering place for friends and family, there are many additional opportunities to add some amenities that enrich the outdoor experience. In the audio/video realm, there are floating and underwater speakers to keep the music flowing, along with projection screens to let you host your own dive-in movie. For the kids, there are many other recreational elements that can be included such as volleyball nets, basketball goals, slides, swings, swim jets, and even climbing walls.

3. Infinity and Negative Edge Pools

One of the more dramatic high-end pool elements is an infinity or negative edge pool. These pools eliminate the traditional coping and bring water right to the edge. They are typically associated with a sloping property or dramatic views but can be used in many different aspects to create a spectacular detail around the pool.

Infinity edges are great for pools on an elevated area, or with a clear view. Eliminating the hard edge of a pool can make it appear larger, and will make your backyard feel like a true resort getaway.

4. Zero Entry

A zero-entry swimming pool, otherwise known as a beach entry pool, has an edge or entry that gradually slopes from the pool deck into the water, getting deeper with each step, much like a natural beach. A favorite feature of the beach entry pool is the ability to sunbathe in the shallow area with partial submersion.

The shallow end provided by the beach entry allows children to have an area to play and splash without having to worry about them being in water that is too deep. The absence of stairs also helps make the pool more accessible for those with limited mobility.

5. Integrated Hot Tubs

Rather than having a separate hot tub away from your swimming pool, consider an attachment hot tub that can be seamlessly attached to your pool. They are more practical, visually appealing and can integrate with your existing pool system.

An elevated hot tub will provide a view of the pool and backyard landscape along with multiple entries. On the other hand, sunken hot tubs with pool spillover can add visual interest to your pool design. While both of these elements are popular, the design should fit with the overall landscape of your property.

If combining your hot tub into your pool design isn’t an option or your preference, a hot tub and gazebo combination makes a bold and eye-catching addition to any backyard landscape. It draws attention to your spa and provides shelter from the sun, outdoor debris such as falling leaves, rain and other outdoor elements.

State of the Art Landscape

State of the Art Landscape is one of the largest suppliers of landscape services in Northern Virginia. We provide dependable services for residential and commercial properties. Our experienced crews are well trained and are able to provide custom services for your property needs.

Call us today to see how we can help your home or business.

What is Hardscaping?

When you see the yard of your dreams, what elements do you see? Likely, there are beautiful natural elements, such as carefully arranged flowers, vegetables and decorative plants. But there are other elements that contribute to a well-designed landscape: the hard materials, also known as hardscaping

The Low-Down on HardscapingNorthern Virginia Luxury Landscaping 

It’s highly possible that, while you have enjoyed your own and your friends’ backyards, that you haven’t realized that the blend of hardscaping and softscaping is what creates the ultimate outdoor experience. 

Landscaping provides the ability for a customer to have a greater appreciation for being outside and being comfortable in their own living space. With hardscaping and softscaping, you can personalize your landscape, the extension of a perennial garden, a habitat of your own creation and for your enjoyment and leisurely appreciation. 

Many individuals value their outdoor spaces as a place to entertain and experience outdoor comfort.

Hardscaping for Privacy 

For many homeowners, buying a home means buying a set of neighbours and a piece of a neighbourhood, whether you would choose it or not. One of the best reasons to consider a carefully designed landscaping project that incorporates hardscaping features is to control the privacy and amount of noise that you can hear from your outdoor living space. 

For example, water features are able to gently mask the more unpleasant noises of both auto and foot traffic outside of your property. Then, when it comes to privacy, your landscaper will be able to work with you to use retaining walls, gazebo and many other features to give you more privacy from your neighbours in a creative and aesthetically pleasing way. 

To paint a picture of other ways to promote privacy in your backyard with hardscaping elements include: 

  •     Woven Screen (using materials like wood or metal)
  •     Solid Panels (translucent or opaque)
  •     Wood Pergola
  •     Ceiling-like Panels (slotted for extra light)
  •     Lattices

Many homeowners prioritize the ability to enjoy their outdoor space without interruption from unwanted noise or prying eyes. But privacy isn’t the only benefit to incorporating hardscaping features alongside your natural features such as floral and edible elements.

Endless Benefits to Hardscaping

Custom Landscaping NOVA

Other benefits of hardscaping features include: 

  •     Guarding your garden against unwanted pests
  •     Extension of your living and entertaining space
  •     Increased property value
  •     Versatility and design expression
  •     Physical boundaries
  •     An added dimension to your natural space
  •     Increased comfort
  •     Ability to enjoy summer nights comfortable seating and ample lighting
  •     Effective yet visually appealing storage for your toys and tools

We embrace creativity throughout the whole process. One of the leading trends in landscape design is mixing textures and materials. We embrace the ability to use a variety of different materials, such as natural stone, polished and shaped stone, and even metals and synthetic materials to create the perfect design. Many homeowners use landscaping as a way to express the design and appearances that they love and already have throughout their home. 

A quality landscaping company will work with you to harness the interaction between hardscaping and softscaping. Since many expert landscape designers believe that hardscaping provides the foundation for the softscaping elements, many will highly recommend that you include complementary elements to your dream garden and backyard.

Common Examples of Hardscaping 

When designing your yard, here are some common hardscaping elements that you could consider adding to your design:

Custom Northern Virginia Pools Hardscaping

  •     Paver Patio
  •     Stone Wall
  •     Gazebo
  •     Garden Walls
  •     Planting Beds
  •     Large Boulders
  •     Stone Edging
  •     Accent Stones
  •     Light Fixtures
  •     Pillars Or Columns
  •     Seat Walls
  •     Stepping Stones
  •     Waterfalls
  •     Swimming Pools
  •     Fountains
  •     Ponds
  •     Stream bed
  •     Fire Features Such As Fireplaces Or Fire Pits
  •     Even a pizza oven feature has become increasingly popular!

Designing Your Outdoor Living Space 

Your landscaping wish list can (and should) be a mile long when you’re working with your landscaping design company. That way, you can rest assured that your landscape project incorporates elements that you’ve considered and value the most. 

State of the Art Landscape embraces creativity and challenges, all with the goal to create a dream outdoor living space for you and your family. We professionally design and execute your outdoor living space, with comprehensive services that let you dream big or dream big on a budget. No project is too big or too small for us! We love working with a variety of customers, ideas, and yard sizes to create the perfect space for you. 

Let us bring our passion for quality and our years of landscaping experience to create your dream outdoor living space. Request an on-site appointment with one of our passionate landscape designers today. Let’s get started!

Hardscaping North Virginia 

Why Building an Inground Pool in the Winter is the Right Choice

In moderate climates, winter may not be the prime swimming season, but it might be the best season to build your inground pool. With time, resources, and labor readily available in the winter, you might find contractors jumping at the chance to upgrade or build your new inground pool this winter season.

Advantages of Building an Inground Pool in the Winter

The ideal construction project stays on budget, while keeping schedules un-rushed, stress-free, and on time. If you’ve been considering building a pool, winter is the ideal season for contractors to build it.

Swimming Pool Companies are Available

Since swimming pools are associated with summer, all the local pool contractors are going to be busy during the warmer months. Some companies are scheduled months in advance, and won’t get to your swimming pool until fall. It is smarter to contact your pool builder of choice in the colder months since they will have more time to focus on your swimming pool project, instead of trying to fit you in around other clients.

Installation is Affordable

Due to the decreased demand for materials in winter months, swimming pool companies often lessen their building costs. The offseason of pool building is the time for deals and cheaper prices, and you will be able to build an inground pool for a cheaper price in the winter as opposed to building one in the summer.

Installation is Faster

Pool building companies are less busy in the fall and winter, which means the pool installation process for your inground pool will be quicker. Additionally, humidity and high temperatures in the summertime slow down contractors, and they may need extra breaks from the intense heat. During the fall and winter, conditions can be more favorable for outdoor laborers.

Landscaping Can Take Root

Having a pool built can take a toll on your yard and landscaping. By having your pool installed during the winter give your landscaping time to come back and be beautiful in time for swimming once the weather heats back up.

Perfect Timing

When you build a pool in the winter, you have plenty of time to get it installed and ready just in time for the warmer temperatures. Your family will be ready to use the pool when it’s complete, rather than waiting through the summer months for it to be ready.

Disadvantages to Building an Inground Pool in the Winter

Depending on the climate you live in, the major drawbacks to winter pool building are normally due to weather. But even if the snow and cold temperatures cause delays, contractors often have enough time to work around it so that your pool is ready as spring approaches.

Temperatures Too Low to Pour Concrete

If the temperature is too cold, the concrete that is poured for your inground pool will not settle properly. If the concrete does not settle, it may dry unevenly or crack as the weather warms. If you live in an area with mild winter months, this may not be a big concern for you.

Snow Piles Cause Obstruction

Freezing rain, sleet, and snow can all create a hazardous work environment for swimming pool installation. If your yard is covered in layers of snow and ice, it may take too long to clear the area for pool construction. Some homeowners choose to wait until the early spring for their pool installation, where the demand is still low but the winter frost has started to melt away.

Temperatures Too Cold to Fill the Pool

If the outside temperature is well below freezing, filling the pool could cause the pipes to burst, either during the fill or afterward when the water settles. If the temperatures in your area are above freezing for the winter, you should have no issues filling the pool.

Frustrating Family Members

It can be frustrating to have a pool installed that you can’t use for a few months. While this is a small sacrifice to make for the money you can save in winter swimming pool installations, children may have a difficult time having a pool in the backyard that they can’t do anything with.

State of the Art Landscaping

In order to determine when you should install your swimming pool, the best thing to do is to contact a team of trusted pool installers to find out what time of year will work for you. At State of the Art Landscape, our experienced crews are well trained and are prepared to help you with your outdoor needs during any season.

Call us today to see how we can help your home or business.

Benefits of a Pool in Your Own Backyard

There’s just something about the summer that seems to make people happy. Maybe it’s the kids being off school, maybe it’s the memories we have stored away from our own childhoods and that sense of freedom that comes along with it.

Summer is even better when it’s spent poolside surrounded by friends and family. But when you don’t have your own pool and have to watch your neighbors enjoy theirs through the fence it can put a damper on your mood.

Here are the benefits of having a pool in your backyard and why it’s an essential item to have when the hot weather is upon you. A cold popsicle just doesn’t do the job anymore.

Benefits of Installing a Backyard Pool

Cool Off Anytime Anywhere

We all love the beach but it’s such a hassle do get there. You have to drive out of your way to get to those sandy shores, pay for parking, and pack everything you need for the day but somehow still manage to forget stuff. Don’t even try the public pool – that place is always way too crowded.

Cool off anytime at your convenience with a pool in your backyard! You won’t have to deal with crowds, parking, or any other of the small things that can make any trip to a body of water a hassle. Simply walk out your door and jump in when the heat gets too much – it’s that easy.

It’s Great For Entertaining

Most people love the summer cookouts. Just the thought of grilling some steaks, kabobs, burgers, and vegetables gets our mouths watering and your hands busy texting our friends planning the next one. But if you’re hosting, a pool makes your job a lot easier.

A backyard pool at the cookout gives your guests something to do and hang around until the food’s ready. It keeps the party fun and lively while providing hours of excellent entertainment for kids. Since you’re supplying the pool, hopefully, someone else is supplying the pasta salad.

It Makes Your Green Space Look Gorgeous

Adding any kind of water element is a great way to break up the grass and greenery out back with a focal piece that’s stylish and soothing. But adding a pool makes the element functional for you and your life as well.

Gone are the days when pools had to be your standard rectangle and blue plastic combination. Now, pools can be built into custom shapes that complement your backyard and look as stylish as they are fun to splash in. It’s a win, win!

Pools Are Ideal For Exercise

Don’t bother buying a gym membership when you have a pool in your backyard because swimming is one of the best exercises for you. It’s a full-body workout that also conditions your heart and lungs.

Swimming is great for you because it’s low impact movement that won’t disturb those suffering from joint pain or mobility issues, water resistance is higher than air resistance so you’ll get your heart rate up while you’re swimming, and it’s an aerobic exercise so you’ll be burning lots of calories while you do it.

The best part about having a backyard pool is that it’s a private way to get your exercise in without nosy people looking at you at the gym. We’ve all felt exposed and self-conscious when we lock eyes with that one random person who’s watching you on the treadmill. Avoid that whole situation and workout somewhere that’s private.

Your Kids Will Love It

Any kid with a pool basically lives in it all summer. They’re out there from 9am to 9pm playing with their friends, tanning, listening to music, and swimming laps happily. The pool is basically the summer camp that’s way easier to get to and they can choose when snack time is.

Your kids won’t be able to thank you enough for installing a pool – everyone will want to hang out and party with them at the pool and have a great summer. Plus, you’ll always know that your kids are safe and not getting into trouble since they’ll be at home and you can check on them when you please.

Contact State of the Art Landscape for Your Backyard Pool

Have yourself a wonderful summer by signing up to install a backyard pool today. The benefits of having a pool are just way too good to ignore. Plus, when you’re drenched in sweat in the middle of a heatwave and desperately trying to cool down with one measly icepack in your basement, a pool is all you’re going to be dreaming about.

Contact the experts in luxury custom swimming pools in Northern Virginia to learn more about what we can build for you.