Shootin’ Pool

Spring is about to be sprung and as thoughts turn to warmer weather, they probably include a refreshing dip in the pool. Now is the best time to plan an installation or refinish an existing design; before the busy season makes scheduling complicated and materials sparse. Kevin Anderson has been in the pool game for more than 20 years and is the president of Vanderbilt Associates’ pool division in Hauppauge. He let us in on the designs he has found work best.

Pulse: What are the benefits of gunite pools?

Kevin Anderson:
Gunite is the most expensive and does require more maintenance. But the benefits are limitless style, shape, size, color… it is just beyond anything you can do with any other pool. There are beautiful tiles to choose from and different colors and textures to do the bottom in. The customization is infinite. We usually finish off the pools with plain marble dust—which is basically a plaster finish with marble chips in it. It’s very strong and we typically do that in white or add a dye to it and do shades of gray or other colors. There are also upgraded finishes like Quartzscape, Stonescape, Diamond Brite, Pebble Tec and glass bead, some of which can add $5,000 to $25,000 to the cost.

Pulse: How about a fiberglass pool?
It’s got a lot of benefits: It never needs a liner change or to be refinished
and they come pre-gel coated in nice colors. The negative is that you can’t customize—you’re limited on sizes and shapes because that’s how they’re molded. They’re all pre-manufactured. You can custom order what color you want, but you can’t custom order the shape. The maximum width you’re ever going to see in a fiberglass pool is 16-feet. But it is a quick install, we’re in and out of people’s yards in a couple of days, whereas other pools take a month or so.

Pulse: What are some basic patio styles to surround the pool?

Typically the patio colors tie-in with the
 house and its style. For a modern look, it should be something geometric, like a rectangle with clean lines and travertine tile with small grout lines. It should have a big patio for entertaining. The pool 
is usually going to be white or blue, with a brighter colored tile and glass mosaics. The opposite side of that style could be creating a mountain lake theme: big waterfalls with a lot of boulders, a limestone patio and usually a lot of landscaping featuring more grass and bushes. It’s going to be a darker pool, with shades of gray, and the border tiles are going to be on the dark side with just hints of color coming out, like some blue from a gray slate tile.

Image: Lynn Spinnato