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    Credit: PHOTO BY TODD MORRISON

  • Image

    Credit: PHOTO BY TODD MORRISON

 

Masters of Design Winners

  • Like Nature Made It

    An Illinois builder hand-selected key boulders to create a natural look in a half-acre water garden

     
  • Tiny Treasure

    A suburban backyard is transformed into an entertaining retreat

     
  • Adventureland

    An original backyard waterpark design that celebrates childhood

     
  • No Place Like Rome

    An Arizona backyard gets a spa fit for an emperor

     
  • Long on Style

    This swim spa is the perfect complement to a custom deck overlooking a ravine

     
 

Natural Beauty

John Anderson has a knack for designing pools that fit naturally into their surroundings, thanks to smart use of stonework, waterfalls and landscaping. A major flood plain, though, caused some design headaches for the designer. The property sits just a few yards from Stone River, and to get a permit, Anderson had to raise the equipment area above the 100-year flood level. A 6-foot-tall wall neatly obscures the equipment from view. Like Mother Nature around it, this backyard continues to change each season.

Effortless Design

To create a backyard that was more rustic than ritzy, Anderson and his team started with a 19-by-40-foot fiberglass shell. The interior is painted a custom chocolate-brown color Anderson calls “Mystic River,” which creates the soft jade look of a natural body of water. “There was a lot of skepticism about the color before we put the water in,” Anderson says.

Tennessee quartzite forms the large deck around the pool and nearby spa, with the perimeter accented by locally produced brick. While two small, natural-rock waterfalls hug either end of the pool, the back side is treated only with coping for an unobstructed view of the river and wildlife. Numerous plantings tie the pool area into the natural setting.