Launch Slideshow

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Homeowner Dave Lucas wanted to create a deck and spa to mirror the natural beauty of his Bellingham, Wash., house.

Lucas, who owns a nearby art gallery, also designed the home, which is situated on a woodsy, 1-acre lot where he and his wife Donna live. One important priority for this design was that the spascape match the house stylistically.

“There’s a natural look in our landscaping and our home, which features wood beams, wood floors and the earthy toned furnishings,” Lucas notes. “We hope the deck echoes the architecture of the house and the gardens.”

Using the Google 3-D design software Sketch-Up, Lucas created a 400-square-foot deck. After some consideration, he decided to construct it out of Trex, a composite decking material, for its durability. He also incorporated stainless steel tubing into the railing.

The couple preferred a smaller spa, and went with a three-person, 150-gallon, 12-jet Rendezvous model by Marquis Spa.

The triangular vessel was obtained from Orca Spa & Pool in Anacortes, Wash. Company owner Jack Greene acted as a design consultant on the project, providing input on the spa’s placement, as well as material choices and accoutrements. “This installation is a personal favorite of mine,” Greene says. “The overall effect is greater than each of its individual components.”

A critical element of the setup was lighting for the deck and the water. “I learned about the importance of lighting in college and at the gallery,” Lucas says. So he installed a low-voltage system that turns the lights on automatically at night and off in the morning.

The eight lights are spaced equally around the deck and, along with the spa’s illumination, set a dramatic mood and draw attention to a 24-inch-tall Buddha on a nearby bench, which serves to underscore the Japanese garden theme.

Music wasn’t part of the original plans, but after installing the spa, Lucas decided to add wireless speakers, a transmitter and a remote control for access anywhere. “I thought it would be nice to have music available,” he notes. For the Lucases, this natural blend of music, water and woods forms the ultimate serene retreat.