In all the years we’ve done the Masters of Design issues, we’ve never heard a story quite like this.

A builder was charged with designing a “backyard waterpark” for a family with two young children. There were to be places to explore, such as a cave dotted with dinosaur “fossils,” a splashpad, a full-sized pool, a shallow kiddie pool — and much more. A lot of the work was done in the winter under a heated tent, and the kids had to wait until spring for “the big reveal.” The builder was on hand, but nothing could’ve prepared him for the 6-year-old’s reaction. She promptly dubbed him the “magical unicorn,” which she’d seen on TV, because it makes children’s dreams come true.

No doubt many children — and not a few adults — feel that something magical has been created in their yards when a talented designer dreams up their aquatic creations.

Indeed, the fossil cave isn’t the only project with fantasy overtones.

From a multifaceted aquascape with fire features that appear to float on the surface of a spa to an innovative water environment featuring an unexpected window, these projects all contain elements of wonder.

The Masters of Design have outdone themselves. Again.

But don’t take our word for it. Check out the 14 incredible projects yourself.