Top Landscape Architect Shares Design Insights, Pool Trends, and 2021 Predictions

Come find the answers to your burning backyard questions.
Nelson 20120711 1625

Photograph by Phil Nelson Photography

When designing or renovating a home, creating spaces for enjoyable outdoor living is just as important as the interiors. But doing this requires an expert eye. Landscape Architect John De Feo joined Shoreline Pools as the head of the Design Services team in 2015 and is a force in the industry. With a wealth of knowledge to share, we picked De Feo’s brain about what it takes to turn a backyard into a sanctuary, trend predictions for 2021, and everything in between.

Top Landscape Architect Shares Design Insight And 2021 Predictions Shoreline Pools House

Photograph by Phil Nelson Photography

What do you consider when designing a backyard oasis?

At Shoreline Pools, every backyard design is unique to the customer. Our first step is to learn as much as we can about the customer and their vision for the new or renovated space. Who will be using it – adults, children, grandchildren, pets? How will it be used – family fun, entertaining, evenings? Next, we look to the property setting, architecture of the home and our customer’s style preferences to guide a comprehensive swimming pool and outdoor living design.

Top Landscape Architect Shares Design Insight And 2021 Predictions Shoreline Pools Grill

Photograph by Phil Nelson Photography

With people staying at home more than ever, what are clients requesting most?

Our customers want to extend and expand their outdoor entertaining capabilities. To deliver on the need for usable outdoor space, we are designing a lot of covered dining areas and protected lounge spaces, like pergolas, wired for lighting, ceiling fans, and televisions. We are also building expansive outdoor kitchens with gourmet elements like grills, pizza ovens, refrigerators, and sinks.

What strategies do you have for making outdoor spaces enjoyable year-round?

We are incorporating a lot of heat features. Spas have always been a popular request—for years customers wanted spas that were separate from the pool or elevated with a waterfall. But one of our favorite design trends is incorporating the spa into the interior of the pool. The result is clean and elegant, and it allows our customers to protect both the pool and spa with a single automatic safety cover. We’re also designing more custom fire pits, fire tables, and fireplaces as well as installing overhead heat lamps into covered entertaining spaces that surround the pool.

Top Landscape Architect Shares Design Insight And 2021 Predictions Shoreline Pools Fireplace

Photograph by Phil Nelson Photography

How long does it take to put a pool in once ground breaks and what time of year is best for this?

People are often surprised to hear that it takes Shoreline 8-10 weeks to build most of our swimming pools. However, town approvals, permits, and inspections can take several months in some cases, and we have seen further delays since the pandemic, so we recommend that our customers begin planning several months in advance of when then want to be swimming. Designing, planning, and construction continue year-round, so there is no bad time to start.

Sp 3drendering Westport

3D Rendering by John De Feo

Nelson 20171010 09161 Edit Edit Edit

Photograph by Phil Nelson Photography

What outdoor space or pool trends do you predict for 2021?

West Coast and Southern states have been incorporating elaborate year-round outdoor living spaces surrounding their swimming pools for quite a while. The East Coast climate has some limitations, but 2020 has pushed us to create spaces that can be used in different capacities throughout the majority of the year, and we see this trend continuing into 2021 and beyond.


Conceptual Landscape Design Plan by John De Feo

Top Landscape Architect Shares Design Insight And 2021 Predictions Shoreline Pools Kitchen

Photograph by Phil Nelson Photography

There are many ways to turn your outdoor space into your favorite place. With Shoreline Pools working year-round, you can get your home ready now for splashy fun or cozy evenings by the fire. Their experienced team creates elegant backyards by combining innovative swimming pool and landscape design with the latest advancements in technology and safety.

To learn more and schedule a consultation with industry expert John De Feo, visit their website.