An infinity pool, also known as a vanishing edge or negative edge pool, is a swimming pool designed to create the visual illusion of water extending to the horizon. This effect is achieved by having one or more pool walls set slightly lower than the water level, allowing water to overflow into a catch basin or trough concealed below.
Infinity pools have become coveted status symbols, associated with luxury resorts, high-end homes, and dramatic landscapes. Their seamless integration with the surrounding environment creates a serene, almost magical atmosphere.
What is an Infinity Pool?
An infinity pool utilizes clever design to make the water appear boundless. The term specifically refers to pools with one or more vanishing edges.
These vanishing edges are pool walls or lips positioned an inch or two lower than the water level. This allows water to flow over the edge and down into a hidden trough or catch basin below. The result is the illusion of water continuously extending towards the horizon.
Key Takeaway: Infinity pools have vanishing edges that conceal troughs to catch overflowing water, creating the optical effect of no boundaries.
Infinity pools are also called negative edge or rimless pools. They may have one vanishing edge or be designed so the water spills over multiple sides. The more edges turned into vanishing edges, the more striking the visual impact.
How Does an Infinity Pool Work?
The infinity pool illusion depends on precision engineering.
The vanishing edge is designed lower than the water level, enabling overflow. The amount the edge is lowered must be carefully calculated, typically 1-2 inches to allow smooth, laminar water flow without splashing.
Hidden around the pool perimeter is an overflow system to collect the water spilling over the vanishing edge. The system channels the water into the concealed catch basin or trough below.
The catch basin is on a separate filtration system from the main pool. It pumps water back into the infinity pool, creating a continuous flow and maintaining the water level.
This closed loop circulation system removes the need for skimmers along the vanishing edges. The entire rimless side essentially functions as one long invisible skimmer.
Key Takeaway: Infinity pools use a concealed overflow system to recirculate water spilling over vanishing edges back into the pool.
Infinity Pool vs Regular Pool
There are a few key differences between infinity pools and regular swimming pools:
- Vanishing edges – Infinity pools have one or more walls that function as vanishing edges. Regular pools have visible pool walls and coping all the way around.
- Overflow system – Infinity pools rely on a concealed overflow system and catch basin. Regular pools use deck-level skimmers.
- Perimeter skimmers – The vanishing edges eliminate the need for skimmers along those sides in infinity pools. Regular pools require periodic skimmers around the entire perimeter.
- Recirculation system – Infinity pools recirculate overflow water from the catch basin. The water level in regular pools is maintained by direct filtration.
- Construction – Infinity pools require more complex structural engineering and design. Regular pools have simpler requirements.
- Appearance – Infinity pools seamlessly blend in with the surroundings, looking boundless. Regular pools look like contained rectangular basins.
- Cost – Infinity pools are significantly more expensive, often 2-3 times the cost of a regular pool.
Infinity Pool Sizes
Infinity pools can range dramatically in size, from intimate 15-foot designs to expansive 300-foot resort-style versions.
Residential infinity pools are typically built to suit the space available. Small backyards may accommodate compact 15 to 30-foot infinity pools. Larger properties can incorporate expansive pools exceeding 50 feet.
Commercial infinity pools at hotels, casinos and resorts often span over 100 feet. Grand poolscapes can stretch 300 feet or more across multiple elevations and feature additional waterfalls and amenities.
When planning an infinity pool, available space is only one consideration. The surroundings must also be evaluated to ensure the pool complements the environment. Sweeping vistas best leverage the infinity effect.
Key Takeaway: Infinity pools range from 15-foot residential designs to 300-foot mega-pools at luxury resorts. The surroundings dictate the ideal size.
infinity pool construction
Constructing a properly functioning infinity pool requires advanced engineering and skill. Key considerations include:
- Structural design – Infinity pools often sit atop sloped sites. The foundation must account for geology, weight distribution and drainage.
- Waterproofing – Extreme waterproofing is vital, especially along vanishing edges. Membranes, sealants, and concrete additives help avoid leaks.
- Overflow system – Capturing and recirculating the overflow water requires precise design of the concealed catch basin and plumbing.
- Water flow – The system must enable smooth laminar flow over the vanishing edge without splashing or flooding the catch basin.
- Filtration – Infinity pools require 2-3 times more filtration capacity due to constant water turnover.
- Safety features – Railings, warning depths, non-slip surfaces, and structural backups promote safe use.
- Costs – Infinity pool construction costs 2-4 times more than regular pools given the complex requirements.
Skilled engineering is crucial in translating infinity pool designs into functional realities. Otherwise, problems with structural flaws, flooding, erosion and accidents can result.
infinity pool materials
Infinity pools utilize the same basic materials as regular swimming pools, with a few unique additions:
- Concrete – Steel-reinforced concrete forms the pool shell. Shotcrete (sprayed concrete) is often used on curved sections.
- Tile – Tile finishes the interior pool surface. Natural stone and glass tiles are popular high-end choices.
- Coping – Coping stones or tile edge the pool perimeter, except along vanishing edges.
- Waterproofing – Membranes and sealants line the shell to prevent leaks. PVC liners may be used for vinyl pools.
- Plumbing – PVC or ABS plastic pipes comprise the circulation system, along with pumps, filters and valves.
- Overflow system – The concealed trough and catch basin are constructed from concrete, tile, and stainless steel.
- Decking – Areas surrounding the pool are surfaced with materials like concrete, flagstone, or wood.
- Fencing – Glass fences, plantings or other barriers enhance safety and ambiance.
infinity pool dimensions
Infinity pool dimensions depend on the specific site constraints and the desired visual impact. Some common size guidelines:
- Lap pools – Lap pools range from 20 to 40+ feet long and allow swimming laps. A 40-foot pool is ideal for short laps.
- Soaking pools – Small soaking pools may be as short as 15 feet for intimate enjoyment. Elongated designs reach 50+ feet.
- Residential pools – Backyard infinity pools often span 15 to 50 feet. Very large residential pools may exceed 60 feet.
- Commercial pools – Hotel and resort infinity pools typically measure over 100 feet long. Grand pool complexes can span 300+ feet.
- Depth – Depth ranges from 3 to 6 feet for residential pools. Commercial pools often incorporate shallow and deep sections, up to 10+ feet.
- Width – Standard widths range from 6 feet for lap pools to 16 feet or more for large leisure pools. Wider pools accommodate more swimmers.
- Shape – Rectangular, oval, freeform and irregular curved shapes maximize site aesthetics.
Proper structural support and hydraulics must be ensured when designing oversized infinity pools. Professional engineers can best advise on ideal dimensions.
infinity pool design
Infinity pools offer incredible flexibility in design. Custom pools can be shaped to complement unique sites and match specific visions.
- Zero edges – Most infinity pools have one vanishing edge. Some configurations incorporate two, three or even four infinity edges.
- Shapes – Common shapes include rectangular, oval, freeform, and creative irregular shapes tailored to the site.
- Elevations – Pools may be designed at a single level or incorporate multiple elevations, steps, and terraces.
- Water features – Waterfalls, fountains, waterslides, and underwater seating can be integrated into large infinity pool designs.
- Landscaping – Gardens, pathways and hardscaping blend the pool and environment. Trees may partially obscure vanishing edges.
- Architectural features – Designs may incorporate arches, columns, fire bowls and other architectural details.
- Lighting – Underwater LED lighting, fiber-optics, and area lighting create dramatic nighttime ambiance.
- Accessories – High-end pools may include infinity spas, sun shelves, bubblers, current machines, and sound systems.
Imaginative infinity pool shapes, sizes, details and accessories can transform backyards into personal resorts.
Is an Infinity Pool Dangerous?
Properly designed infinity pools are no more hazardous than regular swimming pools. However, perceived risks, especially for children, should be addressed through prevention.
- Slippage – Wide coping, textured surfaces, and restricting access when wet reduce slip risks.
- Falls – Interior depths prevent falling outside the catch basin. Exterior guardrails and barriers add protection.
- Structural failure – Stringent building codes reduce risks of foundation, wall or coping failures.
- Contamination – Advanced filtration and UV systems minimize health hazards from bacteria.
- Access – Locking gates, pool covers, alarms, and restricting children’s access increase safety.
- Supervision – Actively supervising all pool users, especially weaker swimmers and children, prevents accidents.
With attentive design and prudent use, infinity pools can provide years of safe, luxurious enjoyment for people of all ages.
infinity pool cost
Infinity pools carry premium price tags, generally 2-4 times the cost of regular pools. Unique considerations that drive up costs include:
- Construction – Infinity pools require extra excavation, materials and engineering compared to basic pools.
- Overflow system – The concealed trough and recirculation system add complexity and materials.
- Filtration – High-capacity filtration systems are needed to handle the constant water turnover.
- Utilities – Running the circulation systems demands more electric and water utilities.
- Permits – Special permits, inspections and certifications often apply to infinity pool projects.
- Surroundings – Elaborate landscaping, views and exterior features maximize the infinity effect.
- Saltwater – Converting to a saltwater pool may cost an extra $2000-$4000.
- Accessories – Premium options like LED lighting, infinity spas, and water features add cost.
With professional installation, infinity pools typically start around $60,000. Luxury residential projects can easily exceed $100,000. Commercial infinity pools cost over $500,000.
infinity pool maintenance
To maximize enjoyment and longevity, infinity pools require consistent maintenance. Special considerations include:
- Water level – The water level must be continually topped up to prevent disappearing edges. Use pool covers to reduce evaporation.
- Catch basin – Regularly clean the concealed catch basin to ensure efficient water recirculation.
- Water testing – More frequent water testing is recommended to balance chemicals and pH due to constant water turnover.
- Filtration – Routinely inspect the circulation pump, overflow system, and high-capacity filters.
- Surface cleaning – Manually skim the pool surface to prevent debris from clogging the concealed drains.
- Tile – Use pH-neutral cleaners to keep waterline tiles stain-free. Reseal tile grout annually.
- Landscaping – Prune vegetation to avoid leaves and debris from accumulating near vanishing edges.
- Drainage – Check that deck drains and drainage areas are clear to prevent flooding.
With proper care, an infinity pool can provide a lifetime of endless enjoyment and standout style!
Infinity Pools in Turkey
Infinity pools have also gained popularity in the luxury homes, hotels, and resorts of Turkey. These visually stunning pools complement Turkey’s beautiful ocean vistas and mountainous landscapes.
You can find infinity pools gracing exclusive villas overlooking the Aegean and Mediterranean coasts. Infinity designs also enhance dramatic hillside hotels along the Turquoise Coast.
Major cities like Istanbul and Ankara feature infinity pools atop urban hotels and high-rise residences. Mountain lodges in destinations like Cappadocia incorporate infinity pools with breathtaking canyon views.
As Turkey’s tourism, construction and luxury home markets continue expanding, infinity pools will likely proliferate. Their unique illusion perfectly pairs with Turkey’s magnificent natural scenery.
Infinity pools utilize innovative designs to create the serene, magical effect of water merging into the horizon. While expensive to build and maintain, their beauty and versatility make infinity pools coveted backyard paradises.
With proper construction, infinity pools offer safe, elegant enjoyment for families and guests. Their striking illusion infuses properties with atmosphere, privacy and prestige.
For homeowners seeking the ultimate exterior upgrade, an infinity pool seamlessly melds luxury amenities with natural tranquility. The investment promises lasting memories, in a space that feels truly boundless.
How much does an infinity pool cost?
Infinity pools typically cost $60,000 to $100,000+ for residential installations. Commercial infinity pools at hotels and resorts start around $500,000. Costs vary based on size, design features, and site conditions.
What is the best infinity pool size?
Ideal dimensions depend on your space and preferences. Smaller backyards can accommodate compact 15 to 30-foot residential infinity pools. Larger properties allow for 40-foot+ designs. Commercial pools often exceed 100 feet.
Can you put an infinity pool anywhere?
No, infinity pools require specific conditions. They should be built on elevated, level sites with adequate load-bearing support. Unobstructed vistas are needed to maximize the visual impact.
Are infinity pools safe for kids?
Yes, with proper design including barriers and secured gates. Close adult supervision is still essential around all pools. Life jackets, alarms, and limiting pool access can further improve child safety.
How often should you clean an infinity pool?
Clean the catch basin monthly. Test water chemistry and filter weekly during peak season, adjusting as needed. Skim the surface daily and perform a thorough cleaning every 2-3 months. Annual drain and acid washes keep water crystal clear.
Do infinity pools use more water?
Yes. The constant water circulation over vanishing edges leads to higher rates of evaporation and water loss. Using a pool cover can significantly reduce evaporation. Expect to add water more frequently compared to regular pools.