A pool renovation with an umbrella and sun bed

Luxury Poolside Landscaping Ideas

The interaction between the design of your pool and the rest of your landscape can make or break the space. Yes, installing the right swimming pool can make a simple backyard look more inviting and beautiful, but arguably more important to the overall effect of the area is the landscaping. We’ve taken many a sad-looking existing pool over the years and transformed them through the use of clever and considered landscaping.

Landscaping is a great way to elevate your pool and backyard, and If your pool is holding your backyard back, or you’re looking to build your dream pool and garden, TDL is here to help. Here are some excellent poolside landscaping ideas that may improve your backyard.


  1. Poolside pergolas

A poolside pergola is a luxury afforded partly by the size of your garden. You can turn these spaces into outdoor rooms and kitchens if you’ve got the budget, but any amount of shaded entertaining area by your pool can make a big difference to the space. On occasion, we’ve even shortened existing pools to make room for entertaining, because it not only diversifies the space but also invites greater use of the pool itself. They give people a place to stop and relax before diving back into the pool, or a place to supervise swimming children.

A poolside pergola

  1. Install a poolside shower

This is a simple touch that finishes off some of our favourite pools. Copper showers are a particular favourite of ours because they can develop a beautiful patina. Outdoor showers make a great addition to a pool area whether you keep them simple or add in extras like benches, tubs, and basins, and nothing quite captures the feeling of being on vacation (without actually going on vacation) like showering in the open air.

A concrete pool with an outdoor shower

  1. Consider Adding a Water Feature

Water features can make great additions to a swimming pool and contribute to the ambiance of your garden. Children especially enjoy them, but the right water feature can win over anybody. It can be easy for pool-based water features to come across as tacky, and we recommend choosing something that is either subtle and/or in keeping with the style of the pool surrounds. When it comes to pool landscape ideas, this is one of the most popular ones because who doesn’t love a fancy waterfall on the side of their swimming pool?

a pool with a water feature

  1. Get a Resort-Like Feel with the right planting

When the right planting is built into your pool area, it can be stunning and eye-catching. The trick to choosing poolside species is to look for plants that are hardy, don’t tend to drop a lot of debris, and are appropriate for the style you’ve chosen for the space. Among our favourite poolside species are frangipani, viburnum suspensum, star jasmine, agave, echeveria, and mondo grass.

Planting around your pool is a great way to add shade and colour to the space, even the simplest pool with the right planting will never go unnoticed.

a resort style pool and landscape

  1. Modernise your pool fencing, or eliminate it almost completely

If you have an existing pool, there’s a good chance the fencing was installed without thinking much about the aesthetic value it can provide. If that’s the case, making an upgrade to your pool fencing can be a simple way to upgrade and update the entire area. Often, our clients favour glass fencing. Glass pool fencing reduces obstructions, giving the illusion of wide-open space while improving safety and visibility. For new pools, if possible, elevating the pool or creating a moat around it can help to minimise the need for fencing, which can be even better than using glass.

If glass and moats aren’t for you, there are so many options for pool fencing that it’s near impossible not to find a design that perfectly suits your taste.

a concrete pool with a moat

  1. Consider Re-Paving the Pool Area

If you’re redoing your swimming pool area, paving is often a good place to start. We’ve seen countless pool areas suffering from dated or mislaid paving, and while it’s not a small change, updating the paving is frequently the greatest improvement in a pool renovation. While you’re at it, look for opportunities to create space for grass and planting. Planting in between pavers in some areas can soften the look of the space and provide a cool refuge for hot feet on sunny days. You’ll get a look that is both classic and modern at the same time, and you can even rest your toes in the grass before you enter the pool to take a dip.

a re-paved kidney shaped pool

  1. Create a Firepit or Conversation Circle

If you’re out in the pool area for a party or social gathering and it starts to get a little chilly, it can be nice to be able to extend your time outdoors by warming things up. When you add a fire pit or fireplace to your pool’s landscaping, it can increase the usability of your outdoor space dramatically.

They can invite winter use of the garden, and even if it isn’t that cool outside, a lit fire adds ambiance to your outdoor pool area. Fire pits can be simple, wood-burning pits, or run on propane, whichever way you go, a firepit to your pool area can help you to create a lot of great memories.

A landscape design render featuring a fire pit and conversation circle

  1. Add a Poolside Sun Deck or Built-in Seating

Pool areas, especially at their far ends, can sometimes appear sparse and unwelcoming. Adding built-in seating or a sun deck at one end of the landscape, or along a nearby wall can fill out the landscape. Poolside seating is essential if your pool and alfresco areas are somewhat disconnected. Whatever your budget, incorporating poolside seating into the landscape is essential.

Built in poolside seating

  1. Upgrade Your Pool With a Built-in Spa

When it comes to luxury features for your swimming pool area, it doesn’t get more luxe than a spa. Built-in spas are a versatile addition to a pool. In renovations where the kids have grown out of the pool, these are particularly popular. Spas work well when designed to blend in with the pool, and if you’re upgrading an existing pool, we recommend taking the opportunity to revise the tiling and paving surrounding the pool as well, if necessary.

A concrete pool and spa.

  1. Get the lighting right

When planning your new pool and garden, don’t forget about the lighting! Lighting can be the difference between a forgotten space and a delightful nighttime extension of your home. Our tips are to focus on the area’s main features and footpaths. Illuminate any water features, feature trees, and seating areas, as well as the pool itself. Be sure to also provide light to any steps or hazards.

A concrete pool design showing lighting design.

A Few Final Words

Before you decide which additions would be right to freshen up your swimming pool area, you should give the area a good clean. Go ahead and sweep and clean the pool deck, pull out any weeds in any of the existing landscaping, mow and rake the yard, and remove any dead plants from the area. This will make it much easier for you to get an idea of what to add to the area, which makes it easier to communicate your needs to a landscaping company such as TDL who can help bring your vision to life.

Contact us today to learn more about poolside landscaping ideas and get a quote for your backyard.