Seems like it’s been a hot second since we last spoke so I’d like to say welcome back to Happy Haute Home. It’s good to be back in the blogging world, I have missed you all so much.
Let me catch you up on what’s going on. We finished our huge backyard project (well mostly) and I’m so excited to show it to you! The long drawn out final reveal of our pool house is here!
What a Year 2021 Has Been
This year has been nuts for all of us. Feelings and emotions all over the place. Constantly trying to adjust to a new normal in an ever changing world. I have found that keeping busy and involved in my family and having side projects has helped me cope during the pandemic. Schools are back to a somewhat normal schedule so kids are out of the house during the week. I miss them but do enjoy the extra time I have now to devote to new ventures.
What Does the Word “Home” Mean to Me?
Our home and the feeling of family is very important to me. Our home is the most precious place on earth. A sense of feeling love, warmth, and protection is what our homes provide and I always want our family to have those feelings just like I did when I was growing up with my parents and brother.
As many of you know, I lost both my parents earlier this year. Those feelings have left me wanting to connect even more with my family. We have two teenagers, so there are definite challenges with the “connecting” part. Not going to lie and give you an impression of a perfect family or perfect life because we are far from that! But I do try as best I can (and fail often). One thing you can always count on from me…is honesty and truth. We are all struggling on different levels and need support from each other and to be lifted up….I hope I can bring some happiness to your day because you are part of my family too 🙂
Swimming Pool Reveal
Recently, I showed you the completed swimming pool in our backyard. What a long project this has been, almost a year and a half in the making. As I continue to add finishing touches, we are so happy with the progress we have made so far. You can also check out my Youtube video of our pool HERE.
If you have been following along on Instagram, most likely you have seen many photos of the pool and pool house already but there are several new ones as well, so sit back and enjoy.
When Did We Decide to Build a Pool House?
Making the decision to build an additional structure in the yard, such as a Pool house is a big deal. Many factors go into the decision and it should be thought through carefully.
We had been wanting to build a structure along with our pool as a place to relax and enjoy the outdoors in a covered area. That’s the first step…making the decision. Then comes the fun part…deciding how we will use the space.
What Features to Add into a Pool House?
Besides being a covered area to get away from the direct sunlight, how else do we want to use the space? Will we want a fireplace for chilly nights? Do we want a place to dine? How about a cooking station and island? What about an outdoor bathroom? Storage? Do we need a place to wash towels? What about a changing room? Where will the pool equipment go, I want it hidden.
Yes to all the above 😉 Sounds reasonable, right?
All of these questions should be answered before you start the process. Really think about wants vs. needs because the cost can go sideways very quickly. All our wants turned into needs and the cost did escalate dramatically 😬
When is the Best Time to Build a Pool House?
If you ask me, building the pool in conjunction with the pool house is the best way to have a complete and cohesive project in the end. If that’s not possible for example because of budgetary constraints, and you’d rather do it in phases, that is achievable too but I suggest you plan the whole project out before you begin.
Know the layout of the pool house when you build your pool, think about the orientation in the yard. Where will you capture the best views? What will make the area conducive for large and small gatherings? How will you serve food and drinks? Do you need a separate bar? So many aspects to consider up front.
Happy Haute Home Pool House Reveal
As I mentioned above, we wanted all those aspects in our outdoor space. To be able to gather around the fireplace, a place to dine, an area to grill and an outdoor bathroom, changing room, storage, and a place for laundry.
Pool House Design
Getting all those wants under one roof can be challenging so we decided to add attached pergolas on the sides of the house. We had our builder custom build them to the exact size we needed. By doing this, it allowed us to spread out the space without trying to cram everything under the roof.
I also wanted a symmetrical design and it wasn’t feasible to get that by adding everything inside. In order to have all the things we want under the roof, the fireplace and seating area would have to be on one side of the pool house and dining/grilling on the other side which would throw off the symmetry. We also felt it would feel cramped – so opted to spread out and create separate areas. We are very happy with the design and think it provides everything we need.
Pool House Lighting
Lighting is a big aspect of the pool house and should be thought about carefully when designing the space. In our initial design, I added the outside lanterns on the brick columns at the last minute and so glad I did! They make a huge statement to the overall feel of the area. The inside lights were initially going to go on either side of the TV but knowing us, we would want a big TV and wouldn’t want to compromise on space, so we moved them to the right and left of the fireplace.
We also added bistro lights to the pergolas which provide the prettiest glow at night. I had my awesome lighting contractor do this for us and he did such a great job.
The round iron chandelier is also a favorite of mine and so glad I opted for it.
The pool lights are also on a timer and come on each night as well.
Dusk is my favorite time to look outside. It’s not too dark and the lights have just come on. The up lighting on the hydrangea trees behind the chaises is also visible in this picture. My lighting contractor did this as well!
After the fact, we added a couple smaller lantern lights to each side of the pergola.
Designing the Outside of the Pool House
When designing the space, it was important for me to have it feel like the pool and pool house have always been on our property and was built with the home. I wanted to make it look similar to our house by using the same materials that are on our home which is mainly brick.
I always knew I would be painting the brick on the pool house as we did to our home a couple years back. I used the same color that we painted our home with as well.
Staying with the same aesthetic, we tried to mimic and use very similar tiles on the roof of the pool house.
The Inside of the Pool House
A side view of the dining area under the pergola.The cabinets were custom built on site and allow for plenty of storage in the dining area as well as the kitchen area.
Eventually, we will replace the dining table but this set still has some good use. My painters freshened it up a bit with a new coat of paint.
It was important to me to have a chandelier in the pool house. I’m not a big “fan” of ceiling fans…so that idea was a hard NO! Does it get hot inside the pool house during the summer, yes but we can easily add fans behind the columns so they will be out of sight, if the time comes and it bothers us enough.
Pool House Furniture
We still have a few pieces on order that will hopefully arrive sometime this month but with the way shipping times are going, it could be longer. I am waiting for a replacement sofa and 2 chairs. The two swivel chairs we currently have are fabulous and I love them. The coffee table is being switched out for this one HERE. As you know, supply chains are all messed up from the pandemic and furniture is back ordered for months. I believe there is a foam shortage for furniture?
Pool House Kitchen
The kitchen area of the pool house has plenty of cabinets and storage. We have a large outdoor grill (less expensive model HERE) that is sitting on top of the counter. If we ever decide to replace it, we will get a smaller grill, so I didn’t want to build the grill into the cabinet.
We have a refrigerator on each side of the pool house. One with adult beverages and one for the kids 😉
My bar stools are great for indoors but have not held up well outside. They are super cute and comfortable but should only be used minimally outdoors.
The bathroom entrance is pictured above. We will finish that project in the Spring.
Our countertops are granite and so far so good 🤞. We also have a pull out trash with separate recycle cans and built in ice maker. Having an ice maker outdoors was a must and has proven to be super useful.
Pool and Spa Spill Over
One of my favorite features of our pool and pool house is the attached Spa with spill over. The sound of the trickling water each day is so soothing and calming. It automatically comes on everyday and turns itself off.
Pool Surround Chaise and Cushions
The area leading up to the pool house is where we have our chaise chairs. I love the large umbrella in black with a white scalloped edge. It’s easy to open and close with a crank handle.
This area is perfect for sipping a cocktail and soaking in some vitamin D.
Night Time View of the Pool House
My favorite view of the pool house is in the evening. It’s just stunning. We have decided to leave the pool open during the winter months..we’ll see how that goes but it will be pretty to look at without a cover!
YouTube Video of the Pool House
I recently uploaded a video of the Pool House with all kinds of tidbits, head on over and check it out.
Future Plans for the Pool House
Next year, we plan to do more landscaping around the pool. Adding boxwoods to the sides of the pool to create a hedge, along with more lighting will enhance it greatly. I look forward to getting started with that in the Spring.
We will also finish up the bathroom and laundry rooms so stayed tuned!
It’s good to be back and I hope to share a lot more – Christmas decor coming up!!
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