Pool House Summer Sanctuaries: 3 Projects from Top Designers

GTM Architects designed this pool house for a young family who enjoys spending time outdoors. Photography by Diego Valdez.

There’s no place like home, especially this summer. And there’s no better way to enjoy your home during the summer months than with outdoor sanctuaries, including pool houses. Three top architectural firms share recent pool house designs that fit each family’s needs.

Mini Retreat

A shower, changing area and storage room are tucked inside this pool house designed by GTM Architects.

The idea of retreating to the outdoors was on the top of the list for this young Chevy Chase, Maryland family who worked with George Myers of GTM Architects to not only design their custom home, but also their backyard pool house and outside spaces. A full-size, stainless-steel refrigerator, microwave, sink, and maple cabinets, as well as granite bar with four stools facing a 65-inch, flat-screen TV complete the kitchen area.

Gathering Grounds

A shower, changing area and storage room are tucked inside this pool house designed by GTM Architects. Photography by Diego Valdez.

With a large lot, about the size of two football fields, the owners transformed the one-time sledding hill into three outdoor zones, including a pool house where they can cook in the covered, but exposed kitchen, as well as gather with family and friends.

Inviting Settings

A kitchen with a full-size refrigerator, microwave and sink provides a spot to cook and entertain in this pool house designed by GTM Architects. Photography by Diego Valdez.

Separated from the house by about 100 feet, the pool and pool house provide a sanctuary in the woods for the family. The pool house also includes a shower, changing area and storage room with dryer for the towels.

Modern Marvel

A stone pathway and flagstone pool deck lead to the year-round pool house designed by Rill Architects. Retractable sliding glass walls encase three sides of the pool house. Photography by Eric Taylor.

For a Great Falls, Virginia family, a pool house wasn’t originally in the plan, but when they started discussing the addition of a screened-in space in the open expanse of their backyard with Jim Rill of Rill Architects, the design quickly turned into a year-round pool house.

Flexible Options

The interior of the heated and cooled pool house designed by Rill Architects offers low maintenance furnishings. Photography by Eric Taylor.

Sliding glass walls by Solar Innovations encase three sides with the fourth solid wall housing the kitchen, powder room, changing room, and storage.

Well Equipped Interiors

The vaulted ceiling and kitchen cabinets feature clear stained maple in this pool house designed by Rill Architects. Photography by Eric Taylor.

The kitchen includes Lynx appliances featuring an indoor grill with an outdoor vent hood, refrigerator, ice machine, and warming drawers. The ceiling, walls and cabinets are made of clear stained maple with the kitchen island also highlighting a Caesarstone waterfall counter. Providing sitting, eating and cooking areas inside, the pool house also has heating, cooling and a sound system.

Nighttime Delight

The Rill Architects designed pool house glows at night. Photography by Eric Taylor.

Flagstone finishes the flooring as well as the pool deck. Janus et Cie furniture upholstered in Perennials fabrics, plus a Janus et Cie chandelier round out the amenities of this Rill Architects designed space.

Beach House Vibes

This Anthony Wilder pool house opens to a saltwater pool and fire pit at the other end. Photography by Morgan Howarth.

The owners of this Bethesda, Maryland home wanted to make the most of their small homesite while also being respectful of the style of their existing home. So, they enlisted the Anthony Wilder Design Build Team of Anthony Wilder, Marian Vaias and Shannon Kadwell to devise a plan to orient the pool within the triangular lot, as well as use contemporary materials and colors on the pool house to complement the home.

Spa Amenities

A hot tub is another amenity of this outdoor oasis punctuated by the Anthony Wilder designed pool house at the far end. Photography by Morgan Howarth.

Double glass doors open into a sitting area with sleep sofa and kitchenette, while half-round windows let in additional sunlight.

Luxurious Features

To the right of the entry door is a stainless steel shower to rinse off before entering the Anthony Wilder designed pool house. Photography by Morgan Howarth.

Taking advantage of the steep lot, the designers added a basement for storage and to hold the mechanical and plumbing systems, which gave them more room for main floor entertaining spaces.

Fresh Finds

Frosted glass accents the shower inside the pool house designed by Anthony Wilder Design-Build. Photography by Morgan Howarth.

The pool house also features pocket doors to powder and changing rooms, plus a large shower with frosted glass. A separate, stainless steel shower in the front provides a place to rinse off the pool’s saltwater before entering.

Personal Retreat

A blue, white and cream color scheme is found inside this pool house designed by the Anthony Wilder team. Photography by Morgan Howarth.

The interiors include a white bead-board ceiling and white kitchen cabinets, as well as a blue, white and cream color scheme. Finishes inside and out provide no-slip surfaces, extensive stonework and lighting, an outdoor sound system, and screened doors for a real beachy feel in a pool house designed for year-round use.

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