Tile It Back A Bit
Tiled pool surfaces have become more popular than ever, thanks to their durable nature, incredible aesthetics, affordability and variety. Jumping on this enduring trend, Sydney Pool + Outdoor Design’s Kirrily Ireland consults Carl Yench, managing partner of Europe Imports Pty Ltd, and discovers how pool owners can find the perfect tiles to complement their own aquatic retreat.
If you’re not sure whether tiles would be the right choice for your pool, who better to ask than, as Yench puts it, the “largest pool mosaic importer in Australia”? The Europe Imports team have been importing and supplying pool tiles since the early 2000s, providing Australians with fantastic products from Ezarri.
With all his years of experience, Yench says, “Aside from aesthetics, I consider longevity through long-life product expectancy to be a crucial reason to fully tile a pool. Ezarri offer a product with lifetime warranty against colour fade and aesthetics, and the mosaic mounting system, JointPoint, exceeds Australian standards for pool tile application.” Such a strong and reliable pool surface will save you money down the track, removing the need to renovate and resurface in the future.
Another reason to consider tiles is their additional functions. Ezarri’s anti-slip Safe-Step system, for instance, “can be used from simple non-slip step edges and ramps through to complete hydrotherapy surfacing, enabling the user to exercise in the pool with a grip surface”. This will open up the various ways you can use your pool, and ensure the safety of everyone who swims in it, from young children to the elderly.
Longevity, functionality and safety on the list, the final reason for choosing pool tiles is that they simply look great! With such a large variety of colours, types, sizes and effects to select from, they can boost the design of your pool and help you achieve a luxurious look, without breaking the bank or compromising on quality
YOUR STYLE OF TILE
Of course, with variety comes decision making, and if you’re not so familiar with the world of pool tiles, it’s best to speak with an expert and educate yourself before settling on a choice. “Education plays a key role in helping people choose a type of tile for their pool,” Yench agrees. “Some products offer benefits whereas others can behold undesirable traits that are not commonly known. We work with the client and help them understand the pros and cons of the options they are considering so that they can make an informed decision.”
If you already have the other elements of your pool locked in, this can be a great starting point to help you decide. Yench believes that for the best results, customers should “consider all factors such as desired water colour, coping, surrounds, landscapes, aspect, shape, pool depth, features, house position, internal and external colour palettes, pool fittings and grout colour”, which can all influence the tiles’ effectiveness and play a part when it comes to finding something that will be complementary.
There’s no arguing that blue is the most obvious colour for a pool, however there’s no reason to stick to the status quo when it comes to your tiled surface. If the surrounding landscape, home design and outdoor area’s colour palette lend themselves well to another shade, why not include this in your pool design, too? “In my eyes there is no one-size-fits-all solution to pool colours,” Yench says, “it’s best to speak with experienced distributors about which colour options will work best for your project.” Classic blacks and opalescent whites make for stylish alternatives, however even a unique shade of blue can work wonders, such as a tantalising turquoise or sophisticated sapphire.
In terms of your tiles’ shape and size, you’ll find this will generally not be dictated too much by the shape and size of your pool, with the occasional exception. “For example,” Yench says, “the pool might be very intricately designed with heavy curves, which would dictate the use of a smaller mosaic.”
If you’re still not completely sure, it never hurts to speak with an experienced pool tiler or supplier, or even someone who has had a positive experience from owning a tiled pool. “Personally, I have used Ezarri Gemma Hematite in my pool, the reasons for this are because of the natural look of the design and the amazing water colour that it creates,” the expert says. “The design utilises the latest print technology to provide a unique marbled effect, which emulates the precious stone Hematite. It is a truly unique design. However, having said this, my taste is always changing!”
VIBRANT AND VERSA-TILE
Once you know exactly what you want for your pool, the next step is to have it surfaced in this fantastic product. For this, you’ll need an experienced pool tiler – finding a trusted professional is key to ensuring the execution goes smoothly. “Some areas of a pool can be more challenging than others,” Yench explains, “however a good pool tiler will explain that it’s not so much about the difficulty of tiling curves, corners, steps, or spas, [rather] it’s more the time it takes to prep, plan and execute the installation.” Extra time might have to be allocated for a more intricate section, but the seamless outcome will be worth the wait.
Of all the amazing qualities pool tiles hold, their ability to form visual features along the surface is perhaps the most exciting. Among custom printed and pixel murals and patterns, Yench’s favourite way to create a feature is to use a “subtle mix with varied tile effects”. “By using a subtle mix that comes to life in certain circumstances, the pool looks beautiful in general, but when you walk by on particular angles, you notice the different effects coming to life, which turns the whole pool into a feature.”
Whether you’re planning on resurfacing an old pool or looking into options for a new one, tiles should be on the list. Stunning in appearance, clever in function, and versatile in application, they’ll bring a world of benefits to your beloved pool.