4 Reasons Why You Need a Cocktail Pool

(and how to survive when you’re building one)

It only took me 3 years to convince the hubs that we neeeeeeeded a pool! He was not a fan of one more thing to have to tend to on his one day off each week, and we had always heard how much maintenance was involved in caring for a pool. And then I started reading about “cocktail” or “plunge” pools. They’re all over Pinterest. I shared the idea with John, and he was intrigued. And finally! Ding! The lightbulb glowed from heaven above, and he was convinced! Here’s some information about cocktail pools, why they’re a smart choice for empty nesters, and how you can survive when you’re having one installed!


The smaller size means less maintenance than a standard size pool. Less maintenance means less TIME spent tending to the pool, and more time actually enjoying the pool! We usually brush the pool twice a week, and skim daily. But it’s so small I can literally stand on the side of the pool and get it skimmed in minutes. We have a robot vacuum, as my grandson calls it. We call him Tank. Tank runs every evening and gets the random stuff that plops in there. He does a great job! We love Tank! ❤️


A smaller pool is generally less expensive to build. Of course, the more bells and whistles you add will raise the cost, but you get more bang for your buck if you’re starting out smaller to begin with. A smaller pool means fewer chemicals are needed! And that means fewer dollar bills bleeding out of your checkbook. The smaller pool uses less water too, which means a lower water bill, versus a standard pool.


Though we have a large back yard, the spot for the pool is a bit tight, due to utility easements. We worked with our contractor, who adjusted the pool design perfectly for our space. He jokingly calls our pool an oversized water feature! With the added waterfalls and fire pit the pool is truly lovely! It’s added so much beauty to what was once a flat expanse of grass, and not much else.


It’s the perfect pool for empty nesters, whether it’s just the hubs and I floating and chatting, or just sitting by the firepit watching the sun go down. But it’s also fun for our kids and grandkids. It provides plenty of room for splashing, jumping and just floating around. We had the contractor add internal benches to each side, where our grandson loves to sit and play with his trucks.

Now, if you’ve decided to bite the bullet and build a pool, here’s some advice on how to survive the process and what to expect:

  1. Work closely with your contractor in the design process. We tweaked the design and placement several times until we were completely satisfied. Once that first hole is dug there’s no going back! So be sure it’s exactly what you want. And where you want it!
  2. It’s messy! Be prepared! Mud! Dirt! Trash! Gunnite and concrete and trucks and ruts and rebar and wood chunks and broken rocks, oh my. I almost lost my mind. It rained and the pool filled with standing water. And it was stinky! At one point I just kept the curtains closed and refused to look. Be patient. That stage won’t last long, and the outcome is worth it. IMG_6993-COLLAGE
  3. Research tile and color options before you begin. You just can’t imagine how many pool tile designs there are in this world! It’s incredibly overwhelming. Having that taken care of before installation begins is just one less thing for you to have to worry about later. (I didn’t do this, so learn from my mistake!)
  4. Most importantly – find a reputable pool contractor. There are many fly-by-night pool builders out there. You don’t want Joe Dirt digging a big old mud pit in your back yard that’s going to end up being a natural disaster in a few years. Get referrals! And check them!

We’re so glad we built our oversized water feature, aka cocktail pool!


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I predict many special memories ahead!


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Cheers, Andy

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