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3 Pool Type & Shape Ideas for Phoenix, AZ

May 14, 2020

With its arid climate, living in Phoenix, Arizona comes with many perks. Not least of which is the ability to swim several months out of the year instead of just June through August. In fact, even though nights may be chilly, the days are often hot, and that means cooling off with a dip in your backyard pool. If a backyard dip is on your wishlist, you’ve probably researched the different pool type and shape ideas. When you envision floating in the cool water or entertaining friends and family poolside, what does your perfect pool look like?

Choose Quality For a Pool That Lasts You Years

Quality is an often overused word, but if you want a pool that’s going to last you for several years, you have to choose a company that focuses on quality first.

Ask for recommendations and research the landscaping companies in your area before you choose one.

What does quality mean? Simply put, it’s choosing to use the best materials, and working with an expert team that’s skilled in bringing your Arizona pool ideas to life.


When it comes to pool materials there are three main types that stand for quality: fiberglass, concrete and vinyl. Of these three, fiberglass is the only one that comes pre-fabricated and ready to install. The build takes less time, overall, but doesn’t sacrifice on quality. All the features you desire are built-in, including stairs and seating, based on your specifications.

Concrete pools, also known as gunite pools, are the most flexible in terms of design. They can be wide, narrow, big or small — there’s no limit. The pool is literally built from the ground up starting with excavating and plumbing installation. If you’re looking for a completely unique design, concrete is the way to go. Plus, its longevity means you can go 5 to 10 years with little maintenance. Vinyl pools tend to be popular. They’re not made entirely of vinyl, but rather include a vinyl liner that covers the structure of the pool. Liners can last up to 15 years when properly cared for. Like fiberglass pools, they’re non-porous, making them easy to clean.

Importance of a Reliable Team

A reliable landscaping team can take your vision of a desert pool idea and bring it to life. They work with you every step of the way, even improving on your vision and showing you how to expand upon it. They explain the steps that go into the different types of pools and which one is best suited for your lifestyle — in terms of maintenance and use. In the end, you’re left with a stunning backyard feature that will serve as the focal point for years to come.

Pool Type and Shape Ideas for Your Phoenix Landscape

There are certainly no shortages of pool landscaping ideas. You can find tons of Pinterest boards and idea articles dedicated to these backyard oases. Before you get started, though, it’s a good idea to know your options for types and shapes.

Why Inground Pools Are Superior

One of the most important decisions you’ll make involves choosing between an above-ground and inground pool. Some people consider above-ground pools because they take less time to set up, but inground pools come with major perks, they:

  • Are fully customizable
  • Blend in seamlessly with the landscape
  • Allow for poolside or water seating
  • Are stronger and can withstand the elements for longer
  • Connect to a spa easily
  • Appeal to the eye
  • Increase the home’s value
  • Require less maintenance when cared for properly

Small Backyards Work Great, Too

The beauty of inground pools is that you can choose a small or large design to fit your specifications. Not all backyards are expansive, in fact, most people have smaller backyards these days. That doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the luxury of taking a plunge. Small pool ideas are plentiful, and with a custom layout, you can easily add one to your backyard. The beauty of a custom pool is that you can:

  • Design the layout
  • Choose where to place it
  • Landscape around it to make your yard feel bigger

With a smaller landscape, it’s a good idea to avoid placing a pool in the center of the yard. Instead, place it closer to the house and then take advantage of the space around it to place plants.

If you’re stuck, consult with your design team and let them show you a myriad of ways to make your current landscape work.

3 of Our Favorite Pool Shapes and Ideas

When it comes to designing your inground pool, there’s a myriad of options at your fingertips. Whether you like the traditional shapes or want to go more modern, your landscaping team can make it happen.


Traditional shapes include those like:

  • Round
  • Rectangle
  • Oval
  • Kidney

These four are the most popular shapes among homeowners who install pools. They give off a classic look that most people fall in love with and are drawn to when they’re looking to install a water feature in their backyard.


Contemporary pools take a step away from the ordinary. They include shapes such as:

  • Figure 8
  • Geometric
  • L-shaped
  • Roman

These pools are designed to create an impact. They’re made to wow visitors and in many cases, showcase luxury. If you’re thinking of adding rocks and cascading waterfall features, these are the pool shapes to do it with.


If you’re truly looking for something unique, though, you can always opt for a custom — or freeform — design.

This is one that you and the design team come up with, depending on your personal taste and your particular landscape.

For an exotic look, consider a pool with multiple layers, for example, where one pool sits above another, but you can easily switch between the two. Some people want to go even further and form the pool in the shape of something they’re passionate about. For example, some musicians have pools in the shape of a guitar.

For a truly relaxing spa experience, a hot tub alongside the pool, or even as part of the pool with a divisive barrier, is the perfect way to unwind after a swim.

Choosing the Right Depth

Once you’ve got the design you want in mind for your backyard pool, you have to decide how deep you want it to be. The most common type of pool is sloped which has a shallow to deeper construction, and is friendly for all ages and swimmer levels.

Deep pools have their advantages, too, namely that you can easily install a diving board or slide, upping the overall entertainment factor. They’re also excellent for exercising and athletic training.

Shallow pools are mostly for relaxing and lounging as opposed to swimming and entertainment. They’re easier to maintain and use less water.

If you decide to go with a multi-layered pool, you can have one layer of shallower waters and traditional depths in another. Let your creativity lead the way.

Pool Landscaping

You don’t want to just put a pool in and call it a day. In order for it to truly shine, you need to have outstanding landscaping features.

An elaborate deck with just the right amount of greenery and maybe even colorful flowers to enhance the tropical theme.

Talk to your design team about potential pool landscaping ideas you can implement, and you’ll be surprised at just how many options you have.

Think desert plants such as cacti and agave, along with flowers including marigolds and poppies.

Consider adding a ramada or pergola to the deck area, for a covered space where you can relax at night. Outdoor kitchens are a perfect complement if you love to entertain. What’s better than a cookout while everyone basks in the summer sun poolside and jumps in the water to cool off? Add a refrigerator and you can house cool drinks within an arm’s reach.

Our Pool Design Process

When you’re searching for and hiring a Phoenix pool company to lead the way in implementing the pool type and shape ideas you have, we promise that there’s no better team to trust than us.

Our process is straightforward and you’ll know where the project stands at any given time. We believe in full transparency and in delivering on our promises. That’s who we are.

  1. Our first step involves filling out the Project Inquiry Form, which you’ll find on our website, and telling us all about your desert pool ideas.
  2. Once we’ve reviewed your inquiry, we’ll reach out for a brief 5-10 minute conversation to discuss your plan further.
  3. Our gallery of pool ideas in Phoenix is a great place to start for inspiration and we invite you to take a look at our past projects.
  4. The next step is a home visit from one of our professional landscaping team members. During this meeting, they’ll take a look at your backyard, evaluate the landscape and make sure your design is feasible. You can expect this to take about an hour and those involved in the decision-making process should be present.
  5. Send us your designs, let us see what you’re interested in. Whether you have small or large inground pool ideas, we want to see what sparks your interest so we can create a 3D rendering or CAD image of the possibilities.
  6. When you meet with us in our office, we’ll go over all of the pertinent details including discussing the design, changes you want to implement and your specific budget information. This usually takes between 30 and 60 minutes.
  7. Once we’ve finalized all the details, there’s one last meeting where we’ll show you the finished design and go over the contract in detail before you sign.
  8. We’ll deliver your detailed plan and work out a schedule that’s favorable for both parties.
  9. Construction on your pool landscape begins.
  10. When work is complete, we’ll discuss all of the details you need to know, including maintenance and care instructions, and your warranty.
  11. The pool is finished and beckoning you to come on in — the water’s fine.

If you’re ready to take the (literal) plunge and break ground on that swimming pool you’ve had in mind since you bought the house — you’ve come to the right place. Our expert team at Straight Line Landscape is ready to turn your dreams into reality. Let us show you how we can go above and beyond, taking your desert pool idea and stepping it up.

If you’re ready to bring your backyard poolscape to life, contact us today and get the best experts in Phoenix, Arizona on the job.


Author: Holly Banghart

Holly, our senior designer and sales manager since 2010, brings expertise in design, industry certifications, and Master Gardener qualification. She crafts functional outdoor spaces tailored to clients' needs with manageable maintenance. Holly excels in conquering design challenges, turning yards into captivating landscapes. If you seek to enhance your outdoor space, Holly stands ready to transform your vision into reality.

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