Indoor Pool, Newport, CT

The magnificent indoor pool room of a private client in Newport, CT, features 1,400 square feet of hand-crafted fractured granite, lichens, and lush foliage. The display, which was designed and completed in just six weeks by a small team, features a faux rock staircase, a hidden storage room behind hollow walls, a hot tub, and a long water slide that winds through the surroundings and down to a large swimming pool. A cleverly designed railing runs along the length of the stairs, disguised as a meandering tree branch.

Contractor Tim Sheldon, of Waterfalls of Wisconsin, Inc., hired Michael Vernelson, Wildlife Preservation’s in-house artist, and Spencer Dean, to produce scenic rockwork for the project. The rocks began as articulated steel armatures covered in wire.  Strong layers of shotcrete were applied directly over the mesh to strengthen the structures. A finer concrete blend was carefully sculpted on top of the first layer, and then painted to replicate the look of natural rocks in the surrounding Connecticut countryside. Finally, the rock work was sealed to protect the structure from water, making it durable and virtually maintenance free.

Fine layers of handcrafted moss and lichen cover the rock. Artificial greenery, including ferns, vines, long grasses and other flourishing plants, sprout from cracks and crevices, enhancing the illusion of nature. The result is an elegant environment, where the family can enjoy the pleasures of a private swimming hole all year long.

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