More than half of all new condo and townhome communities in the Valley offer a lap-sized pool, while a significant percentage offers a smaller, but often just as stunning, play pool.
Ordinary-looking pools aren’t enough for today’s condo and townhome buyers, suggests David Hovey, Jr., president of Optima Inc., the designer, developer and general contractor for the Optima Kierland community in North Scottsdale. “Buyers’ expectations have changed over time,” Hovey said. “This is across the board, but especially for people of means. They have experienced exceptional pools in high-end resorts. Once they experience that, they aren’t satisfied with a conventional pool.”
“Developers would be foolish not to have a spectacular pool in their community,” according to Keith Mishkin, owner of Cambridge Properties in Phoenix, “because a pool is so important to some buyers. Buyers often want an almost iconic place to relax.” In Scottsdale,“we are known as a resort destination,” said Marilyn Cavanaugh, the listing agent for the Hotel Valley Ho Penthouses. “People come from all over the country as well as Canada to enjoy our pools. It’s important to have a fabulous community pool to set you apart.” Condo pools should always have lush landscaping and must be heated, Cavanaugh added. “We have many second-home buyers and winter visitors here,” she said. “They’re here to escape the cold and enjoy the sun and a beautiful pool. They all look for a heated pool and spa.”
Two popular options for condo and townhome pool designs are rooftop and negative-edge. Both of those happen to describe the pool at Optima Kierland. Hoveysaidthatwiththistypeofroof-deck pool design, “usually there is a glass wall for safety. By dropping the wall out of view but keeping the safety and code aspect in place, the effect is an infinity-edge deck with outstanding views in most directions.” At Valley Ho, the pool is shaped to suggest a martini glass. “Back in 1956 when this hotel was built, it was a getaway for Hollywood stars. Martinis were the drink of choice,” Cavanaugh said. “The oversized circular pool is right in the middle of all the chairs. There is a DJ every Saturday and Sunday with an open-air bar at the pool.” “A unique pool can give condo and townhome buyers an experience they may not be able to enjoy almost anywhere else,” Mishkin said.“A pool is an oasis of sorts that can help make condo or townhome living ideal,” he said.