Pool & Spa Outdoor Blog

What Makes a Coral Stone Deck Beautiful? Coralina!

HOW Coral stone decking adds beauty to your swimming pool and backyard

Coral Stone coralina decking poolPool builders, landscape architects, and interior decorators around the country are starting to utilize a building material that their counterparts in the Caribbean and Florida already use to create a number of exquisite indoor and outdoor spaces: coralina.

Coralina, also known as coral stone, coralina fossil stone, and keystone, consists of coral and shell fossils, coral, sand, as well as limestone. This unique product is strengthened by nature to withstand a variety of weather extremes, saltwater, pool chemicals, heavy foot traffic, and the occasional mishap with a falling object—making it ideal for pool decking and coping. Virtually non-slip, coralina also absorbs only a minimum of heat and is easily maintained.

“Coralina can transform any outdoor setting into a comfortable and safe environment that swimmers will enjoy no matter how hot and slick it gets,” says Jorge Larrauri, president of Coral Stone USA.

This durable yet beautiful material provides a tropical elegance to all types of settings and is ideal for constructing everything from grand staircases, columns, and indoor flooring to magnificent fountains and pool decking.

“Coral stone, a material that takes thousands of years to develop, is finding its way into today’s contemporary designs,” says Larrauri. “More and more, professionals are discovering that this product adds a refinement to a variety of home interior and exterior styles.”

Harvested from top quarries in the tropics—especially from the high quality ones found in the Dominican Republic—coralina products have a distinctive splendor that appears during processing. One-of-a-kind fossil patterns are revealed, giving the coral stone a fabulous texture that varies from product to product. Depending on what type of surface is desired, a homeowner can choose smooth finishes with a fine grain to more open textures that showcase the encased fossils.

See more beautiful photos of coral stone pool decks >>

Coral Stone coralina stone decking poolAvailable is a wide range of stunning colors from red and gold to white coral, coralina’s richness consistently passes the test of time, rarely losing any of its brilliance and beauty. “When you enhance your pool's deck with keystone stone, you don't just get stylish pool coping along with a cool deck, you also obtain sophistication, added security, and superior quality,” states Larrauri.

In addition to being luxuriantly beautiful, coralina is also easy to install. It requires very little modification once it is cut for a project; in fact, skilled craftsmen are readily able to position the stone in a desired pattern for any number of outdoor projects besides pool decking and coping, including fences, walkways, steppingstones, planters, and other garden accents where an island ambiance is wanted.

By finishing with a quality sealant, the material can handle all types of harsh weather conditions—and survive to be enjoyed during the warm swimming season! “Normally, those homes in warm, sunny states gravitate to coralina’s alluring elegance,” explains Larrauri. “But homeowners from other types of climates are discovering the material’s durability and exquisite good looks, and it is becoming the product of choice for homes everywhere.

To see more photos and videos of coral stone decks, check out Coral Stone USA>>


Photos courtesy of CoralStoneUSA.com

Top 7 Outdoor Furniture Trends for 2013

New Outdoor Furniture Designs offer
Flexible Style and Indoor Comfort

As homeowners continue to spend more time and money on their outdoor spaces, outdoor furniture manufacturers have come up with new designs and innovative products to meet their growing needs and style preferences. The latest trends in outdoor furniture and accessories focus on indoor comfort, design flexibility, and making better use of your outdoor living space. Here are the top 7 outdoor furniture trends you can expect to see this spring.

1. Stackable Patio Chairs

Circa Stackable Patio Chairs and Dining SetLightweight stackable patio chairs and table sets offer versatile solutions for small yards: they can be repositioned to maximize space and accommodate guests during outdoor gatherings; then stacked and stored away when not in use.

The need for space-saving furniture comes from the reality that many homeowners are moving into smaller homes and “therefore tend to have less outdoor space,” says Gerald Shvartsman, CEO and owner of Source Outdoor, a high-end outdoor furniture manufacturer in Miami, Fla. According to a study by the National Association of Home Builders, the size of the average single-family home will have decreased by 10 percent by 2015.

In addition to smaller spaces, Shvartsman contributes the interest in stackable outdoor furniture to its easy portability. Many homeowners want to bring their furniture indoors during harsh storms or the winter months to help it last longer and protect it from the elements.

Fusion Stackable Sling Chair from Source Outdoor"A huge benefit or reason as to why stackable outdoor furniture is trending more and more is because consumers can save space in storage and have greater mobility to move their furniture when needed," says Shvartsman.

But don’t confuse stackable patio furniture with the outdated plastic white lawn chairs you probably have hiding out in the back of your garage. Today’s outdoor stackable furniture is crafted from durable, high-quality materials like weather-resistant aluminum and synthetic rattan and is designed with a modern style to look great in any setting.

The Circa Stackable Outdoor Dining Chair (pictured above) and the Fusion Stackable Chat Set (pictured at right) are two examples of the stylish new options in stackable outdoor furniture.

Photos courtesy of UpSpring PR on behalf of Source Outdoor

Outdoor rugs are a top trend this summer 2. Outdoor Rugs

Outdoor rugs are a top trend this summer as the desire to bring the look and comfort of the indoors out remains in high demand among homeowners. Just like an interior rug, an outdoor rug can pull your entire outdoor space together, as well as define seating areas and add a warm and welcoming feel to your patio, porch, or deck.

Outdoor rugs are available in all shapes, sizes, colors and patterns to match any décor theme and can even extend the look of your home’s interior. Most outdoor rugs are made from polypropylene for water, mold, and mildew prevention and are treated to resist fading from UV exposure.

Photo courtesy of Whitecraft, Inc.; William Herren, Designer

3. Deep Seating Furniture

Deep Seating Outdoor Furniture from Pride Family BrandsDeep seating outdoor furniture, which includes upholstered chairs, sofas, loveseats, chaise lounges, and ottomans, continues to grow in popularity. Like the cozy furnishings that make a living room the most relaxing place to gather inside the home, deep seating outdoor furniture features large, wide seating areas and soft, oversized cushions to create an equally enticing refuge outdoors.

Deep seating patio furniture comes in a variety of durable, weather-resistant materials, including synthetic wicker, cast aluminum, wrought iron, and wood. Design styles range from traditional to contemporary to country chic and can either extend the look of your interiors or create a new décor theme outdoors.

Modular deep seating sets are a popular choice because the sectional pieces can be moved around or grouped together to best fit the occasion or space. Source Outdoor’s Lucaya collection (pictured below) offers a range of 14 different pieces “so people can customize the look of their space, big or small,” says Shvartsman.

Lucaya Outdoor Modular Deep Seating Lucaya Modular Chaise Lounge with Blue Cushions

Above: Photos courtesy of UpSpring PR on behalf of Source Outdoor
Top Right: Photo courtesy of Pride Family Brands

Outdoor fabric options from Pride Family Brands4. Outdoor Fabrics

Outdoor furniture fabrics continue to improve in performance, design, and texture. Outdoor cushions made from acrylic, polyester, and olefin fabrics feel just as comfy and soft as their indoor counterparts and are resistant to water, stains, and fading from UV exposure so there’s no need to bring them inside after every use. Cleaning is also simple: just wipe them down with a mild soap and a little warm water.

Along with enhanced durability, outdoor fabrics are now being produced in wider ranges of colors, patterns, and prints and offer unlimited design possibilities for outdoor spaces. Everything from outdoor furniture cushions to patio umbrellas and awnings to accent pillows, outdoor curtains and rugs can be mixed and matched to add depth and personality to your space.

The latest design trends for 2013 call for out-of-the-ordinary combinations such as mixing contrasting prints such as stripes and floral and mingling bright vivid shades like poppy red and zesty yellow with neutrals like gray and tan.

The abundance and diversity in outdoor fabrics make it easier and more affordable to update the look of your outdoor space from one season to the next and as trends come and go.

Photo courtesy of Pride Family Brands

5. Multifunctional Pieces

Outdoor Bar Height Dining Fire Pit TableWith the rise of the “outdoor room,” backyards have become multipurpose spaces for dining, swimming, lounging, cooking, and entertaining. As such, outdoor furniture designers are now creating pieces that cater to a variety of needs and activities.

Dining or bar height firepit tables are one of the latest outdoor furniture offerings and provide the warmth and ambiance of a fit pit along with adequate space for dining and socializing. Many manufacturers produce a range of dining fire table sizes to accommodate any space and family, big or small.

A few companies have taken multifunctional furniture a step further with accessories like a Lazy Susan that fits over the fire pit section if extra table space is needed and a table top grill pan that allows you to cook food right at the table, creating an interactive dining experience.

Other multifunctional furniture trends include outdoor storage ottomans, benches, and chaise loungers that provide seating as well as a discreet place to stash furniture cushions, garden tools, or pool toys.

Pride Family Brands is one outdoor furniture manufacturer incorporating this trend into its product line. The company has designed a selection of woven aluminum outdoor storage units, including an oversized coffee table, end table, and an armoire/side board.

Jakarta Outdoor Deep Seating Collection from Pride Family BrandsOutdoor Storage Chest Coffee Table from Pride Family Brands

Photos courtesy of Pride Family Brands

Deep Seating Outdoor Rocking Chair6. Motion Seating

In keeping with the notion toward indoor comfort, motion seating such as swivel chairs, gliders, and rockers are making a bigger presence in outdoor furniture collections this year.

Though they’re not a new trend, outdoor rocking chairs, swivel seats, gliders, and swings are now being designed in a wider array of materials and styles, including deep-seating designs with plush cushions and contoured seats for maximum comfort and relaxation outdoors.

Photo courtesy of New River Casual Furniture;
Photography by Wayne Donelsen, Deanne & Wayne Co.

Transitional Style Outdoor Furniture with Curved Seating7. Transitional Style

Overall, the biggest trend in outdoor furniture this year is the move toward transitional design. A mix between classic and contemporary styles, transitional outdoor furniture blends the clean lines of modern furniture with the curves and comfort of traditional designs for a look that is simple, yet inviting.

The popularity of transitional style furniture stems from its design versatility: Transitional outdoor furniture can easily be mixed and matched with more modern or traditional pieces and works well in any backyard setting. Additionally, transitional style outdoor furniture affords homeowners the flexibility to revamp the look of their outdoor space from one design scheme to the next just by switching out the cushions and accessories.

Photo courtesy of Pride Family Brands

Learn which type of outdoor furniture is best for your climate and space in our Guide to Buying Outdoor Furniture >>

2013 NESPA Award-Winning Swimming Pools Photo Gallery

Beautiful Award-Winning Pool Photos from NESPA

NESPA Crystal Pool and Spa deck bridge backyardLooking to add a pool or renovate your existing swimming pool for the summer? Now is the time to plan! With so many shapes, materials, water features, lighting options, and more, you may not be sure where to start...

That’s why we’ve added a new swimming pool photo gallery featuring the winners of Northeast Spa & Pool Association’s (NESPA) annual Awards of Excellence.


See 100 photos of beautiful swimming pools built and designed by talented pool builders dedicated to their craft. Browse the gallery for striking images of inground pools, custom spas, hot tubs, waterfalls, water features, and more. View pool photos >>


Photo courtesy of NESPA; Crystal Pool & Spa, Inc., East Hanover, NJ (Gold winner)

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