Waterfront: April 2010

Giving For The Greater Good

SwimWays donates nearly a half million dollars to Operation Smile

Onn 410 AqWhen SwimWays was looking for ways to share goodwill three years ago, it didn't need to look very far. Operation Smile, an international medical charity, with its headquarters only a few miles away in Norfolk, Va., was just the type of organization the company wanted to help. In an effort to help change the world, "one smile at a time," SwimWays has donated more than $480,000 in profits from their SwimSteps line to the charity.

"We chose to partner with Operation Smile because they share the same values as SwimWays," says David Arias, president of SwimWays. "At the end of the day, whether it is a child who is smiling because they've learned to swim or because they are able to smile for the first time, we are happy to play a small part in making children's lives better - around the globe."

For more information about Operation Smile, visit www.operationsmile.org.

There's An App For That

Florida pool builder expands a client's horizon

Iphone Amerpools0410You've seen the commercials advertising the thousands of applications available for the iPhone and iPod touch, so it should come as no surprise that apps are making their way into the pool and spa industry. Add American Pools & Spas, Orlando, Fla., to the list.

The company's personal touch assistant app (available for free on iTunes) is designed for clients considering building a new pool or spa. It features virtual 3-D galleries, product videos, testimonials, a variety of tutorials and much more. American says the new app offers customers the ultimate pool buying and construction experience.

La-Fete's Small-Screen Debut

Forget who wins The Bachelor, check out the furniture

Ooj 110 AqEver wonder who makes the shortlist in television set décor? La-Fête, a backyard retailer that has appeared in AQUA's Splash and Patioscapes sections, was recently featured on ABC's The Bachelor, decorating the Roosevelt Lofts where Jake, the bachelor, and a few of the contestants enjoyed an evening out. Check out more of la-Fête's collections at www.lafetedesign.com.

Keep It In Perspective

Fetch-A-Sketch aims to inspire

Poolandspabook 0410"One of the biggest challenges landscape professionals face is in creating presentations that are powerful enough to convince clients to take the next step," writes Scott Cohen, president of The Green Scene in Canoga Park, Calif. "The ideas you have for a property might be truly spectacular, but unless your clients can actually visualize themselves in that beautiful new landscape, your plans could be dead in the water."

Cohen keeps the pages of Pool and Spa Perspectives full of vibrant and imaginative perspective drawings that he says help clients visualize a plan. "They can see themselves relaxing in their spa or sitting around the fire and truly enjoying a new lifestyle."

The book includes a brief introduction about how to use the featured perspective drawings to increase future sales, as well as a user agreement to clarify any copyright questions.

Cohen's work has been previously published in AQUA and is frequently featured on HGTV.

Pool & Spa Perspectives, Vol. 3
By Scott Cohen | Intellectual Property Sales
ISBN: 1-4392-3011-0

Wright Restored

Taliesin West pool gets a new shine and the builder gets lifelong memories

Oee 410 AqThis past January, Aquavida Pools in Phoenix had the pleasure of restoring the pool at Taliesin West, Frank Lloyd Wright's former winter home. As the story goes, Wright designed and built the house in the late 1930s, and after a special request from his third wife, Olga, he included a triangular reflecting pool at the front of the main building.

Because the house is a registered National Historic Landmark, "it's important to keep everything period-correct," says Thomas Lopez, owner, Aquavida. During the two-day restoration, Lopez and his crew drained the pool, chipped out the old plaster and removed the original 6-by-6 solid blue waterline tiles, replacing them with "an exact replica" of the tiles. They also repaired the existing wall fittings and applied Finest Finish white plaster and ran 280 feet of new electrical service.

While working on the project itself was a neat experience for Lopez, it also held sentimental value. Lopez remembers growing up listening to his father's stories from when he delivered produce in the mid-1940s. One such story he remembered was when his father delivered to the Taliesin house and had to wait for Wright to wake up to get the check for the produce.

"My father is 81 years old now, and on Jan. 11, 2010, I had the best experience of my life," says Lopez. "I arranged for a tour for my father and mother to come out and walk through [Taliesin]. My father had not been back since 1944.

"Words cannot explain what it was like when we approached the room where he waited for Wright to hand him the check. He said to me, 'This the room. I sat right there.' The feeling I had at that moment is one I will never forget."

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