Double Take: Is This an Ice Block Within an Australian Sea?

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It’s not often one comes across a square of frozen water in the Australian bush, or anywhere for that matter. Thus, this geometric, seemingly gravity-defying spa slowed down my customary lightning-fast browsing mouse finger and made me stop and stare. As it happens, it’s four raised glass sides, which makes it a dazzling focal point in this lavish backyard in Dural, Australia, about 40 minutes northwest of Sydney. Main designer Dean Herald of Rolling Stones Landscapes approached the massive yard as he would a luxury hotel, making strong relationships between the swimming pool, spa, house, outdoor pavilion and surrounding landscapes and the greater enviromnment of the Australian bush property.

Dean Herald-Rolling Stone Landscapes

Herald made the water-filled square as a key sculptural focal point in the garden. The spa is constructed of glass on all four sides. Square floating steppers connect the water and the pavilion physically and geometrically, along with the chair and lower amount of the spa type a smaller square which adds repetition, measurement and thickness.

The spa connects to the pool through geometry and through a part-time waterfall. “If the spa is not being used, the water out of the pool is pumped to the spa to flow over, providing a water feature,” Herald explains. “When warming, the water from the spa is returned and heated only.”

Dean Herald-Rolling Stone Landscapes

Herald sited the pool, pavilion and other prominent backyard characteristics to be visible from key view portals within the house, playing off straight and curved lines.

Interesting was also important to the homeowners, also Herald gave them a lot to celebrate at the lawn. The luxe pavilion comprises an outside kitchen, dining space, fireplace and lounge, and overlooks the spa.

Dean Herald-Rolling Stone Landscapes

While the tricky square of plain water is the middle of this garden, the design softens as it goes away from the spa to the untamed bush property that covers the majority of the property. “The lush gardens have been placed and implanted with selected species to soften the structural elements while allowing a mixing into the natural bush land beyond,” Herald says.

Dean Herald-Rolling Stone Landscapes

“At night when illuminated, the spa is still a amazing attribute and at times can appear to be a block of ice floating,” the designer describes.

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