Enclosed Luxury…Design Elements for Your Pool Enclosure

Posted March 27th, 2015 by Bonnie Hall and filed in latest, Pool Enclosures
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Whether you desire an endless swim season, privacy for your early morning swim sessions or just protection from sun and insects, a pool conservatory enclosure can provide you with a very luxurious swimming and entertaining setting.  Regardless of the heat of summer, rainy season or the coldest east coast winter ever on record, your pool conservatory will allow you to comfortably enjoy your pool or spa any time of the year.

With the guidance of design experts, creating the perfect pool enclosure will not only provide you with endless enjoyment, it can also add dramatic architectural accent to your home.  Typical discussions for pool enclosure design are usually centered around which type of glass is best (low-e coated glass can reduce heat by up to 50% while cutting UV penetration with will help minimize heating & cooling costs) and environmental controls (how to stay cool in the summer and warm in the winter) at times however, personalizing the space to reflect your passions is overlooked.

Designing Your Space

Much like a traditional conservatory, your pool or spa enclosure can be designed to reflect your personality and lifestyle.  Style should not take a back seat to functionality and now, the choices are truly limitless.  Tanglewood designed and built a mahogany spa retreat for one client that expressed their desire to have their own personal oasis to unwind in, after a hectic day at the office.  The client was very involved in not only the design of the building, which features extensive curvilinear shapes – which studies have showed enables better energy flow, reduces stress and creates positive emotions but also in the calm and soothing decoration.  A fireplace was added not only to serve as a focal point – again emphasizing the prominent curves of the room – but also to create balance for the ‘cooler’ water feature of the spa with the ‘warmth’ of the fire.  A small wet bar and cozy seating area completes the room.

spa1

 

spa room

 

As intimate as the hideaway retreat is above, the project below is very spacious, open and airy.  Very reminiscent of the great conservatories of the 19th century, the open feel with the sturdy steel frame embellished with the whimsy of scrolls, medallions and stained glass.  This setting is very inviting with plenty of entertaining space, a large seating area and adjacent kitchen.  Plants warm the vast openness, pulling the outdoors in.

pool

Current trends to incorporate into your luxurious enclosure include

  • Fire focal point – whether a fully functioning fireplace or an upscale fire pit – bringing a fire element in the room provides a perfect balance
  • Water Feature – beyond the pool or spa, many are incorporating an additional water feature such as a fountain or reflection pond stocked with Koi to enhance and balance the room
  • Architectural details from historic conservatories brought back to life in current projects. Details include the romantic use of steel as both a structural material but also decorative such as the scrollwork, extensive use of glass to give a more translucent feel to the open and airy space.

For more information on trends and how Tanglewood’s creative design process works to help you design and build the enclosure of your dreams, send us an email and let us know about your project.

 

 

Why Invest In A Pool Enclosure?

Posted March 6th, 2015 by Bonnie Hall and filed in latest, Pool Enclosures, Uncategorized

Your pool is a major investment, but how much actual time do you spend enjoying it?  More than likely you use your pool just one season out of the entire year; but certainly not if it is rainy, or thunderstorms, or a snowstorm in a winter that just doesn’t want to end!  And this doesn’t count the hours spent opening and closing your pool, along with cleaning and skimming leaves and insects from the water.  Your desire to swim all year round can be solved by designing and building a pool enclosure.  They can  protect your pool, allowing you more time to swim, alleviating some of the cleaning (no more leaves!) but the enclosure also will allow you to swim all year round, regardless of the weather.

dunes collage

With over 20 years of experience in building conservatories, greenhouses and glass pool enclosures, Tanglewood Conservatories has the expertise to guide you through the design process to installation.  With TWC’s broad knowledge base, along with creative design work, we can assist with decisions such as:

  • HVAC – how to incorporate HVAC into your design
  • Proper humidity & condensation control
  • Discreetly and decoratively conceal mechanical systems – especially important in an all-glass structure
  • Special coatings for the steel to inhibit rust
  • Size and orientation

While it might seem like an odd time to begin designing your enclosed pool with summer close by, if you want to swim in late December, the design process should begin now so that installation is ready to move forward in late fall.   Take a look through Tanglewood’s gallery for more ideas.  Next week we will discuss common HVAC issues with pool enclosures.  If you would like an early preview, complete the form:

Passionate About Conservatories

Posted February 27th, 2015 by Bonnie Hall and filed in Dea Digs, Gardening, Greenhouses, latest
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It’s no secret that everyone at Tanglewood is passionate about what we do – from our founders, Alan and Nancy to our craftsmen in the shop, to the team of architects and engineers, to even our Hospitality Ambassador (front desk!) – we truly live and breathe conservatories, greenhouses and all things glass. But one other observation struck us – many of our clients and contacts are also very passionate about various topics such as gardening, art collecting, community activism, activities that all go hand in hand with the work we do at Tanglewood. As a result of this observation, we thought it would be intriguing, insightful and certainly interesting for us to ‘dig’ a little deeper over the upcoming year and explore these passions that surround us.

Tanglewood Conservatories is very excited to announce our partnership with Dea Schofield – a noted horticulturist. She will be working with Tanglewood to help ensure that a Tanglewood greenhouse is not only a beautiful building, but also optimized for functionality and to also give tips on plant care, systems, etc. She will be featured as a guest blogger on Tanglewood’s blog under the keywords, Dea Digs.

Dea’s Bio

 

20130915 - jf photography - 8296-2After extensive training to become a Master Gardener, I went on to teach classes on indoor/tropical/potted/container plants for future Master Gardeners. As a mom to an elementary-schooler, I needed to be available and working part-time at a nursery made that possible. I soon found myself being offered a horticultural position at Green Spring Gardens Park, in Virginia. Through them, I was able to obtain more training, which included seminars and lectures by pre-eminent people, hosted specifically for Smithsonian horticulturists, botanists, and biologists. Training included regular travel for field trips and lectures at places like Longwood Gardens or Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden.  I then found myself at Hillwood Museum and Gardens as greenhouse and floral display manager, where I also cared for the orchids there for many months (a huge, separate task that I cherished). Eventually, I struck out on my own in order to do design work, solve horticultural problems, and create gardens for others. Today, I have clients who say they just want my presence in their garden occasionally to be sure things stay green and happy—which is the utmost compliment.

 

Passion Found
As a child, I couldn’t stand to be inside. I wanted to be out exploring, looking for plants and creatures. My first memories of a fascination for plants involved the sensory excitement they induced. Pussy Willows and Birch Catkins were irresistible to an outdoorsy little girl. I think the first plant to intrigue me on an intellectual level was the Stinging Nettle, Urtica dioica. Growing up in Germany, I discovered the plant was everywhere along roads and paths that were untended. From that early age, I knew there was something special about the herb. How could something that you could safely touch one way cause such discomfort when you touched it another? Why did it do that? Why were the fuzzy leaves sort of oily too? Why did people drink tea made of it? There was fun to be had with them too. I could get friends to shriek in horror by touching the tops of the leaves, knowing secretly that there were no trichomes, or stinging hairs, in that spot. Today, I know how to cultivate it and that the plant has been in medicinal service to humans for thousands of years. This kind of discovery is something I’m still crazy about.
It was also in Europe where I was exposed to the many variations on public gardens. From the manicured palace, castle and manor home gardens, to planted decoration of towns and cities, and individual homes and apartment windows, flowers were ubiquitous. For Europeans, the garden, both for food and enjoyment, was especially important. That rubbed off on me.  When we moved to Texas for a few years, I truly missed the color of Europe—but there were other things to discover, like Prickly Pear (with its edible fruit!) and Bluebonnets. It was there where I had my very first potted plant—a Purple Velvet Plant, or Gynura aurantiaca. At twelve or thirteen, I found the fuzzy, purple leaves irresistible, much like the pussy willows. Little did I know that the cute, diminutive plant would become a small monster, not unlike my plant passion (which grew to much greater proportions).

hibis collage

After years of travel and living abroad, I was finally able to have my first greenhouse here in the States. That morphed into a career that went from extremist hobbyist to Master Gardener to Expert Horticulturist. Today, I have the same fascination for plants as that little girl who couldn’t resist them!
Cultivating the Passion
One way I cultivated my passion for gardening was through education—constantly learning is not only essential to truly engaging in a passion, but I’m addicted to it as well! I love to learn about the art and science of plants and their cultivation. You might call me a plant fanatic. There are multiple facets to horticulture and I’ve tried to learn about and become experienced with them all. I’ve also have had my own collections for decades and have cultivated innumerable varieties and species. I also visit gardens, natural areas and botanical gardens wherever I travel (I’m especially attracted to places with greenhouses and conservatories).  It’s not hard to nurture something you love.

green  collage

A Passion’s Impact
You probably won’t find a greater impact than having a hobby become a career! But here’s a brief tale of how much my love of plants affects how I think. Five years ago, I decided to reduce my carbon footprint significantly. I donated, gave away, and sold-off most of my collection and greenhouse in the process. But there was no way I’d live without plants. I checked out places and none felt adequate (despite being lovely inside), until one day I stepped into an older condo that was south-facing with floor-to-ceiling windows and overlooked a tree-covered hill. It was just a simple, large studio—but it had a great balcony. Due to the perfect direction for growing and the huge, green view, I took it on the spot. Today, I grow herbs, orchids and other tropicals—and my favorite, Passion Flowers. The vines love to cover the balcony railings by summer’s end. Then everyone but the hardy herbs comes in for winter. I chose my living space based on the needs of plants!

Top Secret Revealed
As a master horticulturist, the best advice I can give is to LISTEN. Listen to what your plants are saying and that will enable you to nurture them and meet their needs. For example, I walked into a very hot and humid greenhouse one day with my client and many of the plants had lost their turgidity and ‘looked’ to be wilted. My clients first response was to set the sprinklers off and water all these ‘wilted’ plants. I was able to show my client that the plant’s wilted structure was not from lack of water (a quick finger check in the soil, which was moist) but from the high heat and humidity. As soon as those variables returned to a more normal range for the plant, the turgidity would also rectify. Below is a picture of a Rose of Sharon – while the normal observer would see the flower and bee, a good ‘listener’ would also notice the plant has leaf scorch. The leaf scorch could be because it’s in too dry of a location, or because an A/C unit blew on it, or both.

rose of sharon

To ask Dea a question or to find out more about building your own Tanglewood Conservatory, click here to email us. If you would like to follow Dea on social media, click on her facebook.

The Art of Design

Posted January 9th, 2015 by Bonnie Hall and filed in Conservatory Projects, General, Insights, latest
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Remember career day back in high school?  Guidance counselors and local business people all gathered in the auditorium talking about career choices and pathways.  Then there was always that one counselor that was the dreamer and spoke of finding your passion and everything else would fall into place.  Back then it all sounded so nebulous – how can a teenager know their life’s passion?

With that high school day forgotten many decades in the past and fast forward to working at TWC for several months now, I have had heard numerous times that it is the design element that Tanglewood brings to a project that sets us apart from others in our arena.  It is easy to prattle off the obvious reasons:

  • TWC has a full suite of architects, engineers and designers
  • We pride ourselves on our collaborative nature and working well with the homeowners’ team of architects and designers
  • We bring a historical perspective based on Tanglewood’s extensive travels, books and lectures series

Wanting to get a more in-depth understanding – I asked Alan his thoughts.  His response quickly brought me back to high school…

’We are architects and artists, not accountants and lawyers.
We create art and that just happens to fuel our business.
We do not compromise or concede to any business strategy that stifles our artistry.
Making money is a byproduct of our passion, the actual building process is the business that supports our artistic endeavors.’

Designing conservatories and greenhouses isn’t just the starting point of the process to get to a completed structure.  It is an artist creating a work of art that ultimately will become part of someone’s art collection.   Designing conservatories is the passion that ignites Tanglewood and it is that passion that then builds these stunning structures.  As Alan states, ‘If we were to just design a building, there is no art, no passion.’   Tanglewood is in business to create art.   Our conception was the result of stumbling upon a passion:  historic conservatories & creative design.   Many marketing manuals have been written extolling the practice of determining your value proposition.   At Tanglewood, it is simple.  We create art – that takes the form of conservatories.  That is our passion.

Turns out your guidance counselors were right on career day – find your passion, make it your job and the ‘business’ of it will follow.

Tanglewood Hand Drawing and finished project

Happy New Year from Tanglewood Conservatories!

Posted January 2nd, 2015 by Bonnie Hall and filed in latest, Uncategorized
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It’s that time of year again—-time to celebrate a year well-lived and time to look forward to a new year full of possibility. We hope your 2014 was full of fun & love & lasting memories. Our wish for the coming year is for each of you to live your life to the fullest and lend a helping hand to those who need it. Volunteer your time, donate a couple of dollars (pesos, bhat, euros, yen…), hold the door open for someone, share a smile. The price is small, but the value is great!

Our wish for 2015 remains unchanged.  The greatest legacy we can leave is a life well-lived – follow your passions and help others along your journey.  One of Tanglewood’s resolutions for 2015 is to celebrate the passionate people whose pathways we have crossed.  From our photographer, also a renowned painter to many of our clients whose passionate endeavors include everything from art collections to animal rescues; we will focus on the passions that has shaped their lives and how it has intermingled with the love of conservatories.

2014 was an awesome year for Tanglewood, and we are so excited to welcome 2015!

 

From everyone at Team Tanglewood

Happy New Year!!