Pool of Perfection

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This luxurious backyard pool and accompanying pavilion perfectly complement the home and outdoor aesthetics, providing a perfect summertime retreat.

Story by Ann Butenas      |      Photography by Matt Kocourek

On a warm summer’s day with a light breeze surrounding you, there is nothing more welcoming than a beautiful backyard pool. It’s difficult to resist kicking off your flip flops and getting into the water for an afternoon of fun and sun. 

Once a blank slate, this backyard oasis beautifully enhances the home and surrounding property without overpowering it. With the combined ingenuity, creativity, and innovative thinking of a well-organized team, this backyard space is wonderfully tranquil and relaxing.

“When we first moved in, we just had a patio and an old gazebo that used to stand by the outdoor grill area,” recalled the homeowner. “So, we began coming up with ideas as to what to do with the space as we knew it had so much potential.”

After careful deliberating and looking at pictures online, the homeowners decided to go for a clean and simple look that aligned with elegance and sophistication yet still was casually welcoming. Upon collaborating with Brian Kuhn, owner of BK Builds, LLC and Hoyt Banks of Banks Blue Valley Pool & Spa, the owners decided to go with a rectangular pool with a spa and a traditional pavilion to make full use of the area and to give them something beautiful at which to look from the inside of the home.

A classic poolside structure

To get the project underway, Kuhn was contracted by Banks to build the pavilion. Kuhn worked in conjunction with architect Bruce Wendlandt of Wendlandt & Stallbaumer Architects, with the objective of tying the overall aesthetics of the pavilion to the home.

“Taking into consideration the landscaping, pool, and overall infrastructure, this project was a challenge, but it was a good one,” indicated Kuhn. “This is a very serene setting which is great for Hallbrook.”

Kuhn and his team focused on bringing all the features of indoor living to the outdoors, creating a highly functional pavilion complete with a fireplace, television, and sound system. Decorative gas lanterns flanking the fireplace add to the overall ambiance of the space.

Among the sophisticated details of the pavilion include elegant beam work, a masonry fireplace, and a custom decorative metal chimney cap, all of which add extra layers of class and elegance.

“The window on the rooftop provides light to the open, vaulted ceiling,” noted Kuhn. “The low slope on the roof is all metal, and the pitched roof is made of cedar shakes to match the home.”

Additional details include a capstone mantel around the fireplace, Indiana limestone pavers on the ground, and touches of brick and wood to round out the captivating beauty of the structure.

Diving into a grand project

“The homeowners were looking for something to match their classic brick home for a cohesive look,” expressed Banks. “They also wanted an outdoor living area, and the brick element was highly important to them.”

Banks and his team installed the Indiana limestone all around the pool, including the capstones and any coping material. A herringbone brick pattern of the patio adds to the palette. The expansive brick patio links the pavilion to their L-shaped outdoor kitchen, which includes a smoker. Banks used Pennsylvania bluestone on the four sets of stairs that lead from the pavilion level to the pool level.

“I personally think the elements of brick, blue stone, and limestone are the ideal choices for this setting,” stated Banks. “I also really like the scale of this project and the material composition, all of which provide the perfect color palette for Kansas City. It resembles a traditional high-end resort. I also enjoyed working with the geometry of the design with its straight lines and the interlaced landscaped beds, which create walkways for a more intimate feeling in an otherwise big backyard.”

“We just love the aesthetics of it all when looking out our windows from the inside of the house,” said the owner.

Adding extra style and sophistication to the pavilion are the intentional landscaping elements.

“We wanted a more structured, formal garden with a symmetrical and formal design that is both ornamental and classic,” said the owner, who relied on boxwoods with white hydrangeas and grafted hydrangea trees around the pavilion.

Although it took a year to fully complete this custom Kansas City swimming pool, the homeowners are delighted with the results.

“We wanted it done right, and everyone involved did a great job,” smiled the owner.


  • Pool Designer/Contractor: Banks Blue Valley Pool & Spa
  • Backyard Living Area Contractor: BK Builds
  • Architect: Wendlandt & Stallbaumer Architects
  • Landscaping, Irrigation, Landscape Lighting: New Leaf Landscape

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