Bringing a resort-style oasis to the countryside in Coatesville, Auckland

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With plenty of open space to work with, this lifestyle block owner wanted to create a slice of paradise to complement her new pool installation.

Before After
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Starting the process

An inground swimming pool is the ultimate landscape accessory but, challenging logistics can also make it a massive undertaking. However, homeowner Judy, undeterred and motivated, wanted to maximise her expansive lifestyle block by creating a resort-style oasis with a luxurious pool as the focal point. 

By the time she reached out to Zones, Judy had already arranged for the pool installation and engaged an independent designer, but she needed a trusted and skilled team to execute her vision. Landscaping Consultant Sandy Lochhead connected with Judy to learn more about the scope of her project.

Taking care of technicalities

Since Judy had already been working with a designer, she and Sandy were able to move right into making plans. As they reviewed the costs and working drawings, Sandy explained which aspects of the landscape renovation would require additional attention. Geotech reports and the location of Judy’s lifestyle block meant they had to build a specially engineered retaining wall to accommodate the full project. Sandy then submitted the consent applications for the wall and pool installation, both of which were approved by the council. 

On the design side, Judy had specific ideas about the materials she wanted to use. Achieving an ambience of luxury was top priority and she was realistic about the investment needed to bring that dream to life. So, when Sandy provided her with the $131,000 quote, she wasn’t deterred. The all-inclusive cost covered both hard and softscaping elements — decking, concrete, plants, and pavers — fencing, balustrades, and excavation, as well as labour and council fees.

Going with the flow

Having to coordinate timing with outside teams proved to be a challenge especially since they were collectively working against difficult weather conditions. Sandy’s in-house project manager Kyle was on site to ensure the day-to-day operations ran smoothly. 

With the pool scheduled to go in at the end of October, Kyle and Sandy’s team built the engineered palisade retaining wall well ahead of time. Then bad weather caused several delays to the pool installation, pushing it out to the end of November. This left just a few weeks to execute the surrounding landscape renovation as the projected deadline was before Christmas.

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Pushing to the finish

Sandy and Kyle went above and beyond to complete the poolscape in that short time. This included excavation, relocating the spa pool, pouring new concrete pads, installing perimeter fencing and pool balustrades (Glass Vice), creating custom covered storage boxes using Outdure composite decking, and re-laying patio pavers. They delivered Judy’s project to 90% completion before the holidays, returning in the new year to finish the pool coping (Horizon International) and planting. 

Despite the challenges, the finished result is an idyllic space for Judy and her family to relax and enjoy the property’s sunshine and peace. With Judy having made a few variations, and the additional tipping fees, the final cost of the Zones project came to $139,000. 

Final thoughts

Judy is thrilled with her new landscape, and Sandy is equally pleased with the outcome. One of her favourite aspects is the way the light hits the pool, enhancing the deep cerulean blue liner. She also cites how well the Outdure decking complements the pre-existing patio pavers and the speckled-stone pool coping. 

Each element of the design enhances the others and the stunning natural surroundings. Judy’s main goal was to bring a serene resort-style retreat to her rural home in Coatesville and Sandy accomplished exactly that.

Would you like to discuss your landscaping ideas?

Get in touch for a free consultation with your local Landscaping Consultant.

This project was completed in
June 2023
Project description
A backyard poolscape
New Zealand
Project duration
10 weeks
Cost estimate
Actual cost
Weather delays
Interesting aspects
A luxurious finish
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Kyle Lochhead is a Zones Landscaping Owner of Landscapes and Outdoor Living Limited, a franchisee of Zones Landscaping New Zealand, doing business in Rodney.

Sandy Lochhead is Landscaping Consultant of Landscapes and Outdoor Living Limited, a franchisee of Zones Landscaping New Zealand, doing business in Rodney.

Actual costs vary by project. Plan ahead to reduce the impact of industry changes or disruptions. For more information see here.

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