Long Island Pool & Spa Association Awards

Each year, the Long Island Pool and Spa Association judges and awards winners based on outstanding pool design. These are presented at the Annual Design Awards Gala Dinner. There, LIPSA members are recognized and rewarded for the installation of pools, spas and water features judged by a panel of peers. Following are the 2018 award winners. Congratulations!

Metamorphosis Landscape Design
Gold - Vinyl Freeform

True Blue Swimming Pools
Silver - Vinyl Freeform

Swimming Pools by Jack Anthony
Vinyl Freeform - Bronze

Metamorphosis Landscape Design
Vinyl Traditional - Gold

Metamorphosis Landscape Design
Vinyl Traditional - Silver

Gibbons Pools
Vinyl Traditional - Bronze

Gibbons Pools
Gunite Freeform - Gold

Gibbons Pools
Gunite Freeform - Silver

All Island Gunite Pools
Gunite Freeform - Bronze

Swimming Pools by Jack Anthony
Gunite Traditional - Gold

Swimming Pools by Jack Anthony
Gunite Traditional - Silver

Swimming Pools by Jack Anthony
Gunite Traditional - Bronze

Chaiken Ultimate Pools
Commercial - Gold

Gibbons Pools
Commercial - Silver

Chaikin Ultimate Pools
Commercial - Bronze

Cat7 Commercial Bronze Chaikin Ultimate Pools.jpg

Swimming Pools by Jack Anthony
Pools with Vanishing Edge - Gold

J Tortorella Custom Gunite Pools
Pools with Vanishing Edge

Gibbons Pools
Pools with Vanishing Edge

Pelican Pools
Pools with Perimeter Edge - Gold

J Tortorella Custom Gunite Pools
Pools with Perimeter Edge - Silver

Gibbons Pools
Pools with Perimeter Edge - Bronze

All Island Gunite Pools
Pool/Spa Combo Gunite - Gold

Pelican Pools
Pool/Spa Combo Gunite - Silver

Gibbons Pools
Pool/Spa Combo Gunite - Bronze

Pelican Pools
Pool/Spa Combo Vinyl - Gold

Pelican Pools
Custom Spa - Gold

Pelican Pools
Custom Spa - Silver

Gibbons Pools
Custom Spa - Bronze

Best Hot Tubs
Portable Spa - Gold

Best Hot Tubs
Portable Spa - Silver

Swimming Pools by Jack Anthony
Portable Spa - Bronze

Gibbons Pools
Renovations - Gold

Chaikin Ultimate Pools
Renovations - Silver

Chaikin Ultimate Pools
Renovations - Bronze

Auto cover with Tracks

Pelican Pools - Gold

Gibbons Pools - Silver

Gibbons Pools - Bronze

Auto Cover without Tracks

Covertech - Gold

Covertech - Silver

Covertech - Bronze

Safety Cover

Chaikin Ultimate Pools - Gold

Gibbons Pools - Silver

True Blue Swimming Pools - Bronze

Water Feature

Gibbons Pools - Gold

Pelican Pools - Silver

Gibbons Pools - Bronze



Sizzling Outdoor Design

Getting more enjoyment out of your home with Atlantic Outdoor Living and Brown Jordan Outdoor Kitchens

Photography by Steve Whitsitt

These days, most people would agree that your outdoor deserves the same amount of design attention as your interiors. Having an outdoor area where you can relax, entertain friends and enjoy family time together increases the pleasure your home can bring.

This backyard lacked character, structure and spaces for lounging. With good planning, design and construction from Atlantic Outdoor Living and Brown Jordan Outdoor Kitchens, it became a true living space with multipurpose areas for relaxing, entertaining and playing.

The outdoor kitchen, rivaling any luxury chef’s kitchen, is equipped with an ice maker, two sinks, two refrigerators, a conventional grill and an Evo grill. The layout allows for a generous amount of countertop to accommodate a busy entertainment season.

The expanded patio brings the entertaining space together with options for al fresco dining poolside or lounging in front of a fire in the cozy outdoor living room. The pool was extended with new steps along with an automatic cover system.

Adding to the entertainment and activity, a sport court is surrounded with a Pennsylvania stacked rock wall. Large trees were installed to soften the hardscape.

The project was tailored to its owner’s lifestyle and is now a beautiful extension of the home.

Landscape Art-chitect

Inspired outdoor space from Finesse Landscape Design

A couple in Massapequa Park needed an update to their backyard and were looking for creative ideas to make their backyard come alive. After meeting with several landscape designers, they decided to go with Eric Hagenbruch of Finesse Landscape Design, Inc. “His love, his passion and his artistic ideas for creating an unusual garden with so much interest from varied perennials was the reason we hired Eric,” stated the homeowner.

An underused above-ground pool was removed to make room for more useful and desired spaces like the irregular bluestone patio with a cozy firepit. This area was positioned so it could be enjoyed from any vantage point in the backyard.

A total of 150 assorted perennials provide color and texture through the seasons in the area around the firepit. Fast-growing thyme was used as a stepable ground cover to fill the joints between the bluestone and soften the hardscape elements. Using herb ground covers such as creeping thyme can be an aromatic addition to the yard. As guests walk around the firepit, a beautiful fragrance is released all around.

Along the fence line, screening was needed to block the neighboring houses. The client just wanted a row of the typical Arborvitaes. “No way; boring!” exclaimed Hagenbruch. A variety of screening plants were chosen including evergreens Cryptomeria, Blue Atlas Cedar and semi-evergreen Elaeagnus along with some specimen plants such as Nootkatensis and Sciadopitys. In front of the evergreens, flowering and fragrant shrubs and perennials add interest throughout the year.

Three plantable wall sconces were fixed on the fence to break up the blank expanse and create some wall art next to a seating area. “It was pretty funny,” explained Hagenbruch. “A dead branch had fallen from the neighbor’s tree into the backyard and my client had asked me to get rid of it. I took a look at it and said to myself ‘it’s interesting.’” When his client came outside to look at some of the work, she chuckled when she saw the branch installed on the fence. “I asked her if she still wanted me to get rid of the branch,” continued Hagenbruch. “She laughed again and said ‘What an amazing idea; how do you think of these things?’”

Hagenbruch professed,“I’m an artist – I’m always thinking of inspiring ways to use interesting pieces.”



Hand crafted by Prestige Swimming Pools of Eastport, NY, this distinctive elongated gunite pool appears to extend endlessly into the wooded surroundings.  Water flows over the far edge of the deep end creating the soothing sound of a mountain stream. Steps along the edge allow effortless entry into the heated blue water which seemingly vanishes into the trees.

The 15 foot wide by 72 foot long pool was built partially above grade to match the elevation of the attached deck and house. Eight separate hydrotherapy jets with air injection provide a spa experience like no other.

Prestige owners Joseph and Danica Ceglio have been enhancing properties for over 30 years on the East End of Long Island. The full service company provides construction, installation, repairs, and maintenance services. Joseph Ceglio, president and founder of the company, combines years of experience in pool construction to skillfully craft your vision into a picturesque reality.

“The pool has to nicely fit in with the landscape and architecture of the building,” said Joe. “You also have to take the owners’ preferences into account resulting in a swimming pool that will be the envy of your neighborhood and a pleasure for your family for years to come.”

A View from Every Angle

Alcamo Pools transforms space and highlights the vista

Already graced with breathtaking views of the Long Island Sound, Alcamo Pool’s client wanted to enhance their backyard space with an inground gunite pool without, of course, impeding the view. Assimilating the pool into the Sound’s natural beauty while accommodating their growing family’s entertainment needs was the goal.

Harmonizing the defined spaces - pool deck, patio and bar platform -  is patterned bluestone. This was also used to coordinate the front entryway with the backyard. Alcamo created a flowing and panoramic pathway, connecting the front of the property to the backyard’s patio, preserving the serene ambience. Alcamo’s mason was able to mix in complementary stonework achieving an interesting accent to the gardens, house and yard.

The beauty of the property allowed Alcamo Pools to finish the outdoor space with lovely characteristics on all sides; if the children are playing on the backyard property, their view is as fantastic as the view from inside the home as well as from outdoor living room.


A clean and crisp automatic pool cover was installed for the safety of the children (and the dogs!). This allows the adults the satisfaction of knowing their family is safe when playing around their wonderful “centerpiece,” their inground gunite pool.

All in all, from every angle, an idyllic backyard was created for Alcamo’s client that far exceeded the expectations of the homeowner.


Photography by Rob Cuni

With the ever evolving trends in backyard spaces, Metamorphosis Landscape Design is always open to providing clients with designs that suit their needs and recreating spaces that bring them to unique places, this property was no exception.

Setback into the pines, this newly constructed two–family home was ready to be transformed into a private Rocky Mountain-style retreat. For this active family, two requests were firmly expressed; a main gathering space and a pool.

The main focal point of this space would be the A–frame pavilion in the center, complete with rustic heavy wood beams and a stone fireplace reminiscent of a ski lodge. The pavilion serves as an area for eating with barbecue access close by and nighttime gathering with a lounge area for relaxing after hours.

A large freeform pool with a stone waterfall provides a feeling of tranquility among its wooded surroundings. Layered stone with multiple falls extends the character of the mountains with a “watering hole” type feel complete with jump rocks. A large, flowing patio provides plenty of space for the family to enjoy parties and summertime with friends.

Evergreen plantings in raised beds help to fill gaps left behind by the mature pine trees, providing screening and continuing the mountain feel of layered trees. Different textures of shrubs, grasses and perennials provide color and soften the stone. Paving stones were used as the main material for the patio with banding used to visually separate areas.

A paver with a natural character and subdued color tone blends into the space well, allowing the pavilion and waterfall to remain the focal points. A Rocky Mountain retreat found in the pine woods of Port Jefferson.

Beauty & Strength

HGTV’s Kitchen Cousins ­­Co-star John Colaneri and Cosentino pair up for the perfect outdoor kitchen

Many outdoor renovation projects in the mid-Atlantic take place in the summer months while the weather is warm and John Colaneri, co-star of HGTV’s Kitchen Cousins and America’s Most Desperate Kitchens, took full advantage of the prime remodeling season.

Colaneri’s stunning outdoor living space features a large dining area, Dekton countertops and wall façade, Brown Jordan cabinets, and a Coyote Outdoor Living grill.

In the center of this ideal entertainment space is a large dining table that acts as a gathering point for friends and family. Defining the boundary of the patio space is an expansive outdoor kitchen.

The kitchen encompasses a built in Coyote 42” S-Series Grill, an Asado Cooker, and a 24” refrigerator. Surrounding the grills is steel cabinetry by Brown Jordan which offers the look of natural wood yet has the strength required for outdoor kitchens in the Northeast. Living on the East Coast, Colaneri was particularly careful about choosing materials and appliances that were both durable and aesthetically pleasing.

For Colaneri, the countertop choice was an easy one – Dekton by Cosentino. Known for its ultra-durable characteristics including stain, scratch, temperature and fade resistance, Dekton offered the look of natural stone without the worry of upkeep or damage. Colaneri and his wife selected Entzo as their color of choice to add a touch of elegance and light to the outdoor space. Entzo shines especially in the wall application. Hugging the sliding glass doors leading to the inside is this decorative element that adds dimension and consistency across the design. 

The Colaneri’s outdoor living space is tailored to meet the needs of their family and is ideal for hosting guests. By choosing strong and beautiful materials and appliances this outdoor space was built to last.

Diamond in the Rough

Island Associates ­ reinvents a family backyard
Photography by Rob Cuni

Unchanged since the home was purchased, this backyard had lots of potential but not a lot of use. The odd-shaped, three level deck was unwelcoming, an aging pool patio needed renovation and it was difficult to take advantage of a generous, but sloping, greenspace. With three young children, the homeowners wanted to create not only a beautiful yard but a functional one as well.

Island Associates removed it all and revamped the entire space. A raised stone patio was built directly off the back of the house with stone light piers, steps to grass from all sides and a large, two-tiered stone kitchen/dining built-in. The patio provides a sizeable, open-concept living space with numerous areas of use.  

A natural boulder wall was added to the back of property to lower the pitch and create a flat grass space. Grading, soil, dry wells for drainage and sod were also added.

The existing brick pool patio had an entire overhaul as well. A raised sun deck with two sheer decent water features cascading into the newly lined pool. A free-standing pavilion structure adjacent to the pool adds space to lounge poolside without being in the sun. Built under the pavilion is another bar area, stone wall with TV and an outdoor shower hidden around the back of the wall.

Using materials in the same color but varying sizes and patterns kept spaces delineated but complementary. Techno Bloc and Aberdeen paving slabs were used for flat surfaces and raised terraces, while bars and walls feature natural ledge stone panels.

Seasonal color is achieved with a mix of deciduous specimens, evergreens and perennials and is accented with low voltage landscape lighting.

2016 Long Island Pool & Spa Association Awards

Chaikin Ultimate Pools - Gold, Vinyl Freeform

True Blue Swimming Pools - Bronze, Vinyl Freeform

Deck & Patio - Silver, Vinyl Traditional

Metamorphosis Landscape Design - Gold, Gunite Freeform

Tortorella Group - Gold, Gunite Traditional

Swimming Pools by Jack Anthony - Gunite Traditional

Chaikin Ultimate Pools - Silver, Commercial

Pelican Pools - Gold, Vanishing Edge/ Perimeter Edge

Totorella Group - Bronze, Vanishing Edge/ Perimeter Edge

Totorella Group - Silver, Pool/Spa Combo Gunite

Deck & Patio - Gold, Pool/Spa Combo Vinyl

Swimming Pools by Jack Anthony - Bronze, Pool/Spa Combo Vinyl

Swimming Pools by Jack Anthony - Silver, Custom Spa with Pool


Pelican Pools - Gold, Custom Spa

J&P Pool Service - Bronze, Custom Spa

Deck & Patio - Silver, Portable Spa

Proper pH Pools  -  Gold , Renovation

Proper pH Pools - Gold, Renovation

Pelican Pools - Bronze, Renovation

Swimming Pools by Jack Anthony - Silver, Auto Cover with Tracks

Covertech - Silver, Auto Cover without Tracks

Deck & Patio - Gold, Ponds

Pelican Pools - Gold, Water Feature

Deck & Patio - Bronze, Water Feature

Chaikin Ultimate Pools - Gold, Water Feature with Pool

Tortorella Group - Bronze, Water Feature with Pool

Each year LIPSA showcases excellence in the swimming pool and spa industry at the annual Design Awards Gala Dinner. The purpose is to recognize and reward LIPSA members whose installation of pools, spas and water features represent the judging panel's and their peer's best evaluation of the most beautiful examples of the industry's products.


Deck & Patio - Silver, Vinyl Freeform

True Blue Swimming Pools - Gold, Vinyl Traditional

Pooltech - Bronze, Vinyl Traditional

Covertech - Silver, Gunite Freeform

Pelican Pools - Silver, Gunite Traditional

Chaikin Ultimate Pools - Gold, Commercial

Chaikin Ultimate Pools - Bronze, Commercial

Swimming Pools by Jack Anthony - Silver, Vanishing Edge/Perimeter Edge

Pelican Pools - Gold, Pool/Spa Combo Gunite

Swimming Pools by Jack Anthony - Bronze, Pool/Spa Combo Gunite

True Blue Swimming Pools - Silver, Pool/Spa Combo Vinyl

Swimming Pools by Jack Anthony - Gold, Custom Spa with Pool

Pelican Pools - Bronze, Custom Spa with Pool

Chaikin Ultimate Pools - Silver, Custom Spa

Deck & Patio - Gold, Portable Spa

J&P Pool Services - Bronze, Portable Spa

Pelican Pools - Silver, Renovation

Swimming Pools by Jack Anthony - Gold, Auto Cover with Tracks

Covertech - Gold, Auto Cover without Tracks

Covertech - Bronze, Auto Cover without Tracks

Deck & Patio - Silver, Ponds

Proper pH Pools - Silver, Water Feature

Proper pH Pools - Silver, Water Feature with Pool

Summer Stylin'

Seasonal decorating with Kim E. Courtney Interiors

Photographs by Alan Barry Photography

Being a passionate interior designer, Kim Radovich of Kim E. Courtney Interiors in Huntington Bay is always “decorating” in some fashion. She entertains often and while setting up for a ladies luncheon at her home in Huntington Bay, Kim lends us some pointers tailored towards decorating
not only with fabrics, furniture and artificial lighting – which is what designers do every day – but with living things, natural light and edibles. Of course, exterior decorating is just as important as interior decorating but often overlooked. Presentation is everything in your own home, at a farm-to-table restaurant or at a personal dinner party.

Kim always thinks “seasonal” when decorating for an event. Flowers, food and fabrics are at the top of list. It’s summertime; brilliant, bright black eyed Susans, sunflowers and the perfect summer blue delphinium add personality to any summer floral arrangement.

Red and purple heirlooms, glistening berries and juicy Meyer lemons add such vibrant color to a table and satisfy the taste buds as well. Use seasonal herbs as decoration and offer your guests the aromas of the seasonal perennial garden.

Kim’s favorite foundation for the table is always crisp ivory or white linen and napkins. It’s the perfect backdrop for the vivid seasonal hues. The designer reminds us that the prettiest china won't look as dramatic if the tablescape doesn't have items at varied heights. A cool trick is to invert bowls of varying heights and use as pedestals for serving pieces. Layer table wear and don't be afraid to mix it up. Use crystals with porcelain and glass with metal in mismatched styles and patterns for an easy casual tablescape. For a more formal table, bring out the silver, china and crystal (don't be afraid to mix up patterns here either).

Outdoor rugs do a fabulous job of anchoring a large outdoor space to create cozy living and eating areas.

And make sure the candlesticks are in place so they can be lit at dusk.

Step away, take a breath and look at the beauty of your decorating. First impressions are everything and your guests will appreciate the beauty you have bestowed upon them.

Elegant Outdoor Living

Courtesy of Baldino Construction and Nassau Suffolk Lumber & Supply

Photography by Bob Geiger

The owners of this glorious Oyster Bay Cove home saw its potential when they were looking to move back into the area. “We were looking for a ranch, and when we saw the bucolic setting and layout of this home, we knew it could be perfect for our family,” said the homeowner. “Although the landscaping was overgrown and the exterior in disrepair, we could see beyond that, especially the potential for an amazing outdoor space – something very important to us,” she said.

The homeowners selected architect Peter Albinski to transform the lackluster ranch into their vision. “Peter Albinski designed the home beautifully, and Phil Baldino, owner of Baldino Construction in Oyster Bay, took it to the next level with his fine craftsmanship and eye for detail” the homeowner stated.

The home’s façade was a mix of styles and materials including brick, stone and shingles. “There were four previous homeowners who each left their stamp on the residence,” the homeowner remarked. It now features a traditional shingle-style design with Maibec eastern white cedar shakes in custom beige, updated stone work and masterful Kleer PVC trim around the windows, front door, and garage. An elegant portico and custom trellises welcome guests as they enter through a rustic Classic Craft Therma Tru door.

The rear façade, with its spectacular outdoor living space, is what really sets this home apart. The 1250 square foot outdoor space features multiple seating and dining areas, an outdoor kitchen and flat screen television. A custom copper roof and millwork panels grace the bow window. The flagstone patio has multiple columns supporting an elegant archway. A barrel-vaulted PVC beadboard ceiling and custom cupola were designed to bring light into the outdoor space, as well as inside the home. The paneled interior of the cupola features LED accent lighting which provides a soft evening glow. A grand chandelier and recessed lighting allow for entertaining any time, day or night.         

“Phil Baldino thought of every small detail – including a hood over the outdoor grill – something we didn’t even consider,” stated the homeowner. “We use this space three quarters of the year for casual get togethers and family celebrations; it’s really a wonderful extension of our home. Phil Baldino is a real treasure.” 

Extending the Pool Season

By Kyle Chaikin, CBP, president of Chaikin Ultimate Pools, a division of Ultimate Pool Care, Inc.

For many Long Islanders, post Labor Day weekend signals the end of pool season. Homeowners begin the process of closing their pools and spas even though weather conditions are still favorable for many outdoor activities. If you are looking to extend the pool season and gain additional enjoyment from the backyard space here are some suggestions.


•    Climatize the water temperature to accommodate the cooler air temperatures in September and ­October. Maintaining comfortable pool water temps can be achieved by adding a heat pump, fuel type heater or even combining the two types of heaters for higher efficiency which is known as hybrid heating. Another option is utilizing an automatic pool cover that opens and closes with a click of a button. 

    Keep in mind that you don’t need to be inside the pool to gain pleasure from the poolscape. 


•    Optimize the outdoor area by creating an inviting gathering space. From a quaint fire pit where the kids can pull up a chair to roast marshmallows to a large hearth for a quiet evening sipping on your favorite beverage or a fully appointed outdoor room with audio visual elements. Each will bring hours of pleasure and relaxation. 


•    Outdoor entertaining is more appealing with an impressive backdrop. Enhance the aesthetic appeal of the pool with lighting, and fire features. Replacing the standard white pool light with the latest energy saving LED color lights will deliver a rainbow of colors to the pool water. And, fire elements strategically placed on pool decks or pedestals create a dramatic effect with the flames reflecting on the water. Select from a variety of styles including fire bowls, curved fire walls, linear fire bars and tiki torches to compliment your lifestyle and pool design. 

    Any of these will extend your pool season in the fall as well as in the spring. Not only do you get to enjoy the pool longer, but you also avoid the mad dash and frustration of everyone trying to close and open their pool at the same time. 

    Take note that when you are ready to close-up the pool, be certain to work with a professional licensed pool contractor who is trained in the proper techniques of winterizing a pool or spa. 


Kyle Chaikin, CBP, is president of Chaikin Ultimate Pools, a division of Ultimate Pool Care, Inc.

Rocky Mountain High on Long Island

Designscapes creates rustic dream backyard

David and Donna, a couple from Melville, Long Island, were referred to Designscapes carrying with them the hope that Designscapes would create an outdoor fantasy for their backyard retreat.

When the clients met with Daniel Steigerwald, president and lead designer of Designscapes, they made it clear that they wanted a unique “out of the ordinary” look featuring the natural beauty of Long Island. 

Their dream backyard did not include the typical pool and patio look as they prefer to swim in the ocean and waterways that surround our beautiful island.

David and Donna also expressed an interest in having an outdoor skating rink but they did not want the problems inherent in refrigerating a rink year round. This presented Designscapes with a challenging project indeed.

This problem was solved, however, when David and Donna saw an interesting product online called Ezglide350. Ezglide350 is a synthetic surface cut into panels that are assembled on a flat surface permitting year round skating without the problems the ­homeowers were concerned about. Ezglide350 allowed Designscapes to design a free form concrete slab base in the shape of a pond reminiscent of a Rocky Mountain lake with features that would make it look comfortable and relaxing as well as breathtakingly beautiful. The skating surface is large enough to skate laps comfortably for casual skating as well as skating activities like ice hockey.

Steigerwald and architect Robert Miller of RCM Architectual Design Studios then set out to design a chalet style cabana featuring a two-sided gas fireplace. This allows for the ability to skate up to the fireplace from the outside or go inside to enjoy a hot chocolate on the couch by a full service bar area in a living room surrounded by glass to enjoy the view of the beautiful surroundings.

Two log style benches in between the chalet's stone columns were created as well as two natural boulder areas to sit on for an even more rustic appeal. This area was also outfitted with a gas burning fire pit to sit and relax, warm up and roast marshmallows. Skaters don't even have to take off their skates to walk between the fire pit and the skating rink as the areas outside the rink were treated with a poured in-place rubberized flooring that looks like mulch!

As you can skate both in the winter and in the summer on this ice-less rink, a beautiful rocky mountain style waterfall was designed for a relaxing effect in the summertime. This area is seamed together with a large scale mahogany deck and a gazebo that works as a fantastic platform with a view looking over both the skating rink and the chalet.

In addition to David and Donna's true year-round adventure, a hot tub was built in a private garden space off the back of the house. This is covered by a beautiful pergola and surrounded by a natural stone patio. Bench areas around the hot tub can be accessed conveniently from the 
skating rink as well as from the house for a quick dip.

All in all, this unique setting beckons family and friends from near and far and has brought David and Donna's backyard dream retreat to life.