While having a swimming pool may feel like a luxury unto itself, a private entertainment retreat adds even more enjoyment to your life. Since you can't always find the time for a destination vacation, transform your pool into its own "resort." Utilize landscaping to enhance the beauty of your pool.

Start with a Freeform Pool

While turning any pool into a recreation destination is possible, the freeform pool blends well into nature, according to the Landscape Network. A freeform pool incorporates curves to create a seemingly random shape. This type of shape mimics a pool you might find in a forest or lagoon, making it the most natural. Consider incorporating an inlet or two for shade.

Pave the Pool Attractively

Much of your pool's design comes from your liner and the deck surrounding the water. One option is tiling the pool in turquoise glass, which creates a depth of color typical of natural water bodies. However, even if you choose to go with a standard liner, your deck still drives the style. For instance, you could utilize concrete stamped and stained to resemble natural rock for a lagoon-like feel. Alternatively, utilize warm-hued pavers for a Mediterranean ambiance.

Include Water Features

No matter the style of pool you choose, a water feature is an attractive addition. The sound of trickling water is soothing. Likewise, the sun glints off of the falling water. If you're including a spa in the design, one option is having the tub raised and designed so water falls from its surround into your pool. Alternatively, build up a waterfall of "natural" rock on one side of the pool. For a modern pool, consider a sleek sheath of water that you can even have illuminated from below.

Add Shade Plants

What often drives people out of the water on hot days is too much direct sun. However, you can incorporate shade plants to alleviate this effect. If you've chosen the freeform pool, plant a queen palm in the inlet. Otherwise, consider a selection of background plants such as papyrus or heavenly bamboo to use as a screen. One possibility is having contractors build up a planter at one end of the pool and adding these background plants. This could be the platform for your waterfall, too.

Finish with Decorative Plants

The final addition to give your pool wow factor is an attractive selection of flowers. Tropical plants such as hibiscus and bird of paradise are typical of pool landscaping. However, day lily, apaganthus and fortnight lily are other options for adding color. The placement of these plants depends on your chosen design. For instance, cluster day lilies and apaganthus around a "natural" stone waterfall. Alternatively, plant birds of paradise under your palm tree.