Design Award 2023

Biotop Design Award: These are the most beautiful natural pools and swimming ponds

On the occasion of its partner meeting, Biotop presented the Design Award for the best natural pool and swimming pond projects. The awards were presented at a festive event held on November 9 at the Natural History Museum in Vienna. 21 partner companies from five nations submitted a total of 47 projects for the competition. The eight-member jury of experts selected the "Kent Pool" project by Elements of Nature (UK) as the most outstanding Living Pool. In the Swimming Pond category, the "Carlton" swimming pond concept by Ellicar Pools (UK) came out on top. The award for the most unusual project in the "Conversion & Renovation" category went to Viridee NV from Belgium. "With the Design Award, we honour the most outstanding installations of our international partners every year. The projects submitted show how quality of life can be combined with design standards and sustainability," explains Marion Hanek, Managing Director of Biotop.

An expert jury made up of specialist journalists, architects and landscape planners assessed the submitted natural pool projects in terms of design, architecture and execution. The best concepts were awarded prizes in the Living Pool, Swimming Pond and Conversion & Renovation categories. In the final, twelve finalists from Austria, Germany, Belgium, the UK and Australia presented their projects to the Biotop partners. The winning concepts were projects from the UK and Belgium. In addition, all participants at the Biotop Partner Meeting voted for a favourite among all submitted projects - regardless of category or nomination. As the project with the most votes, "Seezeitlodge" by GaLaBau Schnur received the "Partners 1st Choice Award".

The most extraordinary Living Pools

The "Kent Pool" by Elements of Nature from the UK was named the most beautiful Living Pool project this year. The concept includes a large natural pool with an area of 72 square meters, an adjoining pond and spacious wooden decks surrounded by lush greenery.

Second place went to "Schleitzer baut Gärten" from Germany with a straightforward, modern Living Pool concept that impressed with its different areas of use, diverse planting and a terrace made of Indian limestone. Landscape West (UK) came third with a breathtaking infinity pool made of black mosaic that offers sweeping panoramic views. In fourth place was the German company Bahl GmbH with a picturesque prefabricated Living Pool nestled between a wooden deck and a natural stone wall.

The Biotop Living Pool with a separate regeneration zone
1st place: Elements of Nature © elements-of-nature/io photography

Outstanding Swimming Ponds

The award for the most beautiful swimming pond went to the "Carlton" project by Ellicar Pools (UK). The 73 square metre Swimming Pond impressed the jury with its family-friendly and natural concept with a fine pebble beach, spacious wooden deck and lush planted area.

GaLaBau Kreye took second place with an integrated project. Here, a Swimming Pond and Living Pool are combined to form a harmonious unit. Hoppe GaLaBau came third with a modern Living Pool featuring organic shapes. P.G.G. Potsdamer Gartengestaltung came fourth with a 25 metre long natural sports pool.

The Swimming Pond in England with blooming water lilies
1st place: Ellicar Pools © MikeSannwald-Kirk/io photography

Winning conversion & refurbishment projects

In this category, the jury honoured the extraordinary "Swimming between granite" project by Belgian Biotop partner Viridee as the winner. As part of the conversion, the water level was raised by around one metre. As a result, the Swimming Pond reaches a water depth of 2.5 metres and creates a special wellness experience with walls made of regional granite stone, a wooden terrace, a fresh green zone and an infinity edge.

Second place went to John GmbH from Germany for the successful conversion of a chlorine pool in a castle park into a dynamic Swimming Pond. The old pool was renovated, equipped with modern Biotop technology and a plant zone was added. Biotop Wassergestaltung took third place with an elegant Living Pool, which was created from a Swimming Pond in need of renovation. Fourth place also went to John GmbH for the tasteful redesign of an existing Swimming Pond into a low-maintenance, modern Living Pool.

 The Swimming Pond with regeneration zone and sunny terrace
1st place: Viridee NV © Viridee

  Natural pond with clear water without chlorine in Germany
Partners 1st Choice Award: “Seezeitlodge“ by GaLaBau Schnur © Seezeitlodge/Guenter Standl


order catalogue

watch videos