A sustainable dip in the search for wellbeing

principalOne in every 22 homes in Spain has a swimming pool. More than a million families own, in their first or second home, a swimming pool to better cope with the heat of summer but, increasingly, to enjoy themselves, relax and feel good. The latest innovations in the industry reflect this need for user comfort and wellbeing by focusing on sustainability and new technologies.

_MG_6972Piscina & Wellness Barcelona 2015 will be presenting the major trends that are driving innovation in the swimming pool sector in Spain, which consists of 2,500 companies employing 64,000 people. Spain has the second largest number of pools in Europe (1.16 million), 60% of which are over 10 years old with very basic or obsolete equipment.

Business opportunities

Currently, according to data from the Spanish Association of Swimming Pool Sector Professionals (ASOFAP) and Fira de Barcelona, three out of four swimming pools in Spain have a lighting system installed, less than half are equipped with automatic water treatment systems, 38% feature covers to prevent evaporation, 45% are fitted with automatic pool cleaners and only one in four has a safety system. Hardly any have energy or water saving systems, heat pumps or solar energy for heating or counter-current swimming machines.
For companies in the sector, it would appear that substantial business opportunities exist in refurbishment and replacement, as well as incorporating new equipment and eco-efficient technologies.

The swimminpools of the near future

What will swimming pools be like in the not too distant future? Here are the four trends that are gaining popularity:

  • 1. Swimming pools controlled by mobile phone

_MG_7147Manufacturers are aware that the initial novelty of having a pool in the garden gradually wears off. The owner gets fed up with having to spend an average of 85 minutes a week during the summer keeping the pool in good condition. To help bring back owners’ enthusiasm and make going for a dip more comfortable, solutions have been developed to automate and control maintenance, simplify processes and even remotely manage the functioning of equipment via mobile devices.

  • 2. Sustainable swimming pools

These pools reduce environmental impact by being equipped with water and energy saving systems that represent savings for the consumer in use and maintenance and ensure that the initial cost of installation soon pays for itself. Examples: leak prevention and repair, installation of covers to reduce evaporation or extend the swimming season, water treatment throughout the year (not only in summer), LED lighting, use of rainwater and fitting of eco-efficient pumps and filters. It is also important to apply eco-design criteria in building swimming pools and facilities.

  • 3. Healthy swimming pools

IMG_4649With the introduction of the use of more natural products for water treatment and better quality air in enclosed areas. In this regard, salt water chlorination is becoming increasingly popular as a method of disinfection and solutions are emerging to minimise oxidants and possible allergies or discomfort for bathers.

  • 4. More pleasant swimming pools

More and more owners see their swimming pools as a place to improve their quality of life and wellbeing. Many innovations involve converting facilities into truly active and recreational swimming pools that improve the experience of users and provide feelings of wellbeing while bathing.

New iWater exhibition

IMG_9461Fira de Barcelona, in collaboration with Aqua España, the Spanish Association of Water Treatment and Control Companies, will be hosting the first edition of iWater, an exhibition on the complete water cycle. The new event will include an exhibition area featuring the latest technologies and solutions for water management and a conference programme that will address the main challenges and developments in the sector. The show will be held at the Gran Via conference centre from 15 to 17 November 2016 in parallel with the Smart City Expo World Congress, the main international event on smart cities.

MARIA DOLORS HERRANZ