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The Bulgari Hotel London Lap Pool


Pool and spa design engineering consultants

Swimming pools and spas are complicated buildings, and their design requires a high level of engineering expertise at all stages.

The key to success of these buildings is to involve all professionals early in the design process. Devin provides the specialist pool and spa engineering services at each of the design and construction stages.

Feasibility and Audits

Stage 1

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This early stage of the project will normally address the project brief, sustainability options, key spatial requirements, programme, and high-level budget costs.

Key inputs on the specialist engineering are required at this stage.  On existing sites, appraisals and site surveys can be carried out.

Concept and Developed design

Stages 2 and 3

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This is the early and most crucial design stage of the project.  Key issues that need to be resolved are: the design philosophy including approach to sustainability, the pool tanks type and profile, the extent and types of water treatment, the servicing strategy, the budgets for the elements, the sizes and locations of plant rooms and service ducts and the procurement method.

Failure to address the issues adequately at this stage can have serious design and cost implications for the project at a later stage.  The Pool and Spa Consultants’ role for these two stages is vital – so they should always be involved, and if not then there is the risk of abortive works.

Technical/Detailed design and specification

Stage 4

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There are two distinct elements to this stage – the specification/drawings and interfacing the design with the rest of the design team.

The specification and drawings clearly establish the scope and quality of the installations, which can then be used to level the playing field to obtain competitive tenders.  This provides the right solution at the best price.  For clients that require systems and materials that are efficient, effective and that will stand the test of time then these are essential.  In today’s highly competitive market there will always be pressure on sub-contractors to reduce the quality of the specification to obtain the job.  This is rarely in the projects or the client’s best interest.  The specialist elements such as water treatment, pool tanks, and movable floors and booms are all highly integrated with the rest of the building.

The interfaces with the architectural, structural, mechanical, electrical, drainage and builders work elements need to be clearly established and it is most effective, both in terms of cost and design, if these are done before any subcontractors are appointed.  Our role for this stage brings significant cost and design benefits to the project.

Competitive tendering and selection

Stage H

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Our team has over 60 years’ combined experience of the specialist engineering market, so Devin has extensive knowledge of subcontractor selection.

It is crucial that appointed subcontractors have the capability to work to the standards specified. Devin also evaluates tenders and provides detailed tender reports with recommendations.  Checking that the correct and most advantageous tender is accepted is a specialist and critical task.

Construction Site Monitoring, Commissioning, Handover and Close Out

Stages 5 and 6

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With the right design, an appropriate subcontractor and an appropriate price, the installation works can commence with the reassurance that risk has been minimised.

Construction information should reflect the specification, should be co-ordinated with the rest of the building and should make maximum use of allocated plantroom space.  The pool and spa consultant needs to comment upon and co-ordinate this information to check that the client achieves the best possible result from the subcontractor.  The pool and spa consultant plays several key roles while the works are on site, essentially protecting the clients’ interests and assisting the main contractor by:

  • regular inspection of the works to check that the requirements of the specification and that high standards of workmanship are being achieved at all stages
  • advising on site variations and conflicts
  • snagging of the completed installation
  • detailed evaluation of the commissioning of the installation to check that the systems are functioning effectively and efficiently; critical for the long term operation
  • checking of the O&M manuals
  • acceptance of the systems for handover and operation
  • Comprehensive and effective commissioning is the key to a successful installation.  Bespoke commissioning documents are prepared by Devin for each design, which are applied by the subcontractor, then independently verified by Devin.  Important mechanical, hydraulic, chemical, and microbiological criteria must be satisfied to enable completion.  Before a pool is handed over from the contractor to the client, the water quality should be verified for its safety, hygiene, and attractiveness. Heat experiences and features need to be verified for functionality.

Given the specialist nature of the works the pool and spa consultants are the only people who can realistically carry out this key role in the expert and independent manner required.

In Use

Stage 7

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The pool and spa consultant plays four key roles in this stage.

  • resolution of any defects with the design
  • advising on construction defects
  • carrying out the end of defects inspections
  • monitoring the performance of the systems against the design criteria.

As with previous stages, given the specialist nature of the works the pool and spa consultants are the only people who can realistically carry out this key role in the expert and independent manner required.

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Our team carry out 3D modelling of the specialist elements including plantrooms and pipework routing, working in Revit, and we work up to BIM Level of Development (LOD) 300 where required.