• The architects cantilevered the edge of the pavilion over the pool and outfitted it with a wide, sliding screen door, providing direct access to the water from inside and giving the face of the building the appearance of floating. Photo by Dror BAldinger, AIA.

Roughly two years after Poteet Architects completed a gut renovation of a two-story, 5,000-sf, yellow brick Victorian house in San Antonio’s King William historic district, the clients — a family of six — came back wanting a pool and a pool house. At first, the vision for this outbuilding was grand: a real home away from home with a kitchen, a bathroom, and a bedroom on two stories, complete with air conditioning. But there wasn’t enough room on the site to accommodate it all. “The more we worked on it, the simpler it got,” says Jim Poteet, FAIA. The bathroom was moved into a remodeled portion of the main house; the shower and kitchen were placed outside; and the pavilion itself became a simple, screened, 12-by-12-by-32-ft building made out of Alaskan Yellow Cedar. It contains a wet bar, a seating area, and a raw-plaster fireplace. A bamboo hedge at the property line provides privacy while allowing the breeze to pass through. The building has the same footprint as the pool, and they are oriented at 90 degrees to one another, forming a T in plan. The structure is slightly cantilevered over the water, and an 8-by-10-ft sliding screen door gives the inside direct access to the pool: a jumping platform or just a place to sit and dangle your toes in the water. Also on the site, Poteet provided a fire pit, an 8-ft-diameter spa connected to the pool by a runnel, and an enclosed, green-roofed portion of the pavilion that houses the pool mechanicals and some bicycle storage. A Ken Little sculpture on the side of this utility room — a neon airplane — casts a blue glow at night. 

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