When Jay Dweck set out to add a swimming pool to his Bedford, New York, home, he faced what many homeowners encounter when renovating their homes: zoning restrictions. "I had a limited number of feet that could be devoted to the pool," he explained. "I wanted a pool long enough to swim laps, say 80 to 100 feet. However, given the restrictions, such a pool would have to be very narrow."
After considering his options, Dweck started to draw the shape that would work best for his pool.
"It reminded me of a violin," he said. Playing the instrument himself, the former Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley executive took note of his Stradivarius' dimensions and realized it could work -- he could have a violin-shaped pool in his backyard.
"The next challenge was finding someone willing to build it," he said. Chris Cipriano of New Jersey-based Cipriano Custom Pools and Landscaping turned out to be just the guy. His company specializes in tricked-out pools with fancy lighting, slides, king-and-queen chairs and more.
"The trend is continuing to grow for specialty pools and water features," Cipriano said. "Perimeter overflow, vanishing edge and all-glass tile swimming pools are very popular." Dweck's pool has 440,000 individual pieces of glass tile and more than 5,600 individual strands of fiber optic lights woven into the strings of the violin. A spa sits where you would expect the chin rest to be, and black stone around the perimeter mimics the purfling on a violin.
Dweck also plans to use his programming skills to coordinate underwater lights and music piped through speakers. "Let's say I play some violin piece," he told Bloomberg Luxury, comparing the effect to the "Guitar Hero" video game. "I can just make it so that it's like the strings are being played in the appropriate place."
The project is part of the work of Dweck's new company, Live Better Systems LLC. "I am planning on using the house to continue to develop automation innovations, and as sort of a demonstration facility for Live Better Systems," he said. As the name suggests, Dweck hopes to help bring technology into others' homes that will improve the quality of life.
Such innovations may come with a high price, however. While a typical pool built by Cipriano costs between $300,000 and $500,000, Dweck's pool and equipment cost about $1.5 million. Dweck sees it all as an investment that will pay off in the future.
"I do expect the pool, as well as the integrated patio and landscaping, [to] add significant value to [my] property," he said.