Drop it when it's hot: Hydro floors go from patio to pool in minutes

No room for a pool? Hide one beneath the floor

There’s a scene in It’s a Wonderful Life where George and Mary dance right into the swimming pool, after the gym floor opens up to reveal the water below. A similar thing happens in the 2000 James Franco movie Whatever It Takes, and both were shot at Beverly Hills High School’s Swim Gym. Companies like Guncast, Hydrofloors, and Agor Creative Engineering will actually install moving-floor swimming pools in your home (if you pay them enough money).

Despite the dancers’ dunk in the pool, the manufacturers argue hydro floors are actually safer than regular pools, because you can adjust their height. There’s no such thing as a deep end, unless you want there to be. Other advantages include energy savings (because the floor helps combat heat loss) and less work to clean the pool (because a patio on top would prevent leaves falling in). And of course, whether your pool doubles as a basement or a deck, it saves space. When its covered up, the water is still run through a filtration system and heated, so it’s swim-ready whenever you are.

“They are particularly sought after in cities, like London, where space is at a real premium, but we have also fitted them in country mansions,” Guncast’s Katie Sullivan told The Daily Mail. “People like the fact they can benefit from having a swimming pool in a space that can double up for other uses as well. It also provides ultimate safety.”

The Hydrofloor system works with a pulley system and water-based hydraulic cylinder, according to the company. Guncast uses Spiralift technology, which is used in platforms for orchestras and stages. The process of switching from floor to pool or vice versa takes around 10 minutes.

Just the floor alone can cost between $300 to $550 per square foot. “The pool itself is additional, and can run into the seven-figure range,” according to The Wall Street Journal.

Maybe when it’s done, you can rent it out to a filmmaker who wants their own memorable pool scene?

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