Open house, insert pool.

Hello blogsters!

*not Designers' Brew*

I am beyond honored to be hosting guest blogging Design Crisis while Karly is surfing the slopes and getting spanked on spiked hot cider out in Vail; I've got a great post lined up for you this morning, complete with a very special musical guest:

They're maniacs on the kazoo.

But before we get to that, let me give you the obligatory self-promotion plug: I'm a recovering English major, shoe addict, and NYC interior designer, and I blog over at Designers' Brew, where I thrash out all the good, bad and hilarious that the design world has to offer. Hope to see you there!

There's only one thing left to say: LIVE FROM NEW YORK, IT'S SPRINGTIME AT DESIGN CRISIS!!!

I know it's only March 12, but don't care what the calendar says; we've had our first two warm days here in New York, thus officially kicking off an awkward month and a half of denial wherein I dress way too lightly for the weather and clatter around the city in bare legs and heels, shivering uncontrollably and acting offended by the cold.

Yep, I'm done with winter, and am already dreaming about warm summer days, long weekends away, and visits to friends with pools and rivers to splash in, so I've pulled together a sampling of all of those things to get your engines revving.

First up, one of the most breathtaking houses I've seen in a long time: Vancouver-based Patkau Architects' Shaw House.

That is a pool. Floating over the entrance to the house, casting dancing, flickering, transparent shadows over the walkway below.

The interior's not half-bad, either:

Full of restless, shifting shapes that are subtly evocative of the shadowy water play outside:

And lest you think that this spectacular piece of architecture is shuffled away in some sightless suburb, never fear--here is the view.

Should you get a yearning to stretch your fins beyond the confines of the glass-bottomed pool, you have an entire bay to conquer--so get swimming!

Here are some other houses where the transition between water and structure is almost erased, creating a sophisticated play of transparency and reflection:

Jacob Termansen photography

Jacob Termansen photography

Inside Out

Mads Mogensen photography

Marmol Radziner

Olson Sundberg Kundig Allen

Roger Davies photography

Inside Out

Or, if turn-of-the-century Belle Epoque grandeur is more your vibe, you can't do better than the indoor pool at Hearst Castle:

The walls are covered with a king's ransom in mosaic tiles, many of them containing actual gold:

Here it is at night; can't you just imagine languidly splashing back and forth in the semi-darkness, the lamplight glinting off the brilliant, faceted tile, turning the pool into a magical Aladdin's cave for you and the companion of your choice (I don't know, do the words "pool" and "gold" bring anyone to mind for you?).

Sigh. Oh, sigh. Only two more months till the weather turns warm for real. I will be counting the days...