The web site for all professionals and consumers who've made or want to make water a part of their lives

By Jim McCloskey 

When I travel from Los Angeles to visit my mother, who lives across the sound from Seattle on Washington’s beautiful Bainbridge Island, I always do my best to stop by the Bloedel Reserve while I’m there.
The Reserve is an internationally renowned public garden that puts its emphasis on 


By Paolo Benedetti 
Maria de Medici moved from Florence to Paris in 1600 as the wife of Henri IV, King of France. Homesick for her native city and caught in an unsuccessful marriage, she pestered her husband to build her a mansion and grounds that would remind her of the 


On a recent trip to Spain, Paolo Benedetti and his family took a side-trip to Portugal and happened on some Roman ruins that opened his eyes to a whole new set of possibilities.  Here, in a most unusual ‘Solutions’ piece, he describes his encounters with the technologies used to heat an ancient residential indoor swimming pool as well as a collections of pools that made up the public-bath system for a seaside outpost of the Roman Empire.

By Paolo Benedetti

As a pointed expression of the growing global concern over the earth’s changing climate, lots of my clients these days are asking me about alternative methods for heating their pools.  It’s a reasonable concern, and I don’t think it will be going away anytime soon.

Part of the problem in answering these questions is that neither I nor my clients want to go out on technological limbs and invest in leading-edge or green ideas that have yet to prove themselves.  The rest of it probably has to do with the phenomenon of

By Jim McCloskey

As I’ve mentioned before in these Travelogues, I have strong ties to Pennsylvania and have spent a considerable amount of time exploring all it has to offer visitors, from the basic touristy stuff to some wonderfully off-the-beaten-path sorts of experiences.
My brother Tom lived in Philadelphia through most of the 1980s, and both work and pleasure led me to visit him on so many occasions that I came to know the city quite well.  The waterfront is amazing, and so is the historic district 

By Jim McCloskey

Through the years, I've spent lots of time in Philadelphia, both on business and visiting with family and friends scattered throughout the area. 

I've been there so many times, in fact, that I started hunting a bit farther afield for 

By Jim McCloskey

Aided by the fact that my sister lives within easy driving distance of Mill Run, Pa., I've visited Frank Lloyd Wright's Fallingwater several times through the years and have had the good fortune to see it in spring, summer and fall.  
It's an amazing place and has been documented with 
By Hal Hagen 
10 Years AgoBack in October 2001, Hal Hagen wrote “The Soul of the River” about his passion for restoring damaged or compromised stretches of wild water.  His insights from back then ring true, perhaps with even greater urgency, 10 years later:
‘At the most basic level, all rivers do is

By Jim McCloskey

9-5 travelogue artA few weeks back, I came across a story on a celebration that ran off the rails in San Diego’s Balboa Park. 

In the wee hours of August 12, a party instantly organized on social media lured an estimated 1,500 people to participate in a gigantic water fight.  Unfortunately, the park’s largest open and available source of water to

By Jim McCloskey

8-22 travelogue art LPBack in a time before I had anything to do with watershaping, I lived for a few years in Eugene, Ore. – a smallish college town that always left me craving more-urban spaces.

Portland was up the road by a couple hours, and in the days before our first child appeared, my wife and I would make fairly frequent trips to visit the closest real city we had available. We loved

By Mark Holden

MarkHoldenVillaLanteWaterStairIf you want to gain a full appreciation for classic fountains, pools or waterfeatures, you really do need to pack your bags: Seeing their beauty, power and subtlety at first hand gives us the opportunity to

By Mark Holden

MarkHoldenHearstCastleI just don't get Hearst Castle. Why should we celebrate the gross-scale purchases of historical artifacts and period-inspired structures by a wealthy American whose main pleasures seem to have involved amusing himself and overwhelming others?

I am willing to concede that Hearst's San Simeon compound and collections impress

By Mark Holden

MarkHoldenVilladEsteIf you're looking for a destination that includes, all in one place, several of the most enduring and influential watershapes of all time, you couldn't go wrong in visiting Villa d'Este — without question one of the

By Mark Holden

MarkHoldenHearstCastleIn a previous edition of WaterShapes EXTRA!, I discussed the merits and deficiencies of Hearst Castle, and was quickly rewarded with a torrent of other peoples’ opinions. In all of the many comments I’ve seen, one thing is clear: Hearst Castle is


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