Janine Stone: How to fit a home gym, pool or yoga studio seamlessly into your house

Janine Stone offers her advice on creating home gyms, yoga studios and swimming pools to enhance mind, body and soul, in the fourth in our series of masterclasses with the designer.

In the past year, the evolution of our homes has rapidly accelerated. Our interiors have been increasingly required to accommodate activities, such as working and exercising, that had previously taken place elsewhere.

Whether incorporating a gym, pool or yoga studio, the ambition should not only be to create an attractive, dedicated space, but also to ensure that it fits seamlessly into a family home in a basement, extension, or annexe.

Redundant agricultural buildings are often perfect to house these amenities because they can offer the right light, space and setting. Whether choosing a basement, an extension, an existing building or one that is purpose built, the secret is to create a space that complements the main house and is of the same standards found in the best commercial environments, with air-conditioning, high-quality lighting and luxurious shower rooms.

These leisure rooms have always been an integral part of houses created or restored by Janine Stone and her team. Here, the designer shares her thoughts on how they should be designed and how they can seamlessly be added to the mix.

What are the advantages of having your own pool, gym or yoga room?

Aside from the obvious health benefits, the great saving is time. Having these spaces close to hand means that no time is wasted travelling to and from a gym or pool. People often forget that these can also be sociable rooms that create the opportunity to host yoga classes, swimming parties and poolside entertaining, thus offering a great way to spend time with family and friends.

However, they also bring huge advantages when people use them on their own, not least because you can then choose your own playlist on a sound system!

Indoor gyms don’t just save your time — they can be sociable spaces to share with friends.

What is the ideal location?

Much depends on the house. Basement gyms are ideal for townhouses, but in large country properties there are significant benefits to using extensions and outbuildings that provide light, plenty of lateral space and beautiful views.

And how do you design them?

Janine Stone & Co has a long track record of working with the UK’s most skilled and experienced craftsmen. Our emphasis on quality, communication and collaboration ensures that we not only have access to the very best skills, but also that work is beautifully executed.

What are your views on indoor pools?

When they are a part of the main house, access is vital. If an indoor pool is beautifully designed, there’s no reason for it not to blend seamlessly with the living areas, as well as with the garden. In a house we built in Surrey, the pool does exactly that, creating a space that is not only good for fitness, but also offers the perfect environment for the owners to spend time with their children and grandchildren. Similarly, it was designed to make use of the beautiful garden they have created.

What are the benefits of a leisure complex that combines gym, yoga studio and pool?

Aside from the variety it offers, a space where clients can swim, exercise and do yoga can be designed so that it shares facilities, such as shower rooms, saunas and steam rooms, thus creating a whole that is infinitely greater than a sum of the parts.

Janine Stone & Co specialises in building and renovating residential projects, incorporating architecture, interior design and construction management, and has been providing Country Life with professional insights and expertise in this Masterclass series for the past few months. To speak with Janine Stone & Co about your project, please telephone 020–7349 8888 or visit www.janinestone.com