You may, or may not, know that the hardscape that surrounds your pool has a name. It is often referred to as a pool surround, pool deck, or decking. Even though the name “deck” is most usually associated with wood, don’t let the name fool you. For the most part, in-ground pools have a concrete pool deck, but pavers and brick are also popular choices. So, how to choose the right pool deck?

How to Choose the Right Pool Deck
How to Choose the Right Pool Deck

Swimming pool decks, along with similar landscape elements, serve a functional purpose. Not only do they create a transitional space within the landscape they also facilitate drainage and cover bare dirt.

Consider These Features When Selecting Pool Deck Material

Although you want to choose a material that will give you the look that you wish to attain, there are other things you should take into consideration when choosing materials for your deck.

  • The material must be safe to use when wet.
  • Material should not be rough or uneven.
  • The material should be heat-reflective – no burning bare feet!
  • Algae and chemical resistant materials should be chosen if possible.
  • Will the material work with safety precautions required by local laws?

Pool Deck Material Options

Custom Pavers

Custom pavers are one of the most popular types of pool deck surfaces. They can be used for paths and patios as well as your pool surround. They come in different sizes, shapes, colors, and even different materials. Material options for pavers that are used as a pool deck material include concrete, stone, and aggregate.



  • Requires border for stability
  • Concrete pavers are more industrial look


Concrete creates a smooth deck and comes in many different colors. It pairs well with any style that calls for smooth, clean lines. Pouring a concrete pool surround should be done by a professional due to the size of the job and the amount of work it will be.


  • Easy to maintain
  • Doesn’t get too hot
  • Goes with many styles of decor


  • If not smooth could be dangerous when wet
  • Costly to repair if problems occur with pool pipes


For many centuries brick has been used for architectural and hardscape designs. Although not the most popular, it can be used as a pool decking material option.


  • Durable
  • Easy to maintain
  • Available in many different colors


  • Moss grows on brick, so regular maintenance is required to guard against slipping.
  • Can get slightly hot in the sun


Wood can blend naturally into most surroundings. It is probably the most affordable option and the easiest to install. Because it is something most people are familiar with, it can also be a bit underwhelming. It also has the most maintenance requirements.


  • Large variety of woods available
  • Lots of design options and styles
  • Natural material


  • Maintenance is very important
  • Seasonal maintenance required
  • Should inspect regularly
How to Choose the Right Pool Deck
How to Choose the Right Pool Deck


Stone, like wood, is a natural material and looks great when it is worked into your pool decking. The natural texture of stone will make it less slippery when it is wet. However, there are different types of stone to choose: quartzite, sandstone, limestone, granite, and prophyry.


  • Comes in many types, shapes, colors
  • Natural hardscape option


  • Darker colors can be hot
  • Expensive option


If you feel you must use tile for your pool surround, consider using a tile that is made specifically for being slip resistant like terracotta or water-impervious porcelain tile. Keep in mind that this is for around your pool, you do not want your family or friends to hurt themselves!


  • Seamless transition
  • Easy to maintain


  • Slippery
  • Fairly costly

Mixed Materials

The use of mixed materials can be a beautiful choice to make when deciding between multiple pool decking material options. You can add a stunning tile mosaic as an accent in the middle of a concrete paver pool deck. River rock made to look like a creek running through your deck could be an elegant touch. Mixed materials used as part of an overall cohesive design can be the best of all worlds if done correctly.


  • Stunning visual
  • Compromise between options


  • If not designed properly, could look too busy

Choose Wisely

There are many things to take into consideration when choosing between the different types of pool deck surfaces. It is always best to consult a local professional pool surround company before deciding on a custom pool deck. Custom pavers are definitely the most up and coming trend when it comes to material for your pool deck, but even the choices offered in pavers is something a professional can help you with. Choose the best option for your home, your family, and your style.