February 23, 2023

Job Debrief: Kohimarama Spa & Deck

This Kohimarama spa & deck lighting installation is a perfect example of how less can easily be more.

With just six watts or $6 per year to run the exterior lighting design every night, you will never have an issue with your power bill!

The client wanted only features highlighted; meanwhile, making sure that there's enough spill light highlighting pathways leading into the spa area. Special timers sync perfectly from dusk until dawn, so everything looks great 24/7 without ever having to interact with the switching manually.

The Landscape Design

After consulting the client, we obtained renders for what was to be built and also received the specifications for the spa and pergola from Spa World.

The builders installed the piles, constructed the framing, and then we installed the spa power and lighting cables. The builders then pushed forward with laying the deck and finishing the stairs and planter boxes. With beautiful Kwila decking chosen by the client, we were lucky to have a great colour match with our stainless fittings. As the Kwila silvers, the stainless fittings will look more and more at home. With Kwila being a harder wood, we achieved a nice clean installation without splintering or issues with wet timber.

Once the deck was finished, we were able to consult the client about the design. We find it much easier to design deck lighting once the decking is complete; there is sufficient access beneath the decking to allow us to cable after it is laid. The client was adamant that there would be enough light on the deck and plant features, but they did not want the space to be over lit.

We achieved this by installing 1w fittings that directed light toward the features of the deck, such as edges and boxing. A very small amount of light is required to achieve sight for walking, so these create enough spill lighting to light the pathway to the spa effectively.

The Deck Lighting Installation

With the switched lighting feed in place before the deck was laid, we could fish from that point between the light holes to cable the fittings. The light fitting holes were cut with a fine tooth hole saw to ensure a clean, precise hole with no splintering, and waterproof connections were fitted. With the holes cut and the connections now fitted, the lights were installed and tested.

The end result

The client was thrilled with the result, the low-level lighting allowed the spa pool lighting to have an effective presence still, and the synchronous timer meant that the lighting system operated by itself under the parameters set by the client.

The entire lighting system with a 40amp spa feed cost under $5500 to install; it is hard to split the labour and materials exactly, but the lighting installation was estimated to have cost around $2000, and with an annual running cost of only $6 on the lamps, this is an excellent return on investment for the client.

'Kohimarama Spa & Deck' is a great example of how less can easily be more in exterior lighting design.  If you have any questions about your own project, please don't hesitate to get in touch!