Pool trends for 2019

If you’re thinking about adding a pool to your home for the 2019 season, it’s important to know about the huge range of available options. Gone are the days when one-size-fits-all was the standard in the pool industry. Today, all of our pools are customized to fit the space and the needs of our clients.

Materials and orientation

Step one is deciding which type of pool best suits your needs: gunite, hybrid, or vinyl. Each one has distinct advantages, and our experts will be able to help you decide which type makes the most sense for your property. We’ll then explore different pool shapes and orientations, depending on available space and the style you’re most attracted to. Thanks to our turnkey solutions, we can create a pool to fit just about any space!


By incorporating safety features into your project, we help ensure the security of your families and friends without sacrificing style. Things like beach entries, which allow everyone to enter the water slowly, and sleek glass safety gates and fences help control access to the water. This is critical for many families, especially those with younger children.

Patio areas

While basic concrete slabs was once the norm, today your pool patio area can be thought of as a chic extension of your home. The range of stones available, from natural options to manmade pavers, can be used to create a variety of looks to appeal to any taste. Moreover, we can add features like special imported wood sun decks, complimentary fencing, and other accessories to bring your patio area to life. Moreover, by adding sitting areas, a space for dining, and any number of accessories, your backyard patio can become a true outdoor living room!

Thinking about a family vacation in 2019? Think again!

If you’re thinking about planning a big family vacation this year, you might want to consider investing in your property instead. While travelling as a family is wonderful, it can be quite costly when you consider the amount of time, coordination, and money spent for such a short period of time. Instead, here are the top 5 reasons to invest in a backyard upgrade rather than a family trip.

  1. A permanent fixture: The most obvious reason to opt for a pool instead of a trip is permanence. A trip will last a couple of weeks, while adding a pool to your backyard will result in countless years of seasonal enjoyment for your whole family – and friends of course.
  2. More face time: Our clients often remark how adding a pool to their home has resulted in a huge increase in family time. After all, why head out when you can spend hot summer days lounging poolside in the comfort of your own home? This is especially true for families with kids of all ages.
  3. Bang for your buck: When you consider that a trip, whether it be to a warm climate or a European getaway, can cost a substantial amount for a short period of time, it begs the question: might it be better to spend a bit more for something that will endure for years to come?
  4. Leave the coordination to the experts: Planning a trip can be quite time consuming and stressful, especially when you’re trying to please every member of the family. When you opt for a pool instead of a trip, you won’t need to spend hours researching locations and venues. Rather, meeting with our landscape architects will kick off the efficient and smooth process of bringing your backyard oasis to life.
  5. Property value: Adding a pool or turnkey landscaping project to your home will undoubtedly increase your home’s value. This means you’ll get to enjoy the new installations for as long as you live in the home, and are likely to see a return on your investment when it comes time to sell your property. Win-win!

Top 5 ways to maximize your backyard space in the fall

If you’re big into outdoor living, you likely already know that your backyard can continue to be an oasis well into the fall. Here, we explore the top five ways to make the most of your outdoor space as we head into the cooler months of the year.

  1. Fall gardens: While we tend to think of gardening as a spring and summer activity, the fall is a wonderful time to liven up your gardens with warm hues and hearty, seasonal plants. Ornamental grasses and shrubs can be used to create clean modern lines, while flowering plants like asters, chrysanthemums, and goldenrods can add a pop of colour and bloom for several weeks. Bonus: you can add some festive décor by including pumpkins and other gourds.
  2. Fire tables: Adding a fire feature, whether it’s a pit, ring, or table, to your backyard is always a great idea! Not only do fire tables add a gorgeous visual component to any outdoor sitting area, they also serve a practical purpose by providing the source of warmth that’s often needed to enjoy your outdoor space on chilly evenings. Curling up by the fire on a cool night with a cup of tea or a glass of wine is often the best way to unwind at the end of the day.
  3. Al fresco dining areas: Let’s face it, eating outdoors is one of the best parts of summer, and a favourite pastime for so many families! But why stop there? Don’t let a little cool air spoil your fun. The number of heating and lighting options available for outdoor dining spaces today are as vast as they are varied. The best part? Most of them won’t break your budget.
  4. Cozy outdoor living rooms: Fall is a great time to invest in some new outdoor furniture! By purchasing three-season pieces and sets, you can set up an outdoor living room complete with comfortable couches and chairs, as well as practical dining options. Doing so can help you make the most of your patio set up well into the fall. You can also add a cozy and visually appealing element by having a basket of blankets on hand!
  5. Soaking in the cooler weather: Did you know? Most outdoor spas can be used year-round, and so we always like to consider accessibility when designing a back yard landscape that includes one. Placing the spa as close as possible to the backdoor, without compromising the orientation of the rest of the patio area, means it’s easy to warm up with a soak on chilly days, and even in the snow.




Five reasons to consider an urban pool

If you live in Montreal, or any city for that matter, and miss the many comforts offered by a suburban backyard, you’ll likely be thrilled to know that the trend of installing pools in city settings is growing quickly. Here, we explore the top five reasons why urban pools are hotter than ever.

  1. Size matters: Thanks to improvements in construction technology and changes in materials, tiny yards have become easier to access and small pools are more popular than ever. This means that even tight backyards can often accommodate a pool! Bonus: a smaller pool means lower heating costs for homeowners.
  2. Customization is king: Because landscape experts have increased their capacity to create complex custom designs, pools now come in all shapes and sizes, meaning there are options for even the most awkward lots and uniquely oriented homes.
  3. Turnkey projects are on the rise: Many urban homeowners are opting to raze their whole backyard, including their deck or patio, and start from scratch. In doing so, landscape designers are often able to incorporate a seating area, patio, steps, and more into the space around a pool. This type of project enables designers to optimize the placement of the pool and typically delivers spectacular results thanks to the uniform look created by designing everything at the same time.
  4. Changing pool trends: Gone are the days of large deep ends with diving boards. The result? You no longer need as much square footage of space around a pool. Rather, linear pools with steps or beach entries, as well as lap pools, leave a smaller footprint than pools of the past, meaning installing one will not dominate your entire backyard.
  5. A sign of a thriving downtown: While having a pool brings about endless hours of personal enjoyment for homeowners, the rising trend of urban pools is actually a sign of a healthy economy and thriving population. The sprawling development in and around Montreal’s downtown core, from the entire Southwest borough to hills of Golden Square Mile, is a positive indication for the city as a whole… so splash on!

« Top ten » des jardins

Le long week-end qui s’amène donnera certainement à plusieurs propriétaires le temps de préparer leur jardin pour la prochaine belle saison.

Voici le « top ten » des tendances en jardinage pour la saison 2018 :

  1. Un jardin zen : Une des façons les plus populaires de créer un jardin zen consiste à installer des places assises, entourées d’herbes basses, de végétaux persistants, de pierres lisses et d’au moins une pièce d’eau.
  2. Pièce d’eau : Peu importe qu’elle soit dans un jardin zen ou non, la pièce d’eau demeure un élément des plus prisés dans l’aménagement de cour arrière d’aujourd’hui. Son look élégant, combiné au son relaxant produit par le flux d’eau, apporte une diversion appréciée à notre train-train quotidien.
  3. Conception d’éclairage : L’ajout de lumières disposées de façon stratégique mettra en évidence certaines parties de votre jardin, en baignant d’un éclat chaleureux différents buissons et arbres dès la tombée du jour. Plusieurs propriétaires optent plutôt pour un éclairage le long des marches et allées, joignant ainsi le style et la sécurité.
  4. Jardins « peu d’entretien » : Aussi appelé jardins sauvages, ces espaces verts sont constitués de fleurs sauvages, de graminées et de rampantes disposées librement, en les laissant pousser naturellement afin de créer un look sauvage.
  5. Herbacées ornementales : Avec un grand assortiment de tailles, de couleurs et de textures, les graminées ornementales agrémentent tous les types de jardins et de propriétés. Ces plantes vivaces sont décoratives, qu’elles soient employées seules ou intégrées à un aménagement.
  6. Merveilles locales : En optant pour des plantes locales, vous assurez la pérennité de votre jardin. Habituées à notre climat, elles requièrent moins d’entretien.
  7. Jardins comestibles : Les jardiniers ne seront pas étonnés d’apprendre que les potagers sont toujours aussi populaires. Produire ses propres légumes est une expérience extraordinaire, particulièrement grâce à la disponibilité de graines et de jeunes cultures biologiques locales maintenant disponibles. Nouvelle tendance cette année ? Faire pousser des légumes verts tels que les différentes variétés de chou kale, de bette à carde, de chou vert et autres légumes-feuilles.
  8. Bordure de jardin : Afin d’obtenir un look propre et plus fini ainsi qu’un effet linéaire, plusieurs propriétaires utilisent le pavé pour le contour de leur jardin. Cela permet d’agencer le patio et les allées avec le jardin.
  9. Jardinage sur balcon : Pas de cour arrière ? Pas de problèmes. Les propriétaires de condo qui désirent profiter d’un coin de verdure ont un vaste choix d’options. Des jardinières à étage, des murs de verdure, un potager étagé, ou encore une jardinière bien garnie, il n’y a pas de limites à ce qu’on peut réaliser pour agrémenter la terrasse.
  10. Espace extérieur accueillant : À quoi bon avoir un magnifique jardin si l’on n’y passe pas le plus de temps possible ? C’est pourquoi les propriétaires choisissent d’incorporer un espace où s’assoir et même un coin repas dans et autour de leur luxuriant jardin afin d’en profiter le plus souvent et le plus longtemps possible.

Maximisez l’attrait de votre maison

Une façade propre ainsi qu’un aménagement paysager en bon état sont certainement deux éléments parmi les plus importants pour rendre votre propriété plus attrayante. En plus de rehausser l’apparence, ils reflètent la façon dont votre propriété est entretenue. Si vous souhaitez rafraichir votre propriété, nos experts sauront vous conseiller, peu importe votre budget. Voici les cinq meilleures façons d’en améliorer l’apparence :

  1. L’entrée et l’allée : Puisque nous disposons d’un immense choix de designs, de styles et de matériaux, nous pouvons créer l’entrée et l’allée de vos rêves, peu importe vos goûts en design. Alors que les lignes pures et modernes demeurent la tendance prédominante, nous prévoyons un fort engouement pour les matériaux XYZ cette année.
  2. Le gazon : Un gazon bien entretenu est toujours attirant, en plus de donner un aspect soigné à votre propriété. En plus de dégager un parfum sublime, une pelouse riche et abondante est une façon économique de rafraichir l’apparence de votre propriété.
  3. Jardins et verdure : Que vous préfériez les arbustes et haies ou que vous vouliez « la totale », des arbres taillés, des fleurs ou des plantes spéciales, nous nous en occupons. Cette saison, nous prévoyons que les plantes XYZ auront la vedette.
  4. Améliorations de base : En plus des travaux d’aménagement paysager, des choses très simples –repeindre la porte avant, améliorer l’éclairage extérieur, remplacer l’ancienne boite aux lettres ou nettoyer le revêtement – sauront mettre en valeur votre propriété.
  5. En prime : Avez-vous déjà songé à améliorer le design de votre cour avant ? L’ajout de cloisons architecturales, de jardinières en pierre ou d’une terrasse avec des places assises peut apporter de l’éclat et faire en sorte que votre maison se démarque.

Vous aimeriez moderniser l’extérieur de votre résidence ? C’est maintenant le moment idéal pour démarrer la planification de votre projet. Contactez-nous et nous vous guiderons à travers les différentes étapes.


Cinq façons de créer votre oasis extérieure

Afin d’obtenir le résultat escompté, les propriétaires de maison font souvent appel à des experts pour l’aménagement de leur espace extérieur. Le choix d’un design, la sélection des composantes et l’utilisation optimale de l’espace extérieur doivent respecter une ligne directrice. Avec près de 40 années d’expérience en la matière, les experts de Groupe Paramount peuvent vous aider à affiner votre concept et à le réaliser. Selon eux, la clé du succès est de savoir investir dans ce qui est bon pour vous et votre famille.

Voici le top cinq des façons de créer votre oasis extérieure personnalisée :

  1. La cuisine extérieure : Vous aimez recevoir? Une cuisine extérieure est une superbe addition pour les propriétaires qui aiment accueillir les parents et amis pour un repas où une fête. En créant un espace extérieur complet avec lavabo, BBQ, fumoir, four à pizza, plaque de cuisson, four à bois, frigo, espace bar, table pleine grandeur et autres, vos réceptions ne seront plus jamais les mêmes. De plus, bien disposée, une chaufferette de terrasse vous permettra de prolonger l’utilisation de votre cuisine et espace salle à manger extérieurs même durant les mois un peu plus frais. Si votre demeure est déjà un lieu de rencontre pour parents et amis, l’ajout d’une cuisine extérieure donnera le coup de départ pour la saison cette année.
  2. Piscine et spa : Si vous aimez nager, relaxer et faire trempette, l’option piscine et spa est pour vous. De plus, si vous avez des enfants, l’ajout d’une piscine représente des heures de plaisir pour les années à venir. Le Québec est présentement le chef de file dans ce domaine puisque, chaque année, 70 % des piscines creusées achetées au Canada sont installées au Québec. Si vous aimez l’eau et que vous souhaitez revamper votre espace extérieur, l’ajout d’une piscine et/ou d’un spa est sans contredit la solution. 
  3. Jardins : Que vous aimiez jardiner ou que vous souhaitiez être entouré de fleurs et de verdure sans avoir à le faire vous-même, l’ajout d’un jardin –ou d’un complexe de jardin– peut vous procurer un magnifique espace de détente. De plus, un jardin bien entretenu ajoutera de l’attrait à la façade de votre maison. Le meilleur moment pour démarrer la planification de votre projet s’étend de janvier à mars, pour la saison qui vient. Si vous aimez la verdure, nous pouvons vous aider à créer un jardin personnalisé qui occupera tout l’espace désigné.
  4. Pavé uni, marches et patios : Avec un choix infini de matériaux, textures et couleurs, le recouvrement d’une allée en pavé uni et d’un patio dans la cour arrière procureront un look soigné, au goût du jour. Qu’il s’agisse de la pierre ledgerock naturelle, de calcaire martelé –un favori au Québec– du Techo-bloc artisanal, de l’option Permacon, Rocvale ou Rhinox, les possibilités sont infinies pour obtenir le design recherché. Si vous désirez simplement faire des modifications plutôt que de tout refaire, rafraichir la pierre est un excellent investissement pour enjoliver et rendre votre espace plus fonctionnel. 
  5. Options supplémentaires : Que vous souhaitiez ajouter un espace de détente style « resort », un foyer encastré en pierre et verre ou encore un éclairage spécial qui illuminera votre cour arrière, nos experts peuvent vous aider à réaliser vos rêves et peut-être même vous suggérer des idées auxquelles vous n’auriez jamais pensé.

Top trends for gardens in 2018

With Victoria Day weekend upon us, many homeowners will be using the next few days to jump-start their gardens for the summer ahead. Here, we explore the top ten trends in gardening for the 2018 season:

  1. Zen gardens: Sitting areas surrounded by simple gardens consisting of low grasses, durable plants, smooth stones, and at least one water feature is one of the most popular ways to build an outdoor relaxation area in your own home.
  2. Water features: Whether they’re part of a Zen garden or not, water features are one of the most sought after elements in backyards today. Their elegant looks, combined with the relaxing sound of flowing water, are a welcome distraction from the hustle and bustle of every day life.
  3. Designer lighting: with some strategic custom lighting, you can help your garden shine even at night by highlighting different shrubs and trees bathed in a warm glow. Many homeowners are also opting to line their steps and walkways with lighting features for both safety and style.
  4. Low maintenance gardens: Also known as bed-head gardens, these types of green spaces consist of informal planting using native species, often grasses and creeping florals, and allowing them to grow naturally in order to achieve a somewhat sauvage look.
  5. Ornamental grasses: with a huge variety of sizes, colours, and textures, ornamental grasses truly provide options for any type of garden and property. These durable plants are beautiful on their own, or as part of a larger garden-scape.
  6. Native wonders: opting to plant a garden consisting of locally growing vegetation is a great way to ensure the longevity of your garden, as the plants require less effort to maintain given that they’re designed to thrive in our climate.
  7. Edible gardens: it will come as no surprise to gardeners that vegetable patches are as popular today as ever before. Growing your own produce is a wonderful experience, especially with the huge range of organic seeds and seedlings available locally today. A new trend this year? Growing greens such as kale varieties, Swiss chard, collards, and other types of leafy greens.
  8. Paver-lined gardens: in order to achieve a clean, linear effect, many homeowners are opting to line their gardens with paver stones. This is especially true for those looking to match gardens pavers to their patio and walkway surfaces.
  9. Balcony gardens: no backyard? No problem. Condo owners who are hoping to have a slice of green space have a huge range of options available to them today. From complex multilayer planters, to planting walls, tiered vegetable gardens, and hearty hanging flowering planters, the sky’s the limit when it comes to terrace planting.
  10. Al fresco living: what’s the use in having a beautiful garden if you don’t also spend as much as time as possible in it? That’s why many homeowners today are choosing to incorporate sitting and even dining areas in and around their lush gardens.

The growing trend of outdoor kitchens

Having a home that enables outdooring is becoming increasingly important for Canadians. Today, backyard kitchens fit right into this phenomenon, and are growing in popularity among all types of home-owners.

Here, Ryan Bloom, co-owner of Urban Bonfire, which partners with Groupe Paramount on many outdoor projects, explores some of the latest trends in outdoor kitchens, and how they’ve come to be a staple in backyards across Montreal and surrounding areas.

How do outdoor kitchens fit into a home’s overall backyard-scape?

Outdoor kitchens have become a more sophisticated manner of recreating a nostalgic feeling of quality time spent outdoors with family and friends. In most cases the driving force behind specific niche purchases like an outdoor kitchen is the desire for a beautiful, functional and cohesive outdoor room. We’ve found that home-owners who are willing to make the time and financial investment on a perfectly manicured outdoor space (large or small) want the final touch of an outdoor cooking area to entertain. Clients who are looking to tie together their outdoor space with an area dedicated to cooking are most likely people who love to entertain, and therefore want to be present throughout the entire party – not constantly running from their indoor kitchen to their backyards, missing half the fun.

Who is purchasing outdoor kitchens?

While we’re consistently designing and installing a large number of high-end projects, we’re definitely seeing a steady rise in demand for what we call micro-kitchens. We developed an outdoor kitchen system that can truly suit many budget levels provided the client is prepared to invest in a quality, locally manufactured system that will last for 20+ years. For example, we recently partnered with SABER, an upscale grill brand to co-create a line of moderately priced, beautiful and high performance outdoor kitchens in a variety of shapes, sizes and price points.

The shift has happened due largely to baby boomers who are downsizing and moving into condo developments with balconies and terraces. We saw a need because this group of homeowners still wanted the amenities a larger home can provide, but in a smaller footprint. So we developed a product that can be customized to almost any sized space without sacrificing design, quality, expectation or user experience.

What are the current trends in outdoor kitchen design?

Today’s outdoor kitchens can offer clients and their design partners a vast selection of layouts, colours, fixtures, upgrades and equipment options that allow for true and uncompromised outdoor space design. Clients are also seeking quality products that are designed, manufactured and tested in our climate and for our climate.  Our entire line is manufactured here in Quebec and is built to handle our demanding weather.

Overall, the reigning trend in outdoor kitchens is the focus on functionality. An outdoor kitchen is only as good as its design and usability. Take the idea behind our modular cabinetry system for example; the whole point is to eliminate the need to use your indoor kitchen when cooking and entertaining outside. The same is true for our pull-out garbage cans, spice cabinets, adjustable shelving, retractable hose, and more. No more running into the house for plates and glasses, just open your outdoor cabinets to find everything neatly stored at arm’s reach.

Running parallel to the outdooring movement is another trend that promotes the global initiative of self-sustainability. We’ve dubbed this trend as urban gardening. We’ve seen a number of our condo and townhouse clients installing micro gardens to grow everything from simple herbs to elaborate vegetable patches. With design and aesthetics running through everything we make, we wanted to give our clients the home gardens of their dreams to perfectly match their outdoor kitchens. With that, we launched our line of custom planter boxes.

Are outdoor kitchens really worth it considering how short the summer season is in Quebec?

We hear this question all the time and while we certainly agree with the fact that our summers are short, we’re absolutely ready to help change the idea that outdoor cooking is only for the warmest months of the year. First off, with tons of new options like covered roofs, pergolas, fire pits and infrared heaters, the season for outdooring is getting longer all the time.

All of the equipment and materials we carry and use have been tested and proven to withstand and perform excellently in colder temperatures. We never set out to be considered a “seasonal product”, so we curated the best of the best materials and grill equipment to match our extreme climates. With countertop materials like the popular Dekton, our outdoor kitchens can withstand both extreme heat and extreme cold. Our custom cabinetry is made of marine grade aluminium and has a full interior and exterior protective powder coating included in pricing, which means that rust is a thing of the past. Our grills, pizza ovens, smokers and side burners are known to be the most powerful available on the residential market.  Even new outdoor ice makers, wine coolers and refrigerators are built to be left outdoors 12 months a year. So in short, the length of our summers is no match for contemporary outdoor kitchens.

What’s the minimum budget range you should be prepared for when considering an outdoor kitchen in your home?

The three factors that will affect pricing on an outdoor kitchen will be size, selected grill equipment, and upgrades to things like countertop material, interior drawers, and so on. We have produced kitchens for under $10,000 on the low end and for over $150,000 on the high end, but an average kitchen (equipment, cabinetry, countertop, installation) typically runs in the $15,000 to $17,000 range.

Why is the investment so valuable?

Outdoor kitchens becomes part of clients’ families. In our fast paced world and go-go-go mentalities, this common space helps facilitate quality time spent with loved ones, helps people connect with friends, family, the outdoors, and of course, delicious food.


Top five ways to improve your home’s curb appeal

When it comes to boosting a home’s curb appeal, nothing is more important than a clean façade and manicured landscaping. Not only do these features go a long way in improving a home’s appearance, they also allude to how the rest of the home is maintained. If your property is in need of a refresh, our experts can help spruce up your home’s exterior, regardless of your budget. Here are the top five ways to improve your home’s curb appeal:

1. The driveway and walkway:

With a huge range of designs, styles, and materials available, we can work with any taste to design and create the drive and walkway you’ve always wanted. This season we expect clean lines and modern styles will continue to dominate trends. Popular looks include the “Sleek” from Techo Bloc, which allows very large rectangles to be used on driveways; the “Quadra” from Rhinox, which are beautiful 32 x 32 inch square slabs great for backyard patios or large stepping stones; the “Beacon Hill” from Rocval, which are large slabs that offer an ultra-smooth texture in vibrant colour options; and lastly, the “Cite” slabs by Permacon, which offer a new gorgeous light beige option.

2. Lawn:

A well maintained lawn is appealing to anyone. Full, lush grass not only smells wonderful, it also adds a polished look to any property, and is one of the most affordable ways to freshen the appearance of any home.

3. Gardens and greenery:

Whether you’re interested in hedges and shrubs, or want to go all out with trimmed trees, flowers, and specialty plants, we’ve got you covered. This season we expect ornamental grasses, perennials over annuals, layered planting designs, and low Maintenance gardens to be among the most popular planting trends.

4. Basic accoutrements:

Aside from planting features, things like a fresh coat of paint on your door, updated outdoor lighting, a new mailbox, and clean siding go a long way in improving a home’s curb appeal and the overall look of any property.

5. Bonus features:

Ever thought of adding some design touches to your front yard? Things like architectural walls, stone planter boxes, and front patio seating area can add flare and make your home truly stand out.

Planning on updating your home’s exterior this season? Now’s the best time to start planning your project! Contact us and we’ll guide you through the process.