Designing A Memorable Family Vacation: Lake George RV Park

Photography Credit: Aquatic Design & Engineering

Photography Credit: Aquatic Design & Engineering

Up in the Adirondack Mountains, Lake George RV Park creates a vacation experience for the entire family, with 120-acres for campers to enjoy. Last summer, the park expanded their offerings with Cascade Cove: an outdoor pool complex designed by Aquatic Design & Engineering. Cascade Cove features a resort pool, spa pool, and a unique lily pad splash park and play structure.

10 Years in the Making

“It feels like I’ve been spending most of my life on this water park,” said Dave King, CEO & President of Lake George RV Park. “I spent 10 years planning it and 2 years building it. I spoke to a lot of operators who have built spray grounds in the last 5-10 years. All of them, when I asked, said if they had to do it over, would have started with a soft flooring system to begin with.”

He also noted that many of the operators who’d started with concrete pads were in the process of adding safety surfacing. “Adding soft flooring cuts down significantly on the minor incidents that occur and are reported during guest hours. We wanted to avoid these incidents from the very beginning.”

Between Dave King’s research and Aquatic Design & Engineering’s expertise in the field, they selected Life Floor to prevent accidents, add comfort, and create a splash pad design integrated with the surrounding nature.

Photography Credit: Aquatic Design & Engineering

Photography Credit: Aquatic Design & Engineering

Designing A Hopping Good Time

“When we started the design of the flooring for the interactive water feature at Lake George RV Park, we wanted to incorporate the character of the surrounding Adirondack Mountains,” said Josh Martin of Aquatic Design & Engineering. “Using Life Floor tiles gave us the flexibility to create a fun and whimsical lily pad design that embodied summertime and the natural beauty that guests would expect to see in this picturesque location.”

As a family destination, the water park was especially designed with inter-generational comfort in mind. “We cater to families with young children and the flooring is very beneficial to the young ones who crawl on it,” noted King. “We picked Life Floor for the durability,  the aesthetic, the maintenance... people really enjoy the lily pad theme from above.” Aside from the waterslide and play structure, the resort pool has a beach entry and ADA handrail, which allows guests of all ages and abilities to enjoy the water. The clover shaped spa’s unique design also allows up to 40 guests at a time.

It was a true pleasure being part of this aquatic expansion and we look forward to hearing about the busy summer season filled with delighted guests!

A special thank you to Dave King and Josh Martin for sharing their thoughts and expertise.

Photography credit: Aquatic Design & Engineering

Photography credit: Aquatic Design & Engineering

10 Things You Won’t BELIEVE You Can Do With Life Floor

The intrepid Life Hacker Will Want To Start With A Good Color Range

The intrepid Life Hacker Will Want To Start With A Good Color Range

2019 is all about the Product Hack: How can you use everyday items in astonishing and unexpected ways. If you’re anything like us then you probably have RACKS on RACKS of impervious, slip-resistant, impact cushioned pool tile just covering every inch of your office. We’re here to help with some Hot Tips for your cool floor:

10. Makeup Application

The Ripple 2.0 Texture Will Help Your Look Leave Its Mark

The Ripple 2.0 Texture Will Help Your Look Leave Its Mark

Life Floor is all about clean and colorful looks. Our impervious, non-porous make-up applicator adds industry leading texture to your make-up routine, which won’t fall apart on you as the day drags on. It’s easy-to-clean and massaging texture also won’t absorb any of your expensive products.

9. DeskMat

Blanket not included

Blanket not included

A rested mind is a more creative mind. No need for a back-up pillow; if you’re falling asleep at your desk, Life Floor’s cushioned desk mats are a non-abrasive way to drift off to dreamland. Bonus: easy drool clean up!

8. Stress… Ball?

Helping you get on a more even  Euclidean plane

Helping you get on a more even Euclidean plane

Sometimes you’re falling apart, and that’s when you need Life Floor in hand. Squeezing a Life Floor tile relieves stress, and gives you more traction for a better grip on your day.

Sure it’s not actually a ball and more of a flat disk, but that’s just part of its charm!

7. Custom Dinnerware

Spoons give you the inside scoop on meals

Spoons give you the inside scoop on meals

Who said pool tile couldn’t be romantic? Get ready to fall in love over Life Floor’s custom made dinnerware sets. They come in any of our 30 different colors to match your home decor. Note: please do not use Life Floor dinnerware with sharp utensils, food, or repartee.

And 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, and 1 didn’t seem like great ideas. Maybe there’s really just one very good use for Life Floor: providing safety, design, and comfort for everyone in aquatic environments. Happy April Fools Day!

Legendary Fun at Atlantis Aquaventure Waterpark

“Hands down one of the best products you can use to allow ‘kids to be kids.’”

-Olivia Wyrick, Director of Aquaventure Operations


Dubai is like no place on earth, and the Atlantis The Palm is like no place in Dubai. Rising out of the Persian Gulf, the Atlantis resort stands on the furthermost point of the Palm, its east and west towers framing the beautiful central arch, a gateway not only to luxury and opulence, but family fun, adventure, and discovery.

In the United Arab Emirates, visiting a water park is seen as much as a cultural experience as a recreational one. The design of the new Splasher’s Kids Play Area reflects this. The entirely-submerged splash pad was created for maximum entertainment, yet at no point does Aquaventure let you forget, you’re in a waterpark at one of the world’s leading resorts.


Leading With Safety

In 2017, our partner in the UAE, Raymond Sport, began working with Atlantis to address several surfacing needs of the new attraction:

“We wanted a flooring that was inviting to kids and families, allowing them to sit, stay and play and feel comfortable doing so,” said Olivia Wyrick, Director of Aquaventure Operations.

Along with the absolute requirement of slip resistance, Aquaventures expressed the need for a surface that was:

  • Durable, impervious, could last in high traffic areas, survive the Dubai sun, and perform while fully submerged throughout operation

  • Cushioned and comfortable to allow guests to play with confidence while also protecting little ones from trips and falls

  • Non-abrasive while simultaneously preventing hydroplaning as kids moved through the shallow water

“If we went with a flooring that was standard and more along the traditional floorings you see in pools and play areas, we probably wouldn’t have guests spending more time inside the area itself,” Olivia explained when asked how they ultimately decided on Life Floor.


Leading With Design

Atlantis was drawn to Life Floor when our studio produced a one-of-a-kind surface design using triangles and gradient colors to create a shoreline effect. In the end, Atlantis’ leadership in luxury and fun was a perfect match for Life Floor’s own position as the new international standard in safety and design.

Kelsi Goss, designer of the project, noted: “The Atlantis project provided us with a great opportunity to create a large gradient effect given its size. Adhering to the theme, we created a design that resembled the beach… We used the depth of the water in this kids play area to determine where to place the ‘sand’ and the ‘water’ in the design”

In 2018 Raymond Sport beautifully brought the vision to life. The beach effect was created with Life Floor’s Ripple 2.0 texture in Ocean, Bluebird, Iceberg, Sandstone and Sandbar colors. To reinforce the shoreline theme, Life Floor inlaid various brightly colored sea creatures, which also added immediate visual interest and play value.

“We wanted the design of the floor to really complement and showcase the slides and play elements, but also be interactive itself with kids and parents… The design and color selection available gives operators endless possibilities to theme. It creates an interactive element that will transform an entire area,” Wyrick added, pointing out the benefit of inlaid “sea life such as fish, octopus and starfish” into the larger work.


Leading With Experience

Life Floor’s core mission is and always has been safety, and the operators and guests alike have taken notice. “It’s been amazing,” Wyrick noted when asked how the floor was performing. “You can see that guests appreciate it when you watch them staying inside the play area for prolonged periods of time, especially when they are sitting in the pool and playing with their kids. The ‘softness’ of the flooring is very inviting and has really allowed families to stay together and enjoy the entire area as one.”


Would Aquaventures recommend Life Floor to other facilities?

“Yes, hands down one of the best products you can use to allow ‘kids to be kids,’” expresses Wyrick. “Kids can run through the area without worry… and can really be more interactive with all the elements and each other.”

A special thank you to Atlantis The Palm and Olivia Wyrick for taking the time to speak to us about your experience with Life Floor!

Photography by Garrett Reid - Instagram @rgrstudio

Play Value Part 3: Where Does Design Fit In?

Life Floor Girl Jumping.jpg

Safety surfacing, by nature, allows kids to play on splash pads the way they want to play. But there’s more to the conversation than just facilitating play. How can safety surfacing elevate experiences by encouraging and inviting new kinds of play opportunities? How can safety surfaces by design create a more dynamic play space?

Over the past 8 years we’ve worked closely with leading architects and engineers in aquatic design, splash pad manufacturers, world renowned brands, and cities all over the world to design safer and active play spaces. We’ve developed guiding principles for our design process to make splash pads as successful as possible, specifically in the matter of safety and play.

Safety (and Fun!) By Design

Our Studio department often discusses how everything we use throughout our life goes through multiple design phases. A common example of this is the difference between a simple, metal folding chair and an elaborate, plush armchair. While they have the same ultimate purpose, they went through design phases - they were simply designed to achieve different goals with different guiding principles in mind.

To understand what is involved in creating a successful splash pad, take playground techniques for example. In their paper “Design for Play: A guide to creating successful play spaces” (x) Shackell, Butler, Doyle, and Ball discuss creating unique and attractive play spaces: “Its premise is that, like any other part of the public realm that is intended to be well used, well loved and well maintained, play space needs a coherent concept and a clear design” (pg. 6).

Crafting a successful play space requires the design to be focused on long-term maintenance, overall play value, and a unique place in the heart of the community that can be transformed. The latter eliminates the possibility of “one size fits all” or “cookie-cutter” location, but also demands a level of integration and customization that lends to making the space fun and maintainable.

To help make this feasible, Shackell, Butler, Doyle and Ball offer a set of design principles to create a successful play space. These play locations:

■ are ‘bespoke’

■ are well located

■ make use of natural elements

■ provide a wide range of play experiences

■ are accessible to both disabled and non-disabled children

■ meet community needs

■ allow children of different ages to play together

■ build in opportunities to experience risk and challenge

■ are sustainable and appropriately maintained

■ allow for change and evolution.

These inspirational guidelines were designed to make communities, designers, and manufacturers alike consider play value as not only a series of parts, but also an ecosystem. Ecosystems flourish when all parts are balanced and each facet is considered harmonious with the rest which are compiled of the features, the functions, the environment, and safety itself.

Safety surfacing is often a vital part of a play value ecosystem. It adds deep richness and dimensions that can support splash features, reflect the environment, and customize the play space for the community.

Designing With Play Value

In the spirit of Shackell, Butler, Doyle, and Ball’s guidelines, we recommend how to best design a floor that integrates it into a splash pad’s story while creating a new recreation space for kids to enjoy. These features can entice and encourage exploratory as well as free play.

1. Surfacing needs to be noticeable.

If a child doesn’t have anything to interact with, then by definition the surfacing won’t encourage change in behavior.  Larger patterns have their place, especially in applications with multiple levels, but on a single plane area it is important that the flooring has noticeable calls to action. Just like a set of rings invites kids to run through them or water guns invite kids to point and spray, colors and shapes on the floor encourage flow through the space.

Real World Examples: When a child walks down the sidewalk they may play a game of avoiding the cracks. In a waiting room a child may try to avoid certain colored carpet tiles as they move back and forth.

What This Looks Like In Action: Similar types of games can be recreated by having a visibly repeating or alternating pattern in the surfacing of a splash pad so children can create their own games inside that framework. Surfaces can have numbered die cuts, inlaid shapes or different colors, and even well-known games like a hopscotch course located between sprayers. The basis is that a child can see the pattern and decide how they want to interact with it.

2. Build harmony between the surfacing and the features.

Features and flooring should complement one another. Not just in theme and aesthetics, but also in how each feature is meant to be used. Flooring can provide flow and add greater dimension to how features are used.

Real World Examples: Kids using building blocks on a city play rug will drive cars on the roads to their newly built buildings (or may just use natural lines in a typical rug). Placing masking tape on the carpet to make an interactive treasure map can help pass a rainy day inside.

What This Looks Like In Action: Some designers accomplish this by creating differently colored “play zones” on the ground to signal to parents and kids what ability level each zone is designed for (e.g. having a lilypad pond with a dark blue signaling where the more elaborate features are). This is a great way to group both features and ability groups.

Consider that features are meant to be enjoyed in different ways. Spray guns can shoot towards inlaid targets, swooping paths can lead kids through spray features, and different hot spots under the dump buckets can show children where to race when the tipping bucket bell rings.

3. Create harmony between play space and the environment.

A splash pad should benefit its surroundings, not replace them. A well harmonized splash pad will be unique to the space it’s situated in. If it’s in a natural setting, then more natural elements should be utilized as possible within the limits of maintenance regarding water. If the splash pad is located at a city center or plaza, then it should stand out from the surroundings for safety reasons, but also still be utilized during offseason. A play space should embody something unique about where it’s built to create ownership in the community, memorable experiences for kids, and clear senses of identity for the space.

Real World Examples: In terms of playing with water, science tables and children’s museums are popular attractions where kids get to learn and experiment with how water behaves in a small scale environment. Historically, theme parks have focused on creating integrated themed experiences that emphasize both how the ride feels, what story it tells, and how its surroundings appear. Kids will recall clear visual elements more easily than park names. For example, if a child says, “I want to go see the dinosaur,” this is equivalent to visiting the park with the dinosaur in the lake.

What This Looks Like in Action: Creating the sort of target pathways and games in the previous examples do not need to be one-size fits all. Die cuts can be created in the shape of local waterfowl footsteps. Local roadmaps can be recreated on the surface to guide kids between features. It can even be as simple as basing the color palette off a nearby playground or environment.

4. Design doesn’t need to be complicated to be meaningful.

Designing intelligently also involves considering what the community needs. A clear example of this is when a city may choose several smaller parks with simple splash pads over one larger and more complex park. These smaller parks won’t draw as much attention as the singular big park, but their accessibility will mean more to kids who get to enjoy them.

Similarly, the design of a single splash pad doesn’t need to be elaborate or overly complex in order for children to enjoy it. Simple and versatile often wins as opposed to complicated and intricate designs.

Real World Examples: Building blocks are one of the most simple toys, yet they attract kids of all ages due to their numerous applications and appeal to various ability levels. One of the most enduring and popular features on playgrounds are the monkey bars, which allows kids to test their abilities and enjoy a sense of risk.

What This Looks Like In Action: A surfacing design doesn’t need to be elaborate in order to add play value. The important thing is how a child sees it. A child might enjoy a simple repeating pattern they can create rules around or a inlaid track they can race on rather than a more intensive or complex design that draws the eye but doesn’t invite interaction.

Taking Design into the Future

With a unique play feature designed to fit and enhance its surroundings, communities are enabled to feel more ownership of their splash pad, and kids have new ways to play with each splash pad they visit. We believe these guidelines are a great way to ensure surfacing creates new dimension to playing beyond the surface level.

Splash Pads are a new trend for many cities and facilities across the country. What the future holds depends on the groundwork we lay now. Opportunities for interactions between flooring, features, and location are unique and specific to each community. As a result, Life Floor wants to help you design and create unique, beautiful, and safer aquatic spaces for your visitors of all ages to enjoy.