In the world of innovation, there are ideas that enhance the way we live. One such visionary concept, spearheaded by local couple Cecilia Alvarez-Heard and Andrew Heard, transformed the traditional pool cover industry. Their venture, TRESSS Aquatectural Designs, introduces an innovative approach to pool covers.
Based out of Zionsville, TRESSS is the designer and manufacturer of race-car-inspired pool covers and plunge pools. Launched in 2019, the moving pool floor company offers a combination of convenience, style and safety features that can enhance the pool ownership experience.
The journey of TRESSS began 10 years ago when Andrew and Cecilia set out to create a unique solution for their own personal swimming pool.
“My wife and I started building our own home and we wanted to have a swimming pool with a pool cover, but we didn’t like any of the pool covers that we saw at the time,” Andrew Heard says. “We also knew we wanted the pool to be integrated into the house so we became familiar with moving pool covers.”
Unsatisfied with the options available in the market, the couple explored the moving pool floor concept. This concept involves a platform that moves up and down within the pool, allowing it to be flush with the surrounding deck when not in use. This design transforms the pool area into usable space, eliminating the need for a separate pool cover.
“What we did with the existing concept was create a version of the moving pool floor that brings other benefits above and beyond anything that’s on the market right now,” Heard says.
At the core of TRESSS’s innovation lies the functionality of a pool cover. The platform, when in its highest position, seamlessly integrates with the existing pool deck, creating an aesthetically pleasing and practical space. When the pool is in use, the platform can be adjusted to the desired depth, catering to various activities. The ability to customize the pool’s depth adds a new dimension to pool enjoyment, whether it’s shallow water play for children or deeper waters for swimming.
“At the highest position, the pool is completely hidden and you wouldn’t know it’s there until you press the button and open it,” Heard says.
His background as a mechanical engineer in car racing and his passion for design set the foundation for TRESSS.
“My background offered the ability to design a pool cover,” he says. “When I started designing, I wanted the pool cover to be done in a way that it could be commercially viable as a potential business for the future.”
The couple’s desire to become entrepreneurs was inspired by Heard’s English upbringing.
“I grew up working on my family-owned farm,” he said. “My wife and I wanted to create that same environment and to leave a legacy for our three children.”
The company’s name, TRESSS, pays tribute to their three children, Sophia, Stephanie and Sabastian. The Spanish word for three is “tres,” and the name is also a nod to Cecilia’s Mexican heritage.
The innovation behind TRESSS not only lies in its design, but also in its construction. Heard drew inspiration from his mechanical engineering background and the techniques used in race-car manufacturing. The pool cover’s structure is a composite-based approach, eliminating the need for traditional frameworks. This results in substantial durability and structural strength of the pool cover.
“Top-level race cars that I work on are built out of composites, where the strength comes from the form of that composite shape,” Heard says. “I used that technique to build the platform for the moving pool floor. The floor can be used for any activities that you would do on the surrounding deck.”
TRESSS’s composition-based structure provides R-30 insulation, allowing for year-round pool usage.
“R-30 is similar to the insulation of a roof of a home,” Heard says. “What that means is customers will have a very insulated swimming pool that they can now use all year, instead of only three months out of the year. We’ve used our pool in the winter, even when it’s snowing.”
TRESSS also addresses the need for special accessibility requirements. Its platform design allows for easy lowering of a person into the water, making it a safe and convenient option for individuals with special needs. Moreover, the pool cover’s design enhances safety, preventing accidental access and potential hazards.
As TRESSS continues to enhance the pool cover industry, its unique design, benefits and versatile functionality continue to pave the way for the future of pool enjoyment.