Club Natació Barcelona

The Secret Of Timeless Pool Design

In the amazing Sant Sebastià Beach area, you’ll discover a big piece of Spain’s aquatic history: the home of Club Natació Barcelona (CNB). CNB first took to the water in its idyllic Barcelona locale around the turn of the last century and their remarkable story is one of success and longevity in the pool. The pool itself is also a success story – fabricated from quality materials, perfectly installed, and conscientiously maintained. But these aspects of the pool alone don’t tell the full story. The CNB pool is an outdoor, 365-day a year facility that has withstood the elements, and the high-salt content seawater it is filled with, for more than two decades. The CNB facility– a Myrtha RenovAction project circa 1999! – is a timeless jewel of a pool in Barcelona.

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ONE CLUB, MANY STORIES

Founded in 1907, Club Natació Barcelona has enjoyed a rich history of success. In 1908, CNB introduced the first ever water polo match in Spain. The Club also inspired the creation of both the Spanish Olympic Committee and the Spanish and Catalan Swimming Federations. In the decades that have followed, the club has produced an astounding 160 Olympic athletes, including water polo star, Manuel Estiarte, who has been named the world’s best player seven times.
The club offers swimming, water polo, diving, high-diving and artistic swimming teams that compete in all categories. With a history inextricably linked to national and international aquatics competitions, it’s no coincidence the club operates out of some extraordinary aquatics venues. In 2003, Myrtha Pools designed the CNB’s “Nova Escullera” or “Piscina Nueva del Rompeolas”, a pool that hosted the water polo competitions of the X FINA World Aquatics Championships. Thanks to the two movable bulkheads and the pool’s adjustable depth bottom – all of which are still in perfect working order – this Olympic-size pool can be divided into zones to meet the requirements of different user groups.

THE POOL THAT WITHSTANDS

Even before the building of the Nova Escullera, Spain’s top aquatics club and the world’s top pool manufacturer shared a history of collaboration. In 1999, Myrtha Pools designed and rebuilt CNB’s extraordinary, but challenging, outdoor pool – the “Piscina Salada” – near the Beach in Sant Sebastià.
A Myrtha RenovAction project, the existing seaside pool – an old concrete structure – had suffered in the Mediterranean conditions and was beyond repair. With the pool in use 12 months of the year, the challenge was to create a new, sustainable structure that could not only weather Barcelona’s seaside climate, but also withstand the high-salt content of the Mediterranean Sea water that is used to fill the pool.
In a controlled saltwater pool, where salt is a substitute for chlorine, the concentration of salt in the water is about 5 grams per litre. In the CNB’s Mediterranean pool, the salt concentration is a problematic 35 grams per litre. At this very high level, concrete and welded steel pools which are susceptible to corrosion, are easily compromised. Even in lower concentration salt pools, concrete is known to age poorly and suffer from cracking and failure. Welded steel pools not only suffer from the salt, but in the Mediterranean conditions, normal day/night temperature changes create expansion problems that can compromise the pool’s structure.
Solving all these problems, Myrtha’s RenovAction solution, built from stainless-steel components that are not welded, is still a community and CNB favourite, even after more than 2 decades in the most challenging conditions.

Photo Credits by Club Natació Barcelona