I'm a first pool newbie. We're in Discovery Bay, CA and contracted Premier Pools in Antioch to do the work. Dan Grady was great to work with and we would give them an A- on the entire job. Minor issues, all to be expected - but in the end they made everything right.
We went with white plaster, salt water, all Jandy equipment, and solar heating. Stamped concrete cantilever edge with no band looks amazing (picture is before sealing which happens in a couple weeks). Did some black moss rock in water and some on-beam, 12" raised beam with ledger stone for a planter, and a 2-ton rock waterfall. Currently the waterfall looks unnatural, so I have some work to do with landscaping to make it fit in better - but I want to think about it a bit.
Pictures below are before the red/black lava rock (and more black moss rock boulders) are delivered this weekend for the perimeter landscaping. Also, the fence is being stained a redwood color.
My mind is open, and I look forward to learning about how to manage this new labor of love in my back yard. I love discussion forums - I find them to be very effective ways to learn the practical means of solving real world problems!