Okeanos Custom Aquariums and Ponds
521 West 26th Street Suite 600 | New York, NY 10001
212.244.9555

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Why Getting a Design Aquarium Is the Best Thing You’ll Ever Do

Posted by on Monday, February 10th, 2014

Design Aquarium

Your aquarium can be a reflection of your personality.
Image from Opulentitems.com via homeinteriorproject.blogspot.com

On this blog, we’ve discussed everything you can put in your aquarium, from the tamest plants to the scariest sharks. We have countless articles about how to build and maintain your aquarium, and the best places to put it. But most of those articles are geared toward people who already have an aquarium, or have made up their mind.  A lot of them are for people dedicated to the hobby. But there is an area we haven’t covered well enough, and an audience we haven’t spoken to, and those are the people who are on the fence. There are a lot of people who might have toyed with the idea of getting fish, but simply think they’re going to have an ugly glass box with a couple of needy fish bubbling pointlessly around.

That doesn’t have to be the case. A company like Okeanos can deliver you an aquarium of your dreams, an extension of your personality. Here’s why your life will be better if you get yourself a design aquarium built with you in mind.

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An Outdoor Aquarium Is the Perfect Addition to Any Gorgeous Deck, Patio, or Backyard

Posted by on Wednesday, February 5th, 2014

Outdoor Aquarium

This fancy outdoor aquarium is sure to impress your guests.
Image from messagenote.com

On this blog we’ve talked about a few reversals, like bringing your koi pond inside and adding a waterfall to your living room (where, I have to stress, they rarely occur naturally). But we’ve rarely taken the reverse route: bringing items that are normally found indoors to the outside. But we can do that, if we take a look at the booming field of outdoor aquariums.

It is admittedly strange that this is something surprising, that we’d be shocked at the very idea of fish existing outside our house. Obviously, that is they belong. But the backyard exists as kind of a hybrid- it is our property, sure, and we try to tame it with lawnmowers and porches and sheds and those little gnomes that stare at you, always. But it is also infused with nature, and so it seems unusual to add fish to it. It’s the land, but not the sanitized and protected land under our roof.

It’s the juxtaposition and hybridization that I think gives outdoor aquariums their capacity to surprise and thrill. It’s not just the goosing jump of seeing something where you don’t expect, but seeing something where you have the nagging feeling it shouldn’t be. Luckily, that isn’t the case. Aquariums can be in the backyard, provided you keep a few things in mind.

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Live Every Week Like It’s Shark Week: Awe-Inspiring Predators Add Drama to Your Luxury Aquarium

Posted by on Monday, February 3rd, 2014

Indoor shark tank

“Oh the shark, babe, has such teeth dear, and it shows them, pearly whites…” Bobby Darrin would approve of your home shark tank.
Image source: bigalscanada.com

On the great TV show 30 Rock, movie star Tracy Jordan advised hayseed Kenneth that if he really wanted advice on how to live life to the fullest, he had to “live every week like it’s Shark Week.” Throughout the show, Tracy would frequently talk about his love of sharks, and how he has a big shark tank in his house. Well, it turns out that the insanely wealthy, absurdly funny man-child of the the show has a lot in common with the impossibly funny, hyper-self-aware absurdist actor who plays him, Tracy Morgan (not much of a surprise). Morgan revealed last year that he has a $400,000 shark tank in his house.

Now, obviously, that’s a little excessive. We don’t all have his money, or talent (or, as Morgan-as-Jordan said when told he was ridiculous, “I know! It’s a good thing people laugh when I say things!”). But that doesn’t mean we can’t have what some would consider the pinnacle of aquarium life in our homes – the apex predator, nature’s perfect killing machine, a beast out of legend, and one of striking beauty: the shark.

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Amazing Underwater Restaurant Serves as Inspiration For Luxury Aquariums in Your Home or Business

Posted by on Friday, January 31st, 2014

 

Underwater Restaurant

If you tell me you don’t want to eat here, I probably won’t believe you.
Image from wikimedia.org

Eating underwater has never really been one of mankind’s top goals. If you are eating with the ocean over your head, chances are something has gone catastrophically wrong, and, honestly: you probably have bigger concerns than dinner (namely, avoiding becoming dinner). But that isn’t always the case, as proven by the jaw-dropping underwater restaurant at the Conrad Hotel in the Maldives. Named Ithaa, which means “mother of pearl” in Divhehi, the national language, the restaurant is an architectural, engineering, and aesthetic wonder. It rests under 16 feet of ocean, which doesn’t seem to be a lot at first glance, but the amount of sea life that can fit in those 16 feet is staggering. And it isn’t just the roof- the walls and ceiling are made of a curved, reinforced glass, offering a 270-degree view of the ocean. Continue reading…

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Forgetting Nemo: 5 Non-Fish Alternatives for Your Design Aquarium

Posted by on Monday, January 27th, 2014

One of the great things about aquariums is that they are like snowflakes or fingerprints: they are all very pretty. Oh, also, they are all different! Or, in the case of aquariums, they all have the potential to be different. Sure, you can go for the standard square with a goldfish and one of those strange diver guys bubbling on the bottom, but you don’t have to. An aquarium designer can do just about anything you need. You have a choice on size, on the plants you’d like, and on what kind of fish.  But you don’t have to limit yourself to fish- anything that goes in water can be in an aquarium (size-permitting, of course: sorry, blue whale aficionados!). Here are five of the most interesting, most fun, or just most bizarre non-fish alternatives!

CRAYFISH

Crayfish

A crayfish is an unusual but fascinating aquarium pet.
Image source: wikimedia.com

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Add Life to Your Design Aquarium with These Beautiful Freshwater Plants

Posted by on Monday, January 20th, 2014

Our aquariums tend to age with us. Our first ones tend to be very simple, when we’re kids, both out of a lack of experience and because of pragmatic parents not wanting to dump a lot of money on the fluctuating whims of a child.  I don’t know if the comic-stereotype of the little bowl with some gravel and a lonely goldfish bubbling around is something that people still do – or if they ever did – but if not, that is just a slight exaggeration of the simple way many of us start our hobbies.

For those that stick with it, that recognize the fun and embrace the responsibility of creating an ecosystem, our aquariums tend to get more elaborate. They get bigger and incorporate more fish, and then tend to get plants. Again, at the beginning, people often want plastic plants. I know my first aquarium plants weren’t real – it was scary enough to try to keep fish alive; I wasn’t going to do the same with plants. But the main problem with plastic plants, of course, is that they are static: they never change, which takes a large chunk out of why having an aquarium is such a joy. You want a living space. Plants that grow and shift and flower add an organic and dynamic addition to any aquarium.

Flowering plants

A collection of plants give a natural feel to your tank.
Image from ebay.com

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4 Incredibly Bizarre Fishtanks

Posted by on Wednesday, December 11th, 2013

Fishtank Backpack

Fishtank backpack — Image source: Trendhunter.com

Conventional aquariums are so square (in both senses of the word). These bizarre aquariums put new spins on an old classic! Continue reading…

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Okeanos Eliminates the Need for Chlorine in Swimming Pools

Posted by on Friday, November 22nd, 2013

Natural Swimming Pool

Natural pool with nearby water garden — Image source: Swimming-teich.com

“Expect poison from the standing water.”

William Blake, my all time favorite poet, said that. He meant that much more in the metaphorical sense — nothing good comes from inaction. Today, I’m going to take it in the literal sense. If you let a body of water sit on its own for long enough, it’s bound to become teeming with microorganisms. You see, humans aren’t the only creatures that love water. Germs, parasites, and other microorganisms simply adore standing water.

So, we do our best to keep our swimming pools clean by dumping chlorine into the water, which acts as a very mild poison. It’s toxic to tiny creatures that live in the water, and it can even be harmful to children, causing health problems such as asthma.

Natural Swimming Pool

Two kids at a natural swimming pool — Image source: Swimuniversity.com

So pool owners everywhere are done worrying about the potential health risks, not to mention that unpleasant chlorine smell. They’re throwing out the chlorine with the bathwater (so to speak) by seeking alternatives to chlorine.

We discussed natural swimming pools a few days ago. These chlorine-free pools combine the beauty of natural ponds with the functionality of swimming pools. The big problem, however, is that natural pools can become breeding grounds for harmful bacteria. I don’t care how eco-friendly you are — nobody likes swimming in a dirty pond.

Another alternative that is often proposed is simply adding salt to the water.  The saline movement is gaining popularity, but even this is not a natural solution. Chlorine is a natural byproduct of salt, so you will not be fully eliminating the presence of chlorine in the water, meaning the health risks involved with chlorine use will still be present.

But wait! There’s actually a third alternative. Here at Okeanos Group Aquascaping, we performed a little experiment with a modified aquarium filter to see how clean we could make the water. Here are the results:

It looks like a normal swimming pool, doesn’t it? We didn’t use one single drop of sterilizing chemicals to get that crystal-clear water. Instead, we relied entirely on a customized, state-of-the-art aquarium filtration system to remove any impurities.

But don’t take our word for it. QC Laboratories, a company that specializes in scientifically analyzing trace chemicals, tested the water and concluded that it was the cleanest filtered water they’d ever encountered. In fact, it passed regulatory standards by leaps and bounds.

Filtered swimming pool

The filtered swimming pool from Okeanos.

This experiment opens up a whole world of possibilities for luxurious natural swimming pools. A lot of people out there wouldn’t even begin to entertain the idea of a natural swimming pool because they’re afraid of germs, or because they want the crystal-clear waters that (they believe) only chlorine-based pools can offer.

However, this water filter allows you to get the best of both worlds: the clean, sterile swimming conditions of a chlorine-based pool, with the organic beauty of a natural swimming pool. The water will be perfectly crystal clear at all times. And while it’s best to create your natural swimming pool indoors, it can also be built outdoors, and still remain clean.

Swimming Pool

The swimming pool with custom aquarium filter.

So, you might want to rethink your backyard. You could do what everybody else does and install a concrete swimming pool… OR you could impress all of your friends and family by installing a stunning, one-of-a-kind, natural swimming pool.  It’s almost like swimming in your own giant aquarium!

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Ozeanium Aquarium Fuses Natural and Artificial Art

Posted by on Monday, August 19th, 2013

Ozeanium Aquarium

Image source: Evolo.us

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The Pebble-Shaped Aquarium of Batumi, Georgia

Posted by on Friday, August 16th, 2013

Batumi Aquarium

Image source: Henninglarsen.com

Rocks usually aren’t a very calming sight. They’re hard, dull, and cold. At worst they’re jagged and chaotic. Put a rock at the bottom of a flowing stream, however, and it gradually transforms into a smooth pebble that embodies the peace and harmony of flowing water. Continue reading…