Add wow to your splash at some of the world’s most striking hotel swimming pools.
When temperatures soar and there’s nowhere to escape but the hotel swimming pool, we all are happy to take some tan time. As you plunge into cool watery depths, you’ll glance up now and again for a serious sense of awe, whether you’re taking in misty mountains, verdant valleys, or sparkling seas. Here are some of the world’s most amazing hotel pools with a view.
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WHERE: Marrakech-Tensift-Al Haouz, Morocco
Sir Richard Branson’s Kasbah Tamadot snuggled into the heart of Morocco’s snow-capped Atlas Mountains, is a magical retreat surrounded by an ancient wall. So imagine the view from its turquoise pool, in a green valley from which to admire those sky-scraping peaks. Sunloungers provide the perfect perch for cocktails and snacks. Or choose one of the tented beds, taking in the sweet smell of rose petals wafting on the breeze.
Plan Your Trip: Visit Fodor’s Travel Guide to Morocco
Westin Playa Bonita
WHERE: Panama City, Panama
Straddling plush green mountains on one side, and the sparkling Pacific Ocean on the other, the infinity pools at Westin Playa Bonita in Panama City are subtropical show-stoppers. If you squint, you can make out the distant silhouettes of ships waiting to enter the Panama Canal, a reminder that the city’s bustling center awaits nearby.
Plan Your Trip: Visit Fodor’s Travel Guide to Panama City
CasaMagna Marriott Puerto Vallarta Resort & Spa
WHERE: Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
Admire beachfront sunsets, towering mountains—and, in the evening, the twinkling lights of downtown Puerto Vallarta—from the shimmering waters of CasaMagna Marriott’s infinity pool on Mexico’s Pacific Coast. That’s a 360-degree perch we’re talking about. And should you feel the need to move, enjoy an active game of pool volleyball (or cheer from the sidelines, enjoying a coconut cocktail from the Cocobar) in one of the most dramatic scenes around.
WHERE: Florence, Italy
Life doesn’t get much sweeter than this two-tiered pool at Il Salviatino, a centuries’-old villa just 15 minutes from Florence in the heart of the Tuscan countryside. Settle into your chaise longue and enjoy views of rolling green hills all around, the intoxicating scent of lavender and rose perfuming the air. Under the Tuscan sun, indeed.
INSIDER TIPTreat yourself to a poolside 30-minute anti-stress massage by a professional therapist, without moving from your lounger.
Miramonte Resort & Spa
WHERE: Indian Wells, California
Deep in the heart of California’s desert, this secluded oasis promises escape from the heat with three splash-worthy pools. The hands-down favorite is the saltwater pool with tranquil waterfalls. All around, unobstructed, 360-degree views take in the gorgeous Santa Rosa Mountains, increasingly breathtaking as the sun sets behind the peaks and the cotton candy skies turn magenta, indigo, then star-spangled black.
Hôtel du Cap Eden-Roc
WHERE: Antibes, France
Historic as swimming pools come, this infinity seawater pool overlooking a sparkling Mediterranean cove has stories to tell. Starting back in 1914, the pool launched the Hôtel du Cap Eden-Roc’s official summer season, with a long line of royalty, dignitaries, and Hollywood stars lolling under the sun. F. Scott Fitzgerald captured its glitz and glam in Tender is the Night (though his hotel was called Hôtel des Etrangers). And still today, Hollywood’s elite make their way here, especially during the nearby Cannes Film Festival in May. That aside, you will not find a more stunning pool setting, with its front-row seats of bobbing supersize yachts and the Iles des Lérins shimmering off in the distance.
INSIDER TIPA rope at pool level allows you to swing Tarzan-style off the cliffs into the ocean swell below.
The Royal Livingstone
WHERE: Livingstone, Zambia
As you soak up the rays of the hot African sun, lounging in your comfy sun bed at the venerable Royal Livingstone’s idyllic pool, the mighty Zambezi River rushes past. Just ahead, near the spot where Dr. Livingstone first spied Victoria Falls, it takes its dramatic, mile-wide plunge in a cloud of mist. If you can pry your eyes from the mighty waters, scan the scene for hippos, elephants, giraffes, and soaring tropical birds.
Gansevoort Park Avenue NYC
WHERE: New York City
Hotel Indigo Hong Kong
WHERE: Hong Kong
A dose of daring is required for swimming laps at this striking urban pool atop Hotel Indigo Hong Kong. Not only is it glass-bottomed, but it cantilevers over the edge of the 29th floor, providing a bird’s-eye view of Wan Chai’s hustle and bustle, all the way down to the street. At night, the pool is illuminated, providing pedestrians down below with a view of swimmers high above (better check to make sure your swimsuit’s in place).
INSIDER TIPBe sure to sip a lychee martini at the adjacent, super chi-chi Skybar.
WHERE: Adelboden, Switzerland
Breathe in the majesty of the Swiss Alps—and some of the freshest air around—from the Cambrian’s exclusive infinity pool. Perched on the very edge, you’re surrounded by snow-capped peaks and plush meadows, easing your sore muscles after an extraordinary day of hiking (or skiing).