The world’s best pools

In the highly competitive tourism industry, pools have become a focal point in most of the world’s finest resorts and hotels. They are not only a place to unwind, swim a few laps or work on your tan; many are architectural wonders. For the family oriented market, indoor and outdoor water parks are all the rage, featuring waterfalls, grottos, slides, tunnels and even dolphin shows. Establishments servicing the executive business traveler or the high end tourist trade, sport pools that are the ultimate in luxury and decadence.

One of the oldest pools to rank with the world’s best is the saltwater pool at the Hotel du Cap Eden-Roc on France’s Cote d’Azur. For more than a century this resort and its pool has been an A-list hangout for the Cannes crowd. The legendary saltwater pool was built in 1870, blasted into the edge of a cliff overlooking the Mediterranean Ocean. It was redesigned in 1992 to give it a sharp infinity edge.

The ocean-side spillover pool at the Spa Village in Malaysia’s Pangkor Laut Resort is a work of art. Bougainvillea and frangipani leaves float in jade green water of the pool which blends perfectly with the colour of the sea beyond. Located on a privately owned tropical island, surrounded by white sandy beaches fringed by graceful palms, the resort and its iconic pool is an oasis of beauty and calm.

If you like the idea of a private pool then you’ll love the Banyan Tree Seychelles Resort, located on the island of Mahe in the Indian Ocean. Each of its sixty private villas has at least one pool, some have two, overlooking the ocean and a beach that has been named one of the top ten beaches in the world. The resorts main pool is an elevated infinity pool that juts out above the beach, seemingly floating on the sea itself, while waves crash on the rocks below.

Other notable infinity pools can be found around the globe. Perched on a cliff side overlooking the Indonesian Sea is the Amankila, Bali Resort’s signature three tiered infinity pool. In New Zealand, the Blanket Bay resort on the South Island sports a lakeside infinity pool that gives you the illusion that you are swimming in a forest. At the Perivolas Resort in Greece you can swim in an infinity pool poised on a cliff high above the Aegean Sea with breathtaking panoramic views.

For a truly unique pool experience, the Blue Lagoon Geothermal Spa Resort in Grindavík, Iceland is second to none. The star attraction of this world renowned spa is its naturally heated geothermal seawater pool. Surrounded by snow capped mountains, the lagoon is five thousand square meters and holds six million liters of healing, mineral rich waters.

Not all of the great pools are in seaside resorts. There are some exceptional urban pools from the neoclassical pool, resplendent in Louis XIV gilt, in the Ritz hotel in Paris to the pool in The Berkeley, with views of London’s Hyde Park. Considered one of the most spectacular urban pools, the pool on the forty-seventh floor of Tokyo’s Park Hyatt Hotel looks out over the city below with the majestic Mount Fuji as a backdrop. Set in a soaring glass atrium, the view from the pool is nothing short of stunning as night falls and Tokyo glitters.

These are but a few of the best pools the world has to offer. The epitome of chic, they are a great place to relax and pamper yourself in settings you won’t soon forget.

Nisha Gautam is Senior Editor at Kissimmee Hotels.

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Comments (4)

  1. baobabs says:

    Surprised that the urban 150m pool at Marina bay sands in Singapore didn’t make your cut or Kengo Kuma’s 22m stainless steel swimming pool @ The Opposite House in Beijing.

  2. Thristhan says:

    Wow, didnt know that one of them would be here in Malaysia, Pangkor of all place.

  3. Fay Holmes says:

    Some of these pools look amazing, such great views while you relax..perfect!

  4. Jenn says:

    @baobabs- totally agree, those are amazing pools! Love the Opposite House pool and the view from the Marina Bay Sands is unparalleled:
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/purplepassport/5263352060/in/set-72157625596723044

    The pool at the Qasr al Sarab in Abu Dhabi is amazing with the dunes in the background (hard to see in my night pic, but they are stunning). http://www.flickr.com/photos/purplepassport/5332254480/in/set-72157613234323348

    Other greats include
    The Chedi in Muscat, Oman: http://www.flickr.com/photos/purplepassport/5262549585/in/set-72157625602776536
    The Four Seasons Kuda Huraa in the Maldives: http://www.flickr.com/photos/purplepassport/3509445657/in/set-72157617167167541
    The Breakers in Palm Beach, FL has a pretty amazing pool set up too! Any single picture doesn’t do them justice, but many of them are directly overlooking the beach/ocean and the set-up is divine (see the photos tab on this page): http://www.thepurplepassport.com/picks/palmbeach/Hotel/the-breakers/

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