Life Travel Make a splash: dive in to the hottest hotel pools

Make a splash: dive in to the hottest hotel pools

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Lap pools, glass-bottom pools, hip city party pools and spectacular lagoon pools to paddle around with the family – this list covers all bodies of hotel water.

As summer heats up, consider checking out one of Australia’s coolest pools.

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Here’s eight of the best.

Surfers Paradise Marriott Resort and Spa, Gold Coast


The Marriott is on the Gold Coast, but it’s not right on the beach – you do have to cross the road – so the Marriott brings the beach to you. The freeform pool – or saltwater lagoon as it’s known – is rimmed by its own white sand beach (silica so it doesn’t stick), with pandanus trees and a raft of stripey deck chairs.

There are even some Balinese-style daybeds. You can breaststroke over to the (artificial) rocky waterfall, skim down the slide, or paddle in the shallows. The pool is up to 4-metres deep and is home to around 500 colourful, tropical fish, so you can snorkel or even scuba dive without once thinking ‘shark’. It’s brilliant. Who’d want to go the beach?

From $237 per night, call 07 5592 9800.

One&Only, Hayman Island


Being the biggest doesn’t necessarily make it the best – still it is hard to argue that this vast, dreamy swimming pool with its strategically positioned palm trees, exquisitely white sun brollies and superbly comfortable lounges, with views across the Coral Sea, isn’t one of the country’s finest hotel swimming pools. Take your goggles and your gold AmEx and enjoy!

From $730, lagoon room, per night, call 07 4940 1838.

Olsen Hotel, Melbourne


Ooh… they think they are so cool down in über-hip Chapel Street, but can there be anything cooler than swimming ABOVE the crowd? The arty, Art Series Olsen Hotel’s vibrantly blue, glass-bottomed pool lets you lap up and down with a watery, birds-eye view of the street.

If you’re more about sun than swimming, aqua-bright Acapulco chairs add a touch of mid-century modern flair. This is the perfect pool if you’d like to check in for a weekend and lounge around ordering margaritas channeling Mad Men.

From $229 for a suite, call 03 9040 1222.  

Pool Club, Merivale, Sydney


Ok – this is not quite a hotel, but it’s like a hotel pool, open to the public and it’s a nifty idea right on George Street (Level 4) in the CBD. It’s all fizzy blue and white with splashes of canary yellow and retro umbrellas. Order gourmet pizza and wine, chill out under the palm trees, swim (of course) and relax until late on those balmy Sydney summer nights. Just the spot for a pool party.

Open daily, call 02 9254 8088.

The Langham, Melbourne


The Langham’s crystal clear, rooftop pool is under cover so you can swim no matter what the weather and still soak up Melbourne’s city skyline views. When you’ve finished splashing about you can lounge around, inside or on the deck.

While many hotels are only accessible to hotel guests, you can join (for a fee) the Langham’s rather exclusive Pool Club – then swim laps or sunbake to your heart’s content all summer long. Members have access to the sauna, steam rooms and rain showers at the Chuan Day Spa. And you can order anything from a health-giving quinoa salad to a club sandwich and a Veuve Cliquot.

From $247, classic double, call 03 8696 8888.

Royal Mail Hotel, Dunkeld


We know it’s all about the food at the Royal Mail Hotel – and it is fabulous food – but you have to love the hotel’s swimming pool too. It’s not huge, there aren’t lots of lounges, but there’s a lovely strip of grass and a fabulous view of Mount Sturgeon.

It’s a very relaxing pool, not overdone in any way, and with the clear, bright Grampians air, it’s very refreshing for a summer dip. Even if you’re booking at the hotel to enjoy the dégustation menu, if it’s warm weather, we say take your swimming trunks.

From $190, incl continental breakfast, off-peak, call 03 5577 2241.

The Park Hyatt, Sydney


Sydney’s Park Hyatt is ultra luxurious, but also somewhat understated, so its heated, rooftop swimming pool is all subtle colours, refined finishes and Armani-like restraint. There’s nothing restrained, however, about the iconic views.

Sydney Opera House? Tick. Harbour Bridge? Tick. Manly ferries chugging past? Yes. Extra points for the cabanas, spa and private sun deck. Exclusive, mighty expensive but amazing.

From $927, call 02 9256 1234.

The Byron at Byron Resort and Spa, Byron Bay


Byron Bay has just the right degree of ying and yang. It’s tropical but not troppo, hip but not too hip, laidback but not lazy (all that yoga and surfing takes energy). And The Byron and its pool are the same – well balanced. The infinity pool is long enough for serious lapping, but wide enough to gaze over, with a sea of well-padded banana lounges and wall of subtropical greenery for relaxing, but pool service for a little sophisticated indulgence. It’s a serene pitstop between a yoga session, a green smoothie and a stroll to the beach.

From $330, standard suite, call 02 6639 2000.

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