Kristine Hansen—Forget about swim-up bars and elegant infinity pools. Today’s coolest hotel pools flaunt jaw-dropping, quirky amenities like sharks on the other side of a glass wall or the image of Andy Warhol’s face on the floor below. Forget about those old kidney shapes, too. These days a pool may be saucer-shaped, or a glass cube.
Tired of the same-old aquamarine water? Imagine swimming in water that’s blood-red, or gold. From Las Vegas to Austria, from Manhattan’s bustling Lower East Side to tranquil Tibet, here are some of the world’s weirdest hotel pools.
The Tank, Golden Nugget Las Vegas, Las Vegas
(Photo: Golden Nugget Hotel & Casino)
Where else but Sin City would a hotel devise such an adrenaline-seeking theme to its poolside atmosphere? Tucked into the Golden Nugget property is The Tank, where sharks swim in a glass-enclosed structure and humans coast down a 30-foot waterslide that’s – thankfully – separated from the fish.
Infinity Pool, Marina Bay Sands, Singapore
(Photo: Marina Bay Sands)
Perched on the 57th floor of one of its three towers, the SkyPark hosts a 150-meter infinity-edge pool that creates the appearance of floating off into the clouds while swimming. Rimming the other side of the pool are palm trees and chaise lounges. Bonus: Singapore’s skyline never looked so stunning.
The Red Pool, The Library, Koh Samui, Thailand
(Photo: The Library)
What looks like blood in the aptly named Red Pool at The Library is an optical illusion, thanks to a mosaic of orange, yellow and deep-red tiles glinting under a blazing sun. Crave a good book after a swim? Look no further than the adjacent all-white library, The Lib, and sink into a red mattress or black beanbag-chair on the pool’s wooden deck.
St. Regis Lhasa Resort, Tibet
(Photo: St. Regis Lhasa Resort)
The stunning view of the Himalayas from your room isn’t the only artful aspect of this nearly 5-year-old luxury hotel. Take a dip in the gold pool, located inside the 11,700-square-foot spa’s Iridium Room. Because each tile in the pool is gold, it literally glows. The black-and-white sea serpent hovering above makes it an even more magical experience.
Laucala Island Resort, Laucala, Fiji
(Photo: Laucala Island Resort)
The 80-foot-long glass cube that serves as the resort’s pool is as chic as the 3,500-acre, private-island hotel itself. Come nightfall, Tiki torches create a serene Polynesian vibe. If you want to do laps or spread out, no worries, as there is also a lagoon-style pool surrounding the cube. For more private soaks, simply retire to your villa, which features a private infinity pool.
Sixty LES (Lower East Side), New York City
(Photo: Sixty LES)
Proof that Andy Warhol lives on is no further than thisboutique hotel in Manhattan, where the ego-driven artist’s face (through black-and-white film stills) is pictured on the bottom of the rooftop pool. Comfy orange chaises surrounding the pool add to the design.
Aqua Dome, Tyrol, Ötztal , Austria
(Photo: Aqua Dome)
Looking like a scene from a fantasy film, the three pools at this hotel in Austria’s Ötztal region resemble UFOs. Even weirder are the underground tunes and light shows in one. If you can get over the oddity, the reward is a great view of the mountains while you take in the healing therapies of the sulfurous water in one of the pools.
LeCrans Hotel & Spa, Crans-Montana, Switzerland
(Photo: LeCrans Hotel & Spa)
Fresh off of a mid-June reopening for the season, thisbeautiful hotel’s heated outdoor pool, located in Le Cinq Mondes Spa, is high up in the Swiss Alps and literally carved into the snow. Another perk: ski-in, ski-out access, which allows for even more pool time as you’re not wasting it trekking to the lift.
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