10 Spectacular Swimming Pools Around the World

Blair Pfander
10 Spectacular Swimming Pools Around the World
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Whether you’re an accomplished swimmer or a dedicated dog-paddler, nobody can resist taking a dip in a super-glamorous swimming pool.
Mysterious fiber optics in Phuket, Thailand make guests feel like they’re swimming in stars, while a minimalist step pool in the Bahamas blurs the line between swimming pool and open ocean with its clever trompe l’oeil design.
Hesitant to leave your pup panting on the pool deck? At Hearst Castle, even your doggie can enjoy a dip thanks to the dogs-only ramp built into the side wall.

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NANDANA VILLAS, BAHAMAS: It's almost impossible to distinguish the swimming pool from the sea at Grand Bahama resort, Nandana, which outfitted its pool with bright white steps that slowly descend into ever-deeper waters. Our favorite design detail? The distinct lack of messy plastic loungers and kids with play toys on the deck. Details at www.nandanavilla.com.

Photo: Nandanavilla.com/Nandanavilla.com

ALILA VILLAS, BALI: The best thing about infinity pools is that they blur the horizon line (literally giving guests the feeling that they're swimming to "infinity"). Perhaps no pool better captures that feeling than the one at the cliff-top Alila Villas in Bali, which also offer a suspended, cage-like cabana. Details at www.alilahotels.com.

Photo: Alilahotels.com/Alilahotels.com

HOTEL TRAGARA, CAPRI: Surrounded by cypress trees and with spectacular views of the Faraglioni rocks, the pool at the Hotel Tragara in Capri is one of the most picturesque in the world—no surprise, then, that it was a vacation favorite for the likes of Winston Churchill and Dwight Eisenhower. Details at www.hoteltragara.com.

Photo: HotelTragara.com/HotelTragara.com

HEARST CASTLE, SAN SIMEON CALIFORNIA: Not only is the spectacular Neptune Pool at Hearst Castle—the palatial estate of newspaper mogol, William Randolph Hearst—surrounded by Roman columns and classic white marble statues, but it even features a tiny ramp that was intended to allow easy access for the family's pet daschund. Details at www.hearstcastle.org.

Photo: DeviantArt.com/DeviantArt.com

LIBERTY, KOH SAMUI THAILAND: It may look like someone swapped Cool Aid for water, but this dramatic pool at the Library in Koh Samui, Thailand gets its unusual hue from red mosaic tiles on the floor. To add to the drama, the entire pool area is outfitted with blood-red settees. Details at www.designhotels.com.

Photo: DesignHotels.com/DesignHotels.com

PER AQUUM HOTEL, MALDIVES: This mysterious looking swim area at the Per Aquum Hotel is illuminated with over a thousand fiber optic lights, and connects to a separate pool area that's famous for its skin-nourishing mineral deposits and healing properties. Details at www.huvafenfushi.peraquum.com.

Photo: Huvafenfushi.peraquum.com/Huvafenfushi.peraquum.com

PARESA RESORT, PHUKET: Similarly, this glamorous pool at the Paresa Resort in Phuket, Thailand looks like it's harboring a tiny galaxy underwater, and offers guests the option to enjoy dinner pool-side in one of its private cabanas. Details at www.paresaresorts.com.

Photo: ParesaResorts.com/ParesaResorts.com

STANDARD HOTEL, LOS ANGELES: The ultra modern pool at the Standard Hotel in Los Angeles is frequently used in movies and music videos— and no wonder. At night, the pool—the edges of which extend to side of the building—features a swanky entertainment space, open fire pit, and dance floor. Details at www.designhotels.com.

Photo: DesignHotels.com/DesignHotels.com

SANCTUARY SWALA, TANZANIA: At Sanctuary Swala, guests can work on their dog-paddle in the near company of lions, elephants and giraffes—which tend to lollygag at the nearby watering hole. Details at www.sanctuaryretreats.com.

Photo: SantuaryRetreats.com/SantuaryRetreats.com

ST. REGIS HOTEL, LHASA TIBET: Some may find the golden hue of the water somewhat unsavory, but the Iridium Room at the St. Regis Hotel in Lhasa, Tibet, is undeniably one of the most remarkable in the world. Indeed, the water gets its color from solid gold plating on the floor and staircase. Details at www.stregis.com.

Photo: St.Regis/St.Regis

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