Hotels with stylish swimming pools
Enjoy a fruity cocktail from your pool in St Lucia, or a gentle pummelling in London. Chris Carter reports
A “swim-up suite” in St Lucia
At the Sandals Halcyon Beach Resort in St. Lucia, guests booking into the Crystal Lagoon Club Level or the Crystal Lagoon Butler Level can book a stay in a “swim-up suite”, says Stacey Leasca for Travel + Leisure. A private pool awaits right outside the door of the suites –and it’s one of the longest in the Caribbean. The 600-foot-long pool also has a bar for “the fruity cocktail and tiny umbrella of your choice”. For those after something more private, the Beachfront Honeymoon Butler Rooms come with a “sparkling private plunge pool lined with shimmering mosaic tile and accented by a soothing cascade water feature”. From £2,119 for seven nights all-inclusive, including flights, sandals.co.uk.
Icy kicks in Knightsbridge
The Bulgari Hotel in Knightsbridge has probably London’s best hotel pool, says Rebecca Rose in the Financial Times. “At 25 metres long and seven metres wide, and tiled with bluish-green and gold-flecked mosaics, it is certainly the most opulent.” It may not be on a beach in Turkey, but with its private cabanas and a buzzer for service, “you could kid yourself for a moment”. Bottled water and fruit are provided poolside. After a swim, plop into the adjacent vitality pool. “The floor-to-ceiling mosaics are made from gold-leaf glass, so the walls shimmer and the bubbling water sparkles like Champagne.” With a touch of a button, you can opt for an “aqua massage”, which gives “a gentle pummelling on an underwater lounger or a shoulder massage from a waterfall”. A sauna and slushy ice fountain can be found upstairs for a “proper Scandi frisson”, or try the cryotherapy facial for more “icy kicks”. From around £700 a night in September, bulgarihotels.com.
Beachside lounging in Sardinia
On the northeast coast of Sardinia, “sleepy San Teodoro has expanded to become a popular holiday resort, with a reputation for splendid beaches and late-night parties”, says Sarah Marshall in The Times. Just to the north, the new Baglioni Resort Sardinia opened in June, “filled with pieces crafted by local artisans. Cushions and tapestries feature patterns that could be Mayan in origin”, made by the “population that thrived here hundreds of years before the Romans”. On the walls in the bedroom, photographs capture the pink flamingos that migrate to the lagoons next door in October. “Out at sea the steep wedge of Tavolara island soars like the bow of an ocean liner.” The resort has 600 metres of beachfront, or guests can lounge on one of the daybeds beside the pool. From around €800 in September, baglionihotels.com.
A pool of one’s own in Greece
It may have been seven years in the making, but the opening of the Rooster, on the Greek island of Antiparos, within the Cyclades group of islands, “chimes perfectly with the new, more meaningful type of travel we are all looking for in 2021, with its emphasis on privacy, health and family time”, says Mary Lussiana in The Daily Telegraph. There is no communal pool. Instead, each “house”, built from the “local, mellow stone”, and containing one or two bedrooms and “spacious” bathrooms, comes with its own individual pool. It also has a tiny private patio featuring an outside shower, in addition to an al-fresco dining area – “gravelled underfoot, green tendrils wrapping around the wooden struts that form the roof overhead”. The hotel also has a gym and holistic spa. From around £700 a night in September, theroosterantiparos.com.