The South's Best Pools
Check out the inns, resorts, and hotels featuring the region's most spectacular swimming spots.
Keswick Hall at Monticello, Charlottesville, VA: Set on 600 acres in Jeffersonian wine country, Keswick's 25-meter infinity pool mirrors the rolling footlhills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. You'll find everything you could ever want at the tranquil aquatic escape: chilled fruit and towels, poolside reflexology massages, an underwater sound system playing soothing tunes...and the glorious absence of screaming kids.
keswick.com or 888/778-2561
The Grove Park Inn Resort & Spa, Asheville, NC: In this underground grotto of pools (part of the resort's famous spa facility), a thundering cascade separates the languid mineral lounging pool from the cool lap pool beneath a ceiling of simulated stars. Both feature underwater music and chlorine-free waters.
groveparkinn.com or 800/438-5800
Wilderness at the Smokies, Sevierville, TN: This water-park resort in the Smoky Mountains has family-friendly amenities: zero-entry (gradual, no stairs or ladders) splash parks for toddlers, tucked-away spas for mom and dad, and the Southeast's only indoor "surf pool," inside the Wild Water Dome complex, which is covered with a clear dome that lets in plenty of sunlight while sheltering guests from the elements year-round.
widernessatthesmokies.com or 877/325-9453
Joule Hotel, Dallas, TX: Cantilevered 8 feet off the Joule Hotel's 10th story, this architectural marvel lets you swim in the sky. Made of a transparent acrylic polymer, the deep end has uninterrupted views of downtown's Main Street far below. By night, the fiber-optic lighting sets the pool aglow as the centerpiece of a rooftop bar.
thejouledallas.com or 214/748-1300
Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress, Orlando, FL: Even in the land of theme-park opulence, this half-acre, lagoon-style pool stands out, with 12 waterfalls, a 45-foot slide, a suspension bridge, caves, grottoes, and a bar. The GPS-equipped lounge chairs make ordering mai tai refills and shrimp cocktails just a simple click away.
grandcypress.hyatt.com or 407/239-1234
Renaissance Concourse Atlanta Airport Hotel, Atlanta, GA: You can see--but barely hear--the jets taking off on the runway right outside this cool-for-kids indoor pool. The floor-to-ceiling windows are virtually soundproof, insulating you from engine roars.
renaissanceconcourse.com or 800/468-3571
Hotel Monteleone, New Orleans, LA: This heated rooftop pool overlooks the French Quarter, 17 floors above the street noise below. To commemorate the hotel's 125th anniversary, the Italian villa-inspired pool underwent a $50,000 renovation this year, with new mosaic tiling, an eco-friendly towel valet, tropical flowers, and cooling fans.
hotelmonteleone.com or 866/338-4684
Fontainebleau Miami Beach, Miami, FL: Just minutes from Lincoln Road, the Fontainebleau's 10 oceanfront pools--from small dipping lagoons to a 10,294-square-foot, bow tie-shaped pool--reflect the uber-glam that is Miami. Flat-screen TV-stocked cabanas, poolside butler service, and fruit-infused water stations are just a few of the draws for the celebs and dignitaries who flock to this Miami Beach hot spot.
fontainebleau.com or 800/548-8886
Omni Shoreham Hotel, Washington, D.C.: Only 3 1/2 feet deep throughout, this resort pool lets nonswimmers wade easy. Toddlers can splash around in a separate 1-foot-deep kiddie pool, and photo-happy parents will appreciate the picturesque setting: a landscape lush with thousands of petunias and mums. The hotel outfits kids with reusable backpacks stuffed with games and treats, making this an ideal family hotel that's just a 10-minute stroll from The National Zoo.
omnihotels.com or 800/843-6664