I’ll be spending this rainy day checking out one of Vancouver’s many museums or galleries, as well as making plans for when the sunny weather returns. Some of my favourite memories of summer last year involve swimming in outdoor pools in the city. From family-friendly public pools to more exclusive hotel ones, Vancouver has tons of different pool options for doing laps, lounging, and splashing around. This summer, I intend to visit them all. Here’s my list of pools worth checking out over the next few months:
The Westin Bayshore (1601 Bayshore Drive)
When I lived in Coal Harbour, I’d run on the seawall and pass the Westin Bayshore and its outdoor pool (screened by shrubbery). The location is phenomenal, with views of the North Shore mountains, the water, and Stanley Park. Their sizeable pool, encircled by lounge chairs, can be accessed if you’re a hotel guest. However, non-guests have two options for also enjoying the outdoor facilities this summer. If you book a 90min or longer treatment at Vida Spa in the hotel, you can use the outdoor pool. Alternatively, you can book the hotel’s Summer Pool Experience, which includes a reserved chaise lounge in the VIP section, cooling face towels, changing cabanas, amuses bouches served throughout the day, and a $ 25 food and beverage credit for poolside dining. The cost is $ 125 and requires a reservation (604-682-3377). Before or after pool lounging, you can check out the hotel’s new, sleek restaurant, H2 Rotisserie & Bar, where you’ll find local micro beer and upscale comfort food (go for the juicy Maple Hill Farms rotisserie chicken).
Pan Pacific Vancouver (300-999 Canada Place)
The location of the Pan Pacific’s heated outdoor salt water pool, hot tub, and sun deck is undeniably fabulous. Stanley Park, the mountains, and the ocean are all before you, making you completely appreciate the city’s natural beauty. Located on the 8th floor, the pool is available to hotel guests, as well as to those who book treatments at Spa Utopia (eg signature manicure $ 87).
Shangri-La Hotel Vancouver (1128 West Georgia Street)
The outdoor pool at Shangi-La Hotel is the epitome of chic, with the hotel situated in the bustling downtown core. Hotel guests can enjoy this urban sanctuary, as can those who book treatments at CHI, The Spa (eg Flow Manicure $ 60-65).
City of Vancouver Pools
You can’t beat the affordability ($ 5.98 for adults) and accessibility of the outdoor pools run by The City of Vancouver. There are five to choose from, all worth checking out over the course of the summer: Kitsilano Pool (2305 Cornwall Avenue), Second Beach Pool (Stanley Park Drive and North Lagoon Drive), New Brighton Pool (3201 New Brighton Road), Hillcrest Aquatic Centre (4575 Clancy Loranger Way), and Maple Grove Pool (6875 Yew St, opens June 17). My personal favourites are the Kits and the Second Beach Pools because of their phenomenal ocean-side locations.