best hotel pools in florida

Take a dip in the pool at The Ritz-Carlton, Orlando, Grand Lakes. (Photo: Marriott International)

Hotel Pools

7 Florida Pools That Raise the Bar for What’s Cool

You could say that the world is divided between beach people and pool people. And if one sunshine-filled place keeps all parties happy, it’s Florida. It’s nearly impossible to resist Florida’s most sublime hotel pools, which are raising the bar for refreshment.

From a lazy river lagoon in Orlando to a sassy pool with peekaboo windows in Fort Lauderdale, get set to get wet. As always, check for travel restrictions and closures before planning your trip.

W Fort Lauderdale

best hotel pools in florida
(Photo: Marriott International)

Maybe it’s the geometric beauty of the gray and eggshell-white tile work on the fifth floor pool deck or the pool’s elevated infinity edges that make slipping into its water a totally Instagrammable moment.

But the show stealer at WET East, the W Fort Lauderdale’s inimitable pool, comes when you step down a tunneling staircase that appears to be cut into the pool’s side and emerge into the hotel’s “Living Room.” Peer up through glass windows and you’ll see people treading water above you. How’s that for different?

The Ritz-Carlton, Fort Lauderdale

You’re not directly on the sand at this sophisticated resort in the heart of Fort Lauderdale Beach (the beach is right across A1A and reached by private overpass). But the oval-shaped infinity pool here is perfectly angled for a transporting experience that feels like you’re looking out from a cruise ship deck onto uninterrupted Atlantic Ocean views.

The pool is situated on a 29,000-square-foot deck that sprawls across the hotel’s seventh floor, with direct access to a poolside café and bar. For a splurge, book one of the private cabanas situated on a balcony with full frontal views of the ocean.

The Ritz-Carlton, Sarasota

best hotel pools in florida
(Photo: Marriott International)

Proximity to the sugar-fine, Gulf Coast beaches and the sophistication of downtown Sarasota make this elegant property fronting Sarasota Bay appeal to a wide range of travelers.

Guests who love the beach life can take advantage of the hotel’s shuttle to its private Beach Club on Lido Key, three miles away. But for cooling off onsite at the hotel, there’s a heated swimming pool buffered by an adjacent whirlpool.

Both are lined with palm trees, through which you can enjoy views of the sparkling water. Shaded lounge chairs perched at the pool’s edge are coveted spots to bask in the breeze coming off the bay.

The Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Grande Lakes

A stay at this decadent lakeside property — just a short, private shuttle ride from Orlando’s many theme parks — whisks you away to a more natural slice of Central Florida.

best hotel pools in florida
(Photo: Marriott International)

But The Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Grande Lakes does more than just woo you with its gorgeous lakefront pool and the on-property spa’s dedicated lap pool. Guests here also get access to the amenities at neighboring JW Marriott Orlando, Grande Lakes, home to one of Orlando’s most tastefully landscaped hotel lazy rivers that’s fringed with rock features and tropical foliage. Pop onto a pool float and while away the day.

W Miami

It’s hard to imagine you’re mere steps from downtown Miami’s busy financial district when you stay at this stylish hotel in Icon Brickell that fronts the Miami River.

Skyscrapers and water views of Biscayne Bay draw your eyes in every direction, but it’s easy to keep focused on your bliss during a dip in the hotel’s 15th-floor infinity pool and hot tub on the WET Deck. Come the weekend, DJs spinning lounge and party tunes poolside inject a fiesta feel into the scene.

W South Beach

best hotel pools in florida
(Photo: Marriott International)

In a city with as much attitude and sex appeal as Miami, the competition for coolest pool can be as stiff as your hair after an ocean dip. If you like your pools right on the beach, minimalist in design, with requisite infinity edge and within a step or two of a plush lounge chair and bar, then WET, W South Beach has you covered.

Private cabanas secluded from the pool edge beckon with amenities like your own outdoor shower. And how’s this for service? “Sunblock application assistance” is available for any guests who might need it, courtesy of the accommodating pool staff.

The St. Regis Bal Harbour Resort

This uber-luxe oceanfront hotel just north of Miami Beach in the tony enclave of Bal Harbour rises some 27 stories above the Atlantic Ocean. But pool people might be most content lower down at one of the hotel’s two infinity edge pools, perched just a tad above sea level and both with blissful ocean views.

The family-centric resort pool is closest to the ocean and has a clean, angular design and easy-entry alcoves cut into either side for slipping into the water. The deck just above is where you’ll find the adults-only pool, a quieter oasis with an oversize lap pool design and infinity edges that appear to slink off directly into the ocean.