Pools, water parks and fountains
Splash around and cool down.
Tue Jul 5 2011
Photograph: Jason Howard
Room Mate Grace Hotel
Gravity Fitness at Le Parker Meridien
On the 42nd floor of this upscale hotel, you'll find a glassed-in oasis within the gym. The 20-by-40-foot pool is surrounded by lounge chairs, a modern sundeck and an observation area that'll treat you to 360-degree views of Central Park. Between dips, fill up on snacks from the room-service menu. 119 W 56th St between Sixth and Seventh Aves, 42nd floor (212-708-7340, parkermeridien.com/gravity). Open year-round Mon--Fri 6am--10:45pm; Sat, Sun 8am--8:45pm; day pass (includes fitness club access) $100.
Room Mate Grace Hotel
The toughest decision you'll need to make at this chic hotel pool is whether to enjoy a cocktail in one of the multilevel lounge's banquettes or at the swim-up bar. The Grace also hosts a series of regular spa and social events, including Plunge Saturday Parties (10pm--close), during which DJs spin a mix of Top 40, house and hip-hop, and ladies get in free until midnight. 125 W 45th St between Sixth and Seventh Aves (212-380-2822, room-matehotels.com). Daily 9pm--midnight; $35 per person or $15 plus a two-drink minimum, reservations required.
Astoria Pool at Astoria Park
It's free to swim at the city's largest Olympic-sized splash zone, and you're guaranteed some astonishing views of the Triborough Bridge while you're there. But bear in mind: On many summer days, you'll have to compete with up to 3,000 other swimmers for a spot. 19th St at 23rd Dr, Astoria, Queens (718-626-8623, nyc.gov/parks). Daily 11am--3pm, 4--7pm; free.
Riverbank State Park
The pool at Riverbank State Park—a 28-acre, multilevel facility perched almost 70 feet above the Hudson River—is a one-of-a-kind city space: Featuring both an Olympic-sized indoor and a 25-yard outdoor basin, the park offers all-weather swimming for a nominal price. Pack a lunch and enjoy an aprs-swim picnic with your crew. Riverside Dr between 138th and 145th Sts (212-694-3600, nysparks.state.ny.us). Daily 6am--8pm; $1--$3 per day, monthly pass $30.
The Floating Pool Lady at Barretto Point Park
This seven-lane pool, which sits atop a movable barge, is currently docked in the Bronx. The Pool Lady features all the amenities of any land-based body, including locker rooms. Barretto Point Park, Viele Ave between Barretto and Tiffany Sts, Bronx (718-430-4601, nyc.gov/parks). Daily 11am--7pm; free.
Manhattan Plaza Health Club
It may feel like you've been transported from Times Square to Turks and Caicos when you claim one of the lounge chairs surrounding the 75-foot pool at this spacious health club. An outdoor roof deck, a retractable glass roof and a bevy of lush tropical plants will further enrich the fantasy, lulling you into automatic vacation mode. MPHC also partners with its neighborhood Lenny's (lennysnyc.com) to offer a range of sandwiches and other deli fare to snack on. 482 W 43rd St between Ninth and Tenth Aves (212-563-7001, mphc.com). Mon--Fri 7am--10:30pm, Sat--Sun 8am--8:30pm; weekday day pass $35, visit the website for a $10 coupon.