Looking to escape the summer heat? Or maybe the rain has rolled in and you just need a dip in a heated pool and get some R and R. Well, that's an easy enough thing to accomplish, right? Wrong. Most of us don't have immediate access to a pool, and if we do, it's a public one that's not nearly as well-maintained as we think. Not to mention it's crowed AF with screaming kids and people swimming for sport. That's not what most of us want. We want the atmosphere. We want calm. We want drinks. And maybe, if we're shallowing and insecure enough, we want a bunch of beautiful people to casually gawk at it. So... this leads us to hotel pools...
Vancouver has an assortment of ultra-ritzy hotel pools for their guests to enjoy. However, most of us either can't or won't spend the money necessary to stay there. Out of towners reading this may want to take note of these places so they can book their next vacation. But, Vancouverites, this may be a good opportunity to learn where to go, how to get in for cheap or just plain sneak into these amazing pools. Just remember, if you get caught, the hotel has every right to kick you out. But that doesn't mean you can't try. So, wherever you're from, if you want an adventure, find your false mustache and prepare yourself for a diabolical journey to Vancouver's luxurious pool scene...
The Westin Grand
Where: 433 Robson Street
Though it's not impossible to sneak into The Westin Grand's luxurious rooftop pool, you may have an easier time getting into one of the many public parties they host throughout the summer. It's actually smart that the hotel allows these events to take place since it's not only good PR but it's inevitable that party guests will dine, drink, or use their spa.
Where: 655 Burrard Street
It's undeniable that the best way to use this swanky outdoor pool and hot tub is to fork over $250+ a night. You probably wouldn't regret that too much since it is a pretty nice place right in the heart of the city. But a more fun way of getting to use it is following a couple of guests through the doors. Just be sure that they're actually guests who have key cards and not freeloaders like yourself.
Where: 177 Robson Street
The highly underrated Hotel Blu in Vancouver is one of the best places in the city to unwind. It's got a great lounge, oyster bar, and is home to this Atlantis-esque pool. Indoor pools, like this one, are always harder to get into, due to a copious amount of locked doors, and yet they're often less patrolled by the hotel staff. This allows you to blend in a little easier.
Fairmont Pacific Rim
Where: 1038 Canada Place
This rooftop pool is a no-brainer. After all, it's located in one of Vancouver's swankiest hotels. Though the pool is apparently just for guests, it's not uncommon to find beautiful outsiders lounging underneath the palm trees or by the fire pit on a sunny afternoon. So, let's just say, there a number of ways of sneaking in, including pretending to be with someone or just making the right friends.
Pan Pacific Hotel
Where: 300 - 999 Canada Place
There probably isn't a pool in Vancouver with a more dramatic backdrop. After all, when you're out by their rooftop pool, you're staring right at the towering North Shore mountains and the dark blue harbour that's complete with the occasional cruise ship. Passing as a guest at this hotel may be a bit tricky, but it's doable. An easier way to get into the pool is to book a room or a $62 spray tan at the spa. The later will ensure you look your glossiest while silently competing with the array of other beautiful poolside people.
Where: 900 Canada Place
Wait for that large group of tourists to find your way onto the lush third-floor pool deck. From there, you'll have to do your best to appear like you belong at this fancy hotel's star amenity. Of course, you could always attempt to make friends with the right hotel employee or purchase a package from their spa, but where's the fun in that, right?
Where: 1128 West Georgia Street
If you don't want to risk bypassing the tight security at the ultra-fancy Shangri-La hotel, you can gain access to their outdoor pool on the 5th floor by booking an appointment at their spa, Chi. The cheapest thing you can get there is for around $55. But that gets you safely into their gorgeous pool, hot tub, fitness area, and the fifth-floor bar, Ginger.
Fairmont Hotel YVR
Where: 3111 Grant McConachie Way, Richmond
The heated pool at YVR may appear slightly less glamorous than the others on this list, not to mention that it's not actually in Vancouver, but it's available for cheap access all year-round. Yes, you don't actually need to sneak into this one. A mere $15.75 will get you into their three-lane lap pool (current included), dry sauna, and hot tub. Best of all, you get to look down on filthy airplane travelers from the comfort of a lounge chair.
Where: 791 West Georgia Street
The Four Seasons Hotel is home to one of the city's most sought-after spas. It also happens to be the best way to gain access to their pool and fitness space. Sure, you'll be spending some coin to gain access to their large swimming pool, but it'll still be less than booking a night at the hotel. But there's still always the option of trying to convince the hotel employees that you're a guest and therefore allowed to lounge half-naked on their terrace.
Rosewood Hotel Georgia
Where: 801 West Georgia Street
If you can sneak into this extravagant in-door pool, you may just have all the skills of Ethan Hunt. Yeah, it's nearly impossible to get in without being a guest or purchasing a package at the spa. But that doesn't mean that you can't give it the old college try. After all, what's the worst they'd do; kick you out? Just go downstairs and buy a coffee at David Hawksworth's amazing Bel Cafe.
Metropolitan Hotel Vancouver
Where: 645 Howe Street
The indoor pool at the Metropolitan is ideal all-year round. It comes complete with a sparkling hot tub, lounge chairs, and a glorious curved window that allows you to show off your beach-bod to the entire downtown core. It may be a bit challenging to get into if you're not a guest, but it's certainly far from impossible to make the right friends, even if you start that off at the bar downstairs.
The Westin Bayshore Hotel
Where: 1601 Bayshore Drive
The Westin Bayshore Hotel has not one, but two pools for you to attempt to sneak into. So many people visit this iconic hotel on a daily basis due to its unbelievably serene location in Coal Harbour and the copious amount of amenities the hotel has to offer. If you fail to crash the outdoor pool, the indoor one gives you a second chance.
Pinnacle Hotel Harbourfront
Where: 1133 West Hastings Street
There's nothing quite like staring out the window at the North Shore mountains from inside Pinnacle's indoor pool. You'll really have to do your best to pretend like you're a guest at this hotel. But, by no means, think this is the hardest pool to get into on this list. All it takes is the right timing and a little of your finesse.
For those hotel people who worry about too many people infiltrating your precious pools, relax... No one is hurting anybody... And if they are, you get the highly rewarding opportunity to cast someone out onto the cold street in nothing but swim shorts, a bikini, and cheap flip-flops.