Six Chicago hotel pools worthy for a dip this Labor Day weekend

SHARE Six Chicago hotel pools worthy for a dip this Labor Day weekend

By Kristin Larson

For Sun-Times Media

Staying in town for Labor Day? It’s not too late to book a staycation. Besides white sandy beaches, few things say vacation like sitting poolside, so here are six city hotels that boast escape-worthy pools to soak up the last weekend of summer.

Swim among the roses at The Waldorf Astoria Chicago

Talk about romantic. Even if the weather looks more like fall than summer, you can enjoy the 65-foot mosaic-tiled indoor lap pool at this stylish hotel whose decor is inspired by Chanel. Designer details abound — 100,000-plus pink tiles form the shape of roses along the bottom of the pool designed to give the illusion that you’re swimming over a bed of flowers. If you need a break from daydreaming and relaxation, the pool turns up the party atmosphere with Water Zumba classes, and for fun, there are complimentary kickboards, flippers, foam noodles and dive rings. Pre- or post-pool time, stroll over to the Greco-Roman inspired Elysian Spa and ease your tired muscles in the hot tub, sauna and eucalyptus steam room. Weekend nightly rates start at $375. Waldorf Astoria Chicago, 11 E. Walton, (312) 646-1300

<b><i>Charlie Barnett during a break in filming Tuesday. (Lori Rackl/Sun-Times)</i></b>

Jet set style at The Peninsula Chicago

Feel like you’re on a chic European vacation while relaxing at this pristine pool situated on the 19th floor of this tony hotel. With panoramic views of the city, an outdoor sun deck (outfitted with lounge chairs so you can catch some end-of-season rays) and hot tub, it’s the perfect indulgent weekend retreat. The 82-feet pool is kept warm, between 81 and 84 degrees, so no need to test the waters before diving in. Why not live it up some more (heck, you saved on a flight) and order lunch, dinner or drinks by the pool and savor this world-class view. Labor Day room rates start at $399. The Peninsula Chicago, 108 E. Superior, (312) 337-2888

Grab the kids and head to the JW Marriott Chicago

Leave your goggles at home and make a splash at the downtown hotel’s chlorine-free indoor pool (it’s filtered by UV light). The state-of-the-art purifying system is great for allergy sufferers and feels like you’re swimming in a fresh water lake. The pool area also features a separate whirlpool with custom-designed shiatsu massage therapy that pinpoints sensitive stress points along the neck, shoulders and back. Sunday rooms are available, starting at $279 per night. JW Marriott Chicago, 151 W. Adams, (312) 660-8200

Travel back in time at InterContinental Chicago

Calling all history buffs, swimmers and families. Built in 1929, the landmark InterContinental was once home to the city’s prestigious Medinah Athletic Club. Its junior Olympic swimming pool, located above the Grand Ballroom on the 14th floor, is the only surviving element of the athletic club — which once housed a gymnasium, bowling alley and golf driving range. Fun fact: Olympic medalist and Tarzan star Johnny Weissmuller trained at the pool. Relics from bygone years remain — rows of seating recall days when swimming was a more popular spectator sport, while the terra cotta fountain of Neptune and blue Spanish majolica tiles lend an old-world luxury feel. Rates start at $239 for Friday and $329 for Saturday and Sunday. InterContinental Chicago, 505 N. Michigan, (312) 944-4100

Get magical at Langham Hotel Chicago

If you really want to splurge, book at room at the Langham, the pool is known among aficionados as the best in town. Spotlights reflect off the water and are designed to replicate swimming under a starry sky. A heated hydrotherapy hot tub offers another place to unwind with a stress-relieving water massage. Next to the pool area, Chuan Spa (Chuan means flowing water in Chinese) features a series of treatments designed to renew and rebalance. Rates start at $435 per night. Langham Hotel Chicago, 330 N. Wabash, (312) 923-9988

Party like a rock star at Soho House Chicago

Don’t forget your Chanel bikini before heading to the rooftop pool at the new West Loop hotel and private member’s club. With picturesque views of the city, the lavish outdoor deck features plush lounge chairs, two fireplaces, a bar and a lounge — so cocktails can be flowing all day long. There are even outdoor showers to freshen up after a day of swimming and tanning. Post-pool, check out the club’s fifth floor where there may be an impromptu DJ, piano player, or both, on any night. Weekend rates start at $260 per night. Soho House Chicago, 113-125 N. Green, (312) 521-8000

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