When you are languishing in the summer heat and every movement seems to require too much effort, it takes something special to leave the comfort of air-conditioning. From spectacular city views to pools looking out over the Himalayan vista to temperature-controlled infinity pools, Lounge rounds up hotel pools worth leaving your couch for.

For the setting

The Lakshman Sagar resort in Pali, Rajasthan, re-imagines a 19th century royal hunting lodge and is spread over 32 acres alongside a man-made lake. Each of the 12 rustic-looking but luxuriously-appointed mud-and-stone cottages has a private plunge pool, but it is the resort’s main pool that catches the eye. The pool is cut into a rock plateau and surrounded by the stark desert landscape, with the picturesque white and pink erstwhile zenana (women’s quarters) tower in the backdrop. Take a dip or lounge in a day-bed, and spend the evening tucking into goodies from the poolside barbeque. From 17,000 a night for double occupancy; Sewara.com

For the skyline

When there’s no time to escape the city’s chaos, a weekend staycation can be refreshing. The St Regis Mumbai is India’s tallest hotel tower, looming over Lower Parel’s mishmash of flyovers, office spaces, malls, restaurants and entertainment venues. The wellness section is spread across the entire 10th floor and the centrepiece is undoubtedly the outdoor swimming pool. From here, it’s easy to romanticize Maximum City and admire its iconic skyline while sipping cocktails from the attached bar. The pool has a sunken lounge where a couple of day-beds stand in the water, and four private cabanas. From 10,045 a night for double occupancy; Marriott.com

The main pool at the Lakshman Sagar resort in Pali. Photo: Laskhman Sagar
The main pool at the Lakshman Sagar resort in Pali. Photo: Laskhman Sagar

For Himalayan views

As far as poolside views go, The Khyber Himalayan Resort & Spa is unbeatable. The only five-star luxury resort in Gulmarg, The Khyber is set in the Pir Panjal range of the Himalayas. Guests can go trekking or picnicking in summer and skiing in winter; one of the world’s highest ski lifts, the Gulmarg Gondola, is a short walk away. Later, relax in the glass-enclosed pool that has incredible panoramic views of the Affarwat peaks, with dense pine forests and flower-festooned meadows in spring and summer, and powdery-white snow-clad summits in winter. The pool is heated in winter. From 23,000 a night for double occupancy; Khyberhotels.com

For ultimate privacy

Spread over a hillside overlooking the Mulshi Lake and the surrounding Sahyadris, the Atmantan Wellness Resort near Pune is a great place to de-stress. Book the Mango Tree Villa, a one-bedroom, glass-walled suite that has a private infinity pool looking out over the lake and the verdant Western Ghats. Add to this your very own butler, a personal gym, spa, steam and sauna facilities, a luxurious bathtub plus an open-to-sky outdoor shower, and “in-room" dining at the canopy jutting out at the far end, and you never have to leave the villa. Mango Tree Villa, 1.65 lakh for single occupancy for a three-night package, including consultation, therapies, and spa cuisine; Atmantan.com



The glass-enclosed pool at The Khyber in Gulmarg. Photo: Khyber Himalayan Resort and Spa
The glass-enclosed pool at The Khyber in Gulmarg. Photo: Khyber Himalayan Resort and Spa

For beach vibes

Get away from Goa’s relentless party scene and check into the secluded and boutique Ahilya by the Sea. Tucked away in Dolphin Bay in Nerul, north Goa, the nine-room property is beautifully done up with French windows, private balconies, and views of the sea or their two pools. The Sunrise infinity pool seemingly dips into the cove and is ideal for a few energizing laps while watching fishing boats putter by. The Sunset plunge pool offers a rather romantic setting in the cool shade of scented frangipani and coconut palms. Punctuate dips with strolls in the hotel’s landscaped gardens with exotic tropical plants. From 13,000 a night for double occupancy; Ahilyabythesea.com

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