Summer is here. And with the season comes some of the hottest months of the year, ushering in Atlanta’s sweltering heat and swampy humidity, with the latter often leading to a heat index in the triple digits. Like patios, Atlantans love a good pool. Better yet, a pool that also serves food and cold beverages while they lounge in deck chairs in the sun, relax in shady cabanas, or wade in the water with a cool cocktail.
There are plenty of public pools and even neighborhood pools to join offering yearly memberships around Atlanta, but these hotels and entertainment spots are the total package and include dedicated poolside bars and restaurants and sell day passes to the public. So, purchase a pass and grab a lounger or rent a private cabana with friends and spend a day pampering yourself while basking by the pool this summer in Atlanta.
Epicurean Atlanta — Midtown
This hotel for food lovers opened in Midtown last year, and it features a pool and restaurant on the ninth floor terrace open to both hotel guests and the public. The pool at Epicurean Atlanta includes the option to rent private cabanas named for various wine brands that offer sofas, TVs, mini-fridges, and overhead fans for keeping cool on hot days. Cabanas also come with private bathroom and shower access, a dedicated server, and complimentary fruit trays and sodas. For those who just want to sit and lounge poolside, a day pass takes care of that and allows access to Aerial, the on-site restaurant and bar on the terrace.
Day pass: $40
Cabana rental: $250 to $350 for four hours and up to six people.
Leave of Absence (LOA) — the Interlock/Howell Mill Road
The hotly anticipated debut of this sprawling rooftop pool, bar, and restaurant venue was expected earlier this year. But its impending late-June opening now seems like perfect timing, given the sweltering summer heat in Atlanta. Run by Slater Hospitality, the group behind Ponce City Market rooftop amusement park Skyline Park and restaurant Nine Mile Station, Leave of Absence (LOA) features a 300-seat restaurant, an indoor-outdoor bar and lounge called the Grove, and a resort-style pool complete with sun loungers and cabanas and its own bar. A private cabana at LOA includes a separate menu serving fruits and cheeses, seafood towers, caviar, and cocktails. There’s also the option to order from the pool bar, featuring shrimp tacos, skirt steak gyros, a fancy burger, and octopus ceviche paired with breezy cocktails.
Lounge chair: $40 for 2.5 hours
Cabana: Starting at $425 for 3.5 hrs hours
InterContinental Atlanta — Buckhead
Plan a spa day at the Intercontinental Buckhead, which includes a heated saltwater pool, making this pool a mostly all-season affair at the hotel. Kick off the day with a 50-minute facial or massage at the spa, then pop over to the pool and claim one of the plush loungers for an afternoon of relaxation, cocktails, and snacks, only interrupted by quick dips to cool off from the summer sun.
Spa day pass: Starting at $169 (via ResortPass)
The Starling — Midtown
The W Hotel in Midtown is now the Starling, a recent rebrand and renovation that transformed the aging Colony Square hotel in the heart of Atlanta into a Hilton property, becoming part of the brand’s boutique Curio Collection. With summer now underway, the hotel offers day passes to its intimate pool on the terrace, which includes food and beverage service and the option to rent one of the four private cabanas. Spa day and fitness packages with pool access are also available.
Day pass: $45
Cabana rental: TBD (check back for updates)