During the summer, the snowbirds are long gone and for the locals, the heat is around 110 degrees. While the Phoenix area is known as the Valley of the Sun, it could also be known as the Valley of Hotels. There are dozens of hotels in the Valley and all of them have pools. But for some, the pool experience is on a whole different level. The hotels sometimes include their own water park on the property along with huge pools. Many of the top pools are for guests only, a few offer day passes for non-guests.
401 W. Clarendon Ave, Phoenix, AZ
Clarendon Hotel is a swanky hotel that offers both luxury of a four-star hotel and a throwback feel. Its pool, called The Oasis, is a work of art, with a 20-foot-tall glass water wall and a Sicis Italian Mural. Not only is it easy on the eyes but it’s state of the art. The pool features underwater speakers and is illuminated by underwater stars. The hot tub also holds 50 people. There are six outdoor cabanas and VIP indoor cabanas with 47-inch flat screens. It’s open from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily. The Clarendon Hotel has the cheapest day passes. For non-guests, it’s $10 per person Monday through Thursday and $25 per person during the weekend.
WET AT W SCOTTSDALE
Anytime you want to swim, you can head over to the W Scottsdale’s WET pool deck. It’s on the second floor of the posh hotel and is open 24/7. The pool features underwater lighting and music and the water is heated or cooled depending on the weather. While the pool deck is a prime spot for a little R&R, it’s also the happening spot for pool parties during the summer.
7277 E Camelback Rd, Scottsdale, AZ 85251
ARIZONA GRAND RESORT
The Arizona Grand Resort is massive and so is its pool. In fact, it has a 7-acre water park that no one else has. The Oasis (popular name for pools) Water Park includes a wave pool, an eight-story tower with three water slides and a lazy river. There’s also a 25-person hot tub. If you’re in the mood to do laps, there’s a pool to do that. The major downside is that you must be a guest at the hotel and they don’t offer day passes. It’s open from 10:30 a.m. to 8 p.m.
8000 Arizona Grand Pkwy, Phoenix, AZ 85044
ARIZONA BILTMORE, A WALDORF ASTORIA RESORT
Arizona Biltmore has been called the “Jewel of the Desert” and the pools live up to the name. The Paradise Pool is three pools in one that features a 92-foot water slide, a swim-up bar and poolside games and cabanas. The Catalina Pool has hosted diving competitions, fashion shows and social events. It was also a favorite spot for the late Marilyn Monroe. All eight of these pools are open 24/7.
2400 E Missouri Ave (at Biltmore Estates Dr), Phoenix, AZ
HYATT REGENCY SCOTTSDALE RESORT AT GAINEY RANCH
The hotel in Scottsdale oozes luxury and packs a powerful punch to keep its guests cool with 2.5 acres of water fun. There are 10 swimming pools with 20 fountains and 45 waterfalls of different sizes. There’s also a sand beach and a three-story, high-speed water slide. Two of the pools are for only adults. While there’s no lazy river, guests can go for a gondola boat ride if they’d rather stay dry. Poolside movies and games are also part of the fun. The pools are open from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. every day. Day passes are $45 for adults and $30 for kids through resortpass.com.
7500 E Doubletree Ranch Rd, Scottsdale, AZ 85258
JW MARRIOTT DESERT RIDGE RESORT & SPA
The resort is far northeast Phoenix has nearly 900 rooms and spreads out its water fun over four acres with four interlocking pools. Three of the four pools are heated at 82 degrees year-round. There’s also 1,600-foot-long lazy river, a waterslide, two whirlpools and a kids’ splash pad. The Sidewinder Pool is where kids can shoot hoops, compete in duck races and watch some flicks at weekly dive-in movies. The pools are for guests only but they can have up to five people with them at the pools. The pool hours are 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily.
5350 E Marriott Dr, Phoenix, AZ 85054
POINTE HILTON SQUAW PEAK RESORT
The hotel is at the base of the Phoenix Mountain Preserve is more centered on being family friendly. Its eight large outdoor pools span its 4-acre River Ranch water park. Children can have fun on the 130-foot waterslide, a half-mile lazy river, which is a popular spot for guests, or the splash pool. There’s also a lap pool for those who want to get in a workout. However, there is no whirlpool or hot tub. The pools are open from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. while the water park is open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
7677 N 16th St, Phoenix, AZ 85020
TALKING STICK RESORT
Talking Stick Resort offers three pools that are catered more toward the 21 and older crowd. All of them offer poolside cabanas, canopy daybeds and bottle service. The Lounge Pool is shallow enough where you can lounge in chairs in the water. The West Pool is more family-friendly. The Main Pool is, well, the main pool that hosts an outdoor concert series during the summer. Tickets are extra though. There are also pool parties every weekend for those old enough to drink. The Main Pool is big enough to do laps but it’ll probably be tough with all the people. The pools are open 24/7 and for guests only but the guests can bring as many friends as they want.
9800 Talking Stick Way, Scottsdale, AZ 85256
THE WESTIN KIERLAND RESORT & SPA
This resort and spa has a family-friendly atmosphere with a 900-foot lazy river, a surf simulator and a 100-foot waterslide. While the kids are floating down the river and playing in the splash pad, parents can relax at the adult-only Aguamiel Pool that’s open 24 hours. Guests can also try to hang 10 at the Kierland FlowRider, which is the surf simulator. There’s also a hot tub and poolside food and drink service. Day passes through resortpass.com start at $35 for adults and $20 for kids. For the ultimate relaxation, there’s the Tommy Bahama Relaxation Reef is a “one-of-a-kind island experience” that has a private section of the lazy river, reserved tubes and a private in-water cove area. It costs $750. The water slide and lazy river are open from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. and until 10 p.m. on Fridays. The Adventure Pool is open 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and until 10 p.m. on Fridays.
6902 E Greenway Pkwy, Scottsdale, AZ 85254
Not all the fancy resorts are in the East Valley. The Wigwam is an oasis in the west Valley. The four-star resort has three pools, including a new main pool that features dual 25-foot water slides, water play features and luxury cabanas. There are a separate kids area and adult zone. There’s also a jacuzzi and a tower bar with an outdoor grill near the adult pool.
300 Wigwam Ln, Litchfield Park, AZ 85340