Summers in Rome are hot and long, and the Roman heat is unforgiving. While beach locations are reasonably accessible from the city center, on those sweltering days when you don't feel like sitting in summer traffic or being on a packed train, Rome has quite a few hotels with swimming pools for public use.
Entry costs for non-hotel guests range from €25 to €80, which is close to what you are likely to spend getting to the beach, paying for an umbrella and sun lounge and eating food for lunch. The cost is all-inclusive and includes a spot to lounge and often a towel.
Swim in an oasis of green at Grand Hotel Gianicolo — Photo courtesy of HeartRome
Many pools in Italy (public or private) require you wear a swimming cap; these are also available for purchase on arrival. And you get to access the hotel pool facilities, including restaurants and bars that, more often than not, have a not-so-bad view.
Hotel Radisson Blu Es. Roma is the most centrally located in the Esquilino neighborhood, not far from Termini central station. It features a beautiful rooftop pool with entry at €55, and the Zest Bar and Restaurant is poolside for snacks and cocktails.
A short walk from Trastevere is the Grand Hotel Gianicolo, with a large pool set in a lush garden oasis. Lazing on a sunbed surrounded by greenery, you'll feel miles away from the hustle and bustle of the Centro Storico. Entry is €25, and light meals can be ordered in the restaurant overlooking the pool.
For a rooftop pool with a view of Rome's rooftops, head to Boscolo Exedra Roma. This stunning 5-star hotel encircles the pretty Piazza della Repubblica. It's your go-to for a day of luxury. The spot features modern leather lounge chairs and couches, plus a stylish bar and restaurant where you can sit and observe the view or opt for poolside service. Entry is €50.
Rooftop style at the Boscolo Exedra — Photo courtesy of Boscolo Exedra Rome
In the Parioli neighbourhood, near Villa Borghese park, you'll find the Aldrovandi Villa Borghese. Entry at this small, sophisticated boutique hotel is €80.
And for the absolute top in style and flashy hotels, there's Rome Cavalieri, Hilton Astoria. Perched on the hill of Monte Mario, north of the city center, the Hilton is the ultimate in 5-star hospitality. Be waited on hand and foot, with the pool bar serving up delicious crushed ice cocktails, hamburgers, pizzas and homemade gelato.
All prices quoted are for weekends. During the week, they can be significantly less but change seasonally. It's best to inquire ahead.
So if you're visiting in the summer months, when the streets of Rome are too hot to bear, go for a swim (in style) instead! Just remember that priority is given to hotel guests, so if you're planning on spending the day at any of these pools, arrive early to avoid disappointment.