10 top UK hotel pools with a view

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The Scarlet, Mawgan Porth, Cornwall
Set on the clifftop overlooking the spectacular Cornish coastline, the freshwater pool at the Scarlet is fringed with reeds and studded with granite rocks, giving it a wonderfully un-hotel, wild swimming feel. Warm up afterwards in one of the log-fired hot tubs, just along the hillside, or take a dip in the glass-walled indoor pool, part of the tranquil Scarlet spa. An adults-only retreat, the Scarlet is an indulgent treat, with seasonal, slow food and sustainable wines on offer in the smart, buzzy restaurant. Doubles from £240 room-only; scarlethotel.co.uk

Carbis Bay, Cornwall

A hotel room overlooking a pool with a sandy beach in the distance
Beach views of Carbis Bay. Photograph: Kieran Brimson

The phrase “infinity pool” could have been invented for the spectacular outdoor pool at the C Bay Spa at Carbis Bay Hotel, with widescreen views straight out over the Atlantic and a swathe of golden sand stretching in either direction. Spend mornings pottering around nearby St Ives – an easy walk away – or hiking along the spectacular coast path, with lazy afternoons by the pool and sunset suppers at Walter’s on the Beach, one of four restaurants. Accommodation ranges from hotel rooms to beach lodges and valley cottages, all effortlessly tasteful. Double rooms from £280 B&B; carbisbayhotel.co.uk

Burleigh Court, Stroud, Gloucestershire

A pool in a garden
A garden swim at Burleigh Court.

An intimate manor house hotel with glorious views over Gloucestershire’s Golden Valley, Burleigh has one of the only three Grade II-listed swimming pools in the UK. Tucked away in the back garden of the coach house, the pool was created in 1920 and what it lacks in size it makes up for with elegant, art deco stylings and Victorian sculptural touches. Surrounded by four acres of pristine grounds and with just 18 elegant bedrooms in the 200-year-old house, this is one of the Cotswolds’ most under-the-radar gems. Double rooms from £139 B&B; burleigh-court.co.uk

Lodore Falls Hotel & Spa, Keswick, Cumbria

A woman rests on the edge of an outdoor pool while steam rises, with a hotel and trees in the background
Spa treatments in Keswick.

Settle on to one of the underwater bubble loungers, let the neck jets pummel your shoulders and drink in the gorgeous views from Lodore’s stunning 16m outdoor pool. Derwentwater shimmers in the distance and the purple-hued Cumbrian mountains rise up behind, softened by the steam rising from the turquoise waters of the pool. This is wonderful walking country, too, so come back to Ishga and Elemis treatments to soothe tired limbs, and lunch at Mizu – offering Pan Asian food – or dinner at the elegant Lake View restaurant. Double rooms from £208 B&B; lakedistricthotels.net

St Brides Spa, Saundersfoot, Pembrokeshire

An infinity pool reflects the clouds and looks out over the Welsh coast
A place for reflection.

The outdoor infinity pool at St Brides – perched high above the town – has one of the most stunning sea views on the Welsh coast, with Saundersfoot harbour and Carmarthen Bay rolling out to the horizon.Follow a walk along the Pembrokeshire coast path with a dip in the heated waters, or pair a swim with a seawater treatment in the state-of-the-art spa. Rooms are sleek and contemporary and the restaurant makes the most of the region’s rich haul of seafood. Doubles from £200 B&B; rarebits.co.uk

Sheraton Grand Hotel & Spa, Edinburgh

Steam rises from an outdoor rooftop pool
Take a rooftop dip in Edinburgh. Photograph: Will Pryce

High above Edinburgh’s graceful streets, the Sheraton’s One Spa boasts the best pool in town – an indoor-outdoor hydropool, with neck, body and floor jets giving a warm-water, whole body experience. The mineral-rich waters are deeply restorative, particularly when paired with time in the thermal sequencing suite or bio sauna. Neutral bedrooms are brightened with tartan, and dinner overlooking Edinburgh castle is the perfect way to end the day. Doubles from £273, three-hour spa £35; marriott.co.uk

Ragdale Hall, Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire

A rooftop pool with views over trees in a park estate
Swim above the trees, Ragdale Hall.

There are six pools at Ragdale, but the rooftop infinity pool is the pick of the bunch, with water heated to 35C and jets to massage swimmers while they take in the countryside views. The indoor/outdoor waterfall pool flows through small inlets, offering plenty of private corners for long, tranquil soaks, while the candle pool is the ultimate watery treat, set in a spectacular, mosaic cavern, lit by candlelight and a starlit ceiling. Back on dry land, there are fitness classes and facials, with cocktails and champagne on offer at the new Twilight Bar, with the restaurant serving both health-conscious and more indulgent dishes. Two-night taster break from £410pp all-inclusive, including 50 minutes of treatments; ragdalehall.co.uk

Slieve Donard, Newcastle, Co Down

The mountains of Morne
A mountain retreat. Photograph: Michelle Holihan/Alamy

A Northern Irish institution, the award-winning spa at Slieve enjoys one of the best pool views in the country; through a floor-to-ceiling glass wall, the Mountains of Morne rise up around a broad, windswept beach with gently rolling sand dunes. There are daily Aqua exercise classes for those who want to do more than just swim, with ESPA treatments on offer, alongside a world-renowned golf course and beach walks from the door. Bedrooms are fuss free and sumptuously comfortable, and diners can choose from the formal Oak restaurant or the cosy Percy French Inn. Double rooms from £275 half-board; slievedonardhotel.com

King Street Townhouse, Manchester

A night view over Manchester
A seventh-storey swim. Photograph: Kat Gardiner/Getty Images/EyeEm

Gain a different perspective on the Mancunian skyline from King Street’s seventh-floor infinity plunge pool. Bag a lounger for a lazy afternoon elevated from the city noise below, or take an early morning dip to see the city come to life. Twin snoozing by the pool with the hotel’s afternoon tea, or save yourself for the menu of hearty British classics in the Tavern restaurant. Rooms are cool and contemporary, in a palette of duck-egg blues and pale creams. Doubles from £152 room-only; kingstreettownhouse.co.uk

Ockenden Manor, Cuckfield, East Sussex

A look down at the pool area at Ockenden Manor, with rooftop garden also in shot
Swim into Sussex.

Swim straight into the rolling Sussex countryside at this sleek indoor-outdoor pool, bisected by a glass wall and surrounded by pristine lawns. Part of Ockenden’s landmark spa, the outdoor pool is heated to ensure swimmers can move between the two without any noticeable drop in temperature. The spa is one of the best in the south-east, with a walk-through rainforest shower and Isopod flotation tank – a modernist counterpart to the charming, Elizabethan manor house which has an award-winning restaurant and 28 rooms. Doubles from £242 B&B; hshotels.co.uk.