Things To Do

Want to hang out at Miami luxury hotel pools without booking a room? Here’s how.

The pool at the St. Regis in Bal Harbour
The pool at the St. Regis in Bal Harbour Miami Herald Staff

It’s summer in Miami. You know it, we know it, and FPL knows it because the air conditioning is working overtime.

People in Miami like to complain about the heat, but we also know how to survive it. And one of those ways is to pool crash at luxury hotels where you don’t have to book a room.

Many hotel pools are reserved for guests, but we know a few loopholes to get you into the cabana (or at least walking around the pool with a drink in your hand).

Here are a few things you need to know before you set out on your pool crashing adventure.

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What’s new

Tidal Cove Waterpark at JW Marriott Miami Turnberry Resort & Spa

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Tidal Cove Waterpark in Aventura offers day passes.

The new Tidal Cove Waterpark has seven water slides, a giant kiddie pool with an aquatic play structure plus a VIP pool for adults only. There’s also a FlowRider Triple surf simulation pool.

Price: It’s not cheap. A day membership is $75 Monday-Thursday; $105 Friday-Sunday

Where to find deals on day passes

ResortPass

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Lounge poolside in one of the cabanas at The Confidante. Chris Sanders


A good first step: Check out ResortPass, the online booking website for pool passes, spa access and cabana reservation. You’ll find luxury hotels like SLS Brickell, The Confidante Miami Beach and The St. Regis Bal Harbour (day passes start at $40 at each of them). You can also find rates for Fort Lauderdale hotels.

DayAxe

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The Conrad Miami pool.

Another online booking site to check out is DayAxe, where you can find day pass rates for hotels like The Conrad Miami and the Catalina Hotel & Beach Club ($25 per guest).

The hot spots

The Mondrian South Beach

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At the Sundance Pool Series, which runs noon-7 p.m. every Saturday and Sunday throughout the summer, guests and locals alike can bask in the sun, listen to music and - most importantly, some would say - enjoy rosé specials. Getting into the party is free, but there’s a $50 minimum food and beverage requirement. Find out about cabana and daybed reservations by emailing mondriancabanas@meninhospitality.com

The Mondrian South Beach: 1100 West Ave, Miami Beach

Delano South Beach

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The pool is for guests during the day, but wait until 7 p.m. and then you can hang out by the pool once Delano Beach Club opens. Less chance of a sunburn. It’s open 7 p.m.-1 a.m. Sunday-Thursday and until 2 p.m. Friday and Saturday.

Delano South Beach: 1685 Collins Ave, Miami Beach

The Fontainebleau

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Bad news. You’ve got to book and buy a spa treatment or rent a cabana to gain access to any of this iconic hotel’s eight pools.

Fontainebleau Miami Beach: 4441 Collins Ave.

1 Hotel South Beach

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Detox and retox on the 1 Hotel rooftop in South Beach.

During the day, the pool is open to hotel guests only. It closes at 6, but the rooftop area is open to nonguests for the rest of the evening. Want to put in a few hours during the day? Rent a cabana by emailing VIProoftop@1hotels.com

1 Hotel South Beach: 2341 Collins Ave, Miami Beach

The Clevelander

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You forgot about this place didn’t you? Well, don’t. Every day is a party. The pool is open to the public from 11 a.m. until sunset, and everybody’s invited for free.

Clevelander South Beach Hotel & Bar: 1020 Ocean Dr, Miami Beach

The Freehand Miami

Freehand Miami pool
The pool at The Freehand. Photo: Gregory Castillo / Miami Herald

Customers of The Broken Shaker - and who doesn’t want to be one of those? - are able to use the pool from sunrise to sunset every day. Sounds like time for a drink.

Pool crashing 101

Still want to forgo the fee or slip into a pool not on this guide? You didn’t hear it from us, but here are a few tips to get you through the gate and into the cool, blue water:

Walk in like you own the place. Don’t stop to talk to the man guarding the back gate by the beach or the woman checking room keys past the lobby, breeze past them with confidence like you belong there and know where you’re going

Have lunch or drinks at the poolside restaurant. Then casually make your way to the pool and take a dip

Snag towels and set up your chair when the pool attendant isn’t looking

Have an exit strategy. If you get busted, know how you’re going to handle it ahead of time. Playing dumb works. “Oh, I didn’t know I wasn’t supposed to be here.” Then, calmly and quietly collect your things.

Don’t bother during a holiday weekend when hotels are sold out and security is on high alert.

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