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5 Pool-Inspired Road Trips From Denver Before Summer's Over

Late-summer Southwestern sun-bathing spots

Make one last splash at these sun-drenched Southwestern retreats just a hop and a skip away from the Mile High City.

Phoenix, Arizona

Two of the Arizona Biltmore’s eight pools truly embody Southwest design. The Paradise Pool (pictured) includes a 92-foot-long waterslide, a swim-up bar and 15 poolside cabanas with luxurious interiors, fluffy beach-size towels, flat-screen TVs and private bathrooms. Adorned with colorful mosaic tiles from California’s Catalina Island, the appropriately named Catalina Pool was built in the 1930s by the second owners of the resort, the Wrigley family. It has hosted social events such as diving competitions and fashion shows, and was once a retreat for Marilyn Monroe. arizonabiltmore.com

Drive time from Denver: 13 hours (820 miles)


Gateway, Colorado

Smack dab on the Colorado-Utah border, this remote turquoise gem acts as a point of respite for weary adventurists after a long day of hiking, biking and climbing through the nearby Moab Desert and Unaweep Canyon. Kids can enjoy the pool’s waterfall feature while parents take in views of the towering Palisade rock from the hot tub. gatewaycanyons.com

Drive time from Denver: 4.75 hours (290 miles)


San Antonio, Texas

Here, a soak-and-sun session is amplified by endless views of rolling hills and manicured fairways. The resort has five pools, including an adults-only infinity pool lined with 10 chic cabanas and a poolside bar. The cabanas (which host up to eight people) feel more like a living room than an outdoor space—each is equipped with high-definition TVs, sofas and a personal attendant. In between dips, poolside restaurant and bar Topaz offers small savory bites and cocktails (try the Texas Mule or Setting Sun Sangria). destinationhotels.com

Drive time from Denver: 14.25 hours (916 miles)


Albuquerque, New Mexico

Lounging poolside at Los Poblanos is a heavenly scene—the resort’s pool (one of the few saltwater pools in the state) is tucked among lavish fields brimming with colorful lavender blossoms, pomegranate and fig trees, and vegetable gardens.  Although the property’s original pool (the second-oldest in-ground pool in New Mexico) is used only for special events and occasions, guests can still meander around the pool grounds, built in 1934. lospoblanos.com

Drive time from Denver: 7 hours (445 miles)


Midway, Utah

Hidden below 55 feet of limestone rock lies one of Homestead Resort’s biggest attractions—a geothermal spring over 10,000 years in the making. The Homestead Crater’s 65-foot-deep waters range from 90 to 96 degrees Fahrenheit, making it the only warm scuba-diving destination in the lower 48. For $16, guests can swim, soak, snorkel or (for an extra fee) even take a paddleboard yoga class in the mineral-rich waters. Landlubbers can access the natural wonder without getting their feet wet via a ground-level tunnel through the rock walls. homesteadresort.com

Drive time from Denver: 8 hours (510 miles)

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