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Lap time

If serious lap swimming is more your speed, check out these public pools. Most are open year-round and are blissfully quiet compared the outdoor spots listed above.

Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium
Two lap pools, one 50m and one 25m, fed by recycled water. Soap and shampoo not allowed in the shower rooms.

1-17-1 Sendagaya, Shibuya-ku. Tel: 03-5474-2111. Open 9:30am-9pm, closed 3rd Mon of every month. Admission: ¥450 (adults). Nearest stns: JR Sendagaya; Oedo line, Kokuritsu-kyogijo stn.

 

Tokyo Tatsumi International Swimming Pool
A tournament-ready facility with two 50-meter swimming pools, a diving pool and 5,000 seats.

2-8-10 Tatsumi, Koto-ku. Tel: 03-5569-5061. Open 9am-9pm, closed 1st and 3rd Mon of every month. Admission: ¥600 (adults), ¥260 (children). Nearest stn: Shinkiba. www.tef.or.jp/tatumi-s/

 

Komazawa Olympic Park
An outdoor 50m pool, mainly for splashing around with the kids.

1-1 Komazawa Koen, Setagaya-ku. Tel: 03-3421-6199. Open 10am-5pm, until Sep. Admission: ¥250 (adults), ¥120 (children). Nearest stn: Denentoshi line, Komazawa-Daigaku stn.

 

Chitose All-Season Swimming Pool
A six-lane 25m pool plus a play pool with waterslides and a Jacuzzi.

7-9-1 Funabashi, Setagaya-ku. Tel: 03-3789-3911. Open 9am-9pm. Admission: ¥200/1hf, ¥400/2hr (adults); ¥80/1hr, ¥150/2hr (children). Nearest stn: Odakyu line, Chitose-Funabashi stn. Take the Keio bus to Kuritsu Onsui Pool-mae stop.

 

Yokohama International Pool
One 1000m2 main pool plus diving pool and a smaller sub-pool with Jacuzzi facilities.

7-3-1 Kita-Yamada, Yokohama. Tel: 045-592-0453. Open 9:30am-9:30pm. Admission: ¥300/2hr. Nearest stn: Yokohama subway, Center Kita stn.




 

 

bar news and views

HEALTH AND BEAUTY ARCHIVE:
538: Pool party
Keep your cool this summer with a visit to one of Tokyo’s many pools. Metropolis shows you where to take the plunge.
536: Don't sweat it
With the hot and humid months upon us, Cristy Burne share some tips on staying cool.
534: Swept away
Put away your broomsticks—all you really need to soar through the clouds is an armful of nylon and a good gust. Cristy Burne checks out the air up there.
532: Tee time
Can’t keep it on the fairway? The ‘yips’ invaded your game? Rob Smaal finds a few experienced golf pros who can work out your kinks on the links.
530: Balancing act
An ancient science is helping modern men and women find peace, health and the always elusive “balance.” Tama M. Lung takes a closer look at ayurveda.
528: Kicking on
Former K-1 Japan champion Nicholas Pettas shares his love of martial arts at the new Spirit Gym in Nogizaka. Chris Betros goes along to watch.
526: On call
A revolutionary daily disease self-management system is making life easier for diabetics. Chris Betros finds out about Lifewatcher.
524: Team spirit
From rugby to roller hockey, Tokyo is teeming with sports clubs for the expat athlete. Rob Smaal shows you how to get in the game.
522: Type casting
Second-generation blood-type expert Toshitaka Nomi looks at the links between blood classifications and health. Mick Corliss reports.
520: Like a rock
Climbing instructor Luke Kearns gets a grip on Tokyo's best indoor climbing gyms.
516: The personal touch
Madonna and Matsui aren't the only ones who need help staying fit. Hanna Kite pumps it up with the top personal trainers in Tokyo.
514: From here to maternity
Kavitha Rao turns to a handful of Tokyo experts to track down baby basics for nervous expat mothers-to-be.
502: Tour de Morton, part deux
Don Morton gets back on two wheels for a leisurely ride out toward Haneda Airport.

ISSUES 499-
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Pool party

Keep your cool this summer with a visit to one of Tokyo’s many pools. Metropolis shows you where to take the plunge.

Besides being a great workout, splashing around in the pool is a great way to fight off the mid-summer ennui. Just a short dip can refresh and revive when outdoor running, biking or even walking seem like far more than your overheated body can handle. Luckily Tokyo is brimming with all kinds of watery options, from playful amusement-park wave pools to Olympic-size lap pools. Here are just a few of the top spots to dive in.

 

Checking in

Several Tokyo hotels welcome local residents to enjoy their pristine pools for a spot of sunbathing, poolside dining and even spa services.

Hilton Tokyo Bay
A short ride from the steamy sidewalks of Tokyo Disneyland, the Hilton Tokyo Bay Garden Pool offers refreshment and spaciousness to weary Disney fans and Tokyoites alike. The 50m-long outdoor pool gets its name from the surrounding Japanese garden, and features the added services of the poolside Splash Bar. Soft drinks (¥500~), beers (¥800~) and cocktails (¥800~) can be enjoyed in the casual air-conditioned bar or at your lounge chair by the pool. Accommodation packages are available through www.hiltontokyobay.jp (Japanese).

Jul 17-Aug 31; Sep 4, 5. 1-8 Maihama, Urayasu-shi, Chiba. Tel: 047-355-5000. Open 8am-6:30pm. Admission: ¥6,000 (adults), ¥3,300 (children 4-12); ¥2,500 (hotel guests), ¥1,800 (hotel guests, children 4-12). Nearest stn: Keiyo line, Maihama stn.

 

The New Otani Tokyo
Celebrating its 40th anniversary this year, The New Otani Tokyo is basing its 2004 poolside fun around the theme “MaiTai.” They continue their tradition of resort-style celebrations with special luau parties (Mon-Thu 6-9pm, ¥6,000) from the Outrigger bar and grill, “Fooding Style” DJ nights (Fri-Sat 6-10pm, ¥3,000 adults, ¥2,000 children), and a full menu of massage and spa services. Guests can also book the second-floor deck Kamehameha Seats for ¥5,000 and enjoy their own private oasis in the city. The convenient location and decidedly less crowded locale should make for a great island-style getaway. A range of pool and room packages are also available.

Jul 16 until Sep 5. 4-1 Kioi-cho, Chiyoda-ku. Tel: 03-3265-1111. Open Sun-Thu 10am-7pm; Fri, Sat 10am-10pm. Admission: Mon-Fri ¥5,000 (adults), ¥3,500 (children 4-12); Sat-Sun and Aug 13-16 ¥10,000 (adults), ¥7,000 (children 4-12); ¥2,000 (hotel guests), ¥1,500 (hotel guests, children 4-12). Nearest stn: Nagatacho.

 

Hotel Okura
Dubbed the “Green Oasis,” the Hotel Okura’s 25m pool is available for recreational swimming, lounging and spa services. Take in the view of the hotel’s Japanese gardens as you receive a foot massage (30min, ¥3,150, available 10am-5pm until Aug 31). The Terrace Restaurants and its tropical cocktails are also close at hand.

Until Sep 5. 2-10-4 Toranomon, Minato-ku. Tel: 03-3582-0111. Open 9am-7:30pm (until Aug 31), 9am-7pm (Sep 1-5). Admission: Mon-Fri ¥6,300 (adults), ¥3,675 (children 4-12); Sat-Sun ¥10,500 (adults), ¥5,250 (children 4-12). Nearest stn: Tameikesanno.

 

The New Otani Makuhari
Located steps from the Makuhari Messe convention center and 15 minutes from Tokyo Disneyland, The New Otani Makuhari aims to bring a touch of relaxing resort living to this industrial district. Their 20m-long Shell Pool features a Jacuzzi, poolside dining, and plenty of shaded tables to visit with friends. A number of tasty meal plans are on offer this summer, including a café lunch and pool ticket for ¥5,200 (adults) and ¥3,000 (children). Guests arriving after 3pm can also get in for 50 percent less.

Jul 16-Aug 31. 2-2 Hibino, Mihama-ku, Chiba-City, Chiba. Tel: 043-297-7777. Open 9am-7pm (Jul 16-Aug 12), 9am-9pm (Aug 13-16), 10am-6pm (Aug 17-31). Admission: ¥4,000 (adults, ¥7,000 Aug 13-16), ¥2,000 (children 4-12, ¥3,500 Aug 13-16); ¥1,500 (hotel guests), ¥1,000 (hotel guests, children). Nearest stn: JR Keiyo line, Kaihin Makuhari stn.

 

Slip-n-slide

These massive pool compounds offer fun for the whole family, with kiddie pools, waterslides, wave pools and a raft of other activities close at hand.
 
Rainbow Pool
Located in a sprawling park built to commemorate Emperor Showa’s reign, this 6.3-hectare pool complex features nine different ways to get wet. Highlights include the Running Water Pool, the Wave Pool and, in the adjacent Water Playland, a huge pool fed by five waterfalls. There’s also a 1,490m2 (4,888ft2) Adventure Pool complete with a rope so you can play Tarzan. Kids are welcome and everyone’s invited to stroll the rest of the park-with its putting greens, boathouses and barbecue areas-in their swimsuits. Check the website for a range of special events planned throughout the summer.

Rainbow Pool until Sep 12, Water Playland open all year. 3173 Midori-machi, Tachikawa-shi. Tel: 042-528-1751. Open 9:30am-6:30pm (Jul 17-Aug 15), 9:30am-6pm (Aug 16-Sep 5), 9:30am-5pm (Sep 11, 12). Admission: ¥2,250 (adults), ¥1,220 (children ages 6-14). Nearest stn: JR Ohme line, Nishi Tachikawa stn (3min walk). www.ktr.mlit.go.jp/showa/index.htm


 
Rock Garden Pool
This 2,000m2 (6,561ft2) pool complex makes up part of the Tama Tech amusement park, which includes motor sports, barbecue areas and a Ferris wheel. With a big toy fire truck and no less than 15 kinds of slides, fountains and hoses sitting at its center, the main 400m2 (1,312ft2) pool is perfect for kids. But the slides are for the whole family—the “slider pool” with its massive ramp is the latest to open, adding to the already popular body and inner-tube slides.

Until Sep 12. 5-22-1 Hodokubo, Hino-shi. Tel. 042-591-0820. Open 9:30am-4pm (Jun 26-Jul 17), 9am-4pm (Jul 18-Sep 12). Admission: ¥2,200 (adults), ¥1,600 (elementary school students), ¥500 (children under 3). Nearest stn: Tama Dobutsu Koen. www.tamatech.com

 

Edogawa Pool Garden
With five different pools, this water “garden” on the eastern edge of the metropolis has something for everyone. If it’s space you’re after, try the Jumbo Pool. For a little more action, there’s the water slide, and for the little ones, the jabu-jabu wading pool. But get there before it’s gone-the city turns it into a tennis court in the off-season.

Until Sep 12. 8-17-1 Nishi Kasai, Edogawa-ku. Tel: 03-3687-1721. Open 9am-5pm. Admission: ¥500 (adults), ¥200 (junior high and elementary school students), ¥100 (infants). Nearest stn: JR/subway Tozai line, Nishi Kasai stn, 15-min walk.

Photos: Courtesy of The New Otani Tokyo, Courtesy of The New Otani Makuhari, Courtesy of Hilton Tokyo Bay


 

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