As warm weather flows into France, taking a dip is becoming more and more appealing. If you’re wondering where to go this summer, look no further than the comprehensive guide: “Paris à la nage : Guide des piscines parisiennes” by authors Colombe and Marine Schneck. Together, they tested all of Paris’ 42 pools, rating them on criteria such as: the length, width and depth of the pool, number of swimming lanes, the water temperature, presence of a sunroof, access to outdoor space, cleanliness, disability access, locker rooms, and showers.
They also took note of the architectural history of the buildings, as many fall into beautiful 1920s art deco style.
Explaining her key takeaways from spending a year testing Paris’ pools, author Colombe Schneck said, “They are really clean. The municipality is often criticised, but the lifeguards are great, the entrance workers are always friendly and the rates (3.50 euros, 2 euros for those under 26, free for the unemployed) are very affordable.”
Here are each of the authors’ top five pools based on the criteria outlined above:
Colombe Schneck’s Top Five
1. The Butte-aux-Cailles (5 Pl. Paul Verlaine, 75013 Paris)
Listed as a historical monument, the Butte-aux-Cailles swimming pool bears witness to “the modernity of the architecture of the 1920s,” says Colombe Schneck. In addition to the indoor pool of 33m, the establishment also boasts an outdoor pool of 25m.
#BodiesOfWater Day 10: designed in 1924 by architect, painter and Paris city planner Louis Bonnier, Piscine de la Butte-aux-Cailles in the 13th combines a squashy Art Nouveau exterior with a surprisingly muscular pool hall defined by supple concrete arches. Total chef’s kiss. pic.twitter.com/eynHgvSOQy
— Catherine Slessor (@cath_slessor) April 4, 2020
2. Blomet (17 rue Blomet – 75015 Paris)
Located in Paris’ 15th arrondissement, the Blomet pool is 50m large, which is “rare enough to be noted.” The building has a “pure 1925 style” with large concrete arches were replaced by a glass roof in the 1960s, making the establishment all the sunnier.
— Mairie du 15 (@mairie15) September 8, 2020
3. Keller (14 rue de l’Ingénieur Robert Keller – 75015 Paris)
Also located in the 15th arrondissement, this pool was built at the end of the 1960s for postal workers. It was bought by the city in 2002 and renovated in 2006. It is a 50m pool with an opening roof, which is a huge plus during summer! “Swimming in the sun, looking at the sky, is quite unexpected in Paris,” said Colombe Schneck, in her book.
Pas le temps de faire des longueurs en journée … Bonne nouvelle, la #piscine Keller est ouverte jusqu’à 22h tous les soirs de la semaine (19h le weekend). À vos maillots ! #Paris15 pic.twitter.com/3cbry7kO68
— Mairie du 15 (@mairie15) August 1, 2018
4. Georges-Hermant (15 rue David d’Angers – 75019 Paris)
This time found in the 19th arrondissement, located near Buttes Chaumont, the piscine Georges-Hermant is “worth the trip for the beauty of its 50m pool, which is almost outdoors because the canvas roof opens in the summer,” said Colombe Schneck.
La piscine Georges Hermant, située à deux pas des #ButtesChaumont, est l'1 des seules piscines de la capitale à offrir 1 bassin de 50 mètres, idéal pour enchaîner les longueurs ! Et Dès l'arrivée des beaux jours, la piscine s’offre le luxe d’être en plein air #JeudiPhoto #Paris19 pic.twitter.com/uGtbGGULxs
— MACVAC Paris 19ème 🏠 (@MdCA75019) August 30, 2018
5. La Plaine (13 Rue du Général Guillaumat, 75015 Paris)
Built in 1967 by architect Jean-Pierre Sevaistre near the Parc des Expositions, this pool has very large windows. To Colombe, it offers “an almost Californian luminosity. It’s like being in Los Angeles in the 1960s.”
Marine Schneck’s Top Five
1. Édouard-Pailleron (32, rue Edouard Pailleron, 75019 PARIS)
“It’s the pool of the 21st century,” said Marine Schneck, who praised it as the perfect mix between a 33m Art Deco pool from the 1930s and now part of a contemporary building (2006). The pool is luminous, with a paddling pool, a large, round children’s pool and a Jacuzzi.
Pour la sortie d'Aquaman, le 19 décembre, Warner Bros France et Brand station installent une affiche de 450 m2 sur le fond du bassin de la piscine Edouard Pailleron dans le19ème arrondissement de Paris. pic.twitter.com/GdeizmSEST
— jaiunpotedanslacom (@unpotedanslacom) December 10, 2018
2. Roger-Le Gall (34 Bd Carnot, 75012 Paris)
A beautiful swimming pool that in the summer becomes open air, the Roger-Le Gall pool is complete with a waterside cafeteria, lawn, and deckchairs, this pool is located right near to Porte de Vincennes. “It gives you the impression of being on vacation in the countryside!” says Marine Schneck.
La #SOP2019 se clôture en beauté à la piscine Roger Le Gall ! Encouragés par leurs parents et les personnels de la cité scolaire Paul Valéry (12e), les élèves ont participé avec des élèves de CM2 à un relais des générations en présence de @GillesPecout et de @yanisbacha 👏! pic.twitter.com/XOUlioNq3d
— Académie de Paris (@Academie_Paris) February 8, 2019
3. Jacqueline-Auriol (7 All. Louis de Funès, 75008 Paris)
Inaugurated in 2014, the pool at the Beaujon sports centre, with its large bay windows, offers a 25m stainless steel pool and a smaller one for children. Beware however, “the showers [were] installed facing the pool, without walls and without modesty!” notes Schneck.
🏊♀️ La #piscine Jacqueline Auriol est de nouveau #ouverte, pour votre plus grand plaisir.
Plusieurs créneaux #horaires vous sont proposés afin d’ assurer la distanciation physique et le confort de chacun. Plus d’infos ici: https://t.co/exJ0DMlqzs#paris8 #equipements pic.twitter.com/XGpzHHIKSQ
— Mairie du 8e Paris (@Mairie08Paris) July 30, 2020
4. Les Amiraux (6, rue Hermann Lachapelle, 75018 PARIS)
Built in 1927 by the architect Henri Sauvage, the 33m pool of Les Amiraux, is classified as a historical monument. It almost resembles an ocean liner with two-story hallways above the pool! It was recently renovated in 2017.
— Paris (@Paris) November 7, 2017
5. Thérèse-et-Jeanne-Brulé (1, place Edith Thomas, 75014 PARIS)
Opened in February 2020, this swimming pool is brand new with large bay windows that allow the sun to reflect off of the aluminium pool (25m-long). On sunny days, you can visit the lovely solarium and enjoy its deckchairs!
Avec ses deux bassins, un pour la nage, l’autre pour l’apprentissage, pic.twitter.com/AfJgGYf4NT
— Pierre Rabadan (@PierreRabadan) April 29, 2020