The Intercontinental Pool represents a missed opportunity as one of Cairo’s best pools. On paper, the pool has everything going for it: an inner-city location (by Tahrir Square); a rooftop terrace perfectly oriented towards the Nile for excellent views and afternoon sun-tanning conditions; and hotel services and amenities. It is poised for perfection. However, the pool design doesn't capitalise on these features in any way, and is overall unimpressive.
The only person at the Intercontinental Hotel Pool who is able to get a decent glimpse of the Nile is the bored lifeguard on his viewing chair. And it’s probably the only person who isn’t supposed to be distracted by the dazzling scenery. For the rest of us hanging out on lounges or in the pool, views are effectively obscured. The pool only takes up about a fifth of the available space on the terrace and barely suffices as a lap pool. The space surrounding it is particularly unexciting with a few clusters of plastic tables and chairs and sun lounges.
The Intercontinental Pool still offers the essentials – refreshing water, sun lounges, better-than-usual service, food, alcohol, and afternoon sun rays, but it’s not enough to forget about the 300 LE you paid to enter. At least the menu is half-decent with a variety of drinks (including cocktails) and snacks.
Tip: Go between midday and 4pm for adequate sun; and bring an elevated chair for views
Lookout for: Bored lifeguard – he is definitely not watching out for your kids
Cost per person: 200 LE for non-hotel guests day-pas including pool towel