San Alfonso Del Mar (Images courtesy Spluch)
By Andrew Liszewski

If you hate swimming in hotel pools when they get too crowded I don’t think you’ll have much to worry about here. The outdoor pool at the San Alfonso Del Mar resort in Chile is 8 hectares in size, 1 km long and is acknowledged by the Guinness Book of World Records as the largest in the world. It’s filled with about 250,000 cubic meters of salt water which, if you’re wondering, is roughly equivalent to about 6,000 standard backyard pools. It cost about $1.5 billion to build and maintenance alone is about $4 million a year.

Besides swimming (and lots of it) the pool also includes a temperature controlled indoor beach, sailing, kayaking, scuba diving and even a water shuttle service for quickly getting from one end of the resort to the other.

[ San Alfonso Del Mar ] VIA [ Spluch ]


  1. Well, I’m from Chile and all I can say is that the technology used to build this kind of pool was invented here and that the maintenance is very cheap comparing to traditional methods.

  2. awesome use of energy… so you build a pool of salt water next to the see. and those buildings… to me it is so sad to see how far have people gone from nature. no wonder the appalling state of things

  3. this is fucking dope, any of you people would be all over this place if you had the chance. yeah, globalization is everywhere and it’s better that these developing countries take advantage and have something to compete with this greedy giant, the US!

  4. No dude, the water would get way to dirty. wayyy to quick. They dont take baths over there, it’s their culture. They just wash their hands and feet.

  5. It seems to me that with all the starving people in the world and the financial situations of the global economy that to spend this is clearly gluttunous and disrespectful to the human condition

  6. The idiots that built this pool spent way too much cash….The ocean is right next to it….what a bunch o dumbasses…Leave it to the chileans to get famous for making a swimming pool…lazy fucks.

  7. Good Lord! Just because they could is good enough for everyone else in the world why not them. Does anyone know the 2nd largest pool? Bet they didn’t get near the grief for theres.

  8. You all have way too much time on your hands! I’m jerkin off right now while I’m writing this and by the time I am finished, I will have finished the NY times crossword puzzle.

    Now you tell me: Who is the bad ass mutha fucka round here? Bitches!! And I won them 9 Gold medals!! So Fuck you!!

  9. I’m dying here over the last comment. Carl Lewis jerkin off haha!!
    but yeah this doesn’t make sense. lol..Chileans are funny, what the hell were they thinking building this massive pool right next to a…what a bunch of dumb asses. before this I never even knew there was a country called Chili. oh well.

  10. Sigh… Unfortunately, not fake — check out the development web site. Many years ago I used to spend my summers in Algarrobo, where this thing is located. Que pena… the place was much prettier then.

  11. This is cool to look at if its a case of crowded pools at hotels, but ethically speaking, this is wickedness and selfishness at all levels.

    I wonder how these people sleep at night knowing they spent all this money to build this crap right next to the sea which is pointless, with the knowledge of hungry and poor people struggling.

  12. Perhaps Chile should have put their money to better use. I am thinking the $1.5 billion could have been used to give their people baths since they stink.

  13. What the hell is the point, the ocean is right there. I can’t understand why people would spend money to hang out at a fake beach when the real one is a short walk away and is free. Disgusting.

  14. It’s a well known fact that there is a dangerous shark population off the coast of Chile which has impacted the tourism industry. This is their solution. Given that this industry is a major source of jobs and revenue to the local population I think that those who condemn it should think about the starving children that would exist if the service staff for resorts like this all lost their jobs. And the thousands of swimmers who would be shark food every year.

  15. Wow… now that’s a pool. As for the ridiculousness of it… so what? I applaud Chile for doing something so audacious – something like this would never be built here in the USA because we’d have so many wussified, ultra-PC wastoids screaming “what would the people in Chile say?” Globalization sucks – I say that as an American and a traveler – the more I see the world the less I want to see it homogenized. What is so freakin’ horrible about a culture having its own sense of identity (and I include Americans in that statement)?

  16. Re: Comment from Anonymous posted on October 26th.

    So they build a huge pool so children don’t starve? Great logic. You my friend are an ass and should consider going swimming in the ocean.

  17. I think this pool is great, something new and something different. Even though the sea is next to it you still can choose to swim were ever, if you like waves the ocean or if you like more calm waters the pool. This is great Im from South Africa and would really like to visit this place. I think the guys that do not like this place can’t swim or are not into watersports. Great place well done Chille!!!

  18. The pool was built because the beach (yeah, the one that is JUST RIGHT THERE), is way too dangerous and many people have dorwned, so it is forbidden by law to swim or practice sports in it. So, who would buy a luxury oceanfront apartment where you have to drive about 4 kilometers to actually go to the beach and do more than just looking at it? Well, the developers came up with the pool, so they could sell the apartments. I dont really like this place, because they overbuilt and its very crowded now…..but I’ll admit it was a pretty good business idea, and it sold really fast among the local upper class.

  19. Mike, you are the dumb ass apparently for not even knowing there was a country called Chili………………….MORON, I sure hope you aren’t an American if you are you must be from Arkansas.

  20. There is a whole lot of Judgement going on right here, without anyone actually taking any time to research facts, and realise why this pool was built. Personally I think it is an excellent piece of Engineering, and if you would all stop slagging of the Chileans who built it you might be able to see past your prejudice.
    Comparing this to millions of starving people and being disrespectful is also specious, although an initial layout of this magnitude appears high, the wealth and thus prosperity it can potentially bring to a country, through jobs and taxes is very great.

    I am going to get off my high horse now, it was a nice view though.

    besides… who can’t respect a pool that is 8 hectares large.

  21. I have learned that year-round the ocean off the coast of Chile is much too cold for swimming. Is this pool open to the public or only those that own and rent the apartments?

  22. The total investment of the pool is significanlty lower than 1.5 billion, it is some 150-200 million, which were financed by the people that bought the departments

    The pool is not a fake:

    It was built a couple of years ago, and it was supposed to be an artificial lagoon, but this year someone named it as “pool” and “gained” the dubious honour to be mentioned in the Guinness Book of World Records

    Why building a huge pool just meters away from the sea?
    1) The Chilean sea is freezing cold, you can not be more than 5 minutes in the sea, unless you want to be infertile
    2) That particular beach is extremely dangerous, with very strong streams. If you try to swim there, you’ll probably die in less than the 5 minutes it takes you to be infertile. One of the options was to
    3) According to the Chilean Law, there is no private beach, and this lagoon was the solution for 1) + 2) + 3)

    The pictures are definitely photoshoped.

    The place used to be much nicer 10 years ago when the project started, there used to be dunes in the back (in the zone of the second line of buildings), but the beach was not very popular.

    Use google and you will find out that besides producing huge pools we are doing quite a good job on reducing poverty . Ah, and We do bath, daily.

  23. Crystal Lagoons is a chilean enterprice that uses a high technology that allows to design, construct and keep crystal clear water in an unlimited volume and at a low price.
    On behalf of Crystal Lagoons, we want to clarify that the information that appeared in this web page, is incorrect. The construction of the lagoon San Alfonso del Mar, located in Algarrobo, had a cost of US$3.5 million.

  24. Je suis française, j’ai vécu au Chili et j’adore ce pays et ses habitants ! (Viva Chile !) .
    Les commentaires ci-dessus me scandalisent… Qui se permet de dire ces horreurs sur les chiliens ? Peut-être des jaloux (et je suis polie), qui auraient bien voulu que la piscine la plus grande du monde soit dans leur pays !…
    On peut toujours critiquer ce gaspillage d’argent (c’est mon avis), mais peut-être que ça permettra à des centaines de chiliens de gagner leur vie en y travaillant.
    Cependant, j’aurais aimé savoir d’où provenaient les capitaux qui ont servi à la construction. Et donc, à qui iront les bénéfices…
    Le commentaire de Francisco me parait le plus intelligent.
    Je confirme qu’au Chili, la mer est glaciale : le “courant de Humbolt” remonte directement du pôle …sud ! (je précise “sud”, pour les imbéciles qui n’ont jamais entendu parler du Chili !!!!! et qui pourraient situer ce pays près… des Etats Unis , par exemple.)
    Tant pis pour ceux qui ne parlent qu’anglais et qui ne comprennent pas le français…

  25. It’s phenomenal! I love the architecture it is an eye catching piece of construction. I read every single comment and it disappoints me to hear many ignorant or haters degrading Chile. As a matter Chile is located in South America and is in a better economic situation than their sorrounding neighbors. Also I strongly believe that this pool is still bringing cash-into the country. And so WHAT! if they built the largest pool on earth; stop hating a give the credit they diserve. For your information I’m Panamanian, the country located in the isthmus of Central America. By the way some ask who has the 2nd largest swimming and the answer is Panama. The process of finishing the 2nd biggest swimming pool will soon be open for the public.

  26. Another thing I forgot to mention dont you guys think that it would be better to swim in salt water next to the beach? I think that idea was great! why waist water when you can take it from your next door neighbor for free.


    really awesome engineering piece … i would like to know how they can warm up this huge quantity of water … and how do they clean it !!
    I suppose they just took water from the sea through a big filter … but how long did it took to fill in ?!
    In a little swimming pool, the plague are the three leafs and over things that can polluate the water (sand, ect) how do they handle this :s

  28. This is Great!

    No Coastal Commission. No US Army Corps. No US Fish & Wildlife Service.

    Barbara Boxer (D) – Eat your Heart Out Baby!

    P.S. Is it a DoughBoy?

  29. Deal with it folks! Its their money to spend however they want and im sure they worked hard to earn that fat cash. Youre all saying “stupid Chileans” but its one rich person in Chile they can spend their hard earned cash however they want to.

  30. Before you start bitching about how stupid it is to build a pool by the sea, think about this: Average temperature of the ocean ‘right next door’: 17C (64F) temperature of the pool: 26C (78F). I can assure you that warmer is better. Also, Chile is notorious for violent rip tides: SWIMMERS DIE! So please, just stfu.

  31. Je suis désolé de voir les commentaires virulents dont les auteurs connaissent presque rien sur le Chili ! encore moins en géographie… C’est juste des critiques gratuites, irresponsables.
    Heureusement les autres commentaires plus justes plus intelligents qui donne une explication corrective à des idées erronées.
    D’abord il faut admirer le travail colosal (en architecture et aussi en réalisation) et aussi l’idée qui permet donner un coup de pousse pour l’industrie de tourisme au Chili !
    En suite si tous les travaux surréalistes comme cette piscine sont des “stupides choses” alors on aurait pas aujourd’hui les pyramides d’Egype, Les murailles de Chine, les grattes ciels etc etc.

  32. Although it is in the other end of the world with respect to our country, I will visit it But I am worried about its heiginity . And its effect on the inviroment . How much chemicals discharged with water going back to sea. How is it filtered and cleaned.
    If the answer is positive, I will go with my family.
    I wish we get an answer.

  33. Je pourrai faire mes commentaires en francais ( je suis d’accord avec Joelle)
    ou en anglais, considerant que la plupart des opinions sont negatives.
    I believe it is a great resort, no need for me to expand on this. The facts given by Francisco clear up most of the BS preceding his comments.
    Most commments show quite an ignorance of culture and geography. I also concur with fact the local community benefits. Let’s face it – no free lunch – someone spends and many benefit. If all this gives you hartburn, take some Pepto Bismuth and go on with your miserable life.

  34. I have to agree with Paul here. It’s an economy boost for a “not so rich” country. If it brings tourists, it brings money. That’s a positive. It may seem stupid to build a pool right next to the ocean, but look at all the idiots in California that have ocean front property and a pool on it as well.

    And as for the stupid comment about “Chileans”….. different culture = different (and many times BETTER) ideas. Help them out, spend your vacation in this BEAUTIFUL area!!!

  35. that, mes amis, is a big pool. but i don’t understand why its a big deal that its on the ocean. if you go any other beach resort there will probably be a pool there. i stayed at a resort half way between playa del carmen and cancun and it had a pool. and you know what? most of the people spent their time there. why wouldnt you? it has the aesthetics of the beach with the comfort of stability. and all of you who whine about the selfishness of this masterpiece, get over it. go hug a tree.

  36. This is to Harry Ballsack and Fingel and to many other ignorants that we have in this world. The point of making a pool like that it is becaus you don’t want to get killed by the huge waves crashing on the shore or sucked by the strong current.
    To Harry, I am pretty sure that the people in your country need more baths because I live in yur country and your people don’t take showers or use any kind of deodorant besides that I have never encountered so many diceases and STD like in your country, so before making a comment like that, you should look in the mirror first but wait, you’ll brake it with your reflection.
    How many unnecessary things have been done in your country, wasting money instead of putting it for a better use, think about it, or maybe not, you have a little brain, better not. A chilean spoke

  37. i agree with carlcosta, the people who doesn’t have any idea that how is chile, shouldn’t do a bad comment, u have to live there to know how is a country, i’m chilean but i’m living in australia now, and i don’t see any difference betwen those 2 countries, they are both good, so u can fuck u all up the guys who made a bad comment about chile and the people who live there, if u are fucking ignorants better stay with your mouth shut!!!!!!!!!, u all think that is bad because is in south america, but is way better than all the countries in there, chao

  38. I’ve seen these pics a number of times now but this pool never ceases to amaze me. I imagine you can get quite the workout just navigating back and forth across its length!

  39. Let's see… we've maintained a pool that was used for the film, The Perfect Storm, on the Warner Bros. set in Burbank, CA. But that was a million gallons which is a drop in this pool. I'd say whoever bid for this project has got major abilities. Very impressive.

  40. Let's see… we've maintained a pool that was used for the film, The Perfect Storm, on the Warner Bros. set in Burbank, CA. But that was a million gallons which is a drop in this pool. I'd say whoever bid for this project has got major abilities. Very impressive.

  41. Who or what will pay the incredible maintenance fee, 4million a year? By the way for those questioning building a pool next to the ocean. Look around the internet, there are thousands of hotels, resorts that do the same. More often than not it is a salt water pool , like this one. Many people when on vacation at these types of hotels prefer the pools for many aesthetic reasons. Degree of cleanliness, as opposed to the ocean with seaweed, fish, broken glass from bottles that cuts your feet. etc. Then there is the fear of the unknown factor, many have ir-rational beliefs that something like a Jaws type creature will bite them. I live 500 yards from the ocean and probably 40% of my neighbors have a pool. Also many people like to control the warmth of their pool, temp control is expensive. I don't believe the main part of this pool is heated. (I could be wrong, it happens once every 7 years) It would be too expensive. I also think the reason there is few people in the pool itself is because up until now it really wasn't advertised. The designation by Guinness should amp up the tourist factor. One other question, how come so much hatred on this site, You guys at war? War is bad. Beer is good. Peace…. EFT4MeDebi