One of the highlights of the TWA Hotel at JFK Airport, which opened to much fanfare in May of this year, is the rooftop Pool Bar that overlooks Runway 4 Left/22 Right, one of the longest runways at the airport. It’s a real testament to the long-standing design appeal of Eero Saarinen’s original TWA Terminal that a runway view has become one of the city’s hot spots, so popular that access is now reservation only. The Pool Bar wasn’t quite ready when we stayed at the hotel opening day in May, so we headed back last week when it hit close to 90 degrees to check it out.
The 63×20 foot pool, with the TWA logo in red and gold mosaic, is inspired by the infinity pool at the Hotel du Cap-Eden-Roc in Cap d’Antibes, France. You enter like at beach and step down to a height of about three feet max — this pool is made for lounging, not laps. To that end, the pool is warm, even in the heat of summer and operates all year round. It can be heated up to 100 degrees for a “poolcuzzi” in winter. There’s a bench that runs the length of the pool underwater at the edge closest to the runway, so you can sit with your drink and take in the view. You’ll be provided with TWA branded red and white striped towels and a clear pool tote (because it’s an airport, your bag will be checked in by security but you can take the items you need from it). Get there early if you want to get a lounge chair.
Runway 4 Left/22 Right is one of the airport’s longest runway, at 12,079 feet long and the pool also has a view of the Bay Runway, the second longest commercial runway in all of North America and a backup landing strip for the NASA space shuttles.
You can get to the TWA Hotel the traditional ways, by taxi or by subway and AirTrain, but you can also ride in style by helicopter with a new promotion from BLADE on Sundays that’s running through November 5th. For $390 (or $290 for BLADE GX members), you get a roundtrip helicopter ride from West 34th Street to the helipad at JFK Airport, a short ground transportation ride, then complimentary brunch and pool access. A a normal one way BLADE ride to JFK is $195 each way just for reference.
The Strawberry Collins with Aviation Gin, Strawberry, Fresh Lemon Juice & Club Soda
Operated by The Gerber Group, the Pool Bar has a robust cocktail menu with classic cocktails like the Old Fashioned and a Manhattan, and more modern house cocktails with names like “Come Fly With Me” (Grey Goose Vodka, St-Germain Elderflower Liqueur, Fresh Lime Juice & Prosecco) and “Jet Fuel” (Ketel One Botanicals, St. Germain, Muddled Blackberry & Fresh Lime Juice Topped with Prosecco). The food menu includes fish tacos with avocado, pickled red onion and cabbage, salt and pepper fries served with aioli, smashed avocado, meatball parmesan sliders, a burger, and paninis.
The avocado smash
The fruit plate
Next, check out 10 Fun Facts about the TWA Hotel.