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This New 360-Degree London Infinity Pool Design Is Baffling Everyone

The design for a new rooftop pool in London is leaving people with the baffling question: how, exactly, do you get out of it?

The 'death-defying', 360-degree infinity pool is 600,000 litres of water sitting atop a 55-storey building. Cast-acrylic sides (rather than glass) allow you to look out at the London skyline, but if you climb over the sides -- as one would normally do to exit a pool -- you'll plummet straight down to the pavement, 200-meters below.

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Design for the Infinity London pool. Photo: Compass.

Of course, this pool hasn't been built yet. Chances are it never will be -- plans were released by pool company Compass, partners and contractors are yet to be confirmed, and the media release contains the helpful phrase: "Infinity London's exact location is yet to be confirmed."

But the architects behind the 'world first' 360-degree infinity pool have put some thought into the functionality of this pool beyond aesthetics.

Swimmers will access the pool via a 'rotating spiral staircase' based on the door of a  submarine, which rises from the pool floor when someone wants to get in or out.

"We faced some quite major technical challenges to this building, the biggest one being how to actually get into the pool," designer and technical director Alex Kemsley said.

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A view of the pool from underneath. Photo: Compass.

“Normally a simple ladder would suffice, but we didn’t want stairs on the outside of the building or in the pool as it would spoil the view -- and obviously you don’t want 600,000 litres of water draining through the building either.

“The solution is based on the door of a submarine, coupled with a rotating spiral staircase which rises from the pool floor when someone wants to get in or out -- the absolute cutting edge of swimming pool and building design and a little bit James Bond to boot!”

A built-in anemometer would monitor wind speed, which would then communicate with a computer-controlled building management system to "ensure the pool stays at the right temperature and water doesn't get blown down to the streets below."

infinity pool

Waste energy from the building's air conditioning system would be used to heat the pool, architects say, and as the pièce de résistance: a full spectrum of lights would give the building the appearance of a "sparkling jewel-topped torch" at night.

Kemsley said the pool is often the afterthought when it comes to their design work, but in this case, they started with the rooftop infinity pool and went from there.

The pool's lack of an obvious entry or exit point led to quite a bit of ridicule on Twitter, and more than a few references to The Sims -- a wildly popular simulation game where players frequently drowned their Sims by taking away the pool's ladders.

10 daily has contacted Compass for comment on just how likely it is this pool will see the light of day -- or the London skyline.

UPDATE: Infinity Pools has confirmed to 10 daily that it is "in advanced talks" with developers and a luxury hotel chain, as well as a chain in Dubai. This infinity pool thing could well be happening.

Contact the author: abrucesmith@networkten.com.au