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Nemo 33 & San Alfonso del Mar

14 Jul

Having been a licensed scuba diver for 13yrs now, I am always fascinated with anything that has to do with water, swimming pools included. This one takes the cake!

Nemo 33 is known as the deepest pool in the world. It is a recreational scuba diving center located near Brussels, Belgium which opened in 2004. Filled with 2,500,000 liters of non-chlorinated, highly filtered spring water maintained at 86°F (30°C), it contains simulated underwater caves at the 10m depth level, several platforms and an astounding 33-meter (108 ft) deep cylindrical pit (deeper than you are allowed to go on a standard SCUBA diving license). Numerous underwater windows allow outside visitors to look into the pools at various depths. The complex was designed by Belgian diving expert John Beernaerts as a multi-purpose diving instruction, recreational, and film production facility. I wish there was something like this here in the US!

Now for the largest swimming pool in the world…

Already drawing the crowds in the South American resort of San Alfonso del Mar in Chile, this artificial lagoon and swimming pool has been acknowledged by the Guinness Book of World Records as the the biggest and longest swimming pool in the world. The pool is 3,324 feet long, holds 66 million gallons of water, covers an area of 8 hectares (19.77 acres) and has a 115-foot deep end. It is even navigable in small boats!

The idea to create this resort came as far back as 1997, when Chilean real estate developer and biochemist Fernando Fischmann, wanted to create a revolutionary resort. The motivating factor to create such an immense pool was the Pacific Ocean itself. The waters of the Pacific Ocean coast of Chile is cold, unclean and dangerous, so Mr. Fischmann wanted to create a place for people to swim and enjoy water sports in a comfortable and safe environment. Rather than creating just another small swimming pool, he wanted something totally extraordinary. The water is pumped in from the Pacific Ocean and treated before being pumped into the pool. The water temperature is kept at 78°F (26°C), which is 48°F warmer than the adjoining sea, allowing it to be used even on cold days.  It took five years to build, cost nearly £1billion and the annual maintenance bill is approximated at £2million.


Photos courtesy of Reuters & Getty Images.

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Posted by on July 14, 2010 in An Inside Peek, Travel

 

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