Category Archives: pool reviews

Swimming Pool Review: Badanstalt (Luxembourg)

One of the swimming pools filed under “closed” for quite a bit of the summer was the city centre Badanstalt. It re-opened on 1 August apparently and I dropped in to have a look today. It’s ten minutes from where I live and the paperwork says it’s 25 m but reviews suggest not great for swim training.

The Badanstalt is a beautiful classical building ended by a lovely windowed hemisphere. From the outside it is gorgeous. Inside is a pool which yes, is about 25m long. It has 2 whirlpools, a couple of bubble beds and some water jets. I don’t know exactly all the facilities it has because I did not really have time to test them all.

What I do know, however, is that the Badanstalt really isn’t a swimming pool you can do much swim training in. It just doesn’t have a clearly defined lap you can follow – I swam some lengths but I can’t really say for certain whether they were 20 or 25 metres and anyway, it seems to me there is some sort of a current in the pool. I could do the lengths in 36s on one direction (suggests 25m) and 23 s in the other decision (suggests about 20 m). As my personal best for 25m at the moment is a paltry 33s, I’m doubting that I could do it in 23 unless a) it isn’t 25m and b) there was some support in the water as it were.

So I’m not really going to review this as a swimming pool – but I will say this – it would be a great place to go after you’ve been training. The water is a degree or two warmer than Bonnevoie but cooler than the leisure pools in Syrdall. The jacuzzis are very comfortable, and I liked the bubble beds as well. There are vertical jets at one end of the pool which may be eternal swimming pools except I was too strong a swimmer for that to work for me.

It is in a beautiful building, with a high ceiling and room to sit around the edges.  It is the kind of place I would love to go on a Sunday evening for an hour or two before the week starts again. I used to do this in Dublin – go to the water relaxation centre in ALSAA for a while to cap off the weekend and it’s a nice idea. The main problem with doing it in the Badanstalt is that it closes at 12. And they throw you out of the pool at 11.30. So I think it might work as a post work relation place – the pool is usually open till about during the week except Monday’s when the place is closed.

I’d be happy enough to go there again but more in line with going there after I went running (or something) rather than to go swimming. Full marks for relaxation, less so for pounding out the lengths.

 

Pool Review: Syrdall Schwemm

One of the more useful things about swim.com when I signed up for it is that it highlighted all those places where people swam around me and one of the ones it highlighted was Syrdall Schwemm which did not look like it was all that far away. So I resolved to give it a go and that go was today. It is in Senningen, about 12km from Luxembourg Ville.

Syrdall is more a water complex than just a swimming pool. It has a 25m pool, a relaxation pool, a paddling pool and an outdoor pool. The outdoor and relaxation pools are heated to 32 degrees; the 25m sports pool I thought was heated to 28 degrees but it felt colder than that today.  In addition it has a landing pool for what looks like a decent enough slide. I didn’t test that.

By public transport, you can get to it using the 125, 128 and 140 buses. I think there are a couple more but those are by some distance and counting the most regular, the 125 in particular. I think it is outside the Luxembourg Ville area though, so this means that if you use a CityKaart bus ticket, you’re not covered for it (it is for occasions like this that I have an MKarte as well).

Entrance wise, it charges according to time. I paid for 4 hours access which was more than enough. This puts it into the zone of “pricier than usual”, on the other hand, up front, I’m going to say this is the nicest of the three pool complexes I have been in in Luxembourg and if getting home from it after about 7pm wasn’t such a hassle, I’d probably make the financial sacrifices to swim there more regularly.  Unfortunately there are practical reasons why this isn’t going to work for me at the moment.

The pool building is pretty much glass on 2 sides which makes it a very bright place during the day (I tend to like this which is why I didn’t really like the Ben Dunne pool in Santry and loved DCU pool). The sports pool was relatively quiet which made it a joy to swim in.

The 25m pool is 1.35-2m deep which makes it quite a lot shallower than the pool in Bonnevoie, but slightly deeper than the public 25m pool in dCoque. It is split in two sections, one of which I assume is for the strong swimmers, but to be fair, anyone in the other section was generally swimming lengths. It wasn’t busy either which made a nice change from Bonnevoie which occasionally feels like it needs traffic lights. For a lot of the time I was in it, I had it more or less to myself, with that beautiful feeling of seeing flat calm water before me, a joy to most swimmers.  I thoroughly enjoyed that swim and that on its own makes the pool a good one in my book.

It is possible that the sports pool is quiet purely because the other two pools exist; both warm, both with whirlpool beds. They are both relatively big as well  – not as big as the sports pool but big enough to be take all the people in them. The outdoor pool looks up on to a sweeping hill with a forest. Occasionally, planes taking off from Findel fly over or near by. It was sunny today when I checked it out. I found it idyllic. It also is not very heavily chlorinated for a warm warm pool.

In practical terms, the complex also has a sauna section – I haven’t tried this.

The dressing room are basically a corridor of changing cubicles. They are not divided by sex – the split happens for the shower and toilets. As seems to be common (so far) in Luxembourg pools the lockers are tall narrow boxes and they are unlocked and locked using the smart bracelet you get on entry which I think is fairly practical.

There are analogue clocks littered around the place so you generally know or can find out what time it is. There is also a poolside cafe which is a nice touch imo – not sure how often it is open but it was open today. Showers wise, there are only 8 showers in the womens section. There also is little to no drying off space in the showers area and the entry and exit can get a bit clogged particularly if small children are involved.

There is plenty of space to sit around the pool – quite a few loungers and some benches, both outdoors and indoors. There is a play area as well.

All in all, I liked this pool and my main regret is that it is hard to get home from in the evenings after around 7 – the bus frequency drops right off. Otherwise it would be my number 1 pool, at least while dCoque is closed.

website

Address: 3, Routscheed – L-6939 Niederanven

Pool review: Bonnevoie, Luxembourg

I’m currently without a real home pool at the moment which makes the building of a swimming habit somewhat difficult. My would be home, dCoque, which is Luxembourg’s National Sports Centre, is currently closed for renovations until 1 October which is a nice chunk of the year. I’ll be honest and say I have not really managed to get a swim habit. No swimming till October is  pushing it a bit though. The next replacement, which I haven’t managed to check out yet, Badanstalt, about a 10 minute walk from home, is also closed. The pool 5 minutes from home isn’t open to the public. And so on and so forth

Next on the list is Bonnevoie. Bonnevoie is not too far from the railway station in Luxembourg, and public transport wise it is served by buses 3/30. You need to get off at Leon XIII. It is open every day except Wednesdays, and weekdays, it tends to close at 20.30. On Sunday it is open from 8.00 to 12.00.

There are two pools in the swimming centre in Bonnevoie; what they call the large pool, and the small pool. The large pool is 25m long, and ranges in depth from 1.8m to 3.8m at the deep end. There is a shelf at around 1.5m around the edge under water. The steps are set into the pool wall. Temperature wise it is reasonable – it is cool enough to swim comfortably in, but not so cold that you fight against going into it. When I was there, 2 lanes were separated off for lane swimming. The rest of the pool was occupied by people swimming lengths anyway so basically the choice was yours.

The small pool is about 10 by 10 meters, and at its deepest is 1.25m. One side consists of steps rather than some ladders, and at one end, there is a barrier to hold onto when getting into the pool. There is a small slide as well. I understand the pool is also used for things like aquaerobics. Temperature wise it is around the same as the big pool.

Entry to the pool without discounts for an adult is currently 3.80E and the ticket is in the form of a chipped band which I wore on my wrist and which also serves as a key for the lockers. In my view, there are not a lot of dressing rooms, but they work okay. The lockers are tall and narrow, and while you did not have to fumble for a euro or a coin of some description to lock them. I did not like them. I struggled to get my clothes bag into them and eventually pulled stuff out. My personal preference would have been for wider but shorter lockers and they could have increased the number of lockers available had they done this.

From a layout point of view, the lockers are a distance from the showers which means that really, it’s wise to have a bag to carry towels and shampoo or whatever you want in the showers afterwards. I tend not to like this because it’s just another thing to remember. That being said, one item of design in Bonnevoie recognises the needs for that, and as a result, there are shelves poolside to store stuff, like small swimming bags with towels for example. I liked that touch because typically, in other places, to find somewhere to leave a bottle of water and flipflops or on other occasions, everything can be a hassle.

The other thing which the pool in Bonnevoie has which is not a common feature in pools in my experience is a fine big readable digital clock. This makes it handy to plan around bus services and dates and the like.

Given that currently, dCoque and Badanstalt are closed, it is likely that I will default to Bonnevoie as the alternatives are a) rarely open (Bel Air) or b) expensive (Les Thermes). I’d be happier if it were open for 30 minutes longer during the week and maybe a few hours more on Sunday but then the world does not revolve around me.

Bonnevoie Swimming pool
30 rue Sigismond

Bus 3/30, Place Leon XIII

Monday: 08.00-20.30
Tuesday: 06.45-20.30
Wednesday: CLOSED – although apparently open 8-17.30 while Badanstalt is closed until 1 September – I cannot check this myself.
Thursday: 06.45-20.30
Friday: 08.00-20.30
Saturday: 08.00-20.30
Sunday: 08.00-12.00

Cost of a swim: €3.40

Website: Ville de Luxembourg

Treasa’s Map of Pools