Summer in New York City can be notoriously grueling—the cement holds the heat through the night and denizens get to feeling like they are slow-baking with nary a respite. Bathtubs filled with cold water and ice cubes and day-long movie-theater marathons are formidable weapons, but there’s a more elegant strategy to beating the heat: hotel roof-top pools. Of course, this costs the price of a night’s stay, but checking in and taking a dip gives perfect staycation relief. Here are three in downtown Manhattan (consider booking back-to-back stays!) where you can find a cool, aquatic oasis.

Trump Soho
On the seventh-floor terrace of Trump Soho, service is top-of-the-line at this waterfall-lined plunge pool (ask for a Kindle to use poolside!), and a fresh menu is on offer at Bar D’Eau for 2012, featuring treats such as a Spicy Tuna Tartare with Won Ton Crisps and a Kiwi Krush Caipirinhia.

The James
Just a few blocks from the Trump Soho, the pool at The James is on the 18th floor. Booking the R&R package (available through 9/30/2012) gets you Havaianas, sunscreen, cocktails, and reading materials with your stay.

Thompson LES
What’s cooler that a pool with original artwork on the bottom. Gerard Malanga’s filmstrip Andy Warhol keeps an eye on you as you lap at Thompson LES.

Laura Teusink is the managing editor at Travel + Leisure.