Asser Levy Recreation Center

Lower East-side swim with unexpected shower scene!

Slowly getting through the indoor Manhatten pool list! It’s a cold February morning, and there is still some snow from last night.

Once known as The Asser Levy Public Baths, the pool at the now-named Asser Levy Recreation Center is a quite unusual 22-yard pool, which at approx. 20.1 metres just about qualifies for the list. The center also features an outdoor pool, but as it’s February in New York, that is closed for the season.

At over 100 years old, this is definitely the oldest pool on the list to date! Opened in 1906 and designed by Arnold W. Brunner and Martin Aiken of the firm Brunner & Aiken, the pool was restored by the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation in 1988-90, was designated a New York City landmark in 1974, and was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1980.

This building is original, inside and out. It’s fantastic that it’s still in use and retains most of its original features.

The pool is small in length, width and depth! And has a Roman bath style, complete with a marble fountain at one end. The pool deck is in a huge room with a vaulted ceiling, steel arches, and original brick and tile finishes.

This is not your typical lap swim spot, but I still had to give it a decent swim. There is something to appreciate about these older pools and the people who are working to maintain them - and fighting to keep them open.

Complete my swim and head straight to the changing rooms as I’m greeted by an old guy vigorously pleasuring himself in the showers; at least he saved it for the showers - only in New York!

I do need to seek out these historic pools for this list; they are interesting on another level, offer so much more than the typical modern community pool - and you never know how long they will hold water! Swim before they’re gone!

Swim Stats

  • Length: 2540 yards total swim
  • 1:28 pace / 100y
  • Garmin Swim Watch



Beutiful building with original features and 100 years of history!

Pool Details

  • Length: 22 yards
  • 3-lane pool
  • Indoor

Asser Levy Recreation Center
392 Asser Levy Pl, New York, NY 10010, United States

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