Tips AU

35+ Perfect pool party ideas

By Elise Hodge

Published: July 9th, 2020

Say goodbye to the cold and get ready for summer with these fabulous pool party ideas!

If parties, BBQs and get-togethers by the pool are on your agenda in the warmer months, then putting in that extra effort with food, decorations and theming will make it one to remember. From tropical and flamingo themed, through to BBQs and fiestas, there are so many creative pool party ideas and I’ve put them all together.

With a bit of planning it means by the time the warmer months come around, you’ll be able to host the best pool party complete with tropical prints, sun-kissed hues and boho-inspired furniture.

Sound like fun? Of course, it does – Let’s go!

Topical pool party ideas

1. Tropical vibes

Take your party to the tropics with an infusion of colour! How cool is this balloon garland? It’s been carefully put together with red, orange, pink and white balloons. And green palm leaves have been weaved through the structure to finish it off. I can’t get enough of the “flamingo lemonade” – it’s such a quirky touch. It’s these special details that will really make your pool party stand out.

Pool party
Source: Karas Party Ideas

This is has been installed on a circle arbour, but there are other ways to create a similar effect, find a balloon decorator near you to explore all the wonderful ways to add an eye-catching balloon installation at your next pool party.

2. Cute drink tray

Here’s another gorgeous touch – a colour-filled drink tray. I wonder what’s in those glasses! It looks like a blend of something fruity – perfect for a hot summer’s day. I also love how this area has a colour scheme (green, yellow/gold and pink). This is something to keep in mind when dreaming up the designs for your next pool party.

Pool party idea
Source: Madison Short

3. Flamingo theme pool party

Flamingos, flamingos and more flamingos. I’m beginning to see a trend – flamingos are a very popular choice for pool parties. And this dining setup has them out in full force with six flamingos dotted around the table – too cute.

tropical party theme
Source: Via Blossom

4. Balloon garland

This tropical party styling is perfect for any summer, birthday, or bachelorette gathering! I love all of the fabulous colours that have been used in this design. To display the balloon garland, use a command hook and twine. Simply loop the twine around the balloon tape and tie a knot. This loop creates an extension for your garland to hang from the command hook – voila!

Pool party
Source: Easy Like Sunday Morning

Make the tropical coastal vibes always part of your backyard with these tropical garden designs.

5. Cute cookies

What’s a party without something sweet? These pretty little flamingo and pineapple biscuits are so much fun! I love how they are presented in a beautiful bamboo-rimmed dish. And take a look at the rest of the table setting with flowers and pops of pink – it’s so much fun!

tropical cookies
Source: Style Me Pretty

Don’t spend your time going from supplier to supplier to pick up everything, after all, you’re meant to enjoy it too – get someone to take care of the cookie delivery and even balloon delivery too.

6. Fun inflatables

We see those cute citrus slice floats before but these ones are a bit more glam. There’s a huge “ring” inflatable, which would be perfect for a poolside engagement party. This is such a creative fun-filled corner.

bachelorette party
Source: Catch My Party

7. Add themed inflatables

Back to the flamingos… yes, more flamingos! How adorable is this setup? It’s the perfect pretty pink design for a girly birthday. I love how the balloons have been creatively wrapped around the bar cart to add texture and life. Plus, the simple addition of blow-up beach balls and a flamingo in the pool really finish off this look.

Pool party
Source: One Stylish Party

Hawaiian pool party

Move over bad shirts…

8. Aloha

The original tropical theme before flamingos became a ‘thing’. This simple sign would make a fun addition to any pool party. It would be perfect for a kid’s party. You could easily DIY something like this by finding some wooden arrows from your local hardware store, painting each one solid colour and then hand painting a name on each one in white.

Pool party
Source: Karas Party Ideas

9. Pineapples and coconuts

Forget serving drinks in glasses (that’s old news…). Have fun at your next summer pool party by putting your drinks inside pineapples and coconuts. These little drink holders are made out of plastic and have holes in them for straws. But if you wanted to get really creative, you could chop up some real pineapples and coconuts and go natural!

Pool party
Source: The Picket Fence Projects

10. Fruit stand

This setup is channelling all of the Hawaiian vibes. I love the adorable little fruit stand! This is something that you could recreate yourself if you put your DIY hat on. You’ll need a little timber table with shelving, straw to hang from the top and extra timber to make a cute sign. Oh and I love the little pineapple drinks – too sweet.

Pool party
Source: Lay Baby Lay

Kids party pool ideas

11. Customised food

After all, if you’re going to the effort of picking a theme, it’s important to carry it the whole way through right? Take a look at these cactus cupcakes, and of course the eye-popping cake.

Source: Lenzo

12. Take a seat…

How sweet is this setup? It’s packed with warm summer colours like yellow, pink and orange. I love the idea of placing a large rattan rug outside and creating a picnic-like party with soft cushions to sit on. This would be perfect for a little girl’s birthday!

boho kids party idea
Source: 100 Layer Cakelet

13. Pools and popsicles

You can’t have a pool party without something to cool you down. Some prefer drinks and others prefer iced popsicles. But if you’ve got the kids around, my guess is that they’ll be pretty happy with any kind of ice block. Who remembers Zooper Doopers? They’re a great affordable choice that’ll keep the kids happy. Simply place them in a colourful bucket full of ice and serve.

Pool party ideas
Source: A Night Owl Blog

14. Mermaid themed

Here’s another cute idea for a kid’s pool party – mermaid drinks! You could create something like this by filling little jars with blue lemonade (use a bit of food dye if you need!), tying string with a starfish print around the edges and inserting gold or silver straws.

mermaid drinks
Source: Pretty My Party

15. Unicorn pool party

We’ve seen flamingo and swan inflatables, but now it’s time for the quirky unicorn! I think this inflatable is just too cute. And I love how the rainbow colour from the unicorn has been carried out throughout the space as a theme. The blow-up balls add so much extra colour and fun to the space!

Pool party
Source: Laura Lily

16. Fruity summer bar cart

Nothing screams summer more than an adorable little bar setup. I love the combination of pastel colours – I wish I had a cute pink bar cart like this. Plus, the addition of the white-and-green umbrella is super practical. You could have someone serving the drinks from behind the “bar” or you could let guests help themselves.

Colourful bar cart for party
Source: Studio DIY

17. Moana themed

Aloha! How adorable is this blow-up sign? I love pink – it’s so much fun. Plus, the combination of the pink and green is what tropical dreams are made of. I also love the blue ombre cake and the blue lemonade in the drink canister. What a cute party setup!

Pool party
Source: Chanel Moving Forward

Cocktail pool party ideas

18. Cocktail station

If you’re creating a more fancy poolside affair, then a drink station is a must. And this one is absolutely gorgeous. I love the sign that lets guests know what kind of drinks they can expect. And the mimosas do look superb! Plus the addition of the stunning soft pink flowers in the vase and along with the table really complete this setup.

Pool party
Source: Inspired by this

If you’ve gone to the effort of putting together bespoke cocktails, it’s worth either making a big patch for regular top-ups that wait staff can manage or maybe take it to that next level by hiring a professional cocktail maker or bartending.

19. Elegant white balloons

This is a simple, effective and stunning decoration hack that’ll wow guests at your next fancy party. I love how the big white balloons are attached to strings and appear to be anchored inside the pool to make it look like they are floating above the water. And the differentiation of heights creates a gorgeous look.

white balloon above pool
Source: Rebecca Arthurs Blog

20. Chic entertaining

If you’re wanting to host a more elegant upscale poolside event, try your hand at making some fancy martinis. Plus, infuse your drinks with edible flowers to make them all the more pretty. Your guests will certainly be wowed by these gorgeous touches.

flower cocktails next to pool
Source: A Fabulous Fete

21. Cocktail bar

Here’s another fun cocktail bar, but this one is super chic and minimal. I love the pops of colour that have been added with the cocktail glasses. And the strategic placement of the pink “cocktail” sign and bucket full of bright coloured straws make this area all the more fun.

Pool party
Source: Laura Lily

22. From the house to the pool

Now, this is an elegant setup that’s probably more suited to an adults-only evening, as you wouldn’t want the kids bumping into this bar cart. I love how everything has been so beautifully placed with a bowl of fresh lemons and limes, drinks galore, and gorgeous martini glasses ready for serving!

Bar cart
Source: Fashionable Hostess

What about some other pool party ideas…

23. Beverly Hills inspired

Take your next pool party to the fancy side with Beverly Hills inspired decor. The key to this theme is to use gold as the main accent colour. You can see that it has been integrated here with a sparkly gold floating pool ring, beach balls, and cute glassware with gold spots.

Pool party
Source: Kelly Go Lightly

24. Mexican fiesta

If tacos and sangria are more your style, throw a Mexican fiesta-style pool party! You’ll want lots of colours – so go all out with yellow, orange, blue, green, pink, and more. And you can even create a Mexican themed bar with margaritas, sangria and beer on tap.

Tiki pool party idea
Source: Catch My Party

25. Boho pool party

Boho is a popular interior design trend and also a regular on the wedding scene now, but you can turn any poolside gathering into a relaxing boho pool party with a low table, plenty of cushions and stringing up some festoon lights.

Source: House Beautiful

26. Palm Springs style

Whisk your guests away to the mountainous landscape of Palm Springs with eclectic prints, pops of pink, and plenty of inflatable pool toys. Just make sure you have an umbrella or two so you can get some shade.

Pool party
Source: Marvelous in the Midwest

27. Epic balloon pool party

There is nothing more fabulous than this scene – a pool overflowing with colourful balloons! This looks like the kind of pool party I’d like to attend. The best thing about this is that it wouldn’t be too hard to put together. The most difficult part would be blowing up all of the balloons, so share the work with a group!

Pool party
Source: Studio DIY

28. Retro pool party

Away from the modern neons, take a step back in time with pastels for a retro pool party look. Getting bespoke signage like this would have taken time and effort to put together, but the finished product is worth it. I love how the beach balls are thrown all over the place… How cute!

Pool party
Source: Inspired by this

29. Simple tables

This pool party setup is proof that table settings don’t have to be complicated. Simply drape your tables in colourful waterproof cloths. I love how blue is the main feature of this design – it’s so soothing and cool.

Pool party
Source: Parties with a Cause

Extra special pool party ideas

30. Spell it out

There are so, so many options when it comes to balloons. So why not make a splash… literally!

Source: Lenzo

31. Swanning around

We’ve seen a few flamingos… but how about a swan swanning around? I love how you can add so much joy to your pool area by simply placing inflatables on the water. And there are so many different types you can find – from animals to fruit to classic lilos. Have a hunt around your local store to find some that you like the best.

Pool party
Source: Domino

32. Photobooth

Who says photobooths only have to be for indoors? If you’re hosting a pool party for your special event, you could hire a photobooth van rather than a party photographer. You could even create a photobooth yourself by hanging a sheet and adding the decorations of your choice. Just remember the props – they’re the best part!

Photo booth
Source: The Perfect Palette

33. A warm welcome

Let your guests know they are in the right place with a creative welcome sign. When designing your sign, choose a theme and stick to it and actually get a professional sign writer to make look fabulous. I love how this one uses shades of green and pink to create a tropical vibe. You can place your beautiful sign on an easel at the entrance to your pool party.

Pool party
Source: Party Doll Manila

34. Iced-cold slushies

Everyone loves a good slushie… and this one is as colourful as they come with sprinkles all over the top and neon straws. What a fun way to cool down and enjoy a sweet treat at the same time.

Pool party
Source: Studio DIY

35. Fruit platter

There’s just something so satisfying about munching on fresh fruit on a warm summer’s day. And what better way to serve fruit to your guests than by filling a stand full of blackberries, raspberries, grapes, oranges, strawberries, and blueberries. They’ll not only taste great but they’ll look pretty too!

Pool party
Source: Happy Family Blog

36. Towel station

If you’re hosting a pool party, someone is bound to forget their towel. So to avoid the problem altogether, supply them! I love this cute towel station idea – it makes things so easy for everyone. Plus, it also means you get to choose towels that fit your colour scheme – it’s a win-win!

Pool party
Source: Parties 365

There you have it, all of the incredible pool party ideas for your next soiree in the garden. My favourite was the colourful balloon-filled pool and I also loved the elegant martini glasses with flowers in them. What about you?

I’d love to hear which idea you’re going to use for your next pool party. Comment and tell me. And if you’ve got any other tips, share them too!


Elise H

I've recently moved into a new home and I've been having so much fun decorating it with pretty wall prints and Scandinavian-inspired furniture. So as well as being a freelance writer, I'm always on the lookout for new design pieces for my home!

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