Periodically Free Software people from other countries visit Melbourne on business trips. Usually when someone is sent any distance on a business trip (IE to Australia from anywhere other than NZ) they will stay in a good hotel (4 star or better), this generally means that they have a pool in their hotel. 5 star hotels and the newer serviced apartment hotels tend to have really good pools (1/4 olympic size isn’t uncommon). Hotel pools are very under-utilised, their main purpose AFAIK is to boost the hotel star rating – my experience is that it’s not common to meet other people in a hotel pool.
While food and drinks are often banned in the pool area my observation is that the only rule which matters is “no glass”. So hotel pools are almost ideal for pool parties, you just need to drink from cans or from drinks in plastic bottles that are poured into plastic cups.
If any Free Software person finds themself staying in a hotel in Melbourne Australia with not much to do in the evenings or weekends then one option is to call for a pool party. I’ve asked on a local mailing list and it seems that there is enough interest for a small party, the local mailing lists can be used to arrange a party.
Also one thing to note is that some hotels have outdoor pools, while Australia is generally a warm place the southern parts of Australia (such as Melbourne) get quite cold in winter, an outdoor pool is not going to be fun for the colder half of the year. So getting a hotel with an indoor pool is very important during the April-September period.