Wet and WildJune 29, 2009 By: Glenn Haussman Travel Agent
Never mind nightlife— the Las Vegas pool scene offers a club atmosphere under sunny skies
Wet Republic at MGM Grand is home to the city’s first saltwater pools
When nightlife impresarios began tinkering with the daytime Las Vegas pool experience, they stumbled on a success formula that got guests going gaga. While traditional pools are still aplenty up and down the Las Vegas Strip, the new concepts offer an option for vacationers looking for something different.
Though many of these concepts focus heavily on twentysomethings looking for a good time, recent additions highlight luxury over licentiousness. The new Azure at Palazzo, for example, focuses on a relaxed, restrained experience. Also, some pools such as Bare at The Mirage allow European-style sunbathing, so it’s critical to find out if your client is comfortable with public nudity.
The wilder pool parties such as Ditch Fridays at Palms feature an almost hedonistic vibe. Here, DJs spin the latest hits and liquor flows freely. Be aware that these places are strictly for the above-21 crowd and most have a cover charge that’s more costly for men than women.
Here are some of the highlights of the summer pool scene:
Palms Pool & Bungalows
Now in its third year, Ditch Fridays at Palms is a raucous revelry held every week from noon to 7 p.m. Admission for men is $25, and for ladies it’s free.
Here, guests will find a three-acre adult playground replete with a climate-controlled gaming area, four bars and two waterfalls. Each week features a different live concert or well-known DJ. The pool also features 27 amenity-packed VIP cabanas and three two-story bungalows. All cabanas have a built-in ice chest, state-of the-art sound system, 32-inch plasma TV, house phone, lighted fan, refrigerator and designer lounge furniture. Each of the two-story bungalows is situated on multiple elevations and features two outdoor decks with a Jacuzzi. Each bungalow also has its own private bar, 42-inch plasma TV, DVD player, stereo and LED lighting in the bathrooms. The upper story features king beds with direct views of the poolside stage.
While the pool is open every day, the biggest, most well-attended parties are on Fridays. Palms Pool & Bungalows is open Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Friday through Sunday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. For details, visit www.n9negroup.com, or call 702-938-9999.
Taking a more upscale, low-key approach is the luxurious Azure at The Palazzo Las Vegas. Sophisticated but not haughty, this pool offers a posh experience that includes champagne, frozen grapes, ice towels, poolside cabana massages and water misting.
Guests lounge in an atmosphere marked by a modern decor on daybeds or in cabanas. Visitors can dine on culinary offerings such as smoked salmon pizza with black caviar or Maine lobster salad created by Chef Wolfgang Puck.
Absolut Vodka Saturdays feature exclusive daytime pool events with models, celebrity guests, acoustic performances, live DJs and signature cocktails such as the Spiked Bellini.
Azure is open from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., Friday through Sunday. Visit www.azurelasvegas.com or call 702-607-1218 for details.
After a successful inaugural season, Wet Republic is back at MGM Grand. Home to the city’s first-ever saltwater pools, this high-energy experience has a slew of amenities. The 53,000-square-foot pool venue features two saltwater pools, six cascading waterfalls and several ultra lounges, including a covered one to escape the heat.
Bungalows and cabanas are available for rent, including some with private dipping pools. They’re also stocked with the latest in gadgetry such as flat-screen TVs, Nintendo Wii systems, Blu-ray discs, iPod docking stations and more.
Guests may reserve one of Wet Republic’s spacious daybeds or oversized deluxe chaise lounges placed around the pool. Wet Republic is open daily from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Cover and rental charges vary; local ladies receive complimentary entry. For reservations call 702-891-3715, and for details call 702-891-3563, or visit www.wetrepublic.com.
Hidden behind The Mirage is Bare, one of the first entrants to the high-end pool concept. The 14,000-square-foot venue features daybeds, boat beds and cabanas for rent. Bottle service is offered as well as cocktails, including mojitos, Bloody Marys, sangria and others.
A highlight of this venue is a dipping pool—featuring a see-through wall—whose temperature keeps changing depending on the weather and time of day.
Bare is open daily from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. It charges $10 for women and $20 for men Monday through Thursday and $30 on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Agents can learn more at www.barepool.com, or by calling 702-791-7442 or e-mailing barepool [email protected].
Azure at The Palazzo focuses on a relaxed, restrained experience