It’s pool season—time to shed the winter gear, get on the bathing trunks and pay homage to the warming rays by getting a tan and lolling around. But like everything else in Las Vegas, going to the pool is an experience like none other. At the city’s most popular pools, the experience is more like visiting a hip and sexy nightclub than taking a dip in the local watering hole.
Celebrities can sometimes be spotted at Bare at The Mirage.
In this city of excess, the pool scene has taken the term “lounge” and made it much more than the plain-Jane chaise variety. Rather than having simple lounge chairs around an uninspired body of water, the coolest pool scenes in Vegas are more akin to an all-night party than a lazy afternoon splashing about. If your clients want the basic variety, there are still plenty of those, but these adrenaline-infused pool scenes are where all the action is taking place. These pool areas feature seasonal cocktails, DJs spinning the latest hits and some even had red velvet ropes and long lines of would-be revelers waiting for entry. Others offer topless European-style sunbathing.
Many of these pools require a cover charge, offer bottle service like their nighttime brethren and are cordoned off from the main pool areas. So they’re private, popular and attract the young and attractive who are willing to spend the same as a night on the town, but in the afternoon baking under the sun. And since partying is the name of the game, in many instances admission is strictly for those 21 or older.
Day beds you can really stretch out on at Wet Republic.
Located at the MGM Grand, this ultra pool complex made its grand debut just last month. And in typical Las Vegas style, it’s trying to “out cool” the concepts that arrived before it. This huge 53,000-square-foot complex was created to feature a variety of distinct experiences within a series of intimate spaces. Here you’ll find a contemporary designed atmosphere designed to evoke South Beach ambiance. There are eight separate pools and spas and six waterfalls. There is also a first on the Las Vegas Strip: two saltwater pools. An entertainment stage will feature a series of special events, and music from the custom DJ booth is pumped underwater through a series of special speakers.
Also available are signature cocktails, frozen drinks, premium bottle and pitcher service, upscale cuisine like Lobster Gazpacho Gelée and Toro Tuna Tartar, six VIP bungalows, 10 party cabanas, 18 spacious day beds, more than 80 oversized deluxe chaise lounges, 18 water lounges and more. Wet Republic is open daily from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Local ladies always get in for free while it costs $10 for out-of-town women to enter and $20 for men on weekdays. On weekends, it’s $20 for women and $40 for men. Special events will be priced differently. Call for cabana and VIP bungalow reservations at 702-891-3563. Visit www.mgmgrand.com/wetrepublic for more information.
Located at The Mirage, but hidden away from the resort’s main traffic, Bare is an oasis of cool. Being here is like running with the “in” crowd, and last year it became one of Hollywood’s favored hotspots. Celebs such as Leonardo Dicaprio, Fergie, Quentin Tarantino, Kobe Bryant and Justin Long all partied here, and the 2008 season should be bigger and better.
Daybeds, boat beds and cabanas are available for rental. Bottle service is available for mojitos, Bloody Marys and sangria as well as other more standard drinks. Complimentary VIP services include chilled cucumbers for the eyes, mini fruit-smoothie shots and skewered exotic fruit.
One highlight is a dipping pool featuring a see-through wall, and its temperature ranges from chilly cool to hot-tub hot depending on weather and time of day. New for this year is a removable glass cover for the main pool, creating a dance floor for any event. Expect to see a special series of events being announced shortly. A new menu from California Pizza Kitchen is also available. European style sunbathing is encouraged.
Bare is open daily from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Admission Monday through Thursday is $10 for women, $20 for men; Friday, Saturday and Sunday, $20 for women and $40 for men. Learn more at www.barepool.com or call 702-791-7442, or e-mail [email protected].
Moorea Beach Club
Part of the incredibly cool pool complex at Mandalay Bay Hotel & Casino, this stylish side of the sun scene features an infinity whirlpool, champagne and cocktail-inspired poolside massages. Guests visiting Moorea Beach also get special access to Mandalay Bay Beach, which features a man-made beach and wave pool. People are known to stay at this mega resort simply for the right to spend the day at this terrific amenity. And it’s worth it, too.
Day beds, opium beds and pavilions are available at Moorea Beach for those looking for an upscale experience. They range from $250 to $750 per day. They also offer great views of any concerts taking place as part of the property’s evening summer concert series. Last year, the property opened a $30 million expansion featuring a casino, open-air restaurant and new luxury cabanas dubbed Villas Soleil. Each feature modular seating and day beds, a restroom, wet bar, 50-inch flat-screen TV, MP3 player, safe, ceiling fan, changing area and private deck overlooking the Beach. They’re priced from $750 to $2,000 for the day or can be rented for an evening concert. For booking information, contact Mandalay Bay at 877-632-7800 or visit www.mandalaybay.com.
The craziest of all daylight parties in Las Vegas, Rehab at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino is an all-out bacchanal held every Sunday through the summer. Now in its fifth season, the Hard Rock takes its patented cool and grafts it onto a wet and wild backyard party held in a lush five-acre area behind the hotel. Every Sunday morning about 3,000 people descend on Rehab to continue the party that started the night before.
Forget a peaceful and quiet afternoon by the pool; Rehab is strictly for those looking to let loose. Stay out of the fray with a cabana. Rentals for the afternoon range between $1,000 and $10,000, depending on location and weekend (holidays cost more). They’re dispersed between trees, a babbling brook, waterfalls and sandy beaches. They come with VIP service, and feature plasma TVs, telephones, refrigerators, personal misting systems and more. Or, if your client doesn’t want to dish out the big bucks, they can also just grab a complimentary towel and find a poolside spot.
Rehab takes place every Sunday through September and runs from 11 a.m. to sunset. Admission is $40 for men and $20 for women. Hotel guests are free (up to four guests per room). Call the Rehab hotline at 702-693-5555 for the ultimate hookup, and learn more online at www.rehablv.com.
The day pool at TAO Beach has an Arabian-palace feel.
After a triumphant inaugural season, TAO Beach is back at The Venetian Resort-Hotel-Casino. Open every day, this intimate escape features poolside lounging, handcrafted cocktails and more. The staff will do everything for their guests, from cleaning sunglasses to giving massages (for a fee, of course). Asian-inspired day beds are scattered throughout the 18,000-square-foot refuge, which also includes a 30-foot bar. A casually inspired appetizer and grill menu is available from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily.
TAO Beach’s seven luxury cabanas are the main attraction and feature such amenities as air conditioning, high-definition plasma TVs with Xbox gaming consoles, a DVD library, WiFi service and customized minibars.
TAO Beach is open seven days a week from 10 a.m. until sunset. On Friday and Saturday nights, TAO Beach becomes an extension to TAO Nightclub. Bottle service is the key here for enjoying this open-air nightclub featuring four 14-foot fire columns and high-energy music from resident and international guest DJs. Cover charges vary, so call 702-388-8588 for cabana reservations.
Located center-Strip at Caesars Palace, the 10,000-square-foot Venus is now in its third season. Here, guests will find not only a secluded area to catch some rays, they’ll also get oversized chaise lounges, and air-conditioned bars with flat-screen TVs. On weekends, DJs spin a variety of tunes matching the atmosphere of the day. Also available are frozen towels and Evian face spritzers. Body massages and bottle service are also available for a fee. Try the fabulous lobster sandwiches and ahi tuna poke.
Day beds at Venus range from $200 to $300, and cabanas range from $650 to $1,250. Admission is free for hotel guests except on Saturdays, when it’s $25. Venus is open daily, 9 a.m.-6 p.m. For cabana and outdoor spa reservations, call 702-650-5944.