Looking for the largest, weirdest and most elegant hotel pools in Las Vegas? Even when summer is at its hottest (note: the mercury regularly rises above 110 degrees), visitors know they'll find a great spot to cool off in. Not only do the hotel swimming pools in this city have things like lazy rivers and wave machines, but they also have towering Greek statues and shark aquariums. Here's a list of our favorite hotel pools to take a plunge when you want to beat the heat.
Where: Mandalay Bay
The scene: There's nothing quite like this 11-acre, South Seas-themed aquatic playground. In addition to three large pools, a lazy river with a current that runs at 3 mph and 2,700 tons of white sand, it has a three-story, glass-enclosed building with a casino and a "toptional" pool club called Moorea Beach Club.
The "wow" factor: A 1.6-million-gallon wave pool surrounds the elevated Beach Stage. You can enjoy concerts here on hot summer nights while wading in its surf.
Garden of the Gods
Where: Caesars Palace
The scene: This outdoor oasis boasts eight different pools (each one is named after a Greek god) – including Venus Pool Club, where European-style sunbathing is allowed. Scattered among the landscape are beautiful fountains and waterfalls as well as blue-cushioned lounge chairs and daybeds. Plus, there's a snack bar called Snackus Maximus, swim-up blackjack tables and lavish bottle service provide by "goddesses."
The "wow" factor: Towering Greek columns, classical statuary and a giant rotunda all add to the ambiance during the day – and they are stunningly lit at night!
Where: Golden Nugget
The scene: This $30 million outdoor complex has a lovely curved pool with two cascading waterfalls as well as a hot tub, the H2O Bar and several blackjack tables on its main floor. A child-free zone (guests must be at least 16 years old to enter) called The Hideout is located on the second floor with its own two-story infinity pool.
The "wow" factor: There's a 200,000-gallon aquarium filled with several different species of sharks and other colorful creatures from the ocean – and a three-story water slide takes you right through the center of it!
Beach Club Pool
The scene: There's nothing quite like this family-friendly pool area situated at the center of one of the Strip's few remaining historic hotels. The setting is lush because it's adjacent to the Wildlife Habitat, where a collection of feathered friends (like swans, ducks and, of course, flamingos) as well as koi and turtles make their home. The main pool is shaped like a big lagoon, while a maze of water slides winds through rocky caves into smaller terraced pools. There is also a special pool for adults – the GO Pool, which has more of a nightclub-like vibe. Snacks are available from the nearby Beach Club Café.
The "wow" factor: A large swim-in grotto beneath three gushing waterfalls makes for a fun escape from the sun on scorching days.
Where: Paris Las Vegas
The scene: One giant octagon-shaped pool provides lots of room for swimmers on the resort's two-acre rooftop deck. Located on the third floor, you'll delight in views of replicated Paris landmarks as well as of the Fountains of Bellagio and several hotel frontages along the Strip. A secluded area bordered by rose bushes enfolds two big hot tubs.
The "wow" factor: Nothing compares to taking a dip and sunbathing in the shadow of the Eiffel Tower, even if it is only a half-scale replica of the original.
The scene: This sprawling tropical-themed deck has palm trees, several waterfalls and three Jacuzzis that are tucked away amid rock grottos. The four pools – a lagoon-style pool, a fish-shaped pool, a clam-shaped pool and the sand pool (it's surrounded by a real white sand beach and even has a sand bottom) – all have a different vibe. The kids love the sand pool, which is near the entrance. At the back end of the pool deck is The Voo, a party hotspot for the 21 and older crowd.
The "wow" factor: Flair bartenders can be found at VooDoo Beach's two full-service bars: the VooDoo Beach Bar and the Island Cruzan Bar. They mix up specialty cocktails (like the Rio 'Rita on the Rocks) while flipping bottles and twirling tins.
Where: Hard Rock Hotel & Casino
The scene: The word "Beachlife" not only represents a state of mind (i.e., a carefree mentality), but it's also the name of the 200,000-square-foot complex packed with three pool regions at the resort. Paradise Beach is home to a variety of parties including Sunday's rollicking Rehab, which is now in its 10th year. It features tropical scenery, sandy beaches, swim-up blackjack tables and food from the Palapa Bar & Grill. Nirvana is a more serene area located near the HRH Tower that has an expansive pool, a gaming lounge and a complete bar and grill. Breathe is perched above Nirvana and offers a small glass-bottomed pool in a sophisticated environment as well as a breathtaking view of the Strip.
The "wow" factor: Thanks to underwater speakers, rock music is pumped in and can be heard beneath the surfaces of the swimming pools.
Where: The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas
The scene: Situated on the resort's east deck, this is a magnificent multilevel, open-air venue. There is one large pool with shallow areas so lounge chairs can be placed in the water. You can also relax in a huge hot tub, play games like table tennis and foosball in The Yard or grab a drink at one of three full-service bars. Many special events are held at the Boulevard Pool too – including Bubbles & Brunch at the Overlook Grill during the day and film screenings on the marquee or live musical performances on the poolside stage at night.
The "wow" factor: The Boulevard Pool, which is elevated on the third floor, looks out over the heart of the Las Vegas Strip providing panoramic views of the striking curved LED signage at Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino, the replicated landmarks at Paris Las Vegas and numerous hotel façades.
Where: Red Rock Casino, Resort & Spa
The scene: This three-acre aquatic complex is truly lavish. There's one main circular pool called the Sandbar. Eight small wading pools and a couple of hot tubs dot the decks and cabana areas. It also has a café, two bars and poolside gaming. The Backyard is often used to host special events and concerts for up to 3,000 people.
The "wow" factor: There's an exotic sunbathing island at the center of the Sandbar pool with an interactive fountain.
The scene: This two-acre complex houses two grand pools on its ground level. The one situated near the entrance has a peninsula-like piece jutting out where four daybeds have been positioned. The pool in the back features ankle-deep shelves laden with lounge chairs and lilypads, and it's also fronted by opulent two-story bungalows. Cocktails are poured from three incredible bars: the Entry Bar, the Glass Bar and the Waterfall Bar (which, as the name suggests, is nestled behind a 12-foot waterfall).
The "wow" factor: Between the two ground pools, you'll spot a raised platform with a chic glass-bottomed pool and several lounge chairs. It gives guests an exclusive view of the whole scene – which can get rowdy, especially during the weekly Ditch Friday and Ditch Saturday parties.