Las Vegas New Year’s Eve: To Dance

Headliners of all stripes and styles are seizing the moment to take stages all around town, and that includes several major hotel performances. Whether they’re opening a hot new nightclub or just partying with old friends, musicians all over the city want to make it a night to remember.

At the Cosmopolitan, the legendary Stevie Wonder is kicking off 2012 at the Chelsea, while a potential heir to the piano crooner throne John Legend will be onstage at The Pearl at the Palms, followed by an afterparty at Moon. Also on piano, Bruno Mars is playing The Bank at the Bellagio, while Chris Brown’s show at Pure at Caesar’s Palace will be set to the backdrop of the Strip’s fireworks show. And throwback alert: Vanessa Williams will be taking the stage at the Riviera, performing her favorite old R&B hits.

The rockers of Guns N’ Roses are finishing off their farewell tour with a two and a half hour set at The Joint at the Hard Rock Hotel—singer/rapper Drake will kick off 2012 with a performance the following day. If you like your rock a little more alt, Franky Perez is playing a set at Rocks Lounge at the Red Rock Hotel; their other venues are hosting DJ BKNY at Lucky Bar, and Latin dance group Toto Zara at Onyx. Turntables more your speed? Steve Angello (the house DJ and one-third of DJ trio Swedish House Mafia will be spinning all night at XS Nightclub at Encore. And if “Party Rock” is your anthem of the year, LMFAO is coming to Haze at Aria for the midnight show.

In clubland, House of Blues at Mandalay Bay goes punk for the evening, with performances by Old Man Markley and NOFX, while producer and rapper B.o.B. takes over LAX at the Luxor. Poptart Fergie opens up the new outpost of 1OAK at the Mirage, while bandmate is spinning at Surrender at Encore with DJ Ammo. And for one of the biggest tickets of the night, R&B goddess Mary J. Blige opens RPM Nightclub at the Tropicana. Many VIP packages have already sold out, but the hotels are planning on making these concerts a party—even the cheap seats are sure to come along with a good time.

If you haven’t had enough (or, let’s face it, are still up the next day) dance out your hangover at Hyde, the new club opening at the Bellagio at 5pm on Jan. 1 with DJ88 spinning, snacks from Circo, and a special show by DJ Paul Oakenfold.

Las Vegas Heats Up This Spring

Surrender at the Wynn Las Vegas is partnering with Nivea for Men, and the unlikely union between the club and skincare brand kicked off their “Look Like You Give A Damn” campaign earlier this month.

Last Saturday night, Jason Derulo performed at the club as free haircuts via the Nivea For Men pop-up barbershop were given out poolside. The event was festive and the promotion gives a sharper edge to Surrender. Pun intended. Tonight, Holland’s Afrojack plays at Surrender, while Saturday evening Nivea for Men tapped Calvin Harris to play poolside at the club.

But The Wynn isn’t the only game in town. The new Cosmopolitan is bracing for its first summer on the Strip, and was packed last weekend, with the Strokes on one side of the hotel at The Chelsea. Restaurants were jammed, with Jaleo and Blue Ribbon (where the Strokes ate two nights in a row) seemingly the busiest. Next month, the Cosmopolitan will host a few big acts at their Boulevard Pool, including Robyn (performing with Baltimore’s Rye Rye) on April 14th, and a sold-out Mumford & Sons show April15th. And on April 9, Marquee’s Day Club pool will launch.

Not to be outdone, hotels that have been hosting pool parties for years, such as the Hard Rock, are once again bracing for a busy summer—and it all starts next month. Beginning April 17, Rehab at the Hard Rock kicks off what’s sure to be a busy spring, and a press release says the hotel has “revamped the property and pool area to provide guests with superior service, quality and amenities,” whatever that means.

Industry Insiders: Josh Katz, Vibe Creator

Josh Katz is the co-owner and founder of EL Media Group, a premier custom music provider and audio/video installation company. Along with his partner Ernie Lake, Katz works with hospitality and nightlife venues worldwide customizing music programming to create a client-specific atmosphere and soundscape.The transition was close to seamless for Katz, a music business veteran, and EL Media Group is expanding rapidly—almost solely by word of mouth. More on the concept after the jump.

Background: I’ve worked with literally thousands of bands. I did sales and marketing for BMG; I worked at Jive Records and helped launch Britney Spears and Backstreet Boys. I always had a passion for music from my childhood growing up in Roslyn, New York. I was seeing music non-stop. Then I went to college in Ithaca and I promoted shows there all the time.

First concert: It was Asia when I was 10 years old.

On the foundation of EL Media Group: I met my partner Ernie Lake about 13 years ago. When I was working at Jive Records, I was marketing Backstreet Boys and all that teen pop. Ernie was doing remixes at the label. About six or seven years later, we hooked up and started doing new compilation record CDs. At this point, we’ve done over 300 of them. We sell CDs in close to 50,000 hotel rooms: the Hard Rock Las Vegas, The St. Regis, Tao, Hotel Gansevoort and Thompson Hotels.

On the scope of their operations: The CDs are how we started, but that matriculated and came back into everything we did. The people we made CDs for came back to us and said, “How do we get this music to play in our lobby or our restaurant or our rooftop?” A light bulb went on and we started doing programming. I went out and started finding the best DJs everywhere and getting them to work on programming for us. Through word of mouth, it just took off. We defined the company at the same time that the whole meatpacking district was coming about and we started doing music for everyone there. We reached a point in ’06, ’07 when we were turning away business. We were just so busy. One of the biggest things is that I’ve spent a significant amount of time on is scouring the city and Miami and Vegas finding the best DJs—recruiting them to work for us and setting up music for various hotels and restaurants. That lead to the next progression, which was putting in sound systems. The people we were doing music for would call us and say, “Oh listen. My speakers aren’t working or this or that.” Before we knew it, we were outsourcing all of that. It became so much outsourcing that we went and bought an AV company. That’s where we are today. We do a background music service. Some of the biggest clothing chains have called and said, “You know what you’re doing for them? We want it.” They realize the importance of it.

On replacing DJs: [This concept] replaces a DJ. In the past, it’s been Muzak or just shitty music in the background. We’ve been the pioneers of putting great music into retail stores, restaurants, and hotel lobbies and making music a part of the overall experience where its not just background anymore. We call it music styling because it’s part of the overall venue. We try to stay involved in the whole design aspect.

On the process of creating the vibe: Right now, I’m working with a casino in Vegas and it’s all about the overall concept of the venue. When you walk in the door, what are you going to feel? What’s the feeling you want? It comes down to your senses. What’s it going to look like? What’s it going to smell like? What’s it going to sound like? That’s a big part of it. We try to get in on the early stages of the people putting the design together and we try to understand the overall brand and what they’re trying to achieve. Then, we create music playlists to create a mood. We do the music on a streaming system, and it’s different for breakfast, lunch, and dinner time, depending on the needs of that venue. Then, the CDs we create incorporate the music from the lobby and extend it into the room so guests can take it home.

Recent projects: We’re working with Five Napkin Burger, doing a place in Long Island City for them. And Food Park at the new Eventi Hotel. We just did Prime Co. on the Upper West Side, the new Gansevoort on Park Avenue and STK Midtown.

Go-to places: I’ve been really into Provocateur. I always love Nobu 57. I just love the whole vibe and the food in there. I enjoy Avenue. I definitely like Bagatelle. I really like Philippe and The Palm in the Hamptons.

A Free Weekend in Las Vegas Courtesy of AXE, in Pictures

The last time I was suppose to go on a trip on someone else’s dime, I ended up spending the weekend locked in cage. I missed my flight to Jamaica, but avoided getting flattened by a steel light fixture, so it wasn’t all bad. But in the days leading up to this weekend, when I was scheduled to fly to Las Vegas, I made sure to abstain from all the things that make life worth living (like drinking beer on the street). So there was a small sense of triumph when I touched down in Las Vegas for AXE Fixers/March Madness weekend. The men’s grooming company, notorious for their suggestive marketing, is launching the latest addition to their Fixer line, this one called Rise, which somehow translates into a room at the Hard Rock Hotel, to dinner at Le Cirque, and bottle service at Lavo, for me and some other writer types. I won’t bore you with my impressions of Las Vegas, or stories about pompous doormen denying me entry into nightclubs because of my footwear. I will however bore you with some iPhone snaps from a weekend that, sitting back at my desk on a rainy Monday in New York, now feels like a Grey Goose-induced fever dream.

image This is the 160GB iPod they sent us before the trip, loaded with movies and songs about Vegas. I watched The Hangover in its entirety, which must be infuriating for David Lynch.

image A female lion in the MGM Grand, clearly devastated over the bronzing of her husband, seen below.


image The tournament was everywhere. Everyone on the trip had to fill out a bracket with a mystery prize going to the winner. I found out what it was, but am not allowed to say. Hint: It’s an iPad.

image These little guys were the reason were our reason for being there. The blue one is called Shock, or as Axe likes to call it, Halls for your Balls.

image The X-Scream ride on top of the Stratosphere, as seen through the eyes of a skilled manipulator of natural lighting and framing.

image The suburbs.

image The most terrifying haircut I ever did see on a man.

image The line at Lavo. They wouldn’t let me in for wearing black Converse sneakers. An infuriating and outdated policy.

image The Strip as soon from the penthouse.

image The pool at the Hard Rock as seen from the penthouse. Home to the legendary Sunday Rehab parties.

image She totally knew I was taking this picture.

image Apparently bikinis and cowboy boots are the new ‘look.’

image Whatever possessed me to take this photo, it’s something very dark.

image They use these to stab you in the heart.

The Bungalow 8 Blues

imageI got this story secondhand — and like sweaters I get that way, it’s bound to have a few holes in it. It seems that Bungalow 8 was closed for ten days, and excuses like “Amy isn’t around” and “They were taking a break or renovating” were thrown out for their adoring public. A source with some chops told me it was the collapse of parts of the roof that caused the closing. Plexiglas panels came detached, and in a sky-is-falling late night incident, the party came to a stop. Repairs were long overdue, and staff did their best to control the elements with strategically placed buckets and such. Amy is indeed traveling some, but my source revealed that with only about a year and a half left on her lease, Ms. Sacco has decided to ride it out. She has some money put aside from the sale of her West 23rd Street boîte as well as a flow of consulting fees from the Griffin, the Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas, and the “Living by Amy” condo project on John Street. Bungalow 8 London, which according to another source isn’t hitting its marks, is still another revenue stream for the queen of nightlife.

This second source — a Brit with firsthand knowledge — says that though the membership thing is very common for upscale London clubs, in this case it wasn’t as successful as projected. “She should have gone with a strict door policy and doorman New York style; she would have made more money and been cooler.” I don’t like these secondhand, heard-it-through-the-grapevine stories, so I called up Amy Sacco confidant Tiana Reeves for comment. Tiana would neither confirm or deny the validity of the story. She would only volunteer that “Amy is very happy.”

There is little doubt that Bungalow isn’t what it used to be. One of the main reasons is that none of the feeding clubs — i.e., Marquee, Cain, Pink Elephant, Home, Guesthouse, or M2 — are supplying the A-crowds like they used to. In fact, Scores may be the best source for Bungalow 8 clientele. Scores is bringing people in, these people are spending money, and the girls are doing well. My source said that, “The Bungalow New York City is being treated like a stepchild.”

The realities of the woes of 27th Street have indirectly brought the sky down on Amy’s gin joint. A continuous police presence, the distractions of Noah Tepperberg and Jason Strauss with Tao Vegas and their new spot, Avenue (which is in previews), Jon B’s good crowd moving to Greenhouse, Cain’s crowd to GoldBar, and the change over of the “trying to be great Mansion” to the “trying to stay crowded M2” has drained Bungalow of its crowd. As I said, some of this was from semi-reliable sources and should be taken as just that — secondhand smoke. For instance, one of my contacts reached over to my friend’s hair, tasted it, and correctly diagnosed it as Sebastian with a little Paul Mitchell molding wax. With sources like that, how could I go wrong?

Industry Insiders: Andy Hewitt, Music & Menu Magnate

Andy Hewitt combined his talents (and his contacts) to produce two of the hottest restaurants in West Hollywood — Il Sole and Luau. With rock ‘n roll manager Arnold Stiefel (who still manages Rod Stewart), Hewitt transformed Il Sole into an atypical, low-key Hollywood slip-in and provided a reincarnation for Luau — the legendary tiki outpost — with famed chef Makoto Tanaka (Mako, Robata-Ya). Along with his long-term partner Bill Silva, Hewitt has the exclusive contract on contemporary music for the Hollywood Bowl. Since 1991, he’s booked acts from the Rolling Stones to Luciano Pavarotti. Hewitt gave us some tutelage in merging rock ‘n roll with hospitality.

You’re balancing full plate these days. How’d you get here? I couldn’t have been anything else. My childhood friend in Coldwater Canyon was [film producer] Bill Gerber. We met on the school bus, and his father was an agent in the music business. We started going to concerts at young age, so I was touched by the music business early. Billy went to work for David Geffen and introduced me to enough agents to get me going. I was naive enough to think that that there were all kinds of promoters who were well-established and thought I’d be able to book shows in LA, and even Billy told me I’d never be successful in LA. Maybe in Tucson or Fresno. But I didn’t know any better, and I succeeded. Years ago, I met [music promoter] Ian Copeland at my nightclub in Redondo Beach and started buying shows from his agency. I got my start in that side of the business from Ian, his brother Miles, and Gary Kurfirst — who managed the B52s, Talking Heads, the Ramones. I still see Linda, Johnny’s widow, at Il Sole. I went out on my own in 1991, formed a partnership, and sublet the Hollywood Bowl. Peter Morton gave me the contract to book the joint. The Rolling Stones said Peter and I brought rock ‘n roll to Las Vegas. We were the first to bring all ages shows there for punk acts like Nine Inch Nails and Depche Mode, all because Peter allowed it to happen.

Where do you go out? I like Harry’s Bar in Venice because I love how the restaurant keeps with the city. It all ties together somehow. There’s nothing like taking a little boat over from the Cipriani Hotel, or walking next door from the Danieli. When I asked a friend where I should go on my first trip to Italy, he said I had to go to Harry’s Bar for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. In New York, I like Masa. He may be the greatest chef in the world, and I miss him no longer being in LA. In LA, my favorite is Cut because it’s so perfectly simple and delicious, and I’ve always felt comfortable surrounded by Richard Meier’s extraordinary, contemporary décor. And when you watch Wolfgang Puck work the room, there’s nothing like it. He treats those visiting for the first time the same way he treats Mick Jagger. He and chef Lee Hefter have done an amazing job with a rather uncomplicated menu.

Who do you look up to? James Nederlander, my greatest mentor, had great faith in me and allowed me to blossom to whatever I am today. My great, late friend Ian Copeland showed me how you can do a great job in your business. He loved the artists that he represented and the people he worked with, and he made it all work.

What’s going on in your industry these days? We’re all paying that much more attention to our guests having a positive experience and getting great value. If we buy the highest quality of sole for Il Sole we try to do the same with Luau. I think the quality of food in almost every city in this country is at a much higher level than in the past, and you can go to cities that aren’t known for great cuisine and really get a good cappuccino or espresso and a good bowl of pasta. That didn’t happen 10 years ago. You couldn’t find good food or a decent hotel in Malibu 15 years ago. So much has happened since then.

Anything negative? I discovered tiramisu in my early 20s, and now my friend’s four-year-old orders it for dinner.

What is something that people might not know about you? How much I care about what I do on a personal level; my work with George Malouf and his family at The Palms or Peter Morton and the Hard Rock. It’s what I want to do. Getting to book the Hollywood Bowl and putting the Stones and the Police on is an honor.

What are you obsessed with? My favorite sport is Formula One, and my favorite track is Monza. My favorite cars are Ferraris and Porsches. My game is Monopoly. I’m a secret collector of many types of antiques. I live in a Spanish revival home and love to collect post-Impressionist paintings and Tiffany lamps. And yes, I love my garden, but I like to supervise gardening even more.

Any non-industry projects in the works? I don’t talk about philanthropy. I just do it.

What are you doing tonight? I’m going to have a massage and watch the stack of Netflix I’ve been trying to get to for a week and a half. I’ll probably order in from my favorite Indian restaurant, Flavor of India.

Industry Insiders: Carey Hart, the Illustrated Man

Heavily tattooed freestyle motocross racer/entrepreneur Carey Hart is living life large in the desert with a number of operations under his belt. He’s the owner of Hart and Huntington Tattoo Shop, opening the weekend of April 17-19 at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. His first tattoo-shop-within-a-casino venture at the Palms will close, and relocate to the Hard Rock, which houses Hart’s nightclub Wasted Space, the new tattoo joint, and his newest reality TV undertaking, Hart Rock Life. The Vegas native talks about getting into the nightlife industry, tricking his pops into getting inked, and what he has in common with Lance Armstrong.

Tell us about the new shop. The new shop is an evolution of our previous shop. We’re twice as big; we’re evolving in a sense of technology. We’re doing touchscreen monitors. We’re not straying from our previous shop which was based on great customer service, great quality of tattooing, and a very good atmosphere. With all the hype in town these days, we’re trying to stay away from all the gimmicks and stay true to a great tattooing experience. we’ll also be featuring different artists’ print work. We’ll be doing art shows and press conferences for different tattoo and mainstream artists along with high-profile tattoo artists coming to do guest spots. We’ve taken the original concept at the Palms and evolving each aspect of it, in the world of art and tattooing.

Is this still the only tattoo shop in a Vegas casino? We’re still the original. Hart and Huntington Tattoo was the first tattoo shop in a casino, and now we’re just moving to a bigger and better casino.

Are more people getting tattoos now in these hard economic times? There has been a huge spike in tattooing over the last few years because of our TV show, Inked, and Miami Ink and LA Ink. Those three shows have brought so much awareness to tattooing, it’s come out of the back alleys and now it’s mainstream. Over the last five years, we’ve seen a big spike in tattooing. Drastic times often call for drastic measures, and sometimes the answer is to come in and get a big, nice, new tattoo.

What’s going on with your club Wasted Space? The club’s on fire. It’s my first nightclub, and it’s been a lot of fun and a great learning process. Now that I’m bringing Hart and Huntington to the Hard Rock, I’ll have everything under one roof.

What is the most valuable lesson you’ve learned in opening your first nightclub? Don’t underestimate what you’re signing up for. Originally, the idea was my creative concept, and over time, I’ve gotten very involved from day-to-day bookings to booking parties to programming control and helping the staff.

What’s on the schedule for Wasted Space in 2009? We’re gonna have a huge year coming up. Just in the six months that we’ve been open, we’ve had Katy Perry, Pink, and the Eagles of Death Metal. We’ve had a laundry list of celebs come through. We plan on maintaining that same persona in the next year. We have a lot of surprise shows planned and booking a great deal of talent for after parties.

What about on the reality TV front? We’re working on a new concept called Hart Rock Life. The show will be shot on Hard Rock property and will focus on the day to day and ups and downs of a bunch of temperamental people working together. It shows the chaos going on in my life, which heavily revolves around the Hard Rock. We’re greenlit and hope to start by summer. And I’m also a main person in Benji Madden’s TV show.

Who do you look up to? I’ve always looked up to my dad. He was a 22-year-old single parent raising a newborn, and he’s always had a great work ethic and given 100%. He’s provided me with everything that I needed to get to this point in my life.

Does your dad have any tattoos? He has one pretty big, solid chest piece, and I actually got him into tattooing. He was pretty anti-tattoo until I started getting tattooed, and I tricked him into getting his first tattoo.

How did you trick him? I started getting really heavily tattooed at a really young age, and when I was 25, I was buying my first house in Southern California. And my dad was helping me cosign some stuff. So, I call up my dad and I’m like, “This is an emergency. I need you to come sign some papers on this house or else I’m not going to be able to close on this house.” So he jumped in his truck and drove from Las Vegas to California. Well, what he didn’t know was that he was meeting me at my buddy’s tattoo shop to get his first tattoo. So he comes tearing into the parking lot, thinking he’s signing papers on a house, and in the end he was walking into a tattoo shop with me and my buddies. Ever since, he’s been adding to it.

What was mental process you went through before deciding to do Surreal Life 5? I was just coming off a pretty heavy injury that sidelined me for about three years. The opportunity came up, and I talked to my manager about it, and he was like, “Listen, it’s a good opportunity to get your face back in the mainstream.” And I can take a step back and realize that I’m not going to get drunk or break down and cry, and I know that I won’t make a fool of myself on a TV show. So I thought, what’s the harm? Honestly, in the end, I came out pretty squeaky clean. I think it helped me in the mainstream, because typically, people think of motocross racers as these wild, crazy, stunt-men maniacs, and I brought a level-headed aspect to it. It was just two weeks locked in a house with some crazy people.

Where do Vegas locals hang out? My favorite bar is Double Down Saloon. It’s a good ol’ fashion punk rock bar. I don’t really go to clubs. I get a little socially awkward in big, massive, denim-and-silver-shirt nightclubs. My favorite restaurant is a place called Cracked Egg, and it’s heaven on earth to me.

What’s your guiltiest pleasure? I just started getting into road cycling, like Lance Armstrong. My guilty pleasure is that I have like 15 full spandex matching setups. I am full spandex man with shaved legs, and I have one that is fire engine red.

Industry Insiders: Elizabeth Blau, Restaurant Queen

Elizabeth Blau, founder and CEO of Las Vegas restaurant consulting firm Elizabeth Blau & Associates, was recruited by Steve Wynn early in her career and has helped shape the Vegas restaurant landscape. She caught up with BlackBook about having the occasional truffle, getting hooked on Wii, and where the Vegas connoisseurs dwell.

What establishments do you like in Vegas? I love Blush. I love Tryst for more of the big night club, and I love The Bank at the Bellagio. I love Bartolotta at the Wynn, I love Nobu and Cut as well.

What’s your job description? I am a restaurateur. I have four restaurant operations with my business partner, Kerry Simon — one of which is Simon at Palms Place, and another restaurant with my chef husband, Kim Canteenwalla. I’m also a restaurant consultant.

And a judge on Iron Chef, right? Yes and a judge.

How would you describe what you do among all of those pictures? I am very lucky because I have the most amazing job in the world, and I get to travel all over the world and eat. I work with amazing people, and I run concept restaurants, make restaurant partnerships, and do everything involved in restaurant deals.

Who are two industry icons or people that you admire in hospitality? There’s a gentlemen named Shep Gordon, and he is just this amazing guy. He represented lots of musician and he represented the Shaft. He’s the one that got Wolfgang and Emeril involved in the Academy Awards. I also have to say Wolfgang Puck. I just think he’s extraordinary.

What are some positive trends you’ve seen recently in your field? I think we got to an unattainable level of success, and this current economic crisis is bringing all of that back around. We started to have restaurants with $60, $70, $80 entrees, and now it’s coming back to the experience of an evening of dining and entertainment. The hoopla over a $1,000 bottle of wine has waned a bit, and now it’s more about the experience: great service, being treated extraordinarily well, and cooking great food. Food may be simpler and more approachable now — however, I don’t mind indulging in a truffle every now and again.

What’s something that people might not know about you? People may not know that I’m a mom. I have the most adorable four-year-old little boy, and he likes to get into boy things. So we are constantly out hiking and trekking around for animals at the zoo and things like that.

Does he have a love of fine dining? Has he taken that from you? He does. He likes to cook, and he has his own kitchen. He’s traveled so much that there was a time where instead of going to a hotel we rented a condo at a resort, and he said, “Mom, I don’t know if I like this place, there’s no room service.” And I thought, “Surely we’ve been traveling too much.”

What’s on your radar right now? I’m obsessed with the Wii. My parents got the Wii and the Wii Fit for the holidays. It’s exercising mixed with video game competition. Everyone in our house goes on. You’ll find yourself a champion on the Wii, and then you’ll get dethroned. It’s a good way to get some exercise and competition — plus, it’s fun.

What’s on the horizon for 2009? We are working on a new restaurant that opened at the Encore at the Wynn called Society. We just started working with the Kor Group, and they’ve got hotels opening up all over the world.

What’s your guiltiest pleasure? I love junk food candy, like Jujubes. Only the really bad stuff — not the expensive chocolates.

Las Vegas: Top 5 Pool Parties

imageTans, tits, and tequila …

1. “Bare” @ Mirage – Tropical pool complex becomes a Miami-style club. Not enough transformation: How about the glass cover that turns the pool into a dance floor? 2. “Wet Republic” @ MGM Grand – The first pool complex built expressly for partying, with underwater speakers, waterfalls and a built-in ultralounge. 3. Tao Beach (Strip: Central)) – Flatscreen TVs. Celeb DJs. Poolside spa services. Meals delivered from Tao proper. The only reason you’ll get up is to dance.

4. “Ditch Fridays” @ the Palms – Poolside bikini fashion shows, cheap domestic beer and MTV’s DJ Skribble. It’s like spring break, but cooler and with high heels. 5. “Rehab” @ Hard Rock Hotel – Five years after opening, the original Vegas pool party is still drawing LA’s aspiring starlets.