Right on Queue

No-holds-barred nightlife advice straight from party boss Jesse Waits

You’ve made it past the velvet rope, the club is packed and it’s time to start the night. Now what? Vegas Seven checked in with nightlife czar and co-owner/managing partner of XS and Tryst nightclubs, Jesse Waits, to get his candid take on everything you need to know about navigating a Las Vegas party. We recommend paying heed to his do’s, don’ts and other insights.

First things first: How should guys go about picking up girls in a club setting?

Buying bottles is a good start or buy them a drink. I’m a shy person, so that’s what I would do—not make clever or witty remarks.

Does one have to buy bottles to get the models?

You absolutely have to buy. You’re buying territory. The more money you spend the better the location. Girls like to drink champagne. Cristal attracts the girls.

Who is VIP?

People who are elite: billionaires, the A-list, people spending $50,000-plus a night.

People are still doing that?

Yes, it’s better again. It was down for a bit, but it’s back up.

Have you incited or encouraged a bottle war?

We have had VIP clients come into Tryst before where the two neighboring tables became competitive on who could spend more. UFC announcer Bruce Buffer got involved, pumping up the crowd and adding attention to enhance the battle. It ended with hundreds of bottles being sold and a very successful night for my staff.

How many people say they know you each night?

You’d have to ask my staff, but a lot. I’ve been in the industry for 15 years, everything from promoting on up. I’m the type of person who gives out my business card a lot. I really try to be nice to everyone and like to make people happy whether they are super VIP or a regular person—everybody.

Would simply saying I know Jesse Waits get me in the door?

No. People will tell my staff that they are my cousin or family. They say the craziest things like they grew up with me and then mispronounce my name or don’t know my last name… They have fits. One guy asked me if Jesse was here and tried a scare tactic saying, “I’ll have you fired.”

What should bottle-buyers do if they dislike their assigned table?

Talk to one of our floor hosts; upgrades are always possible although there is some gray area. We want the room to look good so we put tastemakers and VIPs in the “right” sections, but 90 percent of time, you have to think of it like buying real estate. Beachfront property is going to cost a bit more.

How should I go about getting a bartender’s attention?

Politely waiting. When I was a bartender I looked for people who weren’t yelling or screaming and had cash out in-hand. Those who tipped well the first time were the first ones I’d go back to next time. Also, have your order ready.

You’re a house-music guy?

Definitely, for 15 years.

What would you do if your DJ started playing hip-hop?

They know what to play. Tryst is open format/Top 40 and XS is house, but we have A-Trak, Afrojack and Diplo who do produce and play hip-hop.

Can I jump in the XS pool?

We have a night swim on Sundays in summer with beach balls, rafts, toys and water guns. This year we will have beer pong tables. It’s the hottest party in summer and my favorite night.

What about on a normal night?

If [guests] are super intoxicated, for safety we ask them to leave, but if they’re having fun we ask them to get dressed. Can’t blame people for jumping in; it’s very inviting.

What about the 90-foot waterfall lagoon at Tryst?

No, we call them jumpers and have two a weekend. That’s forbidden.