Las Vegas dayclubs have a way of making you lose track of time. You arrive in the morning and rest your head on a daybed and 20 minutes later, the sun is going down.
Blame it on the alcohol if you want, but it’s a combination of many factors: sunshine, scenery and the summer breeze, to name a few.
Now, take that dayclub experience and set it 11 stories above the Strip. You not only forget what day it is, you feel like you’re floating away from the rest of the world.
This is Drai’s Beachclub.
Now in its fifth season, the daytime getaway on the roof of The Cromwell is a paradise of pink and white and remains one of the most accessible spots on the Strip.
When Beachclub is not in full swing—primarily Mondays through Thursdays—hotel and non-hotel guests alike are still welcome to relax and enjoy Drai’s Pool & Café. With more than 70,000 square feet of space, there’s plenty of room to move around. And when you’re not in the water, you should be taking selfies on the edge of the rooftop.
But Beachclub is best experienced on the weekends, at capacity, with 2,499 of your closest friends.
While daybeds surround the pool, a double-decker row of nine bungalows and 15 cabanas line the north side of the roof, directly facing the DJ stage.
The first-level bungalows have a spa you only have to share with the party next to you, which is nice, but the second-level cabanas are where it’s at.
“The bungalows get all the shine because they’re in the middle of the action,” says Director of VIP Operations Phil Loomis. “But the cabanas I like a little bit better, because they have a private bathroom and daybed.”
The second level also grants you exclusive access to the Lily Pad pool overlooking the Strip. So if you prefer, you can ignore the party and just daydream while you stare into the sky.
Executive chef Phillip Soriano is working with a gourmet kitchen behind the scenes at Drai’s, and this year’s focus is on “vegan, vegetarian and health-conscious items,” he says.
Avocado toast, chilled shrimp ceviche and a bevy of smoothies—with names such as “The Vegas Vegan” and “That Bod Is Lit Doe”—are among Chef Soriano’s recommendations.
“With culture nowadays, you have to appeal to so many different tastes,” adds General Manager Suzanne Smith. “We have a lot of gluten-free items. And then appealing to the masses, the usual sandwiches and flatbreads and things like that.”
In the fan-favorites category, Chef Soriano has added Korean fried chicken and matcha green tea–infused waffles dish to the mix. The chicken is battered and marinated in-house, with bourbon maple syrup on the side.
“There’s care and love there,” Soriano explains. “It’s ingredient-driven food; we don’t just open a bag and fry it.”
Beachclub wouldn’t be Beachclub without Champagne, and Drai’s is stocked with the necessities, including a $50,000 6-liter bottle of Ace of Spades Rosé—the most expensive on the menu—that serves 72 people.
In the best Las Vegas tradition, you can order a Champagne spray anytime, and if you’re up for an over-the-top bottle presentation, Drai’s will roll out its golden “Jeep” with a bikini-clad server behind the wheel, ready to pop the cork on your celebration.
When it comes to talent, Drai’s Beachclub and Nightclub are polar opposites, which is rare on the Las Vegas Strip. While most clubs rotate their lineup between day and night (with some on back-to-back duty), Drai’s Nightclub is strictly hip-hop and Beachclub is for dance music and the DJs.
Claude VonStroke, A-Trak, Audien, Kittens, Dada Life, GTA, Troyboi, Major Lazer’s Walshy Fire and Zeds Dead are on this year’s roster.
Talent Buyer (and resident DJ) Dave Fogg says bringing back so many of 2017’s biggest and most popular artists was a goal this season, as was creating more B2B experiences, in which guests get two artists for the price of one.
“I wanted to curate a roster where the artists know each other and they’re friends with each other and they work together on music, or they may be on the same label,” Fogg explains. “We wanted to have that kind of synergy behind the artists and see how that plays in our venue.”
“Our artist roster this year is probably the biggest it’s ever been,” Fogg says.