Wet Republic joins ranks of pool parties

The scene starts moving outside as the summer pool party season heats up over the next few weeks.

The usual suspects -- Bare Pool Lounge, the weekly Rehab party, Tao Beach and the Ditch Fridays shindig at the Palms -- are back in action and lead the charge.

But a fresh face hits local waters and will steal some thunder from the "big four."

Wet Republic joins the party, with its grand opening scheduled for April 25 at the MGM Grand. The venue is a 53,000-square-foot, wide-open facility and features two saltwater pools -- the only of their type in Las Vegas -- at 2,500 and 3,500 square feet.

A 2,500-square-foot, open-air poolside lounge gives visitors a place to mingle and retreat to for some shade during the day. Six VIP bungalows and 10 cabanas also are located at Wet Republic.

"We've taken the best elements of Vegas nightlife and infused them with supreme poolside amenities and services to create Wet Republic, an unrivaled venue that will become the city's must-see, must-experience pool destination," said Anthony Olheiser, director of nightlife for MGM Grand.

Bare hosts its grand opening Sunday at The Mirage, featuring a special set from DJ Donald Glaude. Rehab, arguably the most popular pool party in Vegas, which draws thousands of guests, makes its return April 27 at the Hard Rock Hotel.

Ditch Fridays at the Palms comes back a week later, with a May 2 grand opening planned. Tao Beach had its celebrity-filled opening last Saturday at The Venetian.

Electra to host birthday at Pure -- Carmen Electra celebrates her 36th birthday Saturday at Pure inside Caesars Palace.

Electra will be joined by DJ AM. Doors open at 10 p.m. at Pure. For more information, log on at www.purelv.com.

Miss LAX crowned -- Congratulations goes out to model Lisa Angeline, who walked away with the title of Miss LAX and a check for $50,000 on April 9 during the finals of the competition at LAX nightclub inside the Luxor.

The Albuquerque, N.M., model, who has won a modeling event at The Bank at Bellagio and was named Miss Rio last year, now splits her time between Las Vegas and Los Angeles.

Angeline told me she now has her eyes set on the $25,000 Syrup Swimwear bikini calendar search taking place every Friday at the Hawaiian Tropic Zone inside the Miracle Mile Shops at Planet Hollywood.

Sightings of the weekend -- Playboy Playmate Athena Lundberg hosted her 22nd birthday party Saturday at the Hawaiian Tropic Zone.

Actress Bai Ling dropped by Tryst (Wynn) on Saturday.

Eddie Murphy and Arsenio Hall were spotted at Jet (Mirage) and Tryst on Saturday and Tao (Venetian) on April 11.

Rockers Jon Bon Jovi and Richie Sambora visited Body English (Hard Rock Hotel) on Saturday.

At the season opening pool party at Tao Beach on Saturday: actors Chace Crawford, Wilmer Valderrama and Chris Evans, Joey Fatone, "Project Runway" winner Christian Siriano, Khloe Kardashian, Kourtney Kardashian, Robert Kardashian, NFL player Shawne Merriman and MSNBC host Dan Abrams.

Jeremy Pond covers the nightclub scene for the Las Vegas Review-Journal and Vegas Confidential. His column appears Fridays in Neon and online at www.lvrj.com and www.normclarke.com. He can be reached at 383-0298 or via e-mail at jpond@reviewjournal.com.