Pool parties in LA: The best poolside soirees

Go off the deep end at one of Time Out's picks for the best pool parties in LA.

A Club Called Rhonda
Los Angeles provides a pretty much endless summer, but when the actual season rolls around, you'll find the best of LA's nightlife at the pool. The season officially kicks off with a splash of pool parties thrown at shindig-friendly hotels around town. If you’re looking to lounge (or dance) by the pool, music in ear and cocktail in hand, be prepared to arrive early or grab a hotel room the night before, as most parties cap out at 500 people. Of course, the fastest way to a coveted cabana or table space is via bottle service packages, which can run hundreds of dollars, but you'll buy the best seat in the house. Regardless of how you get in, here are some of the best summer pool parties in LA.

Bask

The party people behind Harmonic return to The Standard with Bask, a tech and house-heavy party for and by a music and nightlife industry crowd. Though it attracts international artists with major chops as well as serious technophiles, you won’t find a cluster of chin-stroking non-dancers intellectually internalizing the tracks. Instead, artists (past performers include Shonky, Safeword, Jake Patrick, Slam, Delinquent Frequency and [a]ppendics.shuffle) will mix heavy-hitting beats sure to bounce afternoon sun-seekers from the oversized waterbeds to the dancefloor. Make sure to RSVP.

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The Rooftop at the Standard

The Midweek Hookup

Strip down for a night swim at the Midweek Hookup. The W in Westwood hosts this free pool party every Wednesday night in June; though the Hookup alludes to the hotel's poolside Airstream bar, we're sure this hump day party will earn its name. Come out for drink specials, live music by DJ Junkyard, Ping-Pong, giant board games and a Popsicle toast at 6pm.

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W Hotel Los Angeles Free

Afternoon Delight LA

When it's right, it's right: Afternoon Delight takes over the rooftop pool at the Standard Sundays throughout the summer. Each month, this Miami export ships in a different lineup of DJs for a feel good afternoon overlooking DTLA. Come for the sunshine, stay for the free popsicles. The guest list fills up fast, so make sure to RSVP—you'll have to pay a cover at the door, as well.

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The Rooftop at the Standard

WET Sundays

Take yours Sundays with a side of craft cocktails this summer at the W's Westwood location. Local DJs will spin alongside the hotel's vintage, mobile Airstream bar at WET Sundays. Stop by any Sunday between Memorial Day and Labor Day, as well as on the aforementioned holidays and July 4th; make sure to get on the guest list first, especially if you're planning on shelling out for a private cabana.

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W Hotel Los Angeles Free

Friends with Benefits pool party

It's pool party season and the Loews Hollywood Hotel is taking full advantage of it by hosting a soiree every Saturday called Friends with Benefits—and don't worry, we're not talking about those kind of benefits. Throw on a swimsuit and head up to the pool deck for the ultimate pre-night-out event with complimentary—yes, that does mean free!—food, drinks and pampering. We suggest starting at Wolfgang Puck's "Build-Your-Own Sangria Bar" along with a liquor-infused ice cream bar, a sure-fire way to build up a buzz and enough confidence to let loose on the dance floor. If that doesn't sound fun yet, maybe you're looking to relax with a massage or spruce up with a manicure; ask either Cure Salon & Spa, Nivea Skin Care or Massage Therapy LA (the companies rotate each Saturday) to help you unwind. Now for the shopping: FWB will have the latest wares from the likes of Ivory Mason Sunglasses, Jeanne Verger Jewelry, Natalie Zena Swimwear and plenty more locals to help dress you up.

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Loews Hollywood Hotel Free

Playa Escondida

Chill out poolside with pitchers of margaritas and a selection of a half-dozen tacos at this weekend pool party. Skybar at the Mondrian hosts a lineup of DJs every Saturday and Sunday—past headliners include Tensnake, Plastic Plates, Penguin Prison, St. Lucia, Jessie Andrews and Zimmer. Plus, we've heard rumors of free rounds of shots and topless tanning. Admission is free, just RSVP at SkybarLA@mhgc.com.

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SkyBar Free

Sixty Swim Club

Sixty Beverly Hills injects more of a party vibe into its rooftop retreat with the introduction of Sixty Swim Club. Every Sunday afternoon in the summer, DJ sets and fun-seeking sunbathers will take over the hotel's chic cabanas. Expect views of the Century City skyline a taste of a new poolside menu featuring liquor-infused gummy bears and mojito and margarita popsicles.

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Sixty Beverly Hills

NightSwim

Daft Punk. Thom Yorke. Questlove. With DJs like this, it’s no wonder NightSwim has become one of LA’s longest running and most loved pool parties. But it’s not just heavy-hitting musicians that surprise crowds with everything from hip hop to indie tracks—celebs who fall in the "who-knew-they-even-DJed" category, like Elijah Wood, spontaneously rock partygoers as well. Add oversized canoes, colossal bubbles and a seven-foot dragon pool toy, the energy of resident DJ Chris Holmes (who is also touring with Sir Paul McCartney this summer), and hipster-friendly attendees ready for their close-ups, and you’ve got yourself one smoking party. The best part? The crowd isn’t just about posturing. When things get too hot on the dance floor, partiers dive into the landmark pool (and swim in style—amid a gazillion-dollar David Hockney painting, no less) until 2 a.m.

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Tropicana Bar

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