I love Las Vegas!

| July 31, 2011 | 0 Comments
lasvegas5 I love Las Vegas!

Photo by Moyan Brenn.

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Think of Las Vegas and you probably think of gambling, quickie weddings in quirky chapels, Elvis impersonators and lavish shows, complete with showgirls in extraordinary headdresses. It’s a hedonist’s paradise—all about having fun and not taking itself too seriously. And, personally I love it! Here’s why:

1. It’s like one big filmset

Las Vegas is ridiculously over the top. Everything is on such a grand scale that you can’t help but be enchanted by it all. Along the Strip you’ll recognize many of the hotels from films and TV programmes—Caesars Palace—where The Hangover was set, The Bellagio, Mirage and MGM Grand—scene of the heist in Ocean’s Eleven, the Strip itself from many aerial views in CSI—and the list goes on.

lasvegas1 I love Las Vegas!

Photo by Moyan Brenn.

Every hotel seems to compete with the others to be the most extravagant or outlandish. In the foyer of the MGM Grand, real live lions laze, thankfully in a contained viewing area; a volcano erupts, every hour, on the hour at The Mirage. Flamingos add a touch of elegance to the aptly named Flamingo which oozes Forties charm, while you can ride a gondola around the canals at the Venetian.

2. You don’t have to gamble to have fun

You don’t have to spend all day putting your chips down either. There is a surprising number of things to do in Vegas aside from gambling. Head to Fremont Street for the Neon Museum which showcases some of the fabulous signs of yesteryear. Or catch a glimpse of an extravagant superstar’s lifestyle at the Liberace Museum including many of his costumes and jewellery.

lasvegas2 I love Las Vegas!

Photo by Moyan Brenn.

Many of the hotels also have huge art collections which you can stroll around. Check out the art trail at the CityCenter complex which includes sculptures by Henry Moore and Claes Oldenburg. Or visit the Gallery of Fine Art at the Bellagio. It’s currently hosting an exhibition of landscapes by artists including Monet and Hockney.

3. The food is fantastic

There’s food and drink to suit everyone’s palate and budget available night and day in Las Vegas. Many of the hotel complexes don’t want you to leave, so they provide everything under one roof – from chain coffee shops and burger bars to full-on gourmet restaurants. The casinos offer great value all-you-can-eat style buffets which are definitely worth a visit, but my favourite restaurant is the Golden Steer Steakhouse on Sahara Avenue—not only for the perfect food, but also because it was a haunt of the original Rat Pack and the waiters will point out the booths favoured by Frank Sinatra as well as the one where Elvis used to sit too.

lasvegas4 I love Las Vegas!

Photo by Moyan Brenn.

Another experience not to be missed is the Sunday champagne brunch at Bellagio’s Jasmine Restaurant. With a mix of Asian and Western dishes, you’ll be tempted to over-indulge. Hey, they even have a whole room just for sweets and desserts. And on top of all the food, you can stroll out to the balcony overlooking the lake to enjoy the dancing fountains.

4. The nightlife rocks

One thing’s for sure, you’ll never be bored in Vegas. While many of the hotels have bars and nightclubs attached to them, some also have purpose-built theatres to house the vast array of shows on offer. Cirque du Soleil currently has eight shows in Las Vegas, including an Elvis tribute. Or you may prefer to catch one of the headliners at Caesars Palace where stars like Elton John and Celine Dion perform nightly.

lasvegas3 I love Las Vegas!

Photo by Moyan Brenn.

And if you’re thinking a bit further ahead about Las Vegas holidays, 2012 will be better than ever. Cirque du Soleil is planning a new Michael Jackson show based on the life and songs of the King of Pop, Shania Twain takes up residency at the Colosseum with her new show ‘Shania: Still The One’ and the new Smith Center for the Performing Arts opens its doors in March. Its inaugural line-up already includes five top Broadway shows: Wicked, The Color Purple, Mary Poppins, Million Dollar Quartet and Memphis.

This post was written by freelance journalist Belinda Weber on behalf of Thomson Tailormade which offers holidays to Las Vegas and many other destinations worldwide. See www.thomsonworldwide.com for more information.

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About the Author ()

Freelance journalist Belinda Weber will happily go barefoot, strap on stilletoes, sneakers and sandals when travelling—but will leave the hiking boots behind. She currently calls the UK home.

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