One of the most appealing aspects of visiting Las Vegas is that it’s different every time you visit. Some of the changes might be subtle; like a new show or restaurant. Some of the changes are huge like the giant Ferris wheel being built in the middle of the Vegas Strip. Then there are cultural changes that regular visitors to Las Vegas may not notice because they happen slowly over a long period of time.
One such change has been the fact that people now spend more money on non-gaming parts of the casino then they do on gambling. This isn’t new but a slow 20 year trend that we’re seeing play out with a lot of the new construction in Las Vegas. Nightclubs have lead the way with this trend and now account for almost as much money for a casino as gambling does. If you’re wondering why casinos are changing this is your answer. The Las Vegas Sun has more details on the business end of things here..
If there’s one thing that’s great about Las Vegas is that it’s always changing. Shows come and shows go. While it’s sad when a show leaves it just opens the door for something awesome to appear. Goretorium announced it will be closing its doors this week. It’s a shame that a show fit for Halloween would close so close to the holiday. Fright Dome at Circus Circus is a great replacement for scary fun.
If you prefer to sit and relax for your Halloween experience you might prefer “Evil Dead”- The Musical. Tickets for the 4D musical range from $49.99 to $69.99. Yes, you’ll pay more to be splashed with blood but that sounds like fun.
The Mafia is a fixture in Las Vegas but it seems as if there may be too much mob for the masses. The Mob Attraction at Tropicana will be closing up shop on November 3rd. The Las Vegas Sun says they may be heading to an new Vegas Strip casino. I’m curious to see if that actually happens.
Last week the big news in Las Vegas was Britney Spears announcing that she will begin a two year residency at Planet Hollywood at the end of the year. Big news in Las Vegas isn’t always big news across the country but this may actually be a real big deal. TMZ is reporting that ticket sales for Britney Spears are on fire! Of the 73,000 tickets made available only a few thousand remain and most of them are the seats that are farthest away from the stage. I was just listening to a little Britney since she’s on my mind. Enjoy.
Residencies aren’t what they used to be. Now they’re just extended and pre-planned concerts. Bruno Mars will be the next musician to play a residency in Las Vegas. Bruno Mars’ residency at the Cosmopolitan is merely a few pre-planned weekends in Las Vegas. He’ll begin with New Years Eve shows on December 29 and 31 that will cost $150 per ticket. Next year his shows at the Cosmo will cost $95. Bruno Mars will be in Las Vegas in 2014 on the following dates; Feb 15 & 26, May 23 & 24 and August 22 & 23.
The big news in Las Vegas this week was Britney Spears announcing that she will be doing a two year residency at Planet Hollywood beginning December. Britney will be performing almost 50 times a year for 90 minutes each show at the 4,500 seat PH Live Theater. Huffington Post has details on the contract if you care about how much money other people make. More importantly tickets are on sale on Friday beginning at $59 each. There are a variety of options that can bring the price up to $500+ per ticket. Total Rewards members may be eligible for discounts so check your mail for special offers.
In other Planet Hollywood show news Vegas! The Show has added Josh Strickland to the cast. You may remember Josh from his stint on Peepshow and on the TV show “Holly’s World”. Vegas! The Show takes place nightly at 7pm and 9pm inside the Saxe Theater at Planet Hollywood. You can get more details at DavidSaxe.com.
One hotel tower opens and another gets delayed. The Jubilee Tower at Bally’s (formerly South Tower) has officially opened to the public although they’ve been letting people in for a couple of weeks now. On the other side of the fence is Delano at Mandalay Bay. Delano is supposed to be replacing The Hotel but has been delayed a few times now. The current delay has the tower possibly opening in the third quarter of 2014. Vegas Chatter has more details on the delays.
If you’re an early planner and like sports you may want to get your reservations in for Cinco De Mayo weekend. After Floyd Mayweather won his fight last weekend he announced that he will be fighting again on “Cinco De Mayweather” aka May 4, 2014. The Kentucky Derby also takes place that day and there are a lot of parties in the clubs. Cinco De Mayo weekend is one of the sneaky great weekends in Las Vegas.
While I’m at it, you might as well get your Super Bowl reservations in soon. The casinos still have comp and low cost rooms available but those will dry up as “The Big Game” gets closer.
The gamblers will be stoked to know that WSOP.com launched real money online poker this week. Anyone can register but you can only play when you’re in Nevada. Come November 23rd you should be able to play in New Jersey as well.
If you prefer slot machines IGT has announced a series of Avatar slot machines. The two initial games are build on platforms that you may have already seen in a casino. Venture Beat has a look at this slot machine from both a gaming and non-gaming perspective.
The fourth year of Cirque Week takes place in between November 9 and 16. This week marks Cirque’s 20th year. There will be special shows and tickets available for the week to most Cirque shows. You can find more information here.
If you’re a beer lover and in Las Vegas this weekend you’re in luck. The Downtown Brew Festival takes place at the Clark County Amphitheater from 5pm to 10pm. Tickets are $35 to $55 with $20 designated driver tickets available.
Lastly, if you play MyVegas on Facebook for MGM Resorts freebies but would prefer to play on your mobile device you’re in luck. MyVegas will be releasing an app this fall so you can play the games to earn coins and rewards.
The weather is beginning to feel like we’ve entered the fall. While 80 degree highs across the country may seem warm it’s almost chilly for some and perfect for this east coast transplant. This is one of the best sports weekends that we’ll see in Las Vegas outside of March Madness and the Super Bowl. On Saturday Floyd Mayweather is fighting Saul “Canelo”Alvarez at MGM Grand. Fight nights in Las Vegas always make for a busy weekend but Saturday also has Alabama playing Johnny Football and Texas A&M. This is the biggest college football game to date this season and one of the biggest we’ll see all year. On top of this Sunday is week two of the NFL season with great games like the San Francisco 49ers taking on the Seattle Seahawks to cap off the weekend for Sunday Night Football.
Whew! Those events tired me out just thinking about how much fun it will be watching them. While football can be seen for free at any sportsbook you’ll have to pay to watch the fight. Here’s a list of places you can pay to watch the fight from Vegas Chatter.
Speaking of MGM Grand they just introduced a new website called Entertainment Authority which will cover all of the entertainment happening in the hotel from boxing to Hakkasan Nightclub to other random things happening at MGM Grand. This is a tumblr site so you can add it to your feed. Expect the content here to be fun and loose but informational.
College football took center stage last week(end) with multiple first days of the season beginning anywhere from last Thursday through Monday. The big boys take over the spotlight this week with the NFL season getting underway on a similar schedule. Sportsbooks are the easiest (and free) ways to watch the games but they’re no longer the only option. Earlier this week I wrote about some awesome non-sportsbooks to watch the games. These kind of bar/restaurants are great options since they offer more than just the games.
The Linq, that huge construction project in the center of the Vegas Strip across the street from Caesars Palace, just announced more progress as part of its opening gets closer. Polaroid Fotobar store and museum, Chilli Beans Sunglasses, Stomping Grape, Vanity Style Lounge and Goorin Bros hat shop have been added to the large list of tenants which includes Yardhouse and Tilted Kilt. Opening of The Linq will be done in phases beginning in December going through mid-2014.
The summer unofficially comes to an end this weekend across the country. In Las Vegas this also means the end of pool season. Pools will remain open for a while but the dayclubs and pool parties will slowly stop after this weekend. If you want to catch one of the many famous DJ’s that come to Las Vegas you’ll have to do it indoors at night unless you’re in town this weekend.
The saying “What goes up must come down” is usually fun when looking at it from a Las Vegas perspective but this time it isn’t. The Harmon Tower, which is part of CityCenter (you may know it as the short blue building across from the Cosmopolitan), has been ruled structurally unsafe and has been ordered to be taken down. Traditionally when buildings in Las Vegas come down there’s an awesome implosion. That won’t be the case with the Harmon Tower. There’s no word on what MGM Resorts will do with the land when the building is gone.
Because weather is fun you may want to prepare for the cool down on your next trip to Las Vegas. Next week high temperatures will be below the 100 degree mark for the first time in months. It will still be warm for a little while but it might be a little chilly for some people at night. Bring a sweater if you’re easily cold. The cool down in means that kids go back to school, football season is right around the corner and Labor Day is upon us!
You can’t wear white pants after Labor Day so don’t forget them on your if you plan on being in Vegas the next few weeks. Labor Day Weekend is one of the busiest times of the year in Las Vegas as many of the pools say goodbye to summer with huge blowout parties. The best DJ appearances will be happening in the day and night clubs so make sure you plan in advance as tickets will sell out. If you prefer more mainstream entertainment the LA Times has a huge list of events happening.
The temperature in Las Vegas has been steady for the past couple weeks with a mellow 105 degree high. It seems strange but the morning temperatures in the low 80’s feel as if there is a chill in the air. All of that to say that it feels as if football season should be around the corner. Thank goodness it is! If you’re ready for football season and in Las Vegas the weekend of August 23 and 24 you might want to head over to LVH for their SuperContest Weekend. There are a multiple activities built around people talking about betting on football. This is a great way to get pumped up for football!
If you enjoy football there’s a good chance that you also enjoy playing poker. There has been a lot of action with the Las Vegas poker rooms this summer and not always in a good way. Last week we told you that M Resort closed their poker room. The good news this week is that there’s no more closures. Harrah’s and Treasure Island have moved their poker rooms while LVH has re-opened their poker pit. Just in time for football season!
A slow week in Las Vegas is like a normal news week in most cities. This week served as a reminder that we’re about to head into “Convention Season” in Las Vegas. There are conventions throughout September and October. Some conventions, like the Global Gaming Expo (G2E), will fill just about every hotel room in town while smaller conventions like the swizzle stick convention will only bring about 20 people. All of this is a reminder that hotel rooms will be occupied and rates will be high. If you’re planning for any visits to Las Vegas before Halloween you may want to plan now. You can view a list of conventions here.
While G2E is on my mind I might as well give the lowdown on that convention. This is the largest gathering of casino businesses of the year. While there is a lot of business that goes on behind the scenes this is where new casino games will first see the light of day. If you are a fan of slot machines keep your eyes peeled for lots of news throughout September. If you want a head start you can check out the new Superman Comic slot machine.
The Vegas Strip is currently having a major metamorphosis. In a couple years it will be very different than the Vegas Strip that many of us grew up with. Treasure Island is getting in on the Vegas Strip renovations. The renovations would mean that Sirens of TI lagoon gets a little smaller while the boardwalk gets bigger. New additions to TI will including a restaurant, pharmacy and car dealership. The best news is that the Sirens of TI show will remain. You can watch the full show in HD on YouTube if you miss it.
A couple more shows that won’t be going away include Rod Stewart and Shania Twain at Caesars Palace. Rod Stewart’s contract has been extended by two years with 9 new shows in November. Meanwhile “Shania: Still The One” returns to The Colosseum at Caesars Palace this October.
If you’ve seen Rod and Shania and are looking for a new show to see then look no further than Planet Hollywood. A few weeks ago we mentioned that there would be a new show called “Rocktellz & Cocktails” opening at Planet Hollywood which will be a “Storytellers” type concert event. At the time there was no artist mentioned as part of the show but this week it was confirmed that Meatloaf would be the first resident artist to perform and tell stories. The residency begins September 26 and you can find more information at rocktellz.com.
Until you live in Las Vegas you don’t realize how big of a deal weather is. People freak out if it rains or gets too hot or too cold. It’s amazing. It’s currently monsoon season in Las Vegas and that means that it rains in small areas really hard for 15 minutes to an hour. Last week the touristy areas of Vegas, the strip and downtown, got tagged with floods and power outages. Vegas Chatter did a great job compiling tweets with pictures and video if you care to see what can happen during a monsoon. Monsoons can happen at any time. There’s a 20% chance of a thunderstorm almost every day so just enjoy the beautiful Las Vegas summer.
Earlier this summer Bagatelle Beach Club opened at the Tropicana. It was a nightclub with a pool and dayclub with an area for grabbing some lunch outside. It was quite nice but the Tropicana isn’t a hot spot right now and the beach club is closing this weekend. It will be renamed as the Havana Beach Club and only open for special events. Frankly, this could be a great spot for a company outing or party during a convention.
Over the weekend firefighters were able to get the Carpenter 1 fire just outside of Las Vegas under control. As of today the fire is 80% contained. Skies are clear and people are able to go back to living in the mountains. You might think that Las Vegas can get back to enjoying normal hot weather but we can’t. It’s now monsoon season in Las Vegas where thunderstorms can pop up for 30 minutes at any time and drop enough rain to cause flash flooding. There’s little warning, you just deal with it. It’s 110 degrees so the rain may feel good for the moment.
The rumors about Britney Spears’ Las Vegas residency at Planet Hollywood are getting louder. The most recent rumors are that the residency will be announced next week, that the show will have a nightclub vibe and that she’ll be doing various dayclub and nightclub appearances at clubs at Caesars hotels.
Before Britney brings her pop music to Vegas the I Heart Radio festival will return to Las Vegas. The two-day festival will take place on September 20 & 21 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. Artists announced include Justin Timberlake, Katy Perry, Tiesto, Muse and more. You can see all of the artists that have been announced at Las Vegas Weekly. If you can’t make it to Las Vegas for the concert it will air on your local CW channel September 30 & October 1.
The major news in Las Vegas this week has been the wildfire just outside of town, around Mount Charleston, that’s only 15% contained. The fire is now touched 44 square miles of terrain but Las Vegas, itself, isn’t in danger just yet. Depending on the wind on particular days you may see giant plumes of smoke and may smell the burning. The best resource on the fire has been 8 News Now if you want to follow the fire or see what’s happened.
The Las Vegas NBA Summer League begins Friday. If you love the NBA you may have seen some games already from the Orlando league. Last month we gave you the heads up that the NBA Summer League was coming to Las Vegas. If you’re an NBA fan and in town in the next week or so this is a great way to spend a day or night.
Not even record high temperatures can slow things down in Las Vegas! Your local news may have told you that Las Vegas set records for high temperatures. Yes, weather is fascinating.
The biggest news in Las Vegas this week was the opening of Cirque Du Soleil’s Michael Jackson ONE at Mandalay Bay. The show opened to rave reviews from the mainstream press and blogs alike. Michael Jackson ONE has two shows nightly Saturday through Wednesday at 7pm and 10pm. The show is dark on Thursday and Friday nights and a few random dates throughout the year.
Mandalay Bay announced that they will be building the 2nd largest rooftop solar panel arrangement in the United States. The panels will be set on top of the 20,000 square foot convention center and will be able to power about 20% of Mandalay Bay. MGM Resorts has had an eye for being green. They specifically designed CityCenter to be one of the most green hotels in Las Vegas. You can read more details from the Las Vegas Sun.
Las Vegas is always hot and I say that often but this weekend it’s going to be SERIOUSLY hot. Las Vegas is expected to break records for how hot it is. Temperatures are set to go as high as 117 degrees in the shade. Add 15 degrees to that when you’re in the sun. There is an excessive heat warning until Monday night at 8pm according to The Weather Channel. If you’re coming to Las Vegas this weekend you may want to add some water to the booze run. You may also want to pack some extra moisturizer and lip balm so you don’t dry up. The heat is awesome and you should enjoy it but some precautions to ensure you enjoy it will go a long way.
What better way to bring the heat than with some fireworks. The 4th of July will bring fireworks shows to the Vegas strip and to the suburbs so you’ll be able to see pretty sparkles wherever you may be. Caesars Palace will have a 10 minute show beginning at 9pm on July 4th. If you’re away from the strip you can see fireworks coming from either Red Rock Resort or Green Valley Ranch at 9pm. Those shows will only last 9 minutes so if you need that extra minute make sure you’re at the strip. Downtown Vegas usually has a fireworks show on the Fremont Street Experience. It’s not real fireworks but it’s pretty cool nonetheless.
Speaking of Downtown Vegas there are a few new things happening. The Plaza opened an electronic poker room this week. There are no dealers or cards because everything is digital. If you prefer touching the cards Golden Nugget, Binions and El Cortez are your live/human poker room choices. The newest casino coming to Las Vegas is the Downtown Grand. Their new website says they’ll open this year but most people expect it to be fully operational in 2014. The site has no info on it but you can sign up for a newsletter and rewards program now. I’m a bit excited for Downtown Grand, so I already signed up.
The more things change in Las Vegas the more they remain the same. Themed casinos used to be the big thing in the 80’s and 90’s. The idea was to create a tourist destination open to everyone. Gambler could enjoy the casino floor while families could wander the rest of the elaborate hotels and enjoy aquariums and so forth. Casinos today are bringing in less than half the income for the hotel operators so the focus has been on non-gaming amenities. Last year was the year of nightclub growth and this year it seems as if the focus is on things every family can do. The latest discussion is around Polercoaster at Tropicana. This 650 foot high rollercoaster is planned to be part observation tower and part roller coaster. You can find more details and video at the Las Vegas Review Journal.
There’s a lot of construction already happening across the street around, in front and behind New York-New York and Monte Carlo. While everyone sees the action on the Vegas strip there is a 20,000 arena being built behind the two hotels that will open in 2016. There are already arenas at MGM Grand and Mandalay Bay but they are smaller. I’m expecting that once construction is complete on this new arena that one of the smaller arenas will be repurposed for something else. This is just conjecture on my part.
Summer officially begins next week but for most people it started on Memorial Day weekend. The temperatures in Vegas have been hot but nothing we can’t handle. Even passengers stuck in an airplane for four hours couldn’t be bothered by the heat. Coping with an exhaustive situation they went a little stir crazy and decided to have a little sing-a-long before taking off. Thankfully everyone was safe when all was said and done. After being teased with temperatures in the 110’s Las Vegas has settled into a nice summer groove in the low hundreds. The dry heat is a real deal and it’s beautiful here day and night.
Speaking of being so hot you have to take your shirt off ladies in their 30’s and 40’s will enjoy the newest addition to the Chippendales lineup. Ian Ziering from the original “Beverly Hills 90210” just the famous male review at Rio. You can see plenty of beefcake and get details on when Ziering will be appearing with Chippendales at Rio on the Pulse of Vegas blog.
We’re back baby! Said mother nature when she decided to drop high temps on Vegas a little early. Normal high temperatures in Vegas this week are in the mid to upper 90’s but this week we’ll be treated to highs in the 100-110 degree range. It’s kind of what makes Vegas great. A trick I used to do when walking from one of the strip to the other on hundred degree days was to walk through casinos to grab air conditioning. Sometimes I’d grab a drink other times I’d just enjoy the cooler air. Now that I live in Vegas I just drive during the day. Whatever the case, it really is important to stay hydrated. It helps with headaches, sun conditions and dry skin alike.
Hot weather means that it’s pool time. Vegas Chatter has compiled everything you need to know about just about every pool in Vegas in their “2013 Field Guide To The Vegas Pool Scene”. It not only a great guide on where to go but a great guide on pools to avoid.
There are a couple new ways to earn some bonus points before and when you visit Vegas. MGM Resorts announced partnerships with their players club, MLife, and Southwest Air and Hyatt this week. You can find all of MLife’s partners on their site. Any time real life can give us rewards to use in Vegas and vice-versa it’s a win-win.
With Memorial Day weekend there was a lot happening in Las Vegas and a lot of announcements made. Now that we’re in a shorter week it seems as if some of the public relations folks are taking a break. News and openings are relatively slow this week. That’s relative for Vegas because there is always something new on the horizon.
Earlier this year The Venetian closed tasty burger joint Rattlecan. Rattlecan was perfectly located near the sportsbook and was a quick bite to eat in or go. People that like burgers and betting on sports, like me, were upset. The Venetian announced that they will be replacing that Rattlecan with another burger joint. B & B Burger and Beer by Mario Batali and Joe Bastianich adds another restaurant by the duo to The Venetian. This will be their 4th restaurant at The Venetian. If it ain’t broke, replicate it…over and over and over and over. No opening date has been set but it shouldn’t take long to clean up.