After spending 72 hours in Sin City I have concluded a few thoughts. There are good aspects, bad and most definitely ugly. This blog is all about the good, Part 2 in the near future will reveal what I didn't love so much.
The last time I was in Vegas was approximately 15 years ago and this trip was about finding the cool spots under the categories of dining, shopping, sightseeing, gaming. I did indeed find some, but I know more research is needed!!! At least I am off to a good start.
Vegas Top Ten that made me Smile and I highly recommend
1. The Signature Hotel. A boutique hotel, separate from the Parent MGM Grand Hotel which was all suites and is non- gaming. Luxurious retreat many with balconies & all with kitchenettes & spa tubs. I stayed here and loved the feel of it. Gated, private, and I didn't get lost finding the elevator as opposed when you stay in a Casino Hotel.
2. Mandarin Hotel. Another non- gaming hotel that is absolutely gorgeous! Quite, Zen and beautifully decorated. This was our elevator exit eye candy on the 23rd floor! The 23rd floor offers a magnificent view, and the bar looked choice. I was drooling watching people enjoy their cocktails! A visit to the public restroom was a treat also. The room was infused with Musk and just the right amount to please the senses. I also treated myself to lunch one day at Twist by Pierre Gagnaire, very expensive but worth it. I devoured my Miso Black Cod, with Marinated Daikon Radish and Sauteed Spinach. A crisp Sauvignon Blanc washed it all down. And I couldn't resist the Bread and Dipping Sauces. I love the good life!
3. Aria Resort and Casino. I only visited the lobby one evening and I was impressed immediately with an aura of minimalism, Sophistication and chic. Located in the heart of both the Las Vegas Strip and the incredible City Center urban complex. It sports a design that spans modern architecture, which rich touches of decor and art. I felt confident a Chihuly sculpture spanned the lobby. I took a peek inside the restaurant Sage and dining there is on my to do list next visit.
4. The Shops at Crystals. Located next Aria in the City Center. Designer heaven. I love to look at these shops for their exquisite beauty and design, the gorgeous merchandise, and most of all inspiration and over the top eccentricity. I was surprised Chanel and Ferragamo weren't invited to the party!
Roberto Cavalli Boutique
Emilio Pucci Boutique
Jimmy Choo Boutique
Van Cleef and Arpel Boutique
Bally, Bottega Veneta, Bulgari, Carolina Herrera, Cartier, Christian Dior, Ermenegildo Zegna, Fendi, Gucci, Harry Winston, Hermès,HStern, Ilori, Kiton, Lanvin, Loro Piana, Louis Vuitton, Marni,Mikimoto, Miu Miu, Paul Smith, Porsche Design, Group Prada, Pucci, Roberto Cavalli, Richard Mille Rimowa, Tiffany & Co., Tom Ford, Tourbillion,Van Cleef & Arpels, Versace, Yves Saint Laurent.
5. The Bellagio Hotel Casino. After dining at Todd English Olives Restaurant located in the Bellagio, Madeleine and I decided to try our luck playing Black Jack. We liked the vibe, and felt comfortable in the Casino. We found a $15.00 minimum table and a gentleman sitting at the horseshoe position who knew how to play. This is so important because if you sit down at a table with a rookie at the end spot they could mess up the whole table if they take hits or holds on cards that could benefit the dealer and then everyone looses. We were lucky charms for the table and had so much fun playing with our new fast friend " The Australian Well Dressed Gentleman " In 30 minutes Madeleine and I turned $50.00 into $358.00 We walked away winners!!!!!
5.5 . The Bellagio Fountains. WOW!!!!!! WE have all watched the scene in Oceans Eleven as the Magnificent 7 gloat with their successful heist as they watch these fountains. Well let me tell you it is so much better live and absolutely spectacular to view in person. I thought it was better than any fireworks display I have seen. I loved it.
6. Vegas at Night. Lights, Lights and more Lights. You can't help but get a feel of excitement taking it all in when the sun sets and the lights take over the strip. Casinos, Bill boards, buildings, palm trees, stores everything is lit up! Even the cars driving on the strip participate in the illumination. I enjoyed the energy the night "lights" gave me.
7 Zara. I love this store and it was located at Fashion Show Mall. Woo Hoo!!! Zara is considered fast fashion- great style and design at a great price. If you are not sure what is in style these days just go to Zara.com and you will find out. Madeleine and I both found some great pieces to compliment our fall wardrobe. I bought cigarette ripped jeans, and two thick, wooly infinity scarves. Madeleine bought a grey cotton Jumpsuit, and a scarf as well.
8. Buffalo Exchange. No trip is complete without a Buffalo Exchange outing if the city has one. The excitement of what you may find is always exhilarating to me. Located downtown, we took the city bus and found our way to their new location. Did we score??? Of course. Madeleine found great jeans and a vintage Coach bag, simple and gorgeous leather. I found an amazing crochet dress, and a Black little cutout tank. I guess I was in a peekaboo mood!!!!
9. Carson Kitchen 124 South Sixth Street. OMG what we stumbled upon has left me hungry and wanting more. As we were navigating to find Buffalo Exchange in a depressing part of downtown we both noticed some cool signage in a small window front. We peered closer and realized a restaurant was hiding behind the window, so hard to see with the bright glare. We walked in and surrendered immeadealtely. Great decor with an industrial vibe, delicious aromas coming from the kitchen and all organic!
We sat down at the bar and chowed and toasted and cheered to our great find. We enjoyed a Beet Salad and Rabbit Ragu with Spaghetti Squash. It was a local hangout and packed by the time we left. I will always come back here when I visit Vegas.
10. Lotus of Siam. My husband and I dined here 15 years ago and our meals were out of this world , along with exceptional service. I never forgot that wonderful experience so I wanted to return and bring my friend to try it again. It did not disappoint!
You don't have to be a food insider in Las Vegas to know about Lotus of Siam. Despite its unlikely location in a non-descript strip mall, the outstanding and authentic food at Lotus of Siam has garnered attention from countless national media outlets, including the title of Best Thai Restaurant in the United States from the late Gourmet magazine.
72 Hours and our trip was packed. Looking forward to the next trip and taking more in-- So much more to do and see!!!!! Next blog: Part 2 The other side of Vegas from my point of view.