My new goal is to find a way to live in the Bellagio Hotel on Las Vegas Boulevard. Who doesn’t want to live in a fantasyland beautified by Chihuly’s ingenious glass sculptures, ornate gardens and sculptures, while being tantalized by the offerings of Jean Philippe’s café, namely salads, crepes, pastry, gelato and chocolate masterpieces? Aren’t those the five food groups? If what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, there must be a way for a person to live in the 30 massive resort properties along the Strip that take our breath away.
From Trump and Wynn in the North to Mandalay Bay and Luxor in the south, there are resorts fit for pharaohs, kings and queens, emperors and empresses, conquistadors and pirates, temptresses and wenches.
For me, the Bellagio is the bomb. Art is everywhere. A multi-colored Chihuly chandelier graces the entrance. Colors reflect off the hundreds of shapes reminiscent of flowers… Gawking is expected. A Chihuly shop with glass sculptures on a smaller scale but no less mesmerizing is available to those visitors needing to take a piece of the experience home with them. Just look for the blue Chihuly spikes outside the shop. Nearby, a large framed Monet painting of a beach scene at Cap Martin is duplicated using flowers instead of paint. It’s simply amazing.
Additional ornate sculptures and fountains throughout the Bellagio make easy photo ops.
An 18th century colorful carousel with charming twirling horses and carriages is in a flower-filled garden at the Bellagio, while bikes pose and multihued hot air balloons float overhead. Large lady bugs, storks with birdseed legs and a frog made out of flowers, mosses and other natural material make spectators pause in wonder in the special garden. The creations are endearing.
Outside the Bellagio entrance, fountains erupt some 60-feet in the air dancing to popular tunes generally twice to four times an hour, and are a sight to behold as well.
Staying in the Venetian is no big sacrifice, mind you. Decorated with wall frescoes, golden statues and fountains, the Venetian is a sensual pleasure worth a stroll and a stay. A replicated St. Mark’s Square under an indoor blue and white painted sky, an outdoor clock tower with moving picture light show at night, gondola rides in the Venetian canals, and music playing Broadway hits from The Phantom beckon visitors to see the show at its theater. Pools, spa and gym with classes, weights and climbing wall, along with the requisite casino also are on property.
If France is your preferred locale, venez ici. Paris awaits complete with an Arc de Triomphe (currently featuring the mug of barking chef Gordon Ramsay), charming outdoor café and looming Eiffel Tower ($15.50 per adult to go up in it by elevator at 7:15 p.m. or later to see the surrounding views). Tip: Look in free tourist guidebooks for coupons for two-for-one deals to the Tower top, as well as for entertainment and dining discounts).
Some will prefer Caesar’s Palace with its larger than life statues and Roman themes. Seeing sensational performers in its Colosseum, such as Celine Dion, is a cinch. Just bring loads of money. Dion delights with a variety of her well-known tunes using her amazing vocal range, as well as by singing tunes she’s not usually identified with such as jazz, a French song, “Ne me quittez pas” (better known as “If You Go Away” in English), a song by Adele, and “Beauty and the Beast.” Dion’s wardrobe, fellow talented musicians, and special effects combine to make the show a wonder almost as grand as Italy’s century-old attractions.
The Cosmopolitan glitters with shimmering lights and a giant high heel that beckons for photo-taking.
ExCalibur is any castle-lover’s dream, with knights in shining armor.
Luxor transports visitors to Egypt with its sphinx and pyramid. Enjoying “Menopause, The Musical” in its intimate theater will keep both genders in stitches with witty lyrics of popular tunes recalling women’s change of life. A dinner at Tender, with its steakhouse and seafood specialties, is sure to satisfy post-show. Tuna tartare, scallops and prawns, Yukon gold mashed potatoes with truffle oil, and desserts such as a Belgian waffle with organic strawberries and a chocolate soufflé, accompanied by coffee with mix-ins such as sugared orange and lemon rinds leaves diners happy to tumble into bed to arise for another day exploring the Las Vegas Strip.
The possibilities are nearly endless in this city that seems to never sleep. You might say you can’t lose — but then hang on to your money at the gambling tables.
For more about the Las Vegas, visit www.visitlasvegas.com.