Let's go to Las Vegas!
When you live in Southern California, Las Vegas is an easy get-a-way whether you chose to fly or drive. If you time your drive right, you can get there without any traffic. If you would rather fly, leaving from Los Angeles International Airport, Bob Hope Burbank Airport, Long Beach International Airport or Ontario Airport, it’s just about an hour away. If you happen to arrive after dark, the Las Vegas strip is an amazing sight all lit up shining bright with neon lights.
One hotel is nicer than the other. You can choose from either the larger hotels such as MGM Grand, mid-size such as The Venetian and The Palazzo or the boutique style such as Mandarin Oriental. I like the location which is in the new City Center, which also houses Crystals shopping experience, Aria Hotel, and the Cosmopolitan Hotel. The Aria and Cosmopolitan are on my radar and I feel are great for people in their 20’s and 30’s. When I walked through Cosmopolitan last time I was there, I was taken by the beauty of the hotel, which is adorned with crystals and hanging chandeliers.
When you step into Mandarin Oriental you have no idea you are in Las Vegas. An elevator ride takes you up to the 23rd floor to the check-in/lobby area. The service is amazing and you will always be very well taken care of. If your room happens to not be ready, take a little walk to the bar, settle in and have a signature cocktail. The view is absolutely amazing. Do try and experience it after dark, as it is sensational.
The rooms are very sleek and a nice blend of contemporary and Asian flairs. The technology is state-of-the-art with lots of fun things like remote drapes and television screens in the mirrors on the bathroom walls. The bathtub is a large soaking tub and they give you a sampling of lovely bath salts for a relaxing and soothing experience.
The restaurants are amazing and award-winning. Make sure you have a reservation at Twist by Pierre Gagnaire, as you won’t want to miss this culinary experience. It’s a myriad blend of French, Asian and California cuisine done in an artistic way. It is simply fabulous from start to finish.
Suffice it to say, I am 100% impressed by the Mandarin Oriental. I’m sure you will be too.
If you enjoy a spa/fitness experience, don’t miss The Canyon Ranch Spa at The Venetian and The Palazzo. This keeps me busy for hours. I start by enjoying a great workout which might include weights, cardio and a yoga class. There is a small fee which gives you access to the spa facilities, and includes a relaxation room, sauna, Jacuzzi, igloo room and more. A massage or facial can round off your experience at the spa.
As for shopping, my very favorite is the Caesar’s Forum Shops. It’s a nice blend of all the designer stores with the more well known off-the-rack stores. You can find everything from Louis Vuitton to Victoria’s Secret and Tory Burch to the Nike store. The ceiling is painted to look like the sky and adds to the ambience. At the far end of the mall, you will find a huge salt water fish tank for viewing and a show that depicts the fall of Atlantis. There are plenty of dining choices for everyone’s tastes. My very favorite there and perhaps one of my all-time favorite restaurants is Joe’s Stone Crabs. You can get a table for lunch in the bar, but if you don’t have a dinner reservation you won’t be getting a table anywhere in the restaurant. They are famous for their Stone Crabs, which are tasty and eco-friendly. The claws are taken from the crabs, the crabs are thrown back in the water and after a period of time, they grow new claws. Everything is amazing at Joe’s, but some of my favorites are of course the Stone Crab Claws, the wedge salad, the sweet potato fries and my very favorite; the peanut butter pie with a side of hot fudge.
If you enjoy fine dining, you can’t go wrong in Las Vegas. Just about every celebrity chef has a presence there. Whatever you want, you can get. Another couple of favorites for me are Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steakhouse, which is located off of the Las Vegas Strip and Capital Grille, which is located in the Fashion Show shopping mall.
As for entertainment, you have plenty of choices. Las Vegas is known for headliner shows and features Celine Dion, Elton John, Brittany Spears and many more. There are production shows, magic shows, dance shows and acrobatic style shows.
It is all there! Whatever it is you want, it’s there for you!
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