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Las Vegas: At CityCenter, more places to shop, eat and marry

July 15, 2013|By Jay Jones

CityCenter, the multibillion-dollar resort and retail complex that opened less than four years ago on the Las Vegas Strip, is making changes to its high-end shopping center and to its largest hotel-casino as it grapples with a still-vacant hotel.

The most noticeable transformations are occurring inside Crystals, the glitzy, upscale shopping center that fronts onto Las Vegas Boulevard. It is full of high-end retailers -- think Cartier, Dolce & Gabbana and Prada

By the end of August, shoppers will have three new stores to peruse.

Richard Mille will open a boutique showcasing the watchmaker’s pricey timepieces. The shop will be Mille’s second U.S. outpost. The other is on Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills.

Rimowa, a German manufacturer of luxury luggage, will open its newest Las Vegas location. The shop will feature what is said to be the largest selection of Rimowa cases in Las Vegas, including the brand’s newest custom color, Ipanema blue, introduced this summer. 

A similarly large selection of Valentino products will be showcased inside the upscale clothier’s newest boutique. The shop will sell all of the company’s product lines, including ready-to-wear clothing, handbags and shoes.

In October, Tourbillon will open what it says will be its largest shop. The luxury watch seller already has a presence at Crystals but is more than quadrupling the store’s size.

Also this fall, Loro Piana will open a boutique featuring its Italian cashmere and vicuna products. It will be the retailer’s third location along the Strip.

The new openings will bring the mall’s occupancy to nearly 90%.

Already known for its innovative art, Crystals has recently  installed two works of art by James Turrell, a  “light and space” artist from Los Angeles. Guests arriving by tram will first be exposed to his ever-evolving light show at the station.

A second creation, viewable by appointment only, is inside Louis Vuitton. The exhibit is free, but reservations should be made at least one week in advance by calling (702) 730-3150.

Meanwhile, at the nearby Aria hotel, three new restaurants are now welcoming guests.

The most recent to open is Five50, a pizza parlor that is Chef Shawn McClain’s first entry into the casual dining category. (The name refers to the temperature at which the pies are baked.) The vibe is embellished by the street art covering an entire wall. It’s the work of L.A.-based artists Cyrcle.

Javier’s, which has existing locations in Orange County, recently opened its first Las Vegas location. The dishes are inspired by recipes that have been in Javier Sosa’s family for generations.

Michelin-starred Chef Masa Takayama invites diners to enjoy teppan-style cooking at his newest eatery, Tetsu, where fresh ingredients are prepared on iron grills. (Tetsu means “iron” in Japanese.)

Aria also will add a wedding chapel. That’s not surprising in an area that’s known for them, but this one is promising a more intimate experience.

Officials at MGM Resorts International, which operates CityCenter, continue to try to divorce themselves from the Harmon, the troubled hotel that fronts onto the Strip at the entrance to the development. The building, reportedly plagued by construction defects, was never completed inside.

The contractor and the resort giant are engaged in a lengthy legal battle over whether the tower needs to be demolished.

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