December 5, 2010 |
Reporting from Las Vegas If you take stock of the Vegas landscape, it's no wonder several Las Vegas clubs are hosting "good riddance to 2010" New Year's Eve parties. The construction cranes atop the flashy but bankrupt Fontainebleau resort, between the Sahara and the Riviera, haven't moved in months. Opposite the Riviera, plywood-covered fences try to hide the foundations for Echelon, a CityCenter wannabe whose owners have pulled the plug, at least temporarily. And at CityCenter, the multi-billion-dollar hotel/retail behemoth that debuted a year ago, the problem-plagued Harmon Hotel will not open this month as expected.
November 26, 2010 |
Two hotels at the swank, $8.5-billion CityCenter Las Vegas complex have pulled off quite a feat: earning the top AAA rating, Five Diamonds, in their first year of operation. The 4,004-room Aria Resort & Casino and the 392-room Mandarin Oriental, Las Vegas opened in December 2009 at the 67-acre complex -- which also includes the 1,495-room Vdara Hotel & Spa , private residences, restaurants and luxury shops -- along the Las Vegas Strip. The Harmon Hotel, originally scheduled to open there this year, is on hold; more about that below.
March 11, 2010 |
How many high-end restaurants can Vegas support, particularly in this economy? Easily a dozen more just opened in the new $11-billion CityCenter complex on the Strip and a number of them definitely have enough wow factor to pull in the hungry tourists. Admittedly, the planning for CityCenter began long before the slump, still, here comes Michelin three-star Paris chef Pierre Gagnaire joining his illustrious (and extravagantly starred) colleagues Joel Robuchon, Alain Ducasse and Guy Savoy in a gamblers' paradise.
March 11, 2010
In the Aria casino, 3730 Las Vegas Blvd. S., Las Vegas; restaurant reservations, (877) 230-2742; http://www.arialasvegas.com. Bar Masa, (877) 230-2742. Chilled dishes, $26 to $89; salads, $15 to $18; braised dishes, $34 to $68; hibachi grilled items, $18 to $120; sushi items, $18 to $240; seasonal sushi or sashimi tasting, $98; omakase , $100 per person and up. Shaboo (the adjoining shabu-shabu restaurant), $500 per person. Open 5 to 11 p.m. Thursday to Monday.
February 14, 2010
A circus fit for the King Montreal meets Memphis as Cirque du Soleil premieres for the public its revamped tribute to Elvis Presley in Las Vegas on Feb. 21. "Viva Elvis," staged at Aria Resort & Casino at CityCenter, is a blend of Cirque's famous acrobatics and the King's music. If you're looking for an Elvis impersonator, you'll need to look elsewhere on the Strip; modern remixes of Elvis' hits dominate the production. Ticket prices start at $115, including taxes and fees. Info: www.ticketmaster .com.
January 3, 2010 |
Packed into 67 acres between the Monte Carlo and the Bellagio casino hotels, CityCenter is billed not just as the Las Vegas Strip's next evolutionary phase, but also as a spectacle capable of pulling the region's tourism from its death spiral. Yet with nearly 5,900 new luxury hotel rooms to fill, that spiral may be intensifying. Between Dec. 1 and 16, the developers unveiled the 1,495-guest room Vdara, the 392-guest room Mandarin Oriental, and the 4,004-guest room Aria Resort & Casino and its 17 restaurants and cafes.
December 27, 2009
When price is no object Crystals is designed for the well-heeled luxury shopper, the one for whom price is rarely a consideration. For many of the rest of us, it will be a terrific place to window-shop, gaze and dream. For instance: For golf enthusiasts, Bally offers a hand-stitched cohiba leather bag, with detachable club hood. $9,000 Ilori boasts a one-of-a-kind pair of Oliver Peoples shades with yellow fancy diamonds set in yellow gold-plated frames.
December 27, 2009 |
Within minutes of entering Crystals, the new super-luxe shopping complex at CityCenter, Bob and Elayne Kirkwood -- tourists from Chilliwack, Canada -- have already made a couple of telling observations. "There's no McDonald's," Bob says. "No Wal-Mart, either." Elayne's analysis may be even more useful to the middle-class masses. "It's a good place to stand outside and look inside," she notes, peering through the window of Swiss jeweler De Grisogono. Her impression is amplified when she discovers that the diamond-and-emerald necklace atop a revolving pedestal -- on the other side of the glass -- is priced at $777,000.
December 23, 2009
Hotel-casino Aria, the Cesar Pelli-designed centerpiece of Las Vegas' $8.5-billion CityCenter, has opened, along with restaurants from chefs such as Masa Takayama, Shawn McClain, Michael Mina and Jean-Georges Vongerichten. Directly off Aria's lobby is Takayama's Japanese restaurant Bar Masa, designed by Richard Bloch, with a three-story high entrance and seating for 256. (Shaboo, the more intimate shabu-shabu restaurant located inside Bar Masa, is set to open this weekend.