Welcome to part two of our adventures in Vegas! If you’re just tuning in, catch up on part one here.
Thursday / Day 04
We started off our morning passing the faux Arc de Triomphe on our journey towards more dark casinos and gigantic malls. My favorite shops are tucked inside Ceasar’s Palace and it’s always a trip stopping by there because marble, fountains and statues are everywhere. Oh, and let’s not forget the massive portraits of Elton, Celine and Rod.
We engaged in a bit of window shopping but finally found our holy grail inside the MAC Pro store, with walls merchandised in an array of rainbow pigments.
After posing next to an amazing bronze Sigfried & Roy statue, showgirls and a group of Elvises, we took a break in front of a McDonald’s to eat some ice cream.
A Michael Jackson impersonator with a striking resemblance to Corey Feldman in pancake makeup would not stop giving us the eye. But man, could he dance! Multiple awkward crotch thrusts later, we said our goodbyes moved onto our next adventure.
That night, we found another winner for dinner, Holstein’s. Located inside the Cosmo, they specialize in gourmet burgers and booze-filled shakes. I had the best vegan burger of my life, seriously. They take American fast food to a whole new level.
Because we’d been so busy in the days leading up to our shoot, we’d barely had time for a drink (I know, I know…in Vegas, that’s nuts.) So, we ventured out to Bond, a glamorous crystal and LED-drenched hangout with cushy seating and massive chains (?!). This bar was a definite highlight of the trip.
One drink later, we moved on down The Strip. With the promise of free admission, we were lured into King Ink inside The Mirage with a tattoo parlor in the back…but the place was completely dead. We did what any other visitor would do on their last night in paradise: we made our own party, dancing through the center of the back patio. When in Vegas, one thing you’ll quickly notice is that music is piped in everywhere. You’ll find tunes blaring all along The Strip, whether it’s at the Bellagio water show (my favorite was when the fountains moved in time to Billie Jean) and coming from every restaurant, bar and hotel complex at top volume. If you’re in the mood, just dance your way through it all, like we did. Gala, Kat and I had dance-offs every morning and night in the Cosmo elevator to fellow passenger’s horror (some looked away, others wouldn’t even step in).
Friday / Day 05
I have no idea how five days flew by so quickly but we weren’t quite ready to drown away our sorrows. Instead, Gala and I danced down the strip one last time, past the Bellagio fountains and into the beautiful Chinese New Year-themed gardens.
After a few more last-minute peeks inside glamourous boutiques, it was time to hop in a cab to catch flights back to opposite coasts. Vegas is what you make of it and this particular stay was pretty awesome. In hindsight, here’s a list of what I’m glad we did and what we’d do differently next time (because, there’s always a next time):
Things I Am Glad We Did
• We took the time to hang out at multiple casinos and people watch. Vegas is the people watching capital of the world. This is partly because big hair, false eyelashes, sequins, spray tans and miniskirts are all considered acceptable at all times.
• We tried a new restaurant every night. Because of this, we got to experience a variety of great atmospheres.
• We switched it up and stayed at a new hotel. When you stay at the same place every time, your surroundings become familiar and stale.
• We made multiple trips outside of The Strip. This gave us a better idea of what Vegas was like beyond the confines of the manufactured metropolis.
• We browsed but barely bought anything. We peeked into many stores and admired a lot of beautiful objects, but beyond that, we really focused on spending quality time together. Stuff is just stuff. Memories (and photos) last forever.
• We used every possible opportunity to dress up. There’s so many amazing sights to shoot and posing in jeans and a t-shirt just doesn’t convey the same energy. Vegas is one of the few places where you can truly go overboard so embrace it!
Things We Would Do Differently Next Time
• Bring more cash. The ATM fees average $5.00 on The Strip (ouch!) and cabs charge a hefty fee if you use your card.
• Check Yelp reviews before visiting restaurants. The newest, hottest places weren’t necessarily the best.
• Check out a few shows. We’d talked about seeing David Copperfield, Peep Show, Criss Angel and Bite. But time got away from us and we never had a chance to make it happen. This gives us an incentive to come back.
• Skip the room service. It tends to be overpriced and not very well done.
• Book a massage. We ended up walking a few miles a day and were exhausted at the end of each. Next time, I’ll leave more time at the end for some pampering.
Viva Las Vegas! Have you been? Did you love it or loathe it? Anything we should add to our list for next time?