BRETT’S VEGAS VIEW
Contributed by Jackie Brett
ÉLIA BEACH CLUB WILL DEBUT AT VIRGIN HOTELS: With the continued unveiling of Virgin Hotels Las Vegas, part of Curio Collection by Hilton, JC Hospitality, owners of the resort, have formed a partnership with nightlife leaders Mio Danilovic, Jason “JROC” Craig and Michael Fuller who will operate the Élia (pronounced ee-LYE-uh) Beach Club. The new daylife venue will officially open on June 10 and initially be open Thursday–Sunday from 11 a.m.–1 a.m. Élia Beach Club is a passion project for Danilovic, creator and managing partner of Elia Beach Club, who is known for his beach club track record, having recently opened celebrity hotspot Joia Beach in Miami. Danilovic’s partners are hospitality veterans Craig and Fuller. Curated by the partners and designed by the discerning eye of Francois Frossard, Élia Beach Club takes its inspiration from Mykonos, Greece, remaining in-step with its namesake, Elia, Mykonos’ largest beach. The Mykonos-inspired decor and ambiance will transport guests to an international paradise. The musical focus will be on all genres of house music with a relaxed, yet energetic dance vibe inspired by international beach destinations. From the wood framed and draped fabric cabana design, to the jute woven poufs, and stonework accents, the global design influences will differentiate Élia Beach Club from the typical pool atmospheres. The stage will be complete with a straw thatched roof creating a desirable and attractive focal point to the venue, which overlooks the Mediterranean-colored pool.
CHEF BRUCE KALMAN OPENS SOULBELLY BBQ DOWNTOWN: Leaving fine dining Italian cuisine for American BBQ, James Beard nominated and Bravo Top Chef favorite, Chef Bruce Kalman is opening his first Las Vegas restaurant this week on May 12 with business partner Richard Camarota. Soulbelly BBQ is in the heart of the Downtown’s Arts District at 1327 S Main Street. The restaurant will open daily at 11 a.m. Kalman is bringing his vision to life by turning a former automotive garage into a restaurant carefully designed to reflect and honor the culture surrounding American BBQ. Paying homage to the bones of the building, Kalman kept subtle details and accents like tying in an original half royal blue painted wall. Murals on each side of the space showcase iconic figures like the Queen of Texas BBQ and pitmaster Tootsie Tomanetz, alongside quintessential southern musicians like Koko Taylor and Buddy Guy. In a kismet meeting, Kalman found himself at a charity event attended by Backbeat BBQ founder and Foo Fighters Front Man Dave Grohl. Helping Grohl serve the crowds, Kalman was introduced to the passion, effort and incredible community of American BBQ. From that experience, Soulbelly BBQ was born. The back of the restaurant has a 16-by-8 stage, which will become home to live musicians from both Las Vegas and beyond. A few special accent features include Soulbelly BBQ’s mascot, an antique metal pig now named “Lambchop,” and the vintage beverage cooler parked near the front of the restaurant, which houses the canned and bottled beverage selection. Patrons will be able to purchase logoed items and shirts saying “Will Work for Brisket” as well as bottled sauces and rubs and Chef Kalman’s BK Brinery pickles.
THE COSMOPOLITAN IS BOOKING THE CHELSEA: The Cosmopolitan has announced some future acts scheduled to headline the Chelsea including Rise Against, Evanescence and Halestorm, Old Dominion, and country artist Cody Jinks. Multi-Gold and Platinum punk-rock band Rise Against will make their Las Vegas stop on the group’s Nowhere Generation Tour on Friday, Aug. 20. Hailing from Chicago, the band has received worldwide recognition for their eight studio albums and upcoming ninth studio album “Nowhere Generation,” which comes three years after their 2017 blockbuster album “Wolves.” Tickets start at $29. The Chelsea will welcome Grammy® Award winners, Halestorm and Evanescence on Friday, Nov. 12 marking the groups’ first rock tour in over five years. Tickets start at $39.50. Evanescence emerged in 1995 and created a name for themselves with their first full-length album, “Fallen,” which sold more than 17 million copies worldwide. Their latest album, “The Bitter Truth,” is meant to incite feelings of hope and empowerment following a year filled with unprecedented challenges. Known for their non-stop touring and hook-heavy sound, Halestorm has rocked the stage with most of the popular American hard rock acts of their era. In 2013, Halestorm took home a Grammy® for Best Hard Rock/Metal Performance for the single “Love Bites (So Do I)” becoming one of the most successful female-fronted hard rock groups of the early 21st century. Grammy® nominated country music group Old Dominion will make a two-night engagement visit on Friday Nov. 5 and Saturday, Nov. 6. Since emerging on the country music scene in 2014, breakout country group Old Dominion has secured eight No. 1 singles, surpassed one billion streams and earned multiple Platinum and Gold certifications. In 2021, the group took home the title of American Country Music Awards “Group of the Year” for the fourth consecutive year. Tickets start at $35. Music Row Independent Artist of the Year, Cody Jinks, will be center stage on Friday, Dec. 3. The American outlaw country star will headline alongside special guest Randy Rogers. For well over a decade, Jinks has devoted himself to making music that is equal parts uncompressing and emphatic. His latest albums, “After the Fire” and “The Wanting” both hold spots for Top Albums on iTunes and Apple Music, with several hits including “Must Be The Whiskey,” “Think Like You Think,” and “William and Wanda.” Tickets start at $99.
TERRY FATOR HAS NEW SHOW AT NEW YORK-NEW YORK: “Terry Fator: Who’s the Dummy Now?” limited engagement show at New York-New York features new music and tells the whimsical story of how and why the world-renowned ventriloquist created his puppets, how each reflects a different part of his life, personality, and people he’s met along the way. Fator performs weekly Thursday to Sunday. Fator is joined on stage with his cast of characters, including Winston, the Impersonating Turtle; Emma Taylor, the little girl with the big voice; Maynard Tompkins, the Elvis Impersonator; Duggie Scott Walker, the annoying neighbor; legendary country singer and ladies’ man Walter T. Airdale; crooning soul singer Julius; and many others.
BACCHANAL BUFFET WILL REOPEN AT CAESARS PALACE MAY 20: Bacchanal Buffet at Caesars Palace redefined the buffet experience when it opened in 2012. Now, following more than a year of renovation, the buffet will reopen on Thursday, May 20 showcasing a multimillion-dollar enhancement. Bacchanal’s seafood, carving, American and Latin kitchens, as well as the entrance and dining room, have all received major upgrades and improvements. In addition to an all-new look and feel, more than 30 new dishes have been added to the robust menu. For the first time, Bacchanal is introducing reservations at OpenTable.com, and will reopen with dinner service Thursday-Monday from 4-10 p.m. Tetsuo Aoyagi, now with MUKU design studio inc. in Tokyo, was the original designer of the $17 million buffet in 2012 and again with the recent transformation. The updated design still reflects the original nature concept with natural textures and materials like glass and stone woven throughout. The Bacchanal’s cornerstone continues to be its nine open, interactive kitchens, and with its new design, guests will have an even clearer view of the action. Open-fire roasting grills will be used to prepare prime rib and other premier cuts to perfection, while new steaming and refrigerated display systems will ensure dishes like crab legs are served market-fresh.
GREEN VALLEY RANCH STARTS SELF-GUIDED FOODIE TOUR: Green Valley Ranch is teaming up with Finger Licking Foodie Tours to bring a new self-guided culinary experience to the Henderson resort. Beginning May 19, guests will enjoy a private, gourmet culinary experience while progressing through three of the resort’s specialty restaurants: Bottiglia Cucina & Enoteca, Borracha Mexican Cantina and Hank’s Fine Steaks, and on Tuesdays Tides Oyster Bar will substitute for Borracha. The two-and-a-half-hour evening commences nightly at 4:30 p.m. and features three signature dishes from each restaurant including a sweet treat ending. The experience costs $125 per person inclusive of gratuity with an optional $50 signature cocktail pairing at each of the three locations add-on. This is a wonderful way to experience many specialty dishes in three fine eateries.
THE FRONT YARD AT ELLIS ISLAND CREATES TIKI BAR ON SECOND FLOOR: The Front Yard at off-Strip Ellis Island will be transforming its second floor into a kitschy tiki bar escape called The Island at Ellis running for one month only from June 3 to July 4 and offer a specialty island-inspired menu. Stepping into this all-day oasis, sponsored by Bacardi, guests will be greeted by a 15-foot swordfish, staff will be decked out in Hawaiian-themed attire, and tiki-style vignettes will be found throughout the space. There will be tropical dishes such as Teriyaki Chicken Burger, Tiki Quesadilla, and Coconut Shrimp along with 10 boozy island-themed specialty drinks. In addition, The Front Yard’s brunch and dinner menus will be available as well as all of Ellis Island’s beers. Two blackjack tables will add some Sin City flare and a variety of slots will be available to play in a lounge area located by the Terrace Bar. Starting June 3, the Tiki Bar will be open Saturday-Sunday 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and 4 p.m. to midnight; Monday 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and 4-10 p.m.; and Tuesday-Thursday 4-10 p.m. Reservations are available through OpenTable.
ZUMA AT COSMOPOLITAN WILL LAUNCH PERMANENT SATURDAY BRUNCH: After featuring a new brunch experience recently for Easter and Mother’s Day, Zuma Las Vegas has decided to make its Japanese brunch permanent, offering the chef-crafted menu to guests from noon to 2:30 p.m. every Saturday starting May 28 to kick off Memorial Day weekend, with an additional day of brunch that Sunday, May 29 to celebrate the holiday. Zuma’s brunch offers the restaurant’s traditional, shared plate izakaya-style dining in a bottomless format. The menu is a modern twist on the typical brunch and features an array of Zuma’s signature small plates, such as the prawn and black cod gyoza; salmon tartare; a premium chef’s selection of maki, sushi, and sashimi; and more. Additionally, guests can select an entrée with selections. Pricing is determined by the beverage package selected.
THE STRAT INTRODUCES ‘SKY HIGH HAPPY HOUR’: Las Vegas’ highest happy hour at The STRAT is going to the next level, literally. Guests may take in the views, the drinks and the bites during “Sky High Happy Hour,” debuting at 108 Drinks and 108 Eats in The STRAT SkyPod on Tuesday, May 11. The all-new happy hour with fabulous views will feature two-for-one SkyPod admission access and two-for-one cocktails at 108 Drinks, situated 829-feet above the Las Vegas Valley. Complemented by floor-to-ceiling windows revealing stunning views, happy hour bites will be available at 108 Eats, located directly adjacent to 108 Drinks. Full menus at both 108 Drinks and 108 Eats will be available during Sky High Happy Hour, which runs 3-7 p.m., Monday through Thursday. Also, the resort offers free self-parking and valet.
THE NEVADA ROOM IS OPENING FOR DINNER: The Vegas Room is about to get a new sibling, The Nevada Room, which will be in the same building in the historic Commercial Center toward Sahara Avenue and across the parking lot from Lotus of Siam. Opening Tuesday, May 18 at 5 p.m. for dinner will be the first phase of a two-pronged food and entertainment expansion for the proprietors of The Vegas Room. First will be the piano bar bistro, serving food in a retro Vegas setting, always combined with live background music and a grand piano. Highlights of the menu will be signature deep-fried potatoes, homemade soups and salads, sandwiches on fresh house made breads, stuffed bundle burgers, pastas, scrumptious desserts, and much more. The Nevada Room Supper Club will open in early July for dinner and complimentary live music. While The Vegas Room continues to present intimate “in your living room” entertainment, The Nevada Room will feature trios, quartets, jazz and soul brunches, and even dancing. The Nevada Room Piano Bar Bistro will be open after performances at both The Nevada Room and The Vegas Room for late-night food, drink and live music.
BURLESQUE HALL OF FAME TO PARTICIPATE IN BLUE STAR MUSEUMS: The Burlesque Hall of Fame will join museums nationwide in participating in the Blue Star Museums program, which is an initiative providing free admission to our nation’s active-duty military personnel and their families up to five members this summer. The 2021 program will begin on Armed Forces Day, Saturday, May 15 and end on Labor Day, Monday, Sept. 6. The burlesque world has always had a special relationship with the U.S. military with performers like Gypsy Rose Lee, Ann Corio, Mae West, and Sherry Britton, who travelled the world with the USO, posed for pinups, led book drives for overseas service members, and entertained troops around the country. The Burlesque Hall of Fame is located at 1027 S. Main Street, #110. They are currently open Tuesday, Friday, and Saturday 11 a.m.-5 p.m. with limited admissions per hour.
Dirty Dick’s Last Resort will hold its grand opening Thursday, May 13 at Neonopolis downtown on Fremont Street. Travis Scott and his CACTI Agave Spiked Seltzer took over Marquee Dayclub last weekend. The rapper enjoyed CACTI cocktails in a grand cabana while taking in the sounds of DJs Chase B and Eric DLux. Then he and a group of friends continued the night with dinner at Beauty & Essex. Emporium Arcade Bar at AREA15, the lively new bar known for its classic arcade games and colorful artistic ambiance, now offers four free game tokens for residents with a valid Nevada I.D. during locals’ nights, which are every Monday and Tuesday, 4 p.m. to midnight. Emporium Arcade Bar offers guests a variety of games, including classic arcade favorites, pool tables, pinball, foosball and more. Open daily for guests 21 years or older, Emporium Arcade Bar is free to enter but guests must reserve a free general admission ticket to AREA15 online. This month at the immersive art experience “Wink World: Portals Into The Infinite” inside AREA15 hosted a live painting event with artist Alex Aliume creating under blacklight, “Eye of Eternity.” Aliume is known for his psychedelic artwork featured on the Wink World façade and in the Wink World gallery located in the main hallway leading into the infinity rooms. Aliume is most famously known as the creator of cosmic UV glow-in-the-dark, 3-D psychedelic art.
LITTLE VEGAS CHAPEL OFFERS FREE MAY 31 WEDDINGS TO MILITARY: The Little Vegas Chapel is offering free weddings to active-duty members of the military this Memorial Day, May 31.The wedding package valued at $129 includes a ceremony, chapel, wedding music, professional photography, private online gallery, the use of a silk bouquet and boutonniere, an officiated marriage license, up to five guests, with a wedding coordinator and witness provided if needed. Package does not include the minister’s cash only donation starting from $60. If a couple is interested in upgrading to another wedding package, they can apply a $129 credit to any other package. Call 702-385-5683 to book.