BRETT’S VEGAS VIEW
Contributed by Jackie Brett
STATION CASINOS WILL OPEN NEW WILDFIRE CASINO ON FREMONT: Station Casinos is unveiling plans for its new Wildfire Casino location on Fremont set to open in early February. The property will offer unmatched gaming options, an STN Sports book, and popular food outlets IHOP and local Mexican eatery Tacos El Pastor. Crews have already installed exterior signage on the building. The all-new 21,000-square-foot casino will feature more than 200 of the latest and most popular slot machines, plus bar-top gaming and electronic table games. In addition to a lively bar, Wildfire Casino will feature an STN Sportsbook for prime sports viewing and will serve as a location for account activation, over the counter, and kiosk wagering. Wildfire located at 2700 E. Fremont will offer convenient, always-free parking, friendly team members, and the connectivity of the Boarding Pass network. Wildfire Gaming is a collection of local-friendly taverns and small casinos conveniently located throughout the valley.
‘THE IMMERSIVE NUTCRACKER’ BRINGS HOLIDAY MAGIC TO THE STRIP: Lighthouse Immersive, the innovators behind the “Immersive Van Gogh” exhibition seen by more than 5 million people across North America, has brought holiday magic to families with “The Immersive Nutcracker, A Winter Miracle” running through Jan. 3 at Lighthouse ArtSpace at The Shops at Crystals adjacent to ARIA. Tickets to the experiential retelling of a young girl’s magical Christmas Eve journey start at $29.99 at immersive-nutcracker.com. “The Immersive Nutcracker, A Winter Miracle” saw its world premiere in Toronto in 2021 and was met with broad acclaim. This year on Nov. 19, the show premiered in 11 North America cities including Las Vegas. Based on E.T.A. Hoffman’s 1816 fairy tale “The Nutcracker and the Mouse King,” “The Nutcracker” has become a holiday classic, taking the form of ballets, films and more. “The Immersive Nutcracker” is the newest rendition using the latest projection mapping technology to chronicle Marie and her beloved toy nutcracker who comes to life to battle the Mouse King and then takes her on an enchanting adventure across a holiday-themed dreamscape with animated characters, young children and world-renowned ballet dancers Denis Rodkin and Eleonora Sevenard. This joyful 30-minute, 360-degree immersive experience introduces children to the art of ballet and captivating storytelling. Set to the sweeping music of Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky, this visual exploration encompasses visitors in more than 500,000 cubic feet of projections composed of over 1 million frames of video, curating a grand immersive display. The projection features beloved scenes set to their classical scores like “The March of the Toys,” “The Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy” and more.
SANDBOX VR WILL OPEN SECOND LAS VEGAS VENUE: Miracle Mile Shops has announced Sandbox VR will open its second location on the Strip within the shopping, dining and live entertainment venue located at Planet Hollywood. The first one in town opened in 2021 in the Grand Canal Shoppes at The Venetian®. Sandbox VR is now operating in 30 locations across seven countries. The global leader in free-roam virtual reality experiences is expected to open in spring of 2023. Sandbox VR uses a combination of full-body motion capture and VR technologies to deliver unprecedented realism and complete immersion which is not possible with home VR systems or other location-based VR venues. Players experience exhilarating, and unforgettably immersive gameplay when they fend off zombie hordes, enter a world of swashbuckling adventure, soar into the clouds in a space elevator or compete against one another in a futuristic combat arena. Open during the remodel, Miracle Mile Shops current extensive interior and exterior renovations include elevated finishes throughout, upgraded technology and digital design elements, which should be completed in spring 2023.
SHRUNK3D PREPARES FOR THE HOLIDAYS WITH TWO LOCATIONS: Shrunk3D Las Vegas, the first fully mobile 3D photo booth is ready to revolutionize gift-giving this holiday season by offering custom-made 3D replicas at the North Premium Outlets through Dec. 31 and The Orleans Arena in December through 2023 for select events. The Orleans Arena customers can also schedule the mobile booth to come directly to them for both individual appointments and events. Perfect for the holidays, Shrunk3D can create custom holiday ornaments or sitting/standing figurines of kids, pets or family. The figurines are detailed, durable and range in size from 4” to 9”. Prices start at $99 for individuals and up depending on size and number of people. The patented Shrunk3D technology works like with the customer or group stepping inside the first fully mobile 3D photo booth. Next is striking a pose and 190 images are taken. The images are converted into 3D using Shrunk3D Booth™ software and sent to a printer. The custom-made 3D replica is mailed directly to the consumer within weeks. Shrunk3D is the world’s first fully mobile 3D scanning photo booth. Named Franchise of the Month in “Franchise Journal,” Shrunk3D is one of the fastest-growing national mobile franchises in the United States.
NEW ADDITIONS ANNOUNCED FOR PROPER EATS AT ARIA: Clique Hospitality has announced three new additions to Proper Eats, the company’s elevated food hall opening this winter at Aria. Laughing Buddha, Easy Donuts and Proper Bar, each created by Clique, will join the resort’s collection of global cuisine and cocktail offerings including Seoul Bird, Wexler’s Deli, Shalom Y’all, Pizzaoki and more. Laughing Buddha will emphasize traditional Japanese fare and be home to steamy, delectable ramen noodles and fragrant broths. Easy Donuts will be a charming coffee and donut shop with craft coffees and an array of specialty donuts, including seasonal creations. At the heart of Proper Eats will sit the Proper Bar, complementing the cuisine surrounding it. With multiple seating options and an array of high-definition TVs, the bar will be a hub for the contemporary food forum. Proper Bar will be a destination in and of itself for sipping cocktails, wine or beer while taking in views of ARIA’s luxurious pool through floor-to-ceiling windows. These new additions will be joining culinary and cocktail offerings, including the first Seoul Bird outside of London; the only Wexler’s Deli outside Los Angeles; New York’s breakfast-centric Egghead by Tao Group Hospitality; Clique’s new Temaki, serving innovative handrolls and sushi dishes; Portland, Oregon favorite, Shalom Y’all; Steve Aoki’s Pizzaoki; and Lola’s Burgers.
TABLE 34 IS NOW UNDER NEW OWNERSHIP: Batch Hospitality, a hospitality group backed by decades of fine dining expertise, has acquired Table 34, a beloved local restaurant located at 600 E. Warm Springs Rd., #180. The restaurant is undergoing renovations and will unveil a reimagined design of both the interior and exterior when Table 34 reopens on Monday, Dec. 5. Table 34 first opened in 2004 and became a local favorite for lunch and dinner, serving gourmet American comfort food within a contemporary setting. Renovations will reveal a space awash in modern rustic charm, showcasing natural materials and dark, natural wood flooring juxtaposed by vibrant pop art along its walls. Guests will also be able to experience Table 34’s expanded bar, featuring new white granite countertops and 12 total bar seats, plus three adjacent cocktail tables. In addition, Table 34 will introduce a refreshed menu built on the restaurant’s roots in farm-to-table cuisine, plus a new wine list and contemporary bar program.
BELLAGIO CONSERVATORY CAPTURES HOLIDAY SPIRIT: Bellagio Conservatory & Botanical Gardens has unveiled its new holiday display titled, “Gingerbread Dreams, a Holiday Confection” inviting visitors to celebrate the sweetest and most wonderful time of the year 24 hours a day through Jan. 1. The new winter display is decked in holiday-trimmed botanicals and giant pastry elements, featuring a 42-foot-tall white fir tree sparkling with thousands of lights nestled among a snowy holiday village, a cozy gingerbread cottage and a bakeshop complete with elves and polar bear helpers. The display engages all five senses as a custom scent, “Gingerbread Dreams” fills the air. For the first time, the Conservatory will offer sweet holiday treats assorted gingerbread cookies, chocolates, popcorn, sweet confections and beverages for sale baked by Bellagio’s talented pastry chefs in the Conservatory alcove located behind the South Bed from 9 a.m.–9 p.m. daily. The West Bed highlights a snowy gingerbread village, majestic 42-foot-tall white fir tree, and toy choo-choo train. The North Bed features three giant stunning bejeweled eggs honoring House of Fabergé with a five-foot-tall real gingerbread house in the center of the largest egg. The East Bed has a life-sized gingerbread-style cottage anchored on the four corners by 14-foot-tall nutcracker guards on rotating platform drums. The South Bed has six hard-working Bellagio elves baking gingerbread cookies with five playful Coca-Cola polar bears warming by a giant fireplace. A large gingerbread clock chimes every hour. A few fun facts about this free holiday display: there are 140,000 Poinsettias; 15,000 gingerbread men, 8,700 ornaments on the tree; 13,250 white carnations; 800 pounds of faux white frosting used on the gingerbread cottage; and 41 fresh-cut white fir trees.
TIVOLI VILLAGE HOSTS SANTA’S EXPERIENCE INTERACTIVE ATTRACTION: Santa’s Experience returns this year to Tivoli Village with an expanded footprint. The family-friendly adventure for all ages is an interactive social media photo-op experience filled with a wide variety of festive scenes celebrating the season. The winter wonderland includes everything from a visit to the North Pole through the reindeer stables, an oversized gingerbread house, Santa’s workshop, a candy factory, nutcrackers, Whoville and the Grinch, and more. There’s a live Santa at the end of the tour, an opportunity to write and mail a letter to Santa, chance to try lumberjack axe throwing inside the North Pole Lodge or stop by the Stride Esports video game lounge. Tivoli Village is located at 350 S. Rampart Blvd. Tickets can be purchased online or at the door. Photo with Santa is included in admission prices. Hours through Dec. 18 Thursday-Friday 4-9 p.m., Saturday-Sunday 2-10 p.m.; Dec. 19-26 daily Monday-Friday 4-9 p.m. Christmas Eve and Day 2-10 p.m.; and Dec. 29-Jan. 1 Thursday-Friday 4-9 p.m. and New Year’s Eve and Day 2-10 p.m.
PLAZA HOSTS NFR RODEO EVENTS: The Plaza again serves as a hotel sponsor of the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo (NFR) and hosting numerous professional rodeo events throughout the property, including at its outdoor equestrian facility, the CORE Arena, Dec. 1-11. The professional rodeo events at the CORE Arena, which are free to attend, include Rope for the Crown Dec. 2-3; Big Time Barrel Racing Championships Dec. 4-6; Las Vegas Stars Tie-Down and Breakaway Dec. 4-9; and U.S. Shootout Finals Dec. 8-11. The Downtown Christmas Expo takes over the Plaza’s third floor convention space from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Dec. 1-10. The carefully curated shopping event features a diverse array of apparel and accessory designers, artisans, jewelers, and Western couture. Admission to the expo is free and parking is validated with a purchase. Also, free to attend, Ropesmart Ropes for The World Dummy Roping will be held in the entry hall of the Plaza’s convention space, Dec. 8-10. The Diamonds in the Desert Premier Horse Sale will be held in the Plaza’s showroom on Dec. 3. The public as well as horse brokers and buyers are invited to attend the sale featuring live and online bidding on 75 performance horses of all disciplines. Previews and meet and greets with the horses will occur Dec. 1–2 in the CORE Arena. A free rodeo watch party sponsored by American Hat Co. is held in the showroom Dec. 1-10 starting at 5:30 p.m. with nightly prizes and giveaways as well as special guest appearances.
MERCADITO TO CELEBRATE GRAND OPENING AT UNCOMMONS: UnCommons, the new 40-acre urban community in Southwest Las Vegas, will officially welcome Mercadito, a Cuban bodega, with its grand opening on Thursday, Dec. 1. Located at 6815 Tom Rodriguez St. Suite 110, Mercadito will kick off its opening celebrations with free sandwiches, a drawing to win Vegas Golden Knights game tickets for Dec. 21, and more special offerings. The 1,000-square-foot Cuban corner market will serve as a destination for the community, offering everything from everyday personal items to unique novelties. The bodega will offer Cuban staples such as cold and hot-pressed sandwiches, empanadas and pastries crafted by Chef Dennis Martinez Miranda, a Las Vegas resident who was born and raised in Cuba. Hours will be daily 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
POP-UP YUKON PIZZA OPENS FIRST BRICK AND MORTAR: After operating out of the Vegas Test Kitchen for the last two years, pizza concept Yukon Pizza is now brick and mortar, opening its doors inside the Huntridge Shopping Center at 1130 East Charleston Suite 160. With just 13 seats in the dining room, the space is welcoming and cozy, while a takeaway window offers quick service for individual slices and full pies. Yukon Pizza serves lunch and dinner from noon until 10 p.m. Wednesdays, Thursdays and Sundays, and noon to midnight Friday and Saturday in the dining room. For those craving a late-night snack, the slice window is open until 2 a.m. on weekends. The menu is full of its popular sourdough pizzas, sourdough battered bites, as well as sandwiches, salads, and rotating specials paired with packaged beer and wine from area partners Garagiste and Silver Stamp. Yukon Pizza’s story starts well beyond two years ago. Founder Alex White’s great-great-grandpa Gilbert started the family yeast culture during the Klondike Gold Rush in the Yukon Territories. From there, pieces of the starter were passed down through the generations, getting into White’s hands as a high school graduation gift and college send off. Yukon Pizza is ready to take the family’s sourdough starter to the next level.
DONATE A NEW UNWRAPPED TOY FOR FREE SHAKE AT SHAKE SHACK: Here’s an opportunity to shake up your holiday giving. Shake Shack locations at Downtown Summerlin, The District at Green Valley Ranch, and Las Vegas North Premium Outlets are accepting new and unwrapped toys through Monday, Dec. 12 in exchange for a voucher for a free standard (not seasonal) shake. Toys will be distributed by Wonder of Christmas to local families in need on Dec. 15 at the Cambridge Recreation Center.
FATBURGER OPENS INSIDE SAPPHIRE GENTLEMEN’S CLUB: Fatburger, The Last Great Handburger Stand™, is now open to the public inside of Sapphire Las Vegas, the world’s largest gentlemen’s club and adult entertainment complex. Fatburger Sapphire is located at 3025 Sammy Davis Jr. Dr. in Las Vegas, amid 70,000 square feet of topless entertainment, and is open Thursday through Sunday from 10 p.m. until close. Fatburger Sapphire serves Fatburger hamburgers, turkeyburgers, veggieburgers, plant-based offerings, served with a wide assortment of fresh condiments; steak fries; traditional bone-in chicken wings; real hand-scooped chocolate, vanilla and strawberry ice cream shakes. The restaurant also features a full breakfast menu with breakfast sandwiches, pancakes, Belgian waffles and more.
LOCALS WINNING AT AREA RESORTS: A local resident playing Pai-Gow Poker for the first time started the Thanksgiving holiday off winning more than $150,000 on Boyd Gaming’s regional linked Pai Gow Poker on Wednesday, Nov. 23. The player was at the Gold Coast with friends from Texas to have lunch at Ping Pang Pong. After lunch, his friends convinced him to give Pai-Gow Poker a try, and he drew a winning hand — a seven-card straight flush with an Ace-King in the hole, good for $152,768. A lucky player from North Las Vegas visited Aliante Casino and hit a $103,086.93 jackpot while playing Dancing Drums — a game created by Las Vegas-based, cross-platform games leader, Light & Wonder, Inc. The guest, who frequents Aliante often, placed a $8.80 bet on the multi-denomination machine before hitting a mega jackpot ahead of the holiday weekend. The player had been on a hot streak in November, hitting four major wins totaling more than $7,000 before scoring the big jackpot.