BRETT’S VEGAS VIEW
Contributed by Jackie Brett
U WILL PERFORM FIRST CONCERTS AT MSG SPHERE: U2 will be the first group to perform at the MSG Sphere at The Venetian when the $1.8 billion high-tech arena opens next year in 2023. U2’s concerts at the venue will be part of a residency that will be spread out over several months and be performed on non-consecutive days. U2 is the second highest-grossing touring band of all time behind The Rolling Stones. The massive entertainment venue is being built by Madison Square Garden Entertainment (MSGE) as what is described as the next generation of live entertainment, offering fans a multi-sensory experience of sound and light inside the largest spherical structure ever created. For concerts, the MSG Sphere at The Venetian can hold 20,000 standing spectators or 17,500 seated guests, with 23 VIP suites. The Sphere will include 160,000 square feet of video viewing space, state-of-the-art spatial audio and an exterior exosphere changing the building’s look via fully programmable LED technology. It will connect to the Venetian Resort via an approximately 1,000-foot-long pedestrian bridge. A second MSG Sphere is being planned in London and was given a green light by local officials to begin construction in March.
TOCA MADERA IS OPENING: Toca Madera Las Vegas, a modern Mexican steakhouse, will open Tuesday, Aug. 9, nestled in the courtyard between Aria and The Shops at Crystals in space formerly housing Todd English Pub. The dining experience helmed by Noble33 co-founders Tosh Berman and Mikey Tanha is Toca Madera’s third location featuring a 220-seat restaurant with a spacious lounge and speakeasy. Hours are daily 4 p.m. to midnight Sunday-Wednesday and until 1 a.m. Thursday-Saturday. Las Vegas can expect an elevated, high-energy atmosphere featuring upscale dining and nightly live entertainment. Toca Madera will debut a new menu, soon to be shared across all locations. Toca Madera’s signature design by Monochrome is inspired by the restaurant’s Mexican cuisine reimagined into a modern, organic aesthetic. Bold architectural elements combined with warm luxurious finishes of handcrafted custom woodwork, plush velvet upholsteries, intimate lighting, and biophilic design create a transcending multi-sensory dining experience in an encapsulating 10,000 square feet. Highlights include “The Bird’s Nest,” an immersive art piece serving as the restaurant’s grand entry point with a nest-like structure featuring rich green trees and a reflecting pond. One-of-a-kind art pieces and photography commissioned by Monochrome include works from Sonny Matson.
ATOMIC RANGE GOING UP NEXT TO THE STRAT: Atomic Range, a production of Flite Golf and located at The STRAT, will be an premier golf entertainment destination offering an immersive, technology-enhanced experience through game play and entertainment. Costing approximately $70 million, Atomic Range will span nearly seven acres, rise four stories and host 103 separate hitting bays when it opens in 2023. It will also include four bars, meeting space, and a 12,000-square-foot Astrocade. Pursuant to the terms of the agreement, The STRAT’s owner Golden Entertainment will contribute seven acres of undeveloped real estate to Flite Golf and will share in the gross revenue generated by Atomic Range under a lease arrangement. Flite Golf will be responsible for all Atomic Range development and operating costs, which will leverage Flite Golf’s next-generation technology. Flite Golf has partnered with Century Golf, which has managed more than 500 golf facilities worldwide, to operate Atomic Range.
‘TOKYO VICE DEN’ IS POP-UP AT RESORTS WORLD: Famous Food Street Eats’ discreet speakeasy, Here Kitty Kitty Vice Den, is hosting a pop-up cocktail experience, “Tokyo Vice Den,” with award-winning Japanese spirits brand House of Suntory. The resort’s elegantly grunge hideaway has transformed into a must-see, must-experience destination filled with Japanese-inspired décor and expertly crafted cocktails. “Tokyo Vice Den” now welcomes guests to a laidback hangout where they can indulge in specialty House of Suntory cocktail selections. Hours are daily, Sunday-Thursday 4:30 p.m.–late and Friday-Saturday 3 p.m.–late now through Oct. 1.
BRUNO MARS PLANNING PINKY RING LOUNGE AT BELLAGIO: News is spreading to look for superstar Bruno Mars to bring a new lounge, The Pinky Ring by Bruno Mars, to Bellagio in space occupied by the Lily Bar & Lounge, which took over in 2012. Mars has a long-standing relationship with MGM Resorts, owners of Bellagio, Park MGM where he has a current residency as part of Silk Sonic, and The Mirage, which was recently sold to Hard Rock International.
SEVEN OH BREW PRESENTS INAUGURAL OKTOBERFEST THIS FALL: Seven Oh Brew will bring an authentic Oktoberfest to Las Vegas from Thursday, Sept. 29 to Sunday, Oct. 2 at The Orleans Arena Festival Grounds. This inaugural brouhaha will celebrate all things of German culture with an array of authentic foods, entertainment and activities. Tickets are on sale now at Oktoberfest. Vegas. Through Aug. 6, a special Buy One Get One promotion is available with promo code BEER22. With the assistance of the German American Social Club, this event will be brought to life by the same team behind the annual holiday Glittering Lights held at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Seven Oh Brew is the sister company of Ivory Star Productions. Oktoberfest will feature multiple tents and stages, live music, family-friendly entertainment all day, contests, The Heineken Keg Course, keg tapping ceremonies, German-style beer and bites, local food trucks, German Learning Center with language lessons and bread-making experiences, The Maipole Village with activities and an authentic German marketplace, The Sauerkraut 5k fun run, a car and large truck show, Wine Garden and grape stomping, carnival rides, fireworks shows nightly, and ceremonial parade Sunday night.
STEAK ‘N SHAKE AND JAVA VEGAS WILL OPEN AT THE CANNERY: Steak ‘n Shake and Java Vegas will debut at the Cannery Casino Hotel in North Las Vegas in August. Steak ‘n Shake opened Monday, Aug. 1 and Java Vegas on Wednesday, Aug. 10. Steak ‘n Shake, which was founded in 1934 in Normal, Ill., will serve its well-known Steakburgers, milkshakes and fries. This includes classics such as the Western BBQ ‘n Bacon Steakburger and Frisco Melt to specialties like the Butter Double Steakburger. The milkshakes, made with real milk and fresh ingredients, are topped with whipped cream and a cherry. Flavors include everything from chocolate to banana, in addition to specialty shakes such as Oreo ® Cookie, Birthday Cake, Kit Kat ® and more. Hours will be 10:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. Sunday-Thursday and 10:30 a.m. to midnight Friday and Saturday. Java Vegas features hot and cold espresso creations, teas and juices. Those looking for light bites can also find sweat treats and locally baked pastries, including “Grizzly-sized” Bear Claws, warm Danish pastries, s’mores brownies and red velvet cupcakes, in addition to personal pizzas and other quick bites. This outlet is open daily from 11 p.m. to 3 p.m.
BELLAGIO DEBUTS THE GARDEN TABLE: The magnificent Bellagio Conservatory & Botanical Gardens unveiled one of Las Vegas’ most exclusive dining experiences. The Garden Table, available for brunch or dinner, is a table set within the spectacular beauty of Bellagio’s stunning floral masterpiece. The epicurean adventure features specialty pre-fixe menus crafted by the award-winning teams at Michael Mina Bellagio and Sadelle’s Café. The Garden Table will be available for all future Bellagio Conservatory displays with menus rotating seasonally to complement the design theme. The experience can accommodate up to six guests and reservation time is limited to two hours.
BELLAGIO GALLERY OF FINE ART INTRODUCES NEW EXHIBITION: “Caldonia: Concert and Film Posters from The Ralph DeLuca Collection” is the current exhibit at the Bellagio Gallery of Fine Art running through Oct. 2. Showcasing icons of American music, Caldonia features a collection of 44 vintage posters DeLuca collected over 20 years which advertise performances and films featuring African American musicians and actors from the 1920s into the 1970s. Named and curated by Serubiri Moses, Caldonia offers a window into an era of Black performance history which is slowly disappearing from public memory. This selection of promotional announcements highlights performers as wide-ranging as Otis Redding, Jackie “Moms” Maybley, Thelonius Monk and Aretha Franklin. Many of the posters are themselves rare, but their true value comes from their historical context. Taken together, they bring to life the networks of Black artists and Black-owned performing arts venues—known as the Chitlin’ Circuit—which launched the careers of now-household names who shaped American music history. The exhibition is named after “Caldonia,” an iconic love song by Louis Jordan, released in 1945 by Decca Records, and features film posters such as “Cabin in the Sky” 1943 featuring Ethel Waters and Lena Horne; and “St. Louis Blues” 1929, the only cinematic presentation of Bessie Smith. Caldonia features video footage and examples of music that inspired American sound. Tickets are $18 for adults; $15 for Nevada residents, seniors 65 and older, students, teachers and military. Children 5 and younger are free.
AIR SUPPLY HEADLINES ORLEANS SHOWROOM: Air Supply with members Graham Russell and Russell Hitchcock will perform at The Orleans Showroom on Friday-Saturday, Sept. 2 and 3 at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $59.95. Formed in 1975, the duo in their early career performed throughout Australia with hit singles like “Love and Other Bruises.” Air Supply later gained international recognition as the opening act for Rod Stewart’s North American tour. Their popularity skyrocketed with the release of “Lost in Love,” which sold more than two million copies. The album included hit songs “All Out of Love,” “Every Woman in the World” and “Lost in Love,” which topped global music charts including in Australia, the U.K. and United States. The soft rock group went on to release 30 albums. In 2008, the duo was named No. 83 on Billboard’s Top-100 musical acts of all time. They were also inducted into The Australian Recording Industry Association Hall of Fame in 2013.
NEW ZIPPY’S RESTAURANT BROKE GROUND: Zippy’s with a successful chain of restaurants in Hawaii is moving forward with plans to open a southwest Las Vegas restaurant at the northeast corner of Badura Avenue and Montessouri Street. Zippy’s offers food items like specialty chili, Korean fried chicken, noodle dishes, sushi, and other Island favorites. The Hawaii-based chain has at least 10 restaurants in Hawaii. This location will be the first in Las Vegas and state of Nevada. Initially the restaurant planned to open at the end of 2020 until the pandemic came along and created the pause. Since ground was broken in June, the countdown has begun.
‘GEORGE MICHAEL REBORN’ HEADLINES M PAVILION: “George Michael Reborn, A Tribute to WHAM!” starring Robert Bartko will appear at the M Pavilion on Saturday, Aug. 13 at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $15. With his live vocals, Bartko exudes the energy and passion of the late, great Michael in the 80s and 90s. He gets the crowd on the dance floor for “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go” and prompts standing ovations for his performance of “Careless Whisper.” A life-long fan of George Michael & Wham, it was during Bartko’s early high school years, when many people began to point out an incredible resemblance between him and Michael. In addition, being a singer in the drama club, Bartko had a voice sounding like Michael’s. Throughout the following years as a successful solo artist and producer, Bartko began imitating the star’s signature vocal stylings and dance moves. Soon after the passing of his idol, Bartko began dedicating his talents to pay tribute to the late superstar with a live tribute show complete with an extensive George Michael wardrobe, dancing and live vocals.
‘COCOMELON LIVE! JJ’S JOURNEY’ WILL VISIT ORLEANS ARENA: EMC Presents and Moonbug Entertainment will present “CoComelon Live! JJ’s Journey,” a live Broadway-style family musical experience with JJ and his friends at Orleans Arena on Monday, Oct. 10 at 6 p.m. Tickets start at $32.11. Inspired by CoComelon, the number one most-watched entertainment brand on YouTube, this interactive musical experience with more than 20 songs will have fans of all ages dancing in the aisles as they help JJ write a song for a show his family is putting together. The show will feature classic nursery rhymes and all-new original music. In this live stage show experience JJ learns that with a little help from your family and friends, you can make your dreams come true.
WALK-ON’S SPORTS BISTREAUX HAS NEW DAILY HAPPY HOUR SPECIAL: At Harrah’s, Walk-On’s Sports Bistreaux, a leading sports-themed restaurant with an underdog culture and a Louisiana inspired menu serving up breakfast, lunch, dinner, and sports, is introducing Happy Hour from 2–5 p.m. seven days a week. Additionally, Nevada locals with valid ID can receive 15% off any time they dine in at Walk-On’s. Happy Hour specials include $5 well cocktails and $5 domestic draft beers as well as a selection of starters offered for $10 each including Waffle Cheese Fries, Boneless Wings, Cheeseburger Sliders, and Spinach & Artichoke Dip. Based in Baton Rouge, Walk-On’s Sports Bistreaux was founded in 2003 by Brandon Landry, a former walk-on basketball player at LSU. Leaning on the true spirit of a walk-on and building a winning culture, the brand is rapidly expanding across the United States. Food and drinks made from scratch daily. Hours are 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday-Thursday and until 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday.
PEYOTE FIRES UP REVERSE HAPPY HOUR MENU: Peyote, Corner Bar Management’s elevated restaurant and patio located within the Fergusons Downtown Motel at 1028 Fremont Street, has flipped the script on happy hour with select bites and cocktails now available at the bar with special late-night prices Thursday through Saturday. From 9 to 10 p.m., reverse happy hour food selections available at the bar include papalonas, made with seasoned fries, mamalona sauce, pico de gallo and cotija for $7; chicken wings tossed in guajillo chili sauce topped with Mexican herb sour cream for $10; ceviche served with the tostada of the day for $6; and chicken wings tossed in guajillo sauce and herb crema drizzle for $10. From 9 to 11 p.m., late-night cocktail offerings include select beers and well drinks for $5; rosé on draft priced at $7; and craft cocktails on rotation for $8. Peyote, a desert oasis awash in a vibrant palette serving from-scratch cuisine with Latin influences, brings retro desert charm to the Fremont East District.
THE LITTLE VEGAS CHAPEL CELEBRATES NATIONAL COUPLE’S DAY: Despite recent controversy surrounding Elvis-themed weddings, the “King” is still alive and well at The Little Vegas Chapel, which is celebrating couples who “Can’t Help Falling in Love” this National Couple’s Day, Thursday, Aug.18 with a special discount on its most popular Elvis packages. Couples who wish to get married by the “King” between Monday, Aug.15 and Sunday, Aug. 21 can choose from three specially priced packages: Burning Love, Viva Las Vegas and Ultimate Vegas. The Little Vegas Chapel, which opened in 2013, is located at 1330 S. 3rd Street downtown.
LOCAL HITS PAI GOW POKER PROGRESSIVE JACKPOT AT THE ORLEANS: A Las Vegas local resident and regular player at The Orleans last week hit a Boyd Gaming’s regional linked Pai Gow Poker progressive jackpot for a payday of nearly $340,000. The winner, who requested to remain anonymous, was playing Face Up Pai Gow Poker with his wife late Friday afternoon when he hit a seven-card straight flush (two to eight of spades with a joker), capturing a Pai Gow Poker progressive jackpot of $338,703.99. He also placed a dragon bonus side bet winning an additional $5,000. Six Boyd Gaming destinations are participants in the Company’s regional linked Pai Gow Poker progressive, including The Orleans, Gold Coast, Aliante, Cannery, Sam’s Town and Suncoast. The huge win is the first Pai-Gow progressive jackpot since July 2021, when a lucky player won a $119,000 prize at The Orleans. The progressive jackpot has reset at $75,168.