BRETT’S VEGAS VIEW
by Jackie Brett
GOLDEN ENTERTAINMENT BUYS STRATOSPHERE: Golden Entertainment is buying American Casino Entertainment Properties, which includes the Stratosphere, Arizona Charlie’s Decatur, Arizona Charlie’s Boulder and the Aquarius Hotel-Casino in Laughlin. Sale is expected to be completed by the end of the year. Golden Entertainment’s portfolio includes three casinos in Pahrump and 50 taverns, as well as slot routes in Nevada and Montana and a casino in Maryland.
FIRST ROBOTIC BAR WILL DEBUT AT MIRACLE MILE SHOPS: Tipsy Robot, the galaxy’s first land-based robotic bar, will open Friday, June 30 in the Miracle Mile Shops at Planet Hollywood. Tipsy Robot is the bar of the future showcasing precision mixology combined with robotic innovation. Tipsy Robot will be open 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. on weekdays and to midnight on weekends.
Two cocktail-shaking robots will interact with customers allowing them to order and customize cocktails via the bar’s tablets. The robots mirror the actions of human bartenders, from mixing and pouring, to the slicing of garnishes, and the choice of shaken versus stirred. Each beverage takes 70-90 seconds from order to completion.
The high-tech venue’s interior design will include metal mesh, corrugated steel, and an otherworldly cosmic-inspired video streaming on the bar’s nine big screens. Robots; however, won’t be running the entire operation. The “Galactic Ambassadors,” human staff, will complement the robot bartenders.
VEGAS VICKIE’S DEPARTURE MAKES WAY FOR NEW RESORT-CASINO: Vegas Vickie (or Vicky), the famous kicking cowgirl neon sign on Fremont Street and directly across from a male counterpart Vegas Vic who she “married” in 1994, was lowered from her perch last week to make room for a new resort-casino project by developer Derek Stevens, owner of the D Las Vegas. Stevens purchased land occupied by Las Vegas Club casino in 2014 to continue his vision of revitalizing the west side of Fremont Street Experience and later acquired Granite Gaming Group properties in 2016. The land for these properties will be used in the development of Downtown Las Vegas’ first resort-casino to be built from the ground up in decades.
Stevens assured everyone this won’t be the last we’ll see of Vegas Vickie for her future is still looking bright. Glitter Gulch’s neon sign was originally named Sassy Sally for the casino below her. She was designed by Ad-Art and put up in 1980. Her leg was supposed to kick out over Fremont Street but that never seemed to work.
MACHINE GUN HELICOPTERS IS NEW ADVENTURE TOUR: Machine Gun Helicopters (MGH) offers the only experience over the Nevada desert and privately owned 71-acre shooting range where civilians can shoot a fixed M249 (SAW) belt fed machine gun from a Eurocopter AS350 B2 A-Star helicopter, specially modified for aerial shooting. With guidance from MGH’s Helicopter Range Masters, guests can have this adrenalin rush with the Door Gunner package for $689. Spectator packages allow friends to watch from afar.
Participants undergo a comprehensive briefing and rehearsal of the shoot prior to getting in the helicopter in MGH simulator. Guests then engage in various static targets on the mountainside while looking down an EO Tech scope with a holographic reticle, which repositions itself based on the viewpoint of the shooter’s eye.
THE D IS OFFICIAL VEGAS GOLDEN KNIGHTS DOWNTOWN CASINO: The Golden Knights has a six-year exclusive sponsorship deal with the D Las Vegas. The announcement was made during a press conference on Third Street Stage at the Fremont Street Experience with the D Las Vegas’ CEO Derek Stevens, Mayor Carolyn Goodman, Vegas Golden Knights president Kerry Bubolz and coach Gerard Gallant.
The partnership will include: annual fan fest in off-season; special watch parties at the D; player appearances; official merchandise pop-up shop at the D, etc. In addition, Stevens announced he is making a $100K donation to jumpstart the Vegas Golden Knights Foundation.
DEANA MARTIN’S SHOW CELEBRATES HER FATHER’S 100TH BIRTHDAY: When Deana Martin returns to headline at the South Point Showroom on Friday and Saturday, June 23 and 24 at 7:30 p.m., her special show will be honoring her father Dean Martin, the King of Cool, on the anniversary of his 100th birthday. As part of her “Deana Sings Dino” concert series, the show will include special guests, some of the original Golddiggers and a mystery addition during the show through the “Surprise Guest Door.” Tickets start at $15.
One thing about Martin’s show is you get to hear fun stories about her father, who you can tell she adored. She recalls seeing her dad perform for the first time live when she was nine years old. “It was at the Copa Room at the Sands and they announced, direct from the bar Dean Martin,” she said. “The South Point room reminds me a lot of the magic back then.”
Her father was called the “King of Cool.” Martin recalls her dad never rehearsed. He had Lee Hale stand in for him at rehearsal with wearing a note on his chest that said “Dean.” Her memory is also of her father’s suits fitting him perfectly and that her grandmother was a seamstress so his style came naturally. Along with the stories, her “Deana Sings Dino” show highlights the legendary musical masterpieces keeping “The Great American Songbook” alive.
‘DEANA MARTIN CELEBRITY ROAST’ SET AT SOUTH POINT: Deana Martin’s weekend shows at South Point June 23-24 will precede the “Deana Martin Celebrity Roast” honoring the “Man of the Hour,” Dennis Bono on Monday, June 26 in the South Point Showroom at 6 p.m. The celebrity roast honors the singer, entertainer and host of “The Dennis Bono Show” on his 70th birthday. Martin said it will be reminiscent of her father’s famous TV roasts. She’s expecting rosters including Rich Little, Tony Orlando, Frankie Scinta, Clint Holmes and more folks TBA. Tickets start at $35.
A “Dennis Bono After Party” will be held in the Grandview Lounge with a show at 8 p.m. Tickets are $20. A combo buy is $50. Evening event proceeds will be given to Opportunity Village.
GREEN VALLEY RANCH REVEALS LARGE-SCALE RENOVATIONS: The AAA Four Diamond-rated Henderson destination Green Valley Ranch Resort, which opened in December 2001, has unveiled an array of large-scale renovations including the new hotel lobby area, new lobby bar and renovated suites.
The completely reimagined lobby went from an old-world Mediterranean style to a contemporary-influenced remodel. The all-new lobby features a separate resort entrance away from the casino floor and overlooks the property’s eight-acre backyard pool area. Design elements include: handmade chocolate brown and bronze wool rugs; brushed cream travertine floors from Peru; contemporary furniture covered in cream leather; accent pillows; polished cream marble and golden bronze tables; and contemporary art and accessories. Sophisticated black chandeliers with polished golden metal interiors strike a balance with the dark wood beams and chocolate-colored ceilings.
Just over 50 luxury suites have been transformed into a variety of Central California-inspired getaways ranging up to 1,500 square feet.
THE WEEKND WILL BRING ‘STARBOY’ TOUR TO T-MOBILE ARENA: Grammy Award®-winning and multi-platinum selling music artist The Weeknd has a second leg to his Starboy: Legend of the Fall 2017 World Tour, which will allow for a stop at T-Mobile Arena Saturday, Oct. 14 at 7:30 p.m. Gucci Mane and Nav will join The Weeknd for all U.S. dates. Ticket range is $39.75 to $175.75.
The Weeknd released his fourth full-length studio album, “Starboy,” last year on Nov. 25 through XO/Republic Records.
TEGAN AND SARA VISIT THE PEARL AT PALMS WITH THE CON X: TOUR: Grammy® nominated pop icon Tegan and Sara will celebrate the 10th anniversary of their hit album “The Con” with The Con X: Tour, which includes a stop at the intimate Pearl Concert Theater inside the Palms on Saturday, Oct. 21, 2017 at 9 p.m. The Canadian twin sisters will perform acoustic and intimate arrangements of all 14 of the album’s songs, followed by a selection of fan favorites. Ticket range is $39.50 to $79.50.
“The Con,” which Tegan and Sara co-produced with Chris Walla, a founding member of Death Cab for Cutie, was their first release to chart on the Billboard 200 and to appear on the Alternative Albums and Top Rock Albums charts. In Canada, “The Con” was nominated for a Juno Award and a Polaris Music Prize.
ANDREW W.K. WILL BRING HIS PARTY TOUR TO BROOKLYN BOWL: Party rock legend Andrew W.K. will bring his “The Party Never Dies” tour with a full band to Brooklyn Bowl at The Linq Promenade on Saturday, Sept. 30 at 7 p.m. General admission tickets start at $20.
In addition to live concerts, self-proclaimed “Real-Life Party God,” W.K. is a well-known new-age motivational speaker, entrepreneur and producer. In 2008, W.K. opened Santos Party House, a multi-level, award-winning music venue and dance club in New York City.
THE MOB MUSEUM’S NEW DISPLAY IS ‘MOB AT THE MOVIES: Now on display at The Mob Museum is a new exhibit “Mob at the Movies,” which explores how organized crime has been portrayed in popular culture.
One artifact with an interesting local connection is a 1952 poster from the film “The Captive City” featuring John Forsythe and Joan Camden. Senator Estes Kefauver, who held one of the 1950s U.S. Senate hearings into organized crime in the Museum’s courtroom, provided the epilogue to the film, which was filmed entirely in Reno.
Other artifacts on display include: “The Godfather” memorabilia; screen-worn suit from the television show “The Sopranos;” and posters from mob movies, movie lobby cards and more.
THE SPACE HAS ‘IMPROV INTERNATIONAL’ COMING IN JULY: In July, The Space will introduce “Improv International,” a full-force workshop designed for everyone not just actors to learn the importance of thinking on their feet. Classes will be taught by professional performers with years of experience including Las Vegas’ own Matt Donnelly and Lyndsey Hailey.
Prior to his stardom, Donnelly trained, performed, coached and taught at the Upright Citizen’s Brigade Theatre, The People’s Improv Theater, and The Magnet Theater in New York City. In Vegas, he performed in Wayne Brady’s “Making It Up” at The Venetian. Donnelly currently performs in “50 Shades: The Parody” at Bally’s as well as “Matt and Mattingly’s Bucket Show.” Donnelly just wrapped his third season as head comedy writer for “Penn & Teller: Fool Us” on the CW and is the co-host of “Penn’s Sunday School” and “Matt and Mattingly’s Ice Cream Social.”
As a comedic performer, Hailey has screen tested for “SNL” and performed throughout the U.S. and internationally. She has toured with The Second City Touring Company, iO’s Deltones, The iO’s Roadshow and her own sketch shows “30% Chance of Hailey” and “Shauman Noodles.” Hailey is currently the female emcee for “Magic Mike Live” at the Hard Rock.
Improv International will launch with a master class weekend workshop Friday and Saturday, July 21-22 from 1–4 p.m., followed by an intensive 6-8 week course. The cost of the weekend master class is $125 and limited to 20 students.
SCORPIUS DANCE THEATRE MAKES LAS VEGAS DEBUT: The internationally acclaimed Scorpius Dance Theatre will make its Las Vegas debut with a choreographers’ showcase at Charleston Heights Arts Center, 800 S. Brush St., on Saturday, July 15 at 7 p.m. Tickets are $24 for adults and $12 for children 17 and younger.
The showcase will feature modern and contemporary works created by the company dancers as well as new and popular pieces by director Lisa Starry. Combining mainstream dance and popular music, the production will appeal to both dance enthusiasts and those experiencing the art form for the first time.
POKER TOURNAMENT HELPS FIRE AND RESCUE PERSONNEL: The Don Vines Memorial No Limit Poker Tournament, a poker-for-a-cause annual public event, will take place Saturday, July 1 at Planet Hollywood on the main Mezzanine floor at 2 p.m. The cause benefits active and retired fire and rescue personnel through the nonprofit Vegas Fire and Rescue Charitable Association, Inc. (VFRCA). The $200 buy-in includes the chance to win tiered-cash prizes and the winner of the tournament is guaranteed a $10,000 seat to the World Series of Poker main event.
***ENTERTAINMENT FAST TRACK***
Golden Rainbow’s 31st annual “Ribbon of Life” will take place at the Tropicana Theater on Sunday, June 25 at 1 p.m. The fundraising “Ribbon of Life” is an original production featuring custom production numbers from the best singers, dancers and performers from premier shows on the Strip and live music again. This year’s show is appropriately titled “Reimagined” and it will feature Billboard Top 40 hits reimagined for this one-day-only performance.
“Man in Black: A Tribute to Johnny Cash” starring Shawn Barker will bring Cash’s classic hits to The Orleans Showroom on June 30 and July 1 at 8 p.m. Since 2005, Barker has performed his tribute show all over the world and recreated Cash’s sound and signature style down to his acoustic guitar and harmonica. Tickets start at $15.95.
***VARIETY OF EVENTS***
The Las Vegas Natural History Museum’s newest traveling exhibit created by Minotaur Mazes is Rainforest Adventure running through Monday, Sept. 4. Visitors explore one of the least known habitats on earth in a fully interactive maze exhibit, full of the sights and sounds of a tropical rainforest. Museum admission starts at $10 for adults.
Topgolf and the Southern Nevada Toyota Dealers Association have partnered to launch The Toyota Yard social hotspot featuring live music, entertainment and events. The Toyota Hole-In-One Challenge will be 3-5 p.m. on Saturday, June 24 at The Toyota Yard. The first 100 guests to sign up that day will get one shot to make a hole-in-one, and the winner will walk away with a brand new 2017 Toyota RAV4.
Celebrity magician, comedian Murray Sawchuck, and star of the “Murray the Magician” show at Planet Hollywood, now has his own likeness as a shrunken head at The Golden Tiki in Chinatown. Smithsonian artist Terry Barr created Sawchuck’s tiny facial version for the venue’s cabinet of curiosities.
The Casino Chip & Gaming Token Collectors Club, Inc. (CCGTCC) will hold its 25th annual Casino Collectables Convention at South Point June 22-24 opening at 9 a.m. each day and closing at 5, 4 and 3 p.m. respectively. Vendors have casino chips and memorabilia. Open to the public, entrance fee is $10 on Thursday, $5 on Friday and free on Saturday.
The National Atomic Testing Museum will host multi-disciplinary scientist and television personality Ben McGee on Friday, June 30 at 6 p.m. for his lecture, “Nuking Asteroids,” as part of Asteroid Day 2017. McGee’s vast professional experience includes geology and geophysics, space science, hydrology and radiation science/health physics. Tickets are $5 and free for museum members
It’s time again for Las Vegas Restaurant Week, June 19-30, with many Strip resort and local restaurants presenting special menu items with a portion of the proceeds going to benefit a great cause Three Square Food Bank.
Honoring National Lobster Day, which was June 15, The Palm restaurant has brought back its summer tradition of serving a four-pound lobster dinner for two with two starters and one family-style side for $99. This special will run through Aug. 16.
Alizé at the Top of Palms is holding a “Meet the Chef” dinner to introduce new executive chef, Joshua Bianchi, on Friday, June 30 at 6:30 p.m. The five-course dinner will showcase his new dishes and takes on classic Alizé fare. Chef Bianchi was the opening chef for Drai’s Beachclub Las Vegas and Drai’s Vancouver. The dinner is $170.
In honor of celebrated Chef Gordon Ramsay’s new FOX show “The F Word,” Gordon Ramsay Burger at Planet Hollywood is serving a special “F Word” Burger, which will be offered daily throughout the run of the show.
Buffet of Buffets is a culinary tour offered at Caesars Entertainment’s Las Vegas resorts. Guests pay one price and get access to up to five buffets in a 24-hour period for $49.99 for Total Rewards members and $10 more for non-members. Upgrades are available to visit the premium Bacchanal Buffet at Caesars Palace or have the expanded seafood option at Carnival World & Seafood Buffet at the Rio.