BRETT’S VEGAS VIEW
Contributed by Jackie Brett
BINION’S IS ADDING RETRO-ROOMS AND NEW CIRCULAR BAR: The historic Binion’s property is joining the exciting changes taking place in Downtown Las Vegas on Fremont Street. Hotel room construction and the bar will be completed by summer. For starters, after a decade of the hotel rooms being closed, they will be renovated and open as Hotel Apache with a nod to the resort’s rich history. The “historic and haunted” boutique hotel will feature 81 rooms with vintage-style furnishings reminiscent of the original Hotel Apache which opened in 1932. Retro-style elements will include hardwood floors, lace curtains, stained-glass windows completed with today’s flat screen TVs and USB cords. Workers have reported experiencing paranormal activity and the hotel has been featured on popular ghost-hunting television shows so “haunted” will be part of its charm. The property will be expanding with the addition of the new circular Whiskey Licker Up bar and restaurant overlooking Fremont Street Experience’s 1st Street stage. The 6,500-square-foot venue will have a centerpiece rotating bar and a balcony extending 12 feet past the face of the building and feature food, drinks, dancing, live entertainment and a mechanical bull.
BIG WHISKEY’S WILL OPEN IN TOWN SQUARE: After nearly 13 years in the Midwest, Big Whiskey’s American Restaurant & Bar is making its way west and debuting in Town Square on Tuesday, Feb. 19. The venue has a relaxed atmosphere appealing to sports enthusiasts, whiskey devotees since there are more than 150 whiskeys on-hand, and a family night out. Open for lunch, happy hour, dinner or late night, the menu is an updated version of classic American cuisine helmed by Executive Chef Ralph Robinette, known as “Chef Rob.” Special gluten-friendly and vegan items are also available. Some of the menu items include: Buffalo Chicken Wontons; Sriracha Steak Street Tacos; Impossible Burger; Impossible Bolognese; as well as desserts Not YourGrandma’s Pecan Pie; Banana Whiskey Foster; Fleury Float; and liquid indulgent Gruden Glory. A special happy hour menu, including half-off food and $3 off select drinks, is available Monday through Friday 3 to 6 p.m. and Sunday through Wednesday 10 p.m. to closing.
GEORGE CLINTON VISITS BROOKLYN BOWL ON HIS FINAL TOUR: George Clinton will return to Brooklyn Bowl with his “One Nation Under a Grove” tour on Sunday, Aug. 18 with the legendary Parliament Funkadelic. Capping off more than 50 years of touring and recording, his visit will be the last stop on his final tour before he retires. General admission tickets are $49.50. Joining P-Funk for Clinton’s send-off are Dumpstaphunk, Fishbone, and Miss Velvet & The Blue Wolf, all of whom put their busy schedules on pause to hit the road with the Grammy-winning pioneer of Funk, Hip Hop, and Rock ‘n’ Roll. P-Funk’s current veteran lineup has been with Clinton for more than 30 years. Now the group includes many younger generations of Clinton’s family who are set to keep the legacy moving forward. The tour coincides with Clinton and P-Funk receiving a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Grammys in May.
A TREE WILL LIGHT UP ON THE STRIP: The Gazillionaire broke the soil outside his tent at Caesars Palace, where “Absinthe” performs nightly, to plant the ABSINTHE Electric Oak™. The new visual attraction will feature 120,000 LED leaves of ever-changing color and become the 35-feet high centerpiece of the champagne garden taking shape this spring. The space is where the Gazillionaire will entertain ticketholders and onlookers and carry out even more of his antics.
HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY – CELEBRATE WITH MURDER: Getting a dinner reservation on Feb. 14 may be a challenge. You might consider a different route “Marriage Can Be Murder” at the D Las Vegas downtown. Make it a “killer” Valentine’s Day with a three-course dinner including a pre-killing course, main corpse and death by sugar dessert while participating in a comedy murder mystery show at 6:30 p.m. Tickets start at $89.03.
RON COURY’S LIFE IS BASIS FOR BOOK ‘TENANCITY’: Recently a book launch for Las Vegas-resident Ron Coury’s book “Tenancity” was held at Cili Restaurant. Coury was born and raised in Brooklyn, N.Y., and following two years in the U.S. Marine Corps landed in Las Vegas in 1973. He has been a casino dealer, realtor, partner in restaurants and gaming bars, major graphics and glass companies, and several automobile dealerships throughout the western United States. Coury has had many battles to conquer including a barrage of constraints including political and police corruption, bribery, coercion and even death threats. However, surviving cancer gives one a new perspective.
CAESARS ENTERTAINMENT AND RAIDERS CREATE HISTORIC PARTNERSHIP: Caesars Entertainment Corporation is the first founding partner of the Las Vegas Stadium. This deal allows the gaming company to host a branded stadium entrance and drop off zone, digital signage, media, radio and print assets in addition to alumni, player and cheerleader appearances. The 65,000-seat stadium will bring 520,000 people to home games each year, when it opens for the 2020 NFL season. The historic partnership also marks the first Raiders team deal with a gaming and hospitality company, providing select Caesars Entertainment customers and Total Rewards members access to exclusive experiences like the customized Caesars-branded Owners Suite at the 50-yard line of the Las Vegas stadium, VIP dinners on the field, training facility events, fantasy camp participation, stadium tours, along with tickets to home games and most stadium events. Las Vegas Raiders owner Mark Davi and president Marc Badain presented Caesars president and CEO Mark Frissora and CMO Chris Holdren with commemorative jerseys. In addition to the partnership with the Raiders, Caesars is the first-ever Official Casino Sponsor of the National Football League.
SANTOS GUISADOS TACOS & BEER OPENS DOWNTOWN: Santos Guisados Tacos & Beer, Las Vegas’ first guisado taco shop, opened this month downtown at 616 E. Carson Avenue. The décor for the 40-seat restaurant draws its inspiration from Mexican churches showcasing traditional and non-traditional Mexican saint and angel décor highlighted by playful celebrity saint candles. An entire wall is illuminated in candlelight, and there’s a mural by local artist José “Killz” Lopez. With Santos, Las Vegas hospitality veteran, Eduardo Cordova pays homage to the homestyle dishes he enjoyed while growing up in Mexico, featuring a taco format made with homemade tortillas. The eatery opens daily at 11 a.m.
CELEBRATE BLACK HISTORY MONTH AT SPRINGS PRESERVE: The Springs Preserve will hold its annual Black History Month Festival on Saturday, Feb. 16 from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. The event celebrates the contributions of African-Americans to our community with live music, soul food from local restaurants, dance performances, cultural art and gift items, a historic Black Las Vegas photo exhibit, activities for the kids including arts and crafts, carnival games and face-painting. Cost is $4 to $6.
HAWAIIAN SPIRIT ON DISPLAY AT SIGNATURE GALLERY: Las Vegas-based artist Ka’iulani Wahinenoilama known as KAI was discovered by the world-renowned Marine Life artist – Wyland – who recognized her talent sculpting extreme cakes on the reality television series “Cake Boss” and encouraged her to transform her talent to painting and permanent sculpting. KAI’s “Color of Love” exhibition, which is dedicated to her late Hawaiian grandmother Pualani, is being featured this month at the Signature Gallery at Grand Canal Shops at The Venetian. KAI is a Hawaiian artist born in Utah. Being from the family of the famous singer Don Ho, she grew up in a culture filled with artful music and her style emanates her culture and expresses the vibrant Aloha Spirit. KAI is one of the very first artists to have an exhibit on display at a Smithsonian Natural History Museum.
RAP ARTIST LIL BABY WILL VISIT HOUSE OF BLUES: Atlanta rapper, Lil Baby, whose career was launched in 2017, will appear with the New Generation Tour at House of Blues at Mandalay Bay on Friday, March 22 featuring supporting acts City Girls and Blueface. Tickets start at $42.50. Lil Baby went from a series of mixtapes to collaborating with Drake on his first full-length release, “Harder Than Ever,” featuring the hit single, “Yes Indeed.” While his friends were thriving in the music industry, at age 19 Lil Baby went to prison for a probation violation. Upon release, his first mixtape, “Perfect Timing” dropped featuring cameos from popular rappers, Lil Yachty, Young Thug and Gunna. The mixtape immediately brought fame. Most recently, the rapper released “Drip Harder,” a collaborative mixtape with Gunna reaching number four on the Billboard 200.
GOLDEN TIKI CELEBRATES SECOND ANNIVERSARY: The Golden Tiki located in Chinatown will host its second anniversary with a Don The Beachcomber’s birthday party on Friday, Feb. 22 starting at 6 p.m. Festivities will include food specials, surprise entertainers, guest bartenders doing their own twists on Donn Beach classics, and the unveiling of Donn Beach’s shrunken head. Special cocktails will be offered for $10. Admission and parking are free. Guests are encouraged to dress in Hawaiian shirts and tiki wear. Beach was born Ernest Raymond Beaumont Gantt in 1907. Texas native Beach traveled the Caribbean and South Pacific, briefly working as a bootlegger, before opening the original Don’s Beachcomber in Hollywood in 1933. He is credited with creating cocktails including the Zombie, Tahitian Rum Punch, one version of the Mai Tai, and the Navy Grog even though he was a Major in the Air Force. One of the participating bartenders will be Jeanie Grant from San Francisco’s famed Pagan Idol, where she is bar manager. She currently holds the titles of reigning Iron Tikitender and Miss Speed Rack California.
KARMA AND LUCK IS ABOUT UNITING CULTURES: Karma and Luck is a Las Vegas-based modern spiritual lifestyles brand, which in two-and-a-half years has 13 locations on the Strip, connects people through fashion, jewelry and exquisite home décor. The company’s message “uniting cultures” and celebrating diversity by introducing the West to the beautiful spiritual customs and iconic symbols of the Middle East and Far East. The signature store at the Fashion Show mall was launched last August. The Las Vegas resident-owner Vladi Bergman travels the world to bring all customs from the East under one roof. For example, every single purchase made at Karma and Luck, whether in store or online, undergoes a takeaway blessing in a Tibetan Singing Bowl ritual to bless its merchandise before it leaves the store. Another practice is Sage Smudging Ceremonies opening each location daily. Smudging sage gives way for positive vibrations to permeate the stores and merchandise while positively elevating the moods and vibrations of those who share in the Karma and Luck experience. Karma and Luck is rapidly expanding. The Las Vegas company just opened a huge warehouse on Russell and Eastern to get ready for national expansion.
Family-owned and operated, Bok Bok Chicken has opened its third Las Vegas location since debuting the Mediterranean concept last August. The business is planning two more locations later this year with one being in Town Square. Being family focused, the eatery serving fresh-casual fare offers for dine-in only a Family Day every Saturday where kids receive a free kid’s meal with a purchase of a regular adult plate. Children must be 12 years or younger only. PT’s Entertainment Group’s newest PT’s Gold at 10520 S Las Vegas Blvd. will hold a celebration including an extended happy hour from 5 to 10 p.m. and giveaways, beginning at 6 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 21. At The LINQ Promenade, ameriCAN will be honoring past leaders with a “Drinkin’ Like Lincoln” special, Feb 16-18 from open to close and $5 domestic beers. The venue houses nearly 70 beers from across the country including several from Abe’s home-state of Illinois. Beer Park at Paris will host a rooftop viewing party for the basketball All-Star game with beer bucket specials including five bottles of Budweiser for $35 starting at 5 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 17. Ferraro’s Italian Restaurant & Wine Bar will feature wines from the Castello Banfi winery for its next Taste & Learn event on Saturday, Feb. 23 at 5 p.m. Guests will enjoy small plates prepared by Chef DiCaudo paired four different wines. All-inclusive tickets are $75; call 702-364-5300. Papa John’s through February is partnering with Three Square Food Bank to fight hunger in Southern Nevada. By using the code THREESQUARE, Papa John’s customers will save 30 percent on all regular menu priced online orders. In addition, Papa John’s will donate 10 percent of those orders to Three Square.
MARGARITA DAY CELEBRATIONS
National Margarita Day on Friday, Feb. 22 will not go unnoticed in Las Vegas. Here are some drink highlights: a smoked Casamigos Blanco Margarita at the new Smoked Burgers & BBQ in The Forum Shops at Caesars Palace; Strip-side Cabo Wabo Cantina at the Miracle Mile Shops with a sharable jumbo margarita in a 50-ounce souvenir glass for $19 during happy hour 3 to 5 p.m.; Beer Park at Paris offering the Grand Slam Peacharita, a next-level margarita $11 by a glass and $44 in a 64-ounce pitcher; La Comida downtown with a selection of signature margaritas priced at $5 from 3-6 p.m.; Therapy also downtown promoting fishbowl five-shot margaritas for $20 and $12 specialty margarita cocktails; and Pancho’s Mexican Restaurant in Downtown Summerlin having the Cadillac “Naughty Maggie” Margarita for $11.75.
CHILDREN’S MUSICAL ‘PJ MASKS LIVE!’ RETURNS TO ORLEANS ARENA: The children’s musical production “PJ Masks Live!” will return to the Orleans Arena on Tuesday, Feb. 26 at 6 p.m. with the all-new show, “PJ Masks Live! Save the Day.” Based on Disney Junior’s animated TV series “PJ Masks!,” the live production follows the nighttime adventures of three heroic friends, Catboy, Owlette and Gekko, as they save the day from villains, along with the show’s newest character, bot friend PJ Robot. Tickets start at $25.
The Backstreet Boys, the best-selling boy band of all time, continue to celebrate their popular Las Vegas-residency at Zappos Theater at Planet Hollywood by hosting official concert after-parties with new dates at Chateau Nightclub & Rooftop at Paris starting at 10:30 p.m. Saturdays, Feb. 16 and 23. General admission to the popstars’ parties starts at $40. Entertainer and Las Vegas-resident, Rick Michel is recognizing worldwide “Act of Kindness Day” Sunday, Feb. 17 with a song he’s written and recorded called “An Act of Kindness.” Some words in the chorus say it clearly, “Think of folks before yourself and wonderful things will happen; Pay it forward is an act, an act of kindness.” A Las Vegas resident turned a visit to the Eastside Cannery into a $211,720 payday when he won the progressive jackpot playing EZ Pai Gow Poker™ this month. By betting a $1 progressive side bet, the winner scored $211,720 with a seven-card straight flush. He parlayed an additional $5 bet into a bonus side bet prize of $5,000. The Nevada Interscholastic Activities Association (NIAA) Basketball Tournament will bring high school hoops highlighting players from around Nevada competing for their class titles at the Orleans Arena on Thursday, Feb. 28 through Saturday, March 2. Tickets are $12 for adults; $7 for students; $5 for seniors (62 and older); and free for children eight years old or younger.