BRETT’S VEGAS VIEW
Contributed by Jackie Brett
DOMINIQUE ANSEL BAKERY TO OPEN AT CAESARS PALACE: James Beard Award-winning pastry chef Dominique Ansel is set to bring his creative culinary talents to Caesars Palace with the opening of Dominique Ansel Las Vegas, slated to open in summer 2022. The bakery showcasing signature whimsical creations will be situated in a soon to be constructed space next to Gordon Ramsay Pub & Grill. With items baked fresh daily, there will be café-style seating as well as an extensive retail area for sweets to go. Chef Ansel is responsible for creating some of the most famous pastries in the world, including the Cronut®, which was named one of TIME Magazine’s “25 Best inventions of 2013.” Other signature items making their Las Vegas debut at the Las Vegas shop will include DKA (Dominique’s Kouign Amann), which is similar to a caramelized croissant, Cookie Shot – a warm shot glass-shaped chocolate chip cookie filled to order with homemade cold-infused Madagascan vanilla milk, and Frozen S’mores served on a smoked branch. For his prolific originality, Ansel was named the World’s Best Pastry Chef in 2017 by the World’s 50 Best Restaurants awards. “Food & Wine” has called him a “Culinary Van Gogh” while the “New York Post” coined him “the Willy Wonka of New York.” In 2011, Ansel opened his first shop in NYC’s Soho neighborhood with just four employees. In January 2020, he launched Dang Wen Li by Dominique Ansel in Hong Kong, and most recently in July 2021, he opened Dominique Ansel Workshop, a croissant counter inside of his pastry kitchens in NYC’s Flatiron neighborhood. Ansel has authored two cookbooks, “Dominique Ansel: The Secret Recipes” in 2014, and “Everyone Can Bake: Simple Recipes to Master & Mix” in April 2020.
EXOTICS RACING – SPEEDVEGAS CREATE MOTORSPORTS PARK: Beginning Nov. 29, Exotics Racing’s elite supercar driving experience will join forces with SPEEDVEGAS to create an exhilarating destination for motorsports enthusiasts. SPEEDVEGAS Motorsports Park will offer three major activities: Exotics Racing, Vegas Off-Road Experience, and Vegas Superkarts. SPEEDVEGAS opened its facility in 2015 on Las Vegas Boulevard South, 15 minutes from the Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas Sign. Its 20,000-square-foot, two-story welcome center features indoor and outdoor observation decks and meetings and event space for up to 500 guests. With a newly redesigned and renovated supercar racetrack, the 100-acre SPEEDVEGAS Motorsports Park will be home to Exotics Racing’s expert team of driving instructors and supercar fleet with more than 40 exotic cars, a freshly enhanced Vegas Off-Road one-mile track with nine challenging turns, three massive jumps, ramps and top speed capabilities, and the brand-new Vegas Superkarts outdoor go-kart track.
MIRACLE FLIGHTS LAUNCHES ‘LIGHTS FOR FLIGHTS’ PHOTO EXPERIENCE: Las Vegas-based national nonprofit Miracle Flights, which provides free air transportation to children and adults who need help reaching specialty medical care not available in their home communities, has launched of “Lights for Flights” this holiday season at Downtown Summerlin®. The interactive holiday family photo opportunity includes six oversized illuminated words – LOVE, JOY, HOPE, PEACE, SOAR and MIRACLE – which infuse the mission of Miracle Flights and now light up the holiday season. The lighted signs, placed at high-traffic locations throughout Downtown Summerlin, will be illuminated through Dec. 31 from dusk to dawn. Each sign provides the perfect holiday background for all your Instagram-worthy holiday moments. Sponsored by local companies and businesses, the signs generate awareness and help raise funds for Miracle Flights by providing visitors with a QR code to a landing page to encourage donations to the nonprofit. In addition, guests who check in via the QR code at each sign will be entered into a weekly contest to win a $250 Downtown Summerlin gift card. On Dec. 23, one lucky guest will have a chance to win the grand prize, a $2,500 Downtown Summerlin gift card. On Fridays and Saturdays through the end of the year from 4 to 8 p.m., Miracle Flights volunteers will be on hand in Dillard’s Court near the HOPE sign. Patrons can donate $20 to receive a limited Miracle Flights plush bear named “Miles.” All proceeds from these donations will go directly towards flights for sick children.
MOB MUSEUM’S UNDERGROUND SPEAKEASY HOSTS REPEAL DAY PARTY: The Underground speakeasy and distillery inside The Mob Museum is holding a Repeal Day celebration on Sunday, Dec. 5 from 7 p.m. to midnight. The party includes an open bar featuring handcrafted cocktails, tasty small bites and live music by The Moonshiners. In addition, guests can don their swankiest 1920s attire for a chance to win the costume contest grand prize, courtesy of Jim Beam. VIP tickets are $115 and there’s a 10% discount for museum members. Guests searching for hotel accommodations can enjoy the Repeal Day Party and Circa Resort and Casino Package including a 15% discount off a hotel stay from Dec. 2 through Dec. 7; use access code “REPEAL.”
LINQ PROMENADE AND FLAMINGO TRANSFORM FOR THE HOLIDAYS: The LINQ Promenade and Flamingo have transformed into an enchanting holiday destination through Jan. 2. Conveniently located adjacent to one another, the locations offer festive décor, winter beverages concocted to spread good cheer and plenty of holiday spirit for the entire family. Admission is free for both locations. At The LINQ Promenade, a 30-foot-tall Christmas tree provides the majestic focal point at the Fountain Stage. The Flamingo Wildlife Habitat features spectacular pink and white, twinkling lights and other whimsical ornamentation. Meanwhile, the Wildlife Habitat’s Patio Bar has become the Festive Flamingo Bar, where guests can imbibe seasonal beverages beside a crackling fire pit. While exploring the winter wonderland, visitors can also enjoy drinks from a pop-up holiday bar, as well as sweet treats from the pop-up location of SWEET SIN by Claude Escamilla, The LINQ Promenade’s popular pastry shop.
SANTA’S EXPERIENCE POP-UP WILL OPEN AT TIVOLI VILLAGE: Folks can embark on a self-guided walk through a winter wonderland at the pop-up Santa’s Experience opening at Suite 130 in Tivoli Village and running daily from Friday, Nov. 26 through Dec. 30. Complete with a live Santa visit at the end of the tour, the fun and festive interactive adventure will offer plenty of photo ops along the way. Santa’s Experience will include everything from a visit to the North Pole complete with reindeer, an oversized gingerbread house, Santa’s workshop and candy factory, nutcrackers, the Grinch, and more. Hours of operation will be Monday–Friday 6 to 10 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday noon to 10 p.m. Adult tickets are $20, children 12 and under $10. Children four and under receive free admission. A special package for families up to five people is $50.
DOWNTOWN SUMMERLIN® KICKS OFF HOLIDAY SEASON: Downtown Summerlin® has kicked off the 2021 holiday season with the Holiday Parade which returns after a one-year hiatus and takes place every Friday and Saturday evening at 6 p.m. through Dec. 18. This tradition is complete with holiday music, snow, dancers, and Santa, and runs along Park Centre Drive. A new Nutcracker-inspired float is included this year. The parade is complimentary and open to the public. Santa Claus’ Chalet, presented by Tri Pointe Homes and located in the Macy’s Promenade, is open daily through Dec. 24. Photo packages start at $39.99. Santa offers photos with pets on Tuesdays through Dec. 21 between 7 and 9 p.m. Kids can drop off letters to Santa and for every letter received, Downtown Summerlin will donate $1 to Goodie Two Shoes. Open through Jan. 17, Rock Rink, the signature 8,000-square-foot real-ice skating rink located near The Pavilion at The Lawn is presented by Live Nation with festive holiday music. Skate rentals start at $16, and all ages are welcome. Hours vary, and appointments are required so check the website for details. Downtown Summerlin’s festive holiday train also runs through Jan. 17. Rides are $4 per person. On Dec. 1, Downtown Summerlin will partner with Jewish Nevada to host a one-night Hanukkah celebration that includes the lighting of the Menorah, family skate night, entertainment, kids’ activities and hot cocoa with lite bites. Returning to Downtown Summerlin is The Giving Machine, which is open through Jan. 3. The Giving Machine gives visitors an opportunity to make a holiday donation at a giant vending machine to one of several local nonprofits and international charitable initiatives.
CITY OF LAS VEGAS HOSTS FREE JAZZY CHRISTMAS CONCERT: The Jazzmin Vocal Band will perform a Jazzy Christmas Concert Saturday, Dec. 4 at 7 p.m. at the Historic Fifth Street School Auditorium, 401 S. Fourth St. Presented by the city of Las Vegas, the concert is free and open to the public with seating on a first-come, first-served basis. The five-member vocal jazz band will perform songs from their fourth studio album, “Jazzy Christmas,” as well as new material. Producer and bandleader Rod Henley is currently a professor at the College of Southern Nevada. During his career, he has collaborated with Tony Bennett and written jingles for the Cartoon Network. The concert formerly was scheduled at Bruce Trent Park but was moved indoors due to weather concerns. Face masks will be required.
GREEN VALLEY RANCH OPENS ‘WINTER AT THE TERRACE’: Green Valley Ranch has a holiday-themed outdoor pop-up lounge, “Winter at The Terrace” running through February 2022. The resort’s patio, located in The Backyard, has been transformed into a winter wonderland with the space decked out with holiday decor featuring cozy igloos, fire pits, twinkling lights, snowflakes, and live music on Fridays and Saturdays. Holiday themed cocktails and seasonal bites round out the experience. “Winter at The Terrace” is open Sunday through Thursday from 3 to 9 p.m., and Friday and Saturday 3 p.m. to midnight. Guests must be 21 or older, and entrance is complimentary. Walk-ins are welcome, but reservations are recommended. In addition to “Winter at the Terrace,” GVR’s Bake Shop will offer hot cocoa bombs and breakable chocolate ornaments for the holiday season available for sale at The Lucky Penny beginning Wednesday Dec. 1.
MANNEKEN PIS IS BACK AT THE D LAS VEGAS: After a brief hiatus and much speculation, the D Las Vegas’ Manneken Pis 500-pound replica statue was returned to his rightful place and pedestal downtown on Thursday, Nov. 18. In late September, Manneken Pis was toppled during an unresolved vandalism incident and unlike Humpty Dumpty, he has been put back together. After receiving the finest medical attention in the Las Vegas Valley, he has made a full recovery and is once again serving as the official greeter for the D, which he has done since 2015. The large-scale bronze interpretation of the beloved 17th century troublemaker from Brussels, Belgium, Manneken Pis – Belgian for “Little Man Pee” – is a statue of a little boy who cheerfully relieves himself into a fountain’s basin. The piece holds a special place in the lives of owners Derek and brother Greg who are of Belgian descent and visited the statue in Brussels often throughout their childhood and early adulthood.
SICKIES GARAGE DINERS CAN DONATE A TOY AND RECEIVE A BEER: Sickies Garage Burgers & Brews in Town Square is known for offering diners a choice of 50 burgers and 50 brews. Now through Dec. 20, diners who are 21 and older can give back and score one of the brews while helping the community this holiday season. Diners can donate a new, unopened toy and receive a complimentary 16-ounce tap Shiner Cheer or Bock. Donated toys will benefit HELP of Southern Nevada, which assists low-income families, homeless youth and other individuals.
Bottiglia Cucina & Enoteca at Green Valley Ranch in Henderson will offer a special Hanukkah menu for dine-in and take out from Sunday, Nov. 28–Monday, Dec. 6. “The Dennis Bono Show,” which is taped inside the showroom in front of a live audience every Thursday at 2 p.m., will return to the stage on Dec. 16. The show is celebrating its 21st year of broadcasting and continues to feature many of the stars appearing on the Strip and around town. All PT’s Taverns throughout the Las Vegas Valley are hosting the 23rd annual toy drive in partnership with KLUC and “The Chet Buchanan Show” to collect gifts, new bikes, toys and monetary donations for local children for the 2021 holiday season, now through Friday, Dec. 3. A full list of tavern locations can be found at ptstaverns.com. This month a lucky guest from Hawaii was at Boyd Gaming’s Main Street Station downtown and won a million-dollar jackpot on IGT’s Wheel of Fortune® Double Diamond slots. It was the first major jackpot to hit at Main Street since it reopened on Sept. 8.
ARTISTS CELEBRATE BIRTHDAYS AT DRAI’S NIGHTCLUB: Young music sensation 24kGoldn celebrated turning 21 by performing his first ever Drai’s LIVE concert at Drai’s Nightclub. He was honored on stage with a special birthday cake, oversized photos of his face, sparklers and more. His explosive performance at Drai’s featured his most popular songs, including his multi-platinum hit “Mood.” Grammy award nominee Fabolous celebrated his birthday with his return to Drai’s Nightclub for another amped up Drai’s LIVE Saturday performance. The artist was presented with an extravagant cake on stage by The Drai’s Dolls, who waved sparklers and large cutouts of Fabolous’ face to celebrate his birthday.
RESORTS WORLD IMPLEMENTS DAILY RATE FOR VALET PARKING: Due to increased business and service demands, Resorts World began charging a daily rate for valet parking at the Las Vegas Hilton, Conrad Las Vegas and South Porte Cochere locations on property, effective, Nov. 24. Guests who utilize hotel valet will be charged a daily rate of $21 per vehicle, per 24-hour period. Guests who valet their vehicles will be able to pay by credit card or room charge. At this time, self-parking garages will remain complimentary to all guests.
ATTRACTION DISCOUNT OFFERS: FlyOver in Las Vegas, this year’s new flight-ride attraction on the Las Vegas Strip, is introducing a new “Kids Ride Free” promotion for local and visiting families. With the purchase of an adult ticket, a child ages 12 and under can ride free through Dec. 31, 2021. Booking must be made at the FlyOver ticket office. ICEBAR at the LINQ Promenade and Minus5º Ice Experience locations at Mandalay Bay and The Venetian® Resort are offering a locals’ special. From Nov. 24–28 and Dec. 23–26, locals with valid ID will receive a buy-one, get-one-free discount off the COOL Experience admission package, which includes, entry into the ice attraction plus gloves and a parka.
GIRLS ON THE RUN HOST FALL 5K: Girls on the Run Las Vegas (GOTR) invites the community to participate in their 2021 Fall 5K, a non-competitive community event celebrating the hard work and dedication of all the program’s participants. On Saturday, Dec. 4 festivities begin at 8:30 a.m. and 5K starts at 9:30 a.m. at the University of Nevada – Pida Plaza. The event marks the culmination of this year’s GOTR fall season, a 10-week experienced-based curriculum designed to inspire girls in grades 3 through 8 to build confidence and make intentional decisions, while fostering care and compassion for themselves and others. Participants can run at their own pace with their group of friends, family members, colleagues or on their own. Cost is $35 for adult community runners, $15 for children and running buddies, and cheering section $35. For the first time since fall 2019, more than 342 girls from 26 different sites around the valley will participate in the group celebratory event. The GOTR girls will be accompanied by their coaches, adult running buddies and other community runners.