BRETT’S VEGAS VIEW
contributed by Jackie Brett
AN IMMENSE SIGN OF THE FUTURE: While Circa is under construction on Fremont Street and will open at the end of this year, Resorts World Las Vegas on the Strip has been talked about and under construction for years. As a reference, the Asian-themed luxury resort is occupying the land where the Stardust used to stand and will have 3,500 rooms when it opens in Summer 2021. Over the July 4th weekend, the $4.3 billion integrated resort launched its 100,000-square-foot LED Screen located on the West Tower revealing one of the largest LED building displays in the United States and giving a first look into the progressive technology the property will present. The screen is approximately 294 feet high and 340 feet wide and features 3,552 individual LED panels. It is the first of several LED displays planned for the property. Anticipated to total more than 200,000 square feet of LED content across the resort, additional displays will include a 19,000-square-foot East Tower LED Screen, 10,000-square-foot marquee, 50-foot diameter video globe, which will display more than 6,000 square feet of LED content, and more.
NEW EXHIBITS AT LAS VEGAS NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM: The Las Vegas Natural History Museum (LVNHM) in the downtown Las Vegas cultural corridor has a new traveling exhibit, In the Dark, running through Oct. 11. This exhibit invites visitors to discover the dark, often unseen, ecosystems of the world like caves, the deep sea, the forest at night, and underneath the ground. Guests explore these mysteries via electronic, mechanical and computer interactives, immersive dioramas, and lifelike models. It showcases the amazing adaptations of the plants and animals who live in these environments. Digital Dinos is also a new exhibit designed and developed by the Museum and the interactive exhibit firm Ideum, based in Corrales, N.M. This projection-based exhibit allows visitors to touchlessly interact with a variety of dinosaurs once native to Nevada and the southwest. All the dinosaurs in this experience are native to Nevada. A few are clad in feathers, and these depictions, although stylized and animated, are based on the most up-to-date science available. The entire scene, including the flora and the geography, is based on what Nevada was like 100 million years ago. The exhibit’s 16-foot projection displays a scene from the Cretaceous Period with massive plant-eating Titanosaurs in the background. New dinosaur characters begin to appear; a meat-eating Eotryrannus tracking visitors in response to their movements, while a small pack of Deinonychus hides from guests when they appear. When an Eolambia mother and baby appear in the scene, visitors can even stretch their arms and feed them ferns.The exhibit uses a Microsoft Azure Kinect to track visitor movements and provide corresponding dinosaur interaction. The exhibit employs this same technology to remind visitors to observe six-foot social distancing recommendations. A partnership between LVNHM and Ideum will make this exhibit available to other museums and public spaces, so the experience has the potential to become a national or even international phenomenon.
ANOTHER AVENUE FOR TREND-SETTING ESPORTS: Tuscan Highlands, Las Vegas’ newest multi-family residential development, is introducing a new trend in residential experiences by providing an on-site esports and gaming lounge, which is an innovative move not seen before. This latest social living community is providing a 4,500-sqaure-foot space for esports tournaments and casual gaming. It is a haven for career or leisure gamers with seating accommodating 75-100 people. The lounge includes: 12 computer stations, 11’ x 7’ ultra HD LED displays; a virtual reality multi-sport simulator with 15’ x 9’ display for golf, hockey and soccer; individual gaming stations equipped with Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One consoles; arcade games; a YouTube/podcast recording studio, and more. Scheduled to open this month, the lounge will be available to residents and for tournaments. “We are immensely excited about this project and developing it in a residential Las Vegas venue,” said Milo Ocampo, founder of UNLV Esports and CEO of 8-bit Esports. “This is not your average gaming lounge. The developer took time to really understand gamers and what it means to integrate esports into a trend-setting living environment.” Tuscan Highlands located on the southwest corner of St. Rose Parkway and Interstate 15 is home to 304 units, including one- to two-bedroom, studio- and loft-style apartment homes, as well as carriage-style living quarters with attached garage. In addition, the apartment complex will have four corporate suites available for companies who need employees to stay in the area for 30 days or more. More like a resort, the destination’s additional amenities include concierge services, a 21,000-plus square-foot resort hall complete with a health club and fitness studios; a spa and salon; resort-style saltwater pool with cabanas; outdoor athletics and multi-use courts and more.
PLAN AHEAD DISCOUNTS FOR GLITTERING LIGHTS: One event not having to postpone this year due to Covid19 will be Glittering Lights at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway Nov. 13-Jan. 10 because families drive through the outdoor experience in the car. It is a rather perfect distancing situation much like a drive-in movie theater. Celebrating its 20th season this year, Glittering Lights is a premier holiday light show. Through July 31, guests can use the code “EARLYELF” to receive 20 percent off 2019’s ticket prices online at glitteringlights.vegas. Additional pre-season promotional offers will be highlighted on social media through Oct. 15. Glittering Lights attracts thousands of visitors annually and is recognized as one of the best holiday displays in the United States. More than 250,000 visitors will gather to experience a magical night of festive displays featuring more than four million LED lights.
CIRCUS CIRCUS UPDATES: For family fun, Circus Circus has reopened including the Adventuredome, a five-acre amusement park, which opens at 10 a.m. daily. Capacity is currently reduced on all rides and attractions to allow for appropriate social distancing. The Carnival Midway where visitors can play a huge selection of games and win premium prizes is open and surrounds the circus stage, which showcases free circus acts — including flying trapeze, clowns, jugglers, contortionists and more daily. For the adjacent gambling spot Slots A Fun Casino, a renovation includes new refurbishments, additional gambling offerings, and the return of its classic offering of $1 hot dogs and $1 beer. For the only RV park option on the Strip, Circus Circus has made enhancements to the former check-in process. The RV park currently starts at $20 per day for its 180 RV sites, which include electrical and plumbing hookups. One mainstay which isn’t open is the Circus Circus Buffet.
MINUS5° IS A HEAT ESCAPE: Minus5° Ice Experience and 1923 Prohibition Bar at The Shoppes at Mandalay Place have reopened with updates hours of operation Wednesday-Sunday 3 to 11 p.m. and all-new décor. Minus5° Ice Experience has been maintained at 23 degrees Fahrenheit for the duration of the citywide shutdown and underwent a complete makeover, now featuring all-new ice décor. New displays include paying homage to Las Vegas’ new pro-football team the Raiders, Elvis and murder hornets, an interactive Plinko game, and more. Adjacent to Minus5° Ice Experience is the brand-new, prohibition-themed 1923 Prohibition Bar, a private, hidden, modern speakeasy serving bourbon spirits and signature barrel-aged specialty cocktails. The elegant venue will feature live burlesque shows, live rock band karaoke and bourbon education and tasting classes.
A VIRTUAL TWIST FOR ‘MARRIAGE CAN BE MURDER’: Numerous entertainers have taken to zoom to release their creative juices and music. The comedy dinner show “Marriage Can Be Murder,” which has been in town 20 years and with many of them at the D downtown, has gone virtual. The show’s husband and wife team suggest you grab your “quarantine” and get ready to “killebrate.” Their show “Quarantined to Death,” has zoom performances set for Saturdays, July 11, 18, 25 and Aug. 1 at 6:30 p.m. PST and at 3:30 p.m. on July 18. The virtual lobby opens 30 minutes before showtime for check in. So, how does a virtual “dinner show” work? “Marriage Can Be Murder” encourages guests to cook at home or support a favorite local restaurant with takeout to partake in the dinner aspect of the show. Guests jump into the interactive murder-mystery fun, working with the actors through video chat to solve a quarantine-style crime. Immersed in the action, sleuthers make their way through breakout rooms including a bar and a cop lair where they bribe and find clues to unravel the story. “Marriage Can Be Murder can never die,” said actor-creator Eric Post. “Our killer team has been using down time during quarantine to evoke new concepts and bring Vegas’ favorite dinner show back to life. Virtually, that is.” Tickets are on sale at ivorystar.com. There are ticket tiers ranging from a solo sleuth to a group of six. There are RIP upgrades allowing for additional interaction during the virtual fun.
BURLESQUE HALL OF FAME CLOSES AGAIN: Slipping back…The Burlesque Hall of Fame (BHoF) closed its doors to the public again this week after reopening last month. They reopened at reduced capacity as part of Nevada’s Phase II on June 23. The museum reorganized its layout to provide for greater social distancing, adopted stringent new cleaning procedures, and required masks and handwashing or hand sanitizing of all visitors. The Burlesque Hall of Fame will remain closed until Phase III is announced by Nevada authorities. While the museum’s doors are closed, all staff are working as the museum continues its #MuseumAtHome initiative, producing videos and online content covering a wide range of topics related to burlesque history. BHoF is also planning a month-long series of virtual events in August including showcases, classes, and social events, called the Virtual Burlesque Hall of Fame Weekender (“VHoF” for short). More information can be found at BHoFWeekend.com.
MOB MUSEUM TURNS MOONSHINE INTO SANITIZER: While you can find liquid hand sanitizer in many public places or in grocery stores, The Mob Museum downtown is producing the product with 80 percent denatured alcohol made with 100 percent corn moonshine created inside The Underground, the Prohibition history exhibition in the basement floor of the Museum. Individual bottles are for sale at the Museum and online: 1 oz – $3; 2 oz $6; and 6 oz $10. There is a 10- or more bottle discount, and commercial gallon-size containers of sanitizer are also available.
ALL IN AVIATION IS EXPANDING: Since launching its full-service aviation complex at Henderson Executive Airport (HND), All In Aviation is hiring six new team members and increasing its fleet. Expanding its flight school operations, All In Aviation has a new full-time flight instructor, bringing the team to five full-time and two part time instructors. This fall, the company will take delivery of four new aircraft, which will allow for the expansion of its training services and meet the steady increase in enrollment of new student pilots. The all-new 2020 Cirrus Aircraft will include two SR22 turbos, an SR22 G6 and an SR20. In partnership with aircraft maintenance provider Lone Mountain Aviation, All In Aviation recently opened the first purpose-built, multi-use aviation complex of its kind at HND to serve the growing needs of the general aviation community. Located on Jet Stream Drive directly across from the new Raiders headquarters, the complex features 9,000 square feet of office space, a premier retail shop for pilots, five training rooms, a full-size ground school classroom, a customer lounge, an avionics workshop, a parts department, and an 18-person conference room overlooking the complex’s 22,000-square-foot maintenance hangar. For aircraft storage, the complex features 25 hangars including 16 “T” hangars for small personal aircraft and nine box hangars for mid-size business jets, all of which are 100 percent leased and occupied. All In Aviation is looking forward to debuting a three-day ground school program, which is currently in development to attract pilots from all over the country.
With the fate of buffets in limbo, The Mint Indian Bistro with two valley locations and one near the Strip at 730 E. Flamingo Road has developed a solution for their popular Lunch Buffet. The food is laid out like before at the buffet station with the only difference being the patron orders from a Contactless Buffet Menu, and staff serve the food at the customer’s table. Hot, fresh dosas and naans are also be served at the table. No more disposable plates and no waiting. Patrons are asked to reserve a table before they arrive. Hard Rock Cafe® Las Vegas has a special promotion for frontline healthcare workers to receive a free Legendary® Steak Burger at the Strip location now through July 31. Visit website for hero promo info.