BRETT’S VEGAS VIEW
Contributed by Jackie Brett
‘EXTRAVAGANZA’ PLANS REOPENING AT BALLY’S: “Extravaganza – The Vegas Spectacular ”had its first and only preview performance on March 14, 2020, before it closed the following day in compliance with state directives relating to the COVID-19 pandemic. “Extravaganza” will reopen at the Jubilee Theater inside Bally’s on Monday, Nov. 23. However, like all the shows in Las Vegas, it will reopen with a socially distanced audience capped at 250 and perform nightly except Wednesdays as well as Nov. 25, Dec. 23, 30, and Jan. 6. There will be two shows per night at 6:30 and 9:30 p.m. Tickets range from $49.99 to $109.99. The revue showcases the captivating talents of more than 30 talented, sexy, and breathtaking artists from around the world – including dancers, acrobats, aerialists, skaters, comedians, and the return of the iconic showgirl to the legendary Jubilee Theatre. Along with feats of strength and flexibility, fabulous costumes, and dance numbers, there are spectacular sets, massive LED screens and state-of-the-art holograms with some including Las Vegas’ famous headliners from Elvis to Frank Sinatra. Also returning is the heart-stopping “Globe of Death” motorcycle act. In addition, for a limited time, the production will feature special guest stars and “America’s Got Talent” finalist and crossbow superstar Silvia Silvia and husband Victor Ponce, who are two of the stars from Extravaganza’s sister show, “WOW – The Vegas Spectacular” at the Rio, which hasn’t reopened yet.
‘ZUMANITY’ CLOSES PERMANENTLY AT NEW YORK-NEW YORK: Cirque du Soleil® shows “Zumanity™” at New York-New York, has permanently closed. When it opened in 2003, it was a groundbreaking departure from the more traditional Cirque experiences. After more than 7,700 shows and a 17-year run, the last show’s performance took place on March 14, 2020, before it was shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Cirque du Soleil and MGM Resorts International have solidified their commitment to their partnership and the four shows remaining in the Cirque du Soleil portfolio. Contract extensions for “O” at Bellagio, “The Beatles LOVE” at The Mirage, “KÀ” at MGM Grand, and “Michael Jackson ONE” at Mandalay Bay have been signed. Additionally, Treasure Island and Cirque du Soleil have recommitted to “Mystère” with a contract extension. More than 70 million visitors have experienced Cirque du Soleil shows in Las Vegas since “Mystère” opened in 1993.
RIO WILL REOPEN DEC. 22: Caesars Entertainment plans to resume operations beginning Tuesday, Dec. 22 at 10 a.m. Pacific Time at the off-Strip Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino, as the company’s final property to reopen company-wide in the U.S. and Canada, following the COVID-19 pandemic. The hotel will accommodate weekend stays, Thursday through Monday, while the gaming floor will be open seven days a week. The resort’s headlining comedy magic duo Penn & Teller will announce later when they will return to the stage. Additionally, the Rio will debut its newly branded William Hill Sports Book on reopening day, with new customer offerings including self-service sports betting kiosks and an expanded betting menu featuring LIVE InPlay Wagering. Guests can save up to 20 percent on their next stay at the Rio with Caesars’ Fall Savings Sale from Nov. 2-23, for select travel dates through September 2021. This offer based on availability cannot be combined with any other offer. Offer code is FALL20. During the holiday season, the Rio will accommodate hotel reservations seven days a week Dec. 23-Jan. 3, 2021. Self-parking at the Rio will remain free for all guests, but valet will stay closed at this time.
‘RAT PACK IS BACK’ AT TUSCANY: The “Rat Pack is Back!” has returned to the Tuscany, but in a different room than the Copa Room on the casino floor. The nostalgic show has moved to the second floor Florentine Ballroom with performances starting at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. The new room will allow for 160 to 250 guests. Tickets start at $64.95. This show has Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr. and Dean Martin impersonators recreating the vintage charm and stage demeanor of the original stars and their infectious camaraderie. A seven-piece band brings to life the classic hits made famous by each superstar.
DOWNTOWN GRAND’S DELIRIOUS COMEDY CLUB ADDS SHOWS: The craving for entertainment has Delirious Comedy Club at the Downtown Grand adding additional showtimes to its back-to-back lineup on Fridays and Saturdays inside The Fremont Room. After the club’s recent return with ticketed entertainment in Downtown Las Vegas last month and required reduced seating, the Delirious Comedy Club has expanded its showtimes with two additional shows at 6 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. There are now 10 shows every weekend with performances Thursday through Sunday at 8 and 10 p.m.
PAMPLEMOUSSE NO MORE: The vintage Pamplemousse Le Restaurant nestled on the corner of Sahara Ave. and Santa Paula near the Sahara Hotel and close to the Strip has closed permanently after a 44-year run and becoming “the oldest French restaurant in Las Vegas.” The man behind Pamplemousse was George LaForge, who died in March 2019. LaForge immigrated to Las Vegas in 1962 and speaking no English at first worked his way up from busboy to chef and showroom captain, where at the Desert Inn he became friends with headliner Bobby Darin. LaForge had a casual creperie, The Morning After, and changed it to a fine dining restaurant in 1976 and called it Pamplemousse as a tribute to Darin, who loved the French word “pamplemousse,” which means grapefruit. The restaurant attracted a tourist clientele especially groups in town for conventions. The interior ambiance resembled a charming cozy French cottage. Two of the memorable specialties associated with the dining experience there were an elaborate basked filled with crudite served before dinner and between courses grapefruit sorbet. LaForge’s widow Diana Maisondieu-LaForge attempted to keep the restaurant open and as if Covid-19 were not a big enough deterrent, last August some men drove a stolen car into the middle of Pamplemousse and got stuck.
SIEGEL’S BAGELMANIA OPENS A SPOT AT MCCARRAN AIRPORT: Siegel’s Bagelmania, a local Las Vegas favorite for more than 30 years, has debuted a second valley location at McCarran International Airport, in Terminal 1 within the A Gates, and it is open daily. Owner Stephen Siegel said his company is preparing to move its existing Twain location to a 10,000-square-foot flagship location, connected to the new convention center on Convention Center Drive. Additionally, more locations are in the planning stages. The convenient made-to-order style deli specializes in making extravagant breakfast and lunch classics, including the “New School,” a choice of bacon or sausage topped with eggs, melted cheddar and chive schmear on a choice of any bagel; the “Rueben Siegel,” with piled-high pastrami, corned beef or turkey topped with sauerkraut and melted swiss cheese, smothered in Russian dressing on grilled house-made rye bread; the “Yiddish Bird,” stacked with turkey and bacon, smothered in chive schmear, and topped with tomato and sprouts on a choice of any bagel; and the “Un-Orthodox,” complete with a signature egg salad, loaded with crispy bacon, and topped with lettuce and tomato.
WORLD SERIES OF POKER® MAIN EVENT ® WILL RETURN: The World Series of Poker (WSOP) plans to host 2020’s hybrid online and live version of the $10,000 No-Limit Hold-Em World Championship, known better to poker players and fans as the Main Event. The Main Event will begin for international players on Sunday, Nov. 29 and domestically on Sunday, Dec. 13. The Main Event will begin online, and a Live Finale will crown a “World Champion” of Poker for the 51st consecutive year. The winner of the Domestic Tournament and the winner of the International Tournament will meet at the Rio in Las Vegas, subject to applicable regulatory approval, for a televised showdown on Wednesday, Dec.30, 2020. In addition to any prize monies won by entrants in their respective tournament, WSOP and GGPoker have committed an additional sum of $1 million to the winner of the Heads-Up match along with the Main Event championship bracelet and the title of 2020 World Champion.
TIVOLI VILLAGE WILL OPEN SANTA BABY POP-UP BAR: Premier lifestyle center Tivoli Village will welcome a festive holiday pop-up bar, Santa Baby, beginning Nov. 30. The pop-up bar experience will feature holiday-themed cocktails, music and Christmas festivities through Wednesday, Dec. 23, for guests ages 21 and older from 6 p.m. to midnight daily. Guests under 21 will be admitted on Mondays only. Santa Baby will be located in the center of Tivoli Village on the first floor at 420 S. Rampart Blvd., Suite 130. Santa Baby will highlight an array of rotating beers, wine, spirits, mixers and hand-crafted holiday cocktails served in stocking and ornament-shaped glasses. The pop-up will have wall-to-wall Christmas décor and offer festive ornament making for guests to enjoy. Guests are urged to purchase tickets for select time slots in advance at a Vegas Santa Baby website. There are 34 tickets available per hour with staggered entry times, and each ticket costs $5.50. Upon selecting a ticket time slot, guests will be granted entry to the pop-up experience for one hour. Walk-ins are welcome if there is availability. Group bookings are available, and Santa Baby will follow strict health guidelines.
ELLIS ISLAND’S HOLIDAY NOG IS BACK FOR LIMITED TIME: With the holiday season in full swing, Ellis Island’s popular Holiday Nog is returning for the 18th straight year and now available for purchase until the supply is sold out. The dairy-based beverage is a family tradition with 5,000 bottles produced this year. Ellis Island’s brewmaster Michaela Key and his team used 14,000 eggs, 950 one-liter bottles of premium liquor, and a few secret ingredients to create the seasonal staple. Ellis Island owner Gary Ellis’ grandfather, Frank Ellis, Sr., learned about the recipe from a fellow passenger on a ship taking him from Italy to the United States back in 1953. In the 1980s, after his grandfather died, Ellis found the recipe and began making small batches in his home kitchen. The Holiday Nog can be purchased at Ellis Island Casino & Brewery, the Mt. Charleston Lodge, and any Village Pub location. The Nog is $7 by the glass and $35 by the bottle.
AREA15’S GALLERIE 360 OFFERS IMAGINATIVE DRINK EXPERIENCE: At the new AREA15, the curious can immerse themselves in a space where audio and visual experiences collide by entering QuantumPlate by Gallerie 360. Located inside The Portal—AREA15’s 360-degree, 3D projection-mapped room—the nightly, 30-minute light and sound exhibition by world-renowned digital artists Darpan and Max Cooper merge art and technology inside 7,500 square feet of transformative space. Open to guests of all ages, Gallerie 360 provides the perfect setting to transport guests into a new dimension while sipping on handcrafted cocktails or non-alcoholic beverages. Tickets are $20, which includes the 30-minute immersive projection-mapped show, entry into AREA15, and a beverage from the bar. Guests age 3 and younger enter for free. Gallerie 360 is open each night unless otherwise noted. Gallerie 360 is the first immersive experience to debut inside The Portal, which can also accommodate viewing parties, immersive dining experiences, as well as corporate and private events.
LVMS, LVCVA EXTEND AGREEMENT THROUGH 2031: The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (LVCVA) has extended its race sponsorship with Las Vegas Motor Speedway (LVMS) through 2031. The LVCVA has been in partnership in various ways with THE speedway since LVMS opened in 1996. The LVCVA and LVMS inked the initial agreement in 2017 which secured bringing the September South Point 400 NASCAR Playoffs race to Las Vegas. The new agreement supports NASCAR Cup Series events in Las Vegas and gives the LVCVA assets at other Speedway Motorsports facilities plus the newly added event at Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas, to promote tourism to the destination. Next year will mark the return of two NASCAR Cup Series weekends March 5-7 and Sept. 24-26, two NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series events April 16-18 and Oct. 29-31, the Electric Daisy Carnival and more than 1,500 other events making LVMS the world’s most diverse racing facility.
CELEBRITY STYLIST MICHAEL BOYCHUCK OPENS THIRD SALON: Jasper & Jade located at 231 N. Buffalo Dr. Suite A will reopen Nov. 14 with a brand-new addition following a remodel. The Salon by Michael Boychuck will be Boychuck’s third signature salon to open in Las Vegas and the second one this year. Boychuck has built a cult following, styling celebrities, locals, and tourists over the last 20 years. The master colorist has worked with an impressive talent list including Katy Perry, Jennifer Lopez, Rihanna, Gwen Stefani, Lady Gaga, and the Kardashians, and others. In addition to opening his third salon, Boychuck now has a partnership with Brent Golden and Cotê Hair. This will be Boychuck’s first salon featuring and using Cotê Hair products. Boychuck is also working with Golden on the education piece of Cotê Hair through their online academy with future goals to bring an academy to Las Vegas.
JW MARRIOTT-RAMPART CASINO HOLD THIRD BLOOD DRIVE: JW Marriott and Rampart Casino will host their third blood drive with Vitalant since re-opening earlier this summer. Appointments are available for the two-day drive, Saturday-Sunday, Nov. 28-29 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Marquis Ballroom. We are heading into the time of year where there is a 25 percent increase in a need for blood donations, and this year battling Covid-19, the need will be even greater. There have been nearly 1,600 canceled blood drives for November and December nationwide, so this drive is more important than ever. Vitalant hopes to collect more than 350 donations. A need also continues for convalescent plasma donations from folks who have recovered from the virus.
ANNUAL FESTIVAL OF TREES AND LIGHTS VIEWING DELAYED: Benefitting nonprofits Down Syndrome Organization of Southern Nevada and Collaboration Center Foundation, the 32nd Annual Festival of Trees and Lights™ family viewing nights and VIP Celebration event are being postponed to Dec. 4-6 and Dec. 10 respectively at Collaboration Center Las Vegas Ranch at 8390 W Windmill Lane. The postponement is directly due to the recommendations of Governor Steve Sisolak for residents to stay at home for two weeks to help curb the state’s recent spikes in COVID-19. The Festival of Trees and Lights online auction and preview launched virtually on Saturday, Nov. 14 giving the public the opportunity to view and start bids on the exquisite trees, wreaths and gifts showcased at the annual event.