BRETT’S VEGAS VIEW
Contributed by Jackie Brett
HOOTERS WILL BECOME OYO HOTEL & CASINO: Nothing seems to stay the same in Las Vegas. OYO Hotels & Homes, the world’s fastest-growing hotel chain, is partnering with Highgate to create the company’s first key flagship property in Las Vegas by taking over Hooters Casino Hotel on Tropicana near the Strip. OYO will embrace the resort’s 657 rooms across 19 floors and 35,000-square-foot casino. Additional amenities include two signature restaurants, four bars, a fitness center, and outdoor pool. The property will undergo a transformation to be completed this year, which will bring the OYO brand to life in Las Vegas. Highgate will assume management of the hotel, and Paragon Gaming will continue to operate the casino. OYO Hotels & Homes started in 2013 and is now the world’s third largest chain of hotels, homes, managed living and workspaces. The portfolio combines fully operated real estate comprising of more than 23,000 hotels and 125,000 vacation homes.
SLS OPENS INFINITY HIGH LIMIT LOUNGE: Continuing its $150 million resort transformation, SLS Las Vegas has unveiled the property’s newest gaming amenity, Infinity, a refined and sophisticated premium gaming lounge as part of the newly renovated casino floor. Infinity offers players a variety of high-limit table games including baccarat, roulette, six-deck shoe and double deck blackjack, five bar top poker machines as well as 40 premium gaming machines including two first-to-Strip products, Pure Luxe machines and Crystal Slant poker. Slot machine denominations begin at $1 and go up to $25 while table games begin at $50 minimums up to $10,000. Infinity is set apart with distinct design details. Custom spiral-patterned glass mosaic walls are accentuated with rich ruby, plum and violet shades offset with champagne and gold. The imported elephant-textured, gold glass panels complement the gold backlit weaved metal accent walls, while the carpet, inspired by the Hermés Spirographie, provides a complex patterned interplay of concentric color circles. Infinity lounge offers a 24-hour bar featuring specialty cocktails as well as complimentary assorted loose-leaf hot teas and an array of seasonal whole fruits Fridays at 6 p.m. through Sundays at 6 p.m.
CESAR MILLAN PREMIERES ‘MY STORY: UNLEASHED’ AT MGM GRAND: Cesar Millan, the world’s most celebrated dog behaviorist, is bringing his remarkable life story to the stage with his one-man show “Cesar Millan – My Story: Unleashed.” The world premiere of Millan’s inspiring journey ranging from humble beginnings in rural Mexico, traveling to America, and crossing the border with $100 and a dream to become the greatest dog trainer in the world, will be performed Sept. 12-18 in the David Copperfield Theater at the MGM Grand. Tickets start at $45. Millan, a gifted storyteller, will share his struggles, successes and passion for transforming families and their lives with his innovative approach to canine discipline. He has more than 25 years of animal behaviorist experience and an Emmy Award-nominated television series. For the past two decades, people globally have grown to trust Millan through his television shows, “The Dog Whisperer,” “Dog Nation,” and “Cesar 911,” as well as more than 12 million social media followers. Millan has written nine New York Times bestsellers and tours the world with his live shows.
‘POTTED POTTER’ AT BALLY’S CELEBRATES 100TH SHOW: The hit, family-friendly “Potted Potter: The Unauthorized Harry Potter Experience – A Parody by Dan and Jeff” at the Windows Showroom at Bally’s celebrated its 100th performance last week on Aug. 23 with the announcement the show will continue there through Jan. 5, 2020. To celebrate, a special 40 percent discount is available for Platinum tickets only with code LV100 through Nov. 3. This clever production combines all seven Harry Potter books into 70 minutes of fun. The show currently stars two Potted Potter veterans, James Percy and Joseph Maudsley. Both English actors have studied at Birmingham School of Acting and toured with Potted Potter. Potted Potter plays daily except Thursday at 8 p.m. with matinee performances Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday at 2 p.m. Ticket prices range from $39.99 to $99.99.
TERRA ROSSA RETURNS TO RED ROCK RESORT: The classic Italian eatery, Terra Rossa is set to debut this week on Aug. 26 inside the Red Rock Resort. The all-new reimagined restaurant will be featuring approachable Italian cuisine with family-style menu options and classic staples and utilizing a one-of-a-kind charcoal-based Josper Grill and Oven, available at only a few locations in the city with different levels of grilling. The 4,000-square-foot, 185-seat restaurant features a dedicated wine room hosting a collection of 1,500 bottles of premier Italian and California wines, along with a full bar. Terra Rossa has an open kitchen and dining concept with a large dining room, 15-seat private dining room, and 800-square-foot outdoor patio. Terra Rossa will be open daily at 5 p.m. for dinner. A Saturday-Sunday brunch is expected to launch this fall. Happy Hour will be available daily from 4:30-6 p.m.
TONY BENNETT WILL VISIT THE VENETIAN: Tony Bennett, the 19-time Grammy Award winner whose music career spans more than six decades, will headline an exclusive, “I Left My Heart in Las Vegas,” engagement at The Venetian® Resort Sept. 25, 27 and 28 at 8 p.m. Bennett’s daughter, Antonia Bennett, will open with a collection of jazz/pop standards. Tickets start at $49.95. Bennett’s life embodies the Great American Story. He celebrated his 93rd birthday on Aug. 3, while his career as the pre-eminent singer of the 20th and 21st centuries is unprecedented. Through his artistry, Bennett has connected in unprecedented fashion with all generations of audiences. In addition to his music, Bennett has been a visual artist all his life. His artwork is in museums and galleries around the world and three of his paintings are part of the permanent collection of the Smithsonian Institute. He has authored six books, including his most recent, “Tony Bennett: On Stage and In The Studio.”
HARVEST FESTIVAL IS ART AND CRAFT SHOW TRADITION: The family-owned and operated Las Vegas Harvest Festival® Original Art & Craft Show is the West Coast’s largest indoor showcase offering nine show locations throughout California and Nevada. The Harvest Festivals began 47 years ago in San Francisco as a destination for artists and craftspeople to gather and have fun to sell their American handmade products. Harvest Festival’s Las Vegas location transition continues moving from last year’s Pavilion 2, to Pavilion 1 this year, while the permanent home starting in 2020 is currently under construction at the new World Market Center (WMC) Convention Center adjacent to the parking structure. Family-friendly Harvest Festival will be held Sept. 6- 8. Only the nation’s top trend-setting artisans qualify for this juried showcase featuring 24,000 handmade creations and approximately 200 exhibitors. Handmade arts and crafts, including jewelry, woodturnings, art and photography, specialty foods, clothing, décor and more will be featured. Attendees can shop and enjoy entertainment acts, live music, prize drawings, artist demonstrations, and different foods. Harvest Festival opens each day at 10 a.m. and closes at 5 p.m. and 6 p.m. on Saturday. Admission is $9 general, $7 seniors (62+) and military, $4 kids (13-17), and free 12 and under. Tickets are valid for re-entry all weekend. There’s $2 off general or senior admission when attendees bring donations for Safe Nest such as canned or baby food, formula, paper products, etc. Parking is $5.
MADAME TUSSAUDS UNVEILED NEW FIGURE – AALIYAH: Last week, Madame Tussauds Las Vegas continued its celebration of all things ‘90s by revealing its newest figure, paying tribute to the Princess of R&B, Aaliyah. The attraction welcomed guests and mega fans of Aaliyah for an exclusive unveiling of the singer’s likeness. Aaliyah’s figure is a representation of her “Try Again” music video look complete with the sexy and edgy iconic diamond studded bra, choker and belt. Aaliyah’s brother, Rashad Haughton, was in attendance for the momentous occasion honoring his late sister’s wax figure, fans, and social media contest winners. Fans and noteworthy VIPs included rapper Kash Doll along with WWE power couple Zelina Vega and Aleister Black.
DONNY & MARIE OSMOND HONORED WITH KEY TO LAS VEGAS STRIP: Donny and Marie Osmond were recently honored with the Key to the Las Vegas Strip for their immense contributions to the entertainment landscape of the city during their celebrated 11-year residency at the Flamingo. Their initial commitment was a six-week concert engagement, which ended up being extended again and again resulting in more than 1,600 performances. The Key was presented by Clark Commission Chairwoman Marilyn Kirkpatrick and Caesars Entertainment CEO Tony Rodio. Before a crowd at The LINQ Promenade, the duo thanked the city of Las Vegas, Caesars Entertainment and their fans for their love and support throughout their time as Flamingo headliners. Then true to form, the brother and sister playfully bantered over who would take home the ceremonial key, ending in a rock, paper, scissors game. Donny & Marie will take their final bow at the Flamingo on Saturday, Nov. 16.
DOWNTOWN ROCKS FREE CONCERT SERIES CONTINUES: The free Downtown Rocks concert series with headliners performing on the 3rd Street Stage at the Fremont Street Experience will continue to entertain fans throughout the year. Upcoming free shows include: The Wallflowers Aug. 30; I Love the 90s featuring Vanilla Ice, Montell Jordan, All-4-One, Tone Loc and Coolio Sept. 1; Smash Mouth Sept. 28; and Muddfest featuring Puddle of Mudd, Saliva, Trapt, Saving Abel and Tantric Oct. 19. Performance begins at 9 p.m.
THE MANHATTANS WILL PERFORM AT THE ORLEANS: The Manhattans will headline The Orleans showroom on Saturday, Sept. 7 at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $19.95. The group was formed in 1962 and released their first single “For The Very First Time” in 1964. After lead singer Smith became ill, Gerald Alston was recruited as the new lead vocalist. Together, the band released several top-charting songs, including their Platinum-selling No. 1 hit “Kiss and Say Goodbye.” The Manhattans’ success continued with release of hit ballads “There’s No Me Without You,” “Don’t Take Your Love,” “I Kinda Miss You” and “Hurt,” as well as with the songs “Feels So Good” and “You’re My Life.” In 1980, the group won a Grammy Award for their hit single “Shining Star,” and they were inducted into the Rhythm and Blues Hall of Fame in 1999.
WAYFARER HOSTS ‘GREETINGS FROM LAS VEGAS’ BOOK LAUNCH EVENT: Wayfarer Theater located inside Inspire Las Vegas downtown will host a book launch event for the newly published printed “Greetings from Las Vegas.” The humorous and informative book by historian Peter Moruzzi visually celebrates Las Vegas’ evolution from its start as a dusty railroad town. Moruzzi, who graduated from the University of California, Berkeley and later attended the American Film Institute in Los Angeles, will present a slide show on Sept. 12 at 6 p.m. followed by a book signing in the 130-seat theater. His illustrated book has more than 300 vintage photographs and postcards. Admission is free. To RSVP to the event, visit http://bit.ly/inspirelv.
COLLECTIVE ZOO’S BLOCK PARTY RETURNS LABOR DAY WEEKEND: Downtown Las Vegas Events Center (DLVEC) and Collective Zoo will kick off Labor Day weekend with the return of Collective Zoo’s Block Party on Saturday, Aug. 31 from 4 p.m. doors opening until 1 a.m. The event will feature sets from performers such as Olan, Crykit, JDHD, Cormac and Yeisukee and headliners Big Gigantic, Keys N Krates, Chet Porter and more. General admission tickets start from $35, and VIP at $60. Guests will be able to dive into a custom 2,200-square-foot pool with a multi-level cabana deck for cooling off and sample various bites from the city’s best food trucks. Additionally, party goers will be able to grab a drink in a craft beer garden with beverages from more than 30 different breweries; enjoy aesthetic art displays throughout the venue; and compete in a variety of games.
MORE LABOR DAY WEEKEND AND SEPT. 3 HAPPENINGS
Wet’n’Wild will celebrate Labor Day with a luau and live performances by hula dancers, a buffet from noon to 2 p.m., foam parties, music, dancing, swimming, sliding and more on Monday, Sept. 2 from 10:30 a.m.–6 p.m. The water park will be open through Sunday, Sept. 29. Cabo Wabo Cantina inside Miracle Mile Shops at Planet Hollywood will celebrate Labor Day Weekend with patio parties, cocktails and breakfast Friday-Monday, Aug. 30 to Sept. 2. Patio parties will be fueled by a DJ on Saturday and Sunday, and live music performances on Monday night beginning at 9 p.m. by Ryan Whyte Maloney, who appeared on season six of NBC’s “The Voice.” To nurse those weekend hangovers, Cabo Wabo will serve breakfast daily from 8 to 11 a.m., including the CW Eggs Benedict and croissant French toast. Bottomless mimosas and Bellinis will also be available for $24.99. TREVI Italian Restaurant inside the Forum Shops at Caesars Palace will have an extended Happy Hour from 2 to 7 p.m. offering food and drink discounts. Frank Cullotta, the Chicago Mob associate turned government witness, will sign copies of his books, “Cullotta: The Life of a Chicago Criminal, Las Vegas Mobster, and Government Witness” and “The Rise and Fall of a ‘Casino’ Mobster” in The Mob Museum’s gift shop on Saturday, Aug. 31 from 1 to 4 p.m. It’s free to visit the gift shop. NoMad Bar at NoMad Las Vegas will host a four-course pig roast honoring the Year of the Pig for $75 on Tuesday, Sept. 3 starting at 5 p.m. The special feast will explore the variety of ways to enjoy the pig from snacks featuring Pork Belly and Avocado Lettuce Wraps, to larger format dishes such as the Porcelet Loin with peaches, peppers, and charred corn. Purchase tickets at secretburger.com.
TRIBUTE ROCK BAND ARCH ALLIES VISIT ALIANTE: Tribute band Arch Allies will headline the Access Showroom at Aliante on Saturday, Sept. 7 at 8 p.m. The group will feature the classic hits of Bon Jovi, Boston, Def Leppard, Journey, REO Speedwagon and Styx with a collective set of ‘80s favorites. Tickets start at $25.
‘STORM’ AREA 51 BASECAMP IS FOR BELIEVERS: On Friday, Sept. 20 the Alien Research Center on the Extraterrestrial Highway, about 109 miles outside Las Vegas, will be base camp for believers as prominent ufologists, expert speakers, musicians and artists will gather to celebrate the ‘Storm’ Area 51 movement. What began from a tongue-in-cheek meme to “Storm Area 51 – They Can’t Stop Us All,” has ignited a global cultural movement to call for greater transparency around what many believe to be decades of government secrecy surrounding UFO technology. The two-day event, Sept. 21-21 will feature live music, expert speakers, food trucks, Alien-inspired retailers and art installations. There will be exclusive screenings and appearances by the cast of Jeremy Kenyon Lockyer Corbell’s Netflix documentary “Bob Lazar: Area 51 & Flying Saucers.” Additional featured speakers include an appearance by “Rogue Warrior” Dick Marcinko, a retired U.S. Navy Seal commander who will share his story of a UFO sighting while conducting a covert mission. Festival goers will also have additional opportunities for learning when they explore the Alien Research Center’s Earth Station – Area 51 exhibit or are treated to some stargazing. Both one-day and two-day passes are available for the ‘Storm’ Area 51 Basecamp festivities. A limited number of on-site accommodations are possible for those seeking to attend both days. Accommodation types include tent sites for campers, RV parking and a VIP “glamping” experience. A list of preferred hotel partners will be available on the ‘Storm’ Area 51 Basecamp website. Passes are $51 per person and include parking, two bottles of water, a $10 food truck voucher and commemorative lanyard.
Last week, Chester Lockhart, best known for his appearance on “RuPaul’s Drag Race” and most recently appearing in Taylor Swift’s new music video for “You Need to Calm Down” was spotted attending “Magic Mike Live” at the Hard Rock. Following the sizzling show, Lockhart met the cast. Twenty-one-year-old Formula One driver Charles Leclerc clocked a 48.959 lap time on Exotics Racing’s 1.5-mile Las Vegas racetrack, breaking the Michelin Time Trial Challenge record. Leclerc is a racecar driver for Scuderia Ferrari Formula One, the racing division of luxury Italian auto manufacturer Ferrari and currently ranks fifth in the 2019 F1 World Championship. He is one of the circuit’s fastest and youngest drivers.