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Westgate is trying to establish itself as a contender in Las Vegas, but we're not convinced it can compete with the big dogs. The hotel's new(ish) topless show, Sexxy, was a C+ at best and we were not impressed with our recent stay in a newly remodeled room. What's it going to take to get this property where it needs to be? More Elvis?
Westgate held a press conference last week to announce Elvis will be back in the building for the first time in 40 years with the coming debut of Graceland Presents ELVIS: The Exhibition – The Show – The Experience. Of course, that claim purposely overlooks the depart of Trent Carlini's The King production a few weeks back. (Columnist John Katsilometes says Carlini was "devastated" by the cancellation.) At Thursday's media event, Westgate CEO David Siegel enthusiastically reminded attendees that Elvis Presley played over 600 sold-out shows there back when the hotel-casino was known as the International.
Couples in search of an unconventional way to say 'I do' have found it for years in Las Vegas. Here, you can exchange vows on a pirate ship, while dressed in medieval garb a la Game of Thrones, with Elvis at your side, or even aboard the world's tallest observation wheel. Back in 2013, lovers in love received another spot for matrimonial bliss -- Denny's on Fremont.
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There's a lot of sh*t that happens in Vegas and not all of it can make it on our site. So, every Friday, we take note of some of the smaller announcements around town that may be of interest, too. Here's the rundown for the week of January 26:
March Madness: Yes, the Big Game isn't even over but folks have been talking about March Madness in Vegas since the end of last year. (Shout-out to the March Madness in Las Vegas Facebook group! Holla!) If you're dying for info, we can now share TI's plans. The resort will host basketball fans March 19-21 in its ballroom. Entry will be free and seating will be banquet-style (first come, first serve). There will be a cash bar, concessions and satellite betting stations so you won't miss a moment of action (unless you're in the restroom). Doors will open at 7:30 a.m. each day.
Gay Vegas / New Year's Eve / Weddings / MGM Grand / Tropicana / Liaison / Xposed / Zumanity / Divas Las Vegas / → All Tags
For the gay and lesbian community (more appropriately and inclusively known as LGBTQ), the Las Vegas of 2014 has become more appealing than ever. The opening of hit nightclub Liaison inside Bally’s, a PRIDE/Gay Days weekend that attracted thousands, and the legalization of same-sex marriage in Nevada has given the gay community plenty to celebrate. Some of our readers keenly noted that “Sin City” was way behind the rest of the country on this civil rights issue so, perhaps, it’s fitting the final gay event of the year has been named EVOLVE.
Same-sex marriages are now legal in Las Vegas as well as Nevada as a whole.
After a ban was lifted a few days ago and ensuing legal confusion, the first same-sex marriage licenses in Las Vegas were issued last night around 5 p.m. PT. By the time the Marriage License Bureau closed at midnight 40 certificates had been claimed.
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Would you get married at a Denny’s? We’ve heard you can do the marriage trifecta in Las Vegas: get your marriage license, get married and get divorced all at one intersection. But, can you go for the Grand Slam? If you could pick up your marriage license and get a divorce there, Denny’s would truly be a grand slam because you can certainly order your own customized menu item of the same name there, all while celebrating your nuptials.
reception inception, Denny's on Fremont -- which opened late 2012 -- has held 33 weddings. So that’s about two marriages a month, on average. John Miller, Denny’s President and Chief Executive Officer, reported on an earnings call that he was pleased with the number, especially in light of the fact Denny’s hasn’t advertised its chapel outside of the restaurant's opening.
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Las Vegas has been long known as the wedding capital of the world. With marriage licenses extremely easy to get (bringing a completed short form to the Clark County Marriage Bureau can get you a license within minutes), dashing to Sin City to tie the knot is an institution. But, with marriage rates dropping nationwide and campy Elvis-style ceremonies falling out of fashion, Vegas weddings may have peaked. By this fall, however, that could change.
You may have noticed an increase in the number of times we’ve mentioned the LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Questioning/Queer) community here in recent months. A new focus by hotel executives has resulted in LGBTQ-themed nightclub events, pool parties and social mixers, annual Pride and GayDays events, and Liason, the first gay nightclub in a Strip casino. And yet, Las Vegas is still playing catch-up to the rest of the country on the issue of same-sex marriage. (Note: the term "gay marriage" is largely frowned upon within the LGBTQ community as it reinforces inequality and separatism.)
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Time for another VegasChatter Question! This one comes from Richard B. who needs help planning the perfect Vegas vacation with friends. Do you have a question about Vegas, too? We bet you do. Send it to us and you just might see it here on VegasChatter!
Hi guys and gals, I am coming August 17th to get married, staying at MGM for 15 nights. We are from the UK, a group of oldies aged 50 and upwards. Can anyone recommend places to visit, shows, restaurants? Also have not booked a place to get wed yet, so any recommendations for that? Thanks."
Weddings / A Little White Wedding Chapel / Drive-Thru Weddings / Vow Renewals / VegasChatter Emails / VegasChatter Questions / → All Tags
A loyal VegasChatter reader is coming to town and hunting for a good place to renew his wedding vows. This got us thinking about the perfect Vegas-y place to tie (or re-tie) the knot. This writer happened to have a lovely ceremony at A Little White Wedding Chapel where she married a Capriotti’s sandwich. (Really.)
This venue proved to be a classic Vegas wedding chapel complete with the obligatory Elvis and cheesy outdoor gazebo. A bonus for couples who don’t bring the whole family: you can stream your wedding live on the Internet so friends and family can join in. There are two different Elvis packages featuring a ceremony in a vintage pink Cadillac and tunes from The King himself (well, the next best thing). Packages range from $55-$1,179.
Everyone loves a wedding, right? That's why we especially get all giggly and teary eyed when hearing about your Vegas weddings. So, when VegasChatter reader Jennifer C. sent us her story we absolutely had to share it.
Jennifer had the right idea from the get-go: Reaching out to VegasChatter on Facebook for advice during the planning stage. Things were going swimmingly. Her ideas, our suggestions. Her dream itinerary was forming. What could go wrong? Then fear set in that her big weekend may not be so Beautiful when she realized a large music, art and food festival might alter many of her downtown plans. Road closures, neighborhood lockdowns, and curfews. Oh my. The Mob Bar was on her hit list, too, but with a then-pending move to Downtown Grand there was uncertainty there, too.
Now, that the palindrome wedding craze is officially dunzo, Las Vegas is looking at other interesting sequences of dates to convince people to get married up. Next up? 11/12/13.
The Neon Museum has already put together a package called "The Magic Day" which will offer a 30-minute wedding ceremony for the couple and four guests inside the two-acre Neon Boneyard, along with a 30-minute photo shoot amongst some of Las Vegas' old neon signs. The package also throws in a bottle of champagne, cupcakes and an exclusive pair of his-and-her Neon Museum wedding-themed shirts. Total cost: $111,213. Kidding! It's actually just $650.
Only in Vegas can you celebrate every occasion involved with getting married all at once and in the most over-the-top way. But, isn’t having a bachelor(ette) party/wedding/honeymoon in Vegas tacky, you ask? Absolutely not! Vegas is notorious for its debauchery, but countless five star restaurants and legitimate wedding chapels (not just drive-thrus!) prove that Sin City has an elegant and romantic side, too. Here are are five reasons an all-in-one Vegas wedding extravaganza is the best thing ever.
1. Bachelor(ette) Parties
Long before The Hangover, brides- and grooms-to-be flocked to Vegas for one last wild escapade before tying the knot. And, why wouldn’t they? Men have their choice of strip clubs and steak houses. (Both, even. Hello, Treasures!) And, let’s not forget that ladies can have their beefcake and eat it, too. Don a veil and a tube dress and the Chippendales will be all over you, and the whole city will probably offer to buy you shots!