89109 Travel Guide
VegasChatter Reviews / Sahara / SLS Las Vegas / Name Changes / Reopenings / Room Remodels / Renovations / → All Tags
The Sahara was one of the first Vegas hotels that this writer (and my other half) ever stayed in. After visiting many times, both alone and with pals, Sahara felt like an old friend. Unfortunately, our relationship faltered when the property and level of service fell into decay. After a particularly unpleasant experience in 2009, I vowed not to return as a guest. And, I kept that promise… until last weekend when it was reborn as SLS Las Vegas.
As soon as an opening date for SLS was announced, I was able to book a two-night stay in a World Tower accommodation (360 sq. ft.) for that weekend. The World Tower is, by SLS’ own description, the "functional” arm of its three towers, with the Story Tower rooms (325 sq. ft.) intended for partiers, and Lux Tower rooms (465 sq. ft.) designed for those with luxury tastes.
Renovations / Reopenings / Denny's / Casino Royale / Expansions / The Strip / Eating / Dining / Restaurants / → All Tags
Torn down for expansion (and for, yes, another Strip-front pharmacy), Denny's should return to the center Strip sooner than we thought.
A representative of the 24/7 diner chain tells us the Casino Royale location -- which sees $8 million in revenue a year! -- is tentatively scheduled to reopen this November. Until now, we thought a return wouldn't happen until 2015.
Dining / Eating / Renovations / Grand Renovation / MGM Grand / Restaurants / Emeril's New Orleans Fish House / → All Tags
A multi-year Grand Renovation project at MGM Grand has slowed down after kicking out new rooms, casino carpet, dining spots and nightlife, but some of the resort's
oldest longest running destinations aren't being ignored.
Emeril's New Orleans Fish House will close September 2-11 while it kicks its design and menu up a notch. The plan will add new fare as well as an oyster bar while a remodel of the space will make it more airy and introduce new promenade-side seating as well. Don't worry, though, about the menu changes. We're told guest favorites will remain.
Openings / Eating / Dining / Restaurants / Border Grill / Mandalay Bay / Forum Shops / Caesars Palace / → All Tags
Soon, you won't have to trek all the way to the south Strip for crowd fave, Border Grill.
A forthcoming Forum Shops location just held a hiring call last weekend. That already told us a debut was soon, but VegasChatter reader @CCORD can pin it down a little more. He sent us a Border Grill newsletter that touts an official opening this October. Will a September soft opening be possible? Keep those fingers crossed as best you can around that marg; but, if not, October will be here before we know it.
You'll find Border Grill in the old PJ Clarke's space at the Forum Shops. The Mandalay Bay location will not be closing so don't panic about that.
(Border Grill Las Vegas on Facebook)
Renovations / Four Seasons / Verandah / Eating / Dining / Restaurants / → All Tags
At Four Seasons, guests have enjoyed a lovely room redesign for closing in on two years now. And, long-time readers know how im-PRESS-ed we've been with the redesigned lobby bar. Now, the focus is turning to the resort's informal yet still classy cafe.
VegasChatter has learned Verandah's indoor dining room will be closed September 1-22 for remodeling. Its patio, however, will still offer breakfast and lunch service. Dinner, however, will not be available. The closure also means the resort's yumtastic weekend breakfast buffet also will be off the menu until renovations are complete.
Halloween / Fright Dome / Circus Circus / Haunted Houses / Fun Vegas / Scary Vegas / The Strip / → All Tags
While the masses of excited children and quasi-drunk tourists who regularly pass through The Adventuredome at Circus Circus are a tad scary, it’s time for something truly frightening as the metallic pink dome shifts into Halloween mode with Fright Dome. Opening Friday, October 3, Fright Dome will celebrate the 40th anniversary of classic horror flick The Texas Chainsaw Massacre by dedicating one of its six haunted houses to the theme.
Horror director Tobe Hooper and writer Kim Henkel are teaming up with Fright Dome to, hopefully, deliver quite the terrifying haunt. Attendees will see scenes from the flick as well brave the over-the-top sets and eerily accurate actors Fright Dome has become known for.
Eating / Dining / SLS Las Vegas / The Griddle Cafe / The Strip / Openings / → All Tags
The Griddle Cafe at SLS Las Vegas might feel like it's in the frying pan as much as its eye-poppin', plate-sized pancakes are on the griddle. Since opening this weekend, we've heard of long lines and waits. Even when we strolled up around 10:30 a.m. Monday -- after passing a near empty casino -- we found every table taken. (Granted the room is small, by Vegas standards.)
Dining / Eating / Palazzo / CarneVino / Bars / Restaurants / Fine Dining / → All Tags
CarneVino has, for quite some time, had one of the best bar programs on The Strip. Old-school bartender class and new-school mixology wizardry are combined with fantastic steaks for quite an experience. But, if you're not in the mood for a 100+ day, dry-aged ribeye, they now have a bar-only "Cicchetti" menu.
Basically, an Italian version of true Spanish tapas, cicchetti are little bites laborers in Venice get with their beer in the afternoon. They'll get up to the bar, order a brew, and in the time it takes to shuffle over to the ice chest, open it, and exchange Euros, the patron will take a toothpick and nibble on a pepper-stuffed onion, an anchovy-stuffed olive, a little charcuterie. You get the idea. Simple, lovely, and great for both the patron and the bar.
Being an east coast transplant who hasn’t become completely jaded (yet) by the bright lights of the Strip, this writer is occasionally still in awe of nightclub and lounge culture. Aside from the obvious amazement over women who choose to wear shoes and clothes that look so uncomfortable in order to fit in at some of these venues, I still get excited about live music in nightclub/lounge settings.
That is why, on what turns out to be my nine-year Vegas-versary of when I arrived in Sin City, I’m excited Sayers Club at SLS Las Vegas is finally open. I am especially hyped after hearing about Sayers Sessions at the outpost in LA and also the one-off events held at sister venue, Hyde Bellagio, featuring the Sayers Sessions band.
Snapshots / Vegas Observations / The Strip / The Harmon / Harrah's / Casino Royale / Bally's / Grand Bazaar Shops / Caesars Palace / PURE / The Quad / The Linq Hotel / → All Tags
The Strip of today is not the Strip of tomorrow. And, when we say tomorrow, we don't just mean the near|distant future, we mean tomorrow tomorrow.
On-going construction continues to bring us a slightly different Vegas each day. Last week, we checked up on six different projects, from the tear-down of a never-completed resort to a casino remodel. The 18 photos below, snapped by Greg C. and @paperposter, were captured between August 19 and August 22. So, yeah, expect five of these projects to be slightly more advanced today.
At The Harmon, the latest phase of a year-long demolition brings a crane and black barrier drapes. The condo-hotel never opened due to construction errors.
SLS Las Vegas / SBE / Grand Opening / Snapshots / → All Tags
If you’ve looked closely at the SLS Las Vegas logo, or were already familiar with SLS chain’s love of monkeys, you probably already know to expect some fun monkey-themed items around the new Vegas hotel and casino. Monkey business is apparently an actual business, if you’re Sam Nazarian or sbe!
During our coverage of the opening week’s festivities, we snapped a few pics of the primates we found throughout the resort, some are easily spotted while others are more subtle. Here's a gallery of some of our faves:
If you haven’t been to the Capital Grille at Fashion Show Mall on The Strip, you’re missing out. Yes, it’s a “chain steakhouse” if you care to look at it that way, but it’s so much more. The rapidly expanding brand has outposts in various cities now and if you’ve tried the food, you may agree it is a solid option when looking for a steakhouse experience. In Las Vegas, there’s the added benefit of a Strip-side view. If you were ever thinking of trying Capital Grille, now is the time because the annual Generous Pour wine event running through August 31.
Wine lovers and the wine curious can make use of the promotion which allows guests to tack on a sommelier-selected wine pairing to their meals for an additional $25. If you look at the wine pairing menus at comparable Strip restaurants, it’s easy to see this is a deal. While certain restaurants offer cheap (or free/included) pairings, the house wine is often of the Welch’s grape juice “varietal.”