Lifestyle: The Trend Jumper
Q: What is the coolest new hotel in Vegas and the coolest old joint?
A: Las Vegas is constantly evolving and growing, so the coolest hotel of last week might be different today.
The newest resort in town is The Cosmopolitan, a hip, modern hotel that is home to some of the hottest bars and restaurants in Vegas. The centerpiece of the resort is The Chandelier bar, which is enshrouded in 2 million beaded crystals and serves creative cocktails on each of its three distinct levels.
CityCenter is another fairly new resort, featuring cutting-edge architecture, state-of-the-art technology in the guest rooms and unparalleled earth-friendly initiatives. You can't get more trendy than staying at Aria and hitting up Haze nightclub.
While not new, there are several hotels in Las Vegas that are perennially cool.
It'd hard to forget that the Palms was once home to MTV's "The Real World: Las Vegas." But the Palms continues to be one of the hottest resort properties in Las Vegas. The Pearl concert venue consistently brings in top-notch entertainment.
The Hard Rock Hotel led the new wave of trendy, beautiful-people-filled casinos. Between its exclusive nightclubs, sexy pool parties and hot restaurants, the Hard Rock continues to set the trends. Its HRH Tower brings sophisticated rooms and a spa.
The coolest "old" hotel of the moment has to be the El Cortez. The hotel has been seamlessly blending the “classic” with the hip and modern. Recent years have seen renovations – now totaling a whopping $28 million. In 2009 the contemporary El Cortez Cabana Suites were unveiled. Resulting from a major overhaul of the ’70s-era Ogden House, this 64-room boutique hotel brings a taste of Miami’s South Beach to downtown. The hotel also takes part in Vegas StrEATS, a food truck and culture festival held every second Saturday of the month.
Q: What are the coolest bars and nightclubs in town?
A: It's all about The Cosmopolitan right now. The three-level Chandelier bar is the place to see and be seen. The resort is also home to the mega-popular Marquee Nightclub and Dayclub. Book & Stage bar hosts hot live music and the Vesper Bar serves cool cocktails.
Other clubs that continue to stay on the top of the trendy nightlife scene are Tao at the Venetian, an Asian-themed, multilevel nightclub and bistro that draws the beautiful and famous to its Zen-like surroundings, and Pure at Caesars Palace, a celeb favorite with its Strip-facing outdoor patio, world-class DJs and wall-to-wall hot bodies.
But since we're talking cool, then definitely head down to Minus 5 at Mandalay Place, a bar that's made of ice, where the temperature is a chilling 23-degrees Fahrenheit (minus 5 Celsius). Parkas and gloves are provided.
Take part in the downtown Las Vegas nightlife renaissance by heading to one of the area's many bars, such as The Griffin , Insert Coin(s), a hip bar where you can play video games while you party, or Downtown Cocktail Room.
Q: What are the hottest pool clubs?
A: When the weather permits, (which is most of the year), pool clubs are all the rage in Las Vegas.
With its Ditch Fridays pool party and celebrity clientele, The Palms Pool remains a staple of Las Vegas pool scene, as does the Pool at Hard Rock, which features Rehab on Sundays. Celebrate "daylife" (versus nightlife) at Wet Republic at MGM Grand, Marquee Dayclub at The Cosmopolitan, or Liquid at Aria.
Q: What shops are fashionable now in Vegas?
A: You need look no further than the Fashion Show mall. It's all in the name: From Saks Fifth Avenue to Neiman Marcus to 200 boutique stores filling the two million square feet of this shopping utopia, the Fashion Show is as beautiful as it is expansive. Also try the Forum Shops or The Shoppes at The Palazzo, which features Barneys New York.
Along with some of the most elite and upscale shops in Las Vegas, Crystals retail and entertainment district at CityCenter is home to cutting-edge water features, dining and nightlife along with captivating architecture.
Just south of Mandalay Bay and Luxor, is the 1.5-million-square-foot Town Square with trendy shops, restaurants, an 18-screen movie theater, a park and a Whole Foods Market in case you want to pick up some groceries during your Las Vegas stay.
Q: Are there any trendy restaurants I should check out while in Vegas?
A: "Las Vegas" must translate into English as "trendy restaurants," because there never seems to be a lack of them. A restaurant you won't want to miss is Yellowtail, a modern Japanese restaurant. STK at The Cosmopolitan draws the crowds with its innovative food and trendy vibe. For a sweet treat, head to Caesars Palace for Serendipty 3's signature Frrrozen Hot Chocolate.
Simon at Palms Place features the cuisine of Chef Kerry Simon in a sophisticated setting overlooking the resort's pool. Of course, if you want a pre-party hotspot with housemade pastas and modern Italian cuisine, make sure to check out Nove Italiano at the neighboring Palms Hotel & Casino.
For a trendy restaurant and nightclub hybrid, try Lavo at the Palazzo. For a casual country-rock party, hit PBR Rock Bar & Grill at the Miracle Mile Shops in Planet Hollywood. It's big, loud and there's a mechanical bull--need we say more?
A big trend in the culinary world is small plates. When dining at a restaurant that serves Spanish tapas or small plates, you can share and try lots of dishes without filling up. Restaurants like Fleur, Jaleo and Julian Serrano make small plates modern and elegant.
Cool new eateries pop up almost weekly, and the best way to keep up is to check out our dining guide.
Q: Any new trends in gambling I should know about?
A: Poker continues to be a popular game. Check out our listing of poker rooms to get in on the action.
One of the newest trends in Vegas gaming is the handheld gaming device, which allows players to place bets from throughout the hotel/casino. These devices are available at the Venetian and Palazzo, as well As M Resort and select other casinos like the Tropicana.
Q: OK, so are there any shows in Vegas that are really making a buzz?
A: As the Entertainment Capital of the World, Vegas is home to plenty buzz-worthy revues.
At Caesars Palace you'll find big-name headliners including Celine Dion . If you want over-the-top production elements paired with performers doing incredible gymnastic feats, the Cirque du Soleil productions never disappoint. Cirque du Soleil's KÀ at MGM Grand takes the audiences on a fantastical journey stopping at a beach, snowy mountain top, jungle and other landscapes, all depicted through the show's ever-evolving stage. Another Cirque favorite is LOVE at the Mirage. This show is a psychedelic ride through the trends and politics of the '60s and most importantly, The Beatles' history, told through nearly 30 of the group's songs.
Peepshow at Planet Hollywood is a sexy show based on nursery rhymes told with a naughty twist. The show has modern burlesque-style dancing, singing, flirty costumes, colorful set pieces and of course plenty of beautiful women.
If you want something that's a little crass, a little in your face and a whole lot of fun, there's Absinthe, and we're not talking about the drink. This circus-style production is hosted by a boisterous character called the Gazillionaire and features a variety showcase of various specialty acts.The show has in-the-round seating allowing every guests to have an up-close view of all the action on stage.