A Day in Vegas: Casinos, Buffets & Tourists

View from CaesarsWe went to Vegas last weekend despite the 100+ F degrees and the Electric Daisy Festival. Thank God there wasn’t any traffic, and we were able to enjoy the trip. We stayed at the Caesar’s Palace, courtesy of my roommate’s co-worker whose family lived there (local gamblers get occasional free lodging, I hear)

Though I was adventurous, wanting to compare its downtown to other cities, our local friends dissuaded us saying “Are you crazy? There’s nothing to do there! Stay in the Strip!” And so we did. And for good measure since it was  hot enough to fry eggs on the street.

One word to describe the Strip? Artifice. From the scaled imitation of the Eiffel Tower to the countless adult entertainment offerings on the street and public ads, everything you see is aimed towards the consumer. The isolated artificial world is essentially like Disneyland, but for mature audiences.

Casinos/hotels visited:

  • Caesar’s Palace – lavish design, neoclassical Roman opulence
    • Forum Shops – great interior design that feels like a grand art gallery
  • Bellagio – fascinating (best) interior design, from restaurants to their artful garden and fountain show
  • Cosmopolitan – gaudy colors and “cheap” design with their glass string chandeliers. Their night/day club was crowded though.
  • The Mirage – supposed to have dolphins and a nude pool, but both were closed when we got there
  • Treasure Island – entertaining free pirate show, with music
  • Palazzo – nice waterfall and piano podium.
  • The Venetia – Shops along a disappointing fake Venetian canal.

So basically, what I enjoyed most was exploring the insides of Strip malls/casinos. Compared to outside architectural tours of Chicago, the tourist best stay indoors to enjoy Las Vegas. The Strip truly exemplifies the beautiful, ornamental interior designs – it kinda makes me want to stay and go at the same time. Collectively, it too is a fantasy. Sadly, we didn’t have the time to see a show or performance, other than TI’s free pirate show.

After swimming in the public Caesar’s pool, I got to try the Bacchanal Buffet ($50~ wait time 2-3 hrs), said to be the world’s #1 buffet. With several different kitchens/cuisines, I got to try Chinese, Japanese, Italian, Mediterranean and American foods + lots of Seafood and yummy Desserts!

Meat Buffet Dessert Buffet Seafood Buffet

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