Vegas Baby! The adult playground of America only gets better. With new money pouring in from professional sports and celebrity icons, the Sin City is trying to make over it’s tawdry image to welcome a more “family friendly” atmosphere. This doesn’t mean it’s giving up the scantily shows and wild night life scene, but it does offer so much more than gambling and cheap thrills.
We just returned from a long weekend in Vegas and wanted to share how to have an iconic weekend of the must see, do, and eat. The highlights are either celebrity inspired or Vegas signatures- the Icons of Vegas.
- Bellagio Fountains
- Cirque du Soleil
- Celebrity Dining
- Luxury Shopping
- High Roller Ferris Wheel
1. Bellagio Fountains
One of the most iconic features of Vegas that comes to everyone’s mind is the Fountain Show at the Bellagio Hotel. The daily show of grand proportions delight visitors from all over the world. The large fountain dances to music daily from 3pm to midnight. Every half hour to 8pm and then every 15 minutes until midnight, a different water show is displayed.
Want to know the best vantage point to see it? Get a “Fountain View” hotel room at the Bellagio on the top floors. In previous visits, we would see it on the streets or from other hotel rooms, but nothing beats the views from the Bellagio Hotel. At this angle, you’re able to see the fountains dance with the Paris Hotel’s Eiffel Tower twinkling lights, another iconic landmark on the Vegas Strip.
We enjoyed the views from our room so much that we ordered room service our first evening there and stayed in to watch a different fountain show every 15 minutes.
The rooms at the Bellagio are quite fabulous and it’s worth an upgrade to a view like this.
2. Cirque du Soleil
Please do not come to Vegas and miss the iconic Cirque du Soleil show! From French to English it means “Circus of the Sun.” There are many Cirque shows each having its own unique theme. Considered the most dangerous show on earth, the heart stopping acrobatics to the majestic music makes this a highlight to any Vegas visit.
We’ve seen several shows in the past including “O” in Vegas and La Nouba in Orlando. We recently saw Michael Jackson One at the Mandalay Bay Hotel Vegas. Who is more iconic than Michael Jackson? The show blew our minds! If you love Michael Jackson’s music and Vegas shows, the combo is amazing.
The whole production was spectacular and the entire theatre came alive. The theater snowed at one point and was mystical. I wanted to dance the whole time and hubby Mike kept saying awesome! How do you get performers to be at any level with The Pop King? It takes a village. You get quadruple jointed dancers that are supernatural, unbelievable acrobatics, heart pumping music, incredible pyrotechnics, and some magic. All of Michael Jackson’s best hits combined with the most dangerous show on earth is now our fave Cirque show. Don’t miss it in Vegas!
3. Celebrity Chef Dining
I’m sure you’ve heard of iconic chefs like Gordon Ramsay, Giada Pamela De Laurentiis, Wolfgang Puck, Thomas Keller to name a few. There are so many celebrity chefs and their restaurants in Vegas. And why not? It is a place of indulgence.
I could not believe how incredible the food was in Vegas this time around. The food scene has grown so much from just a few years ago. We could have spent a couple of weeks here just doing a food tour. For a weekend in Vegas, here are some wonderful suggestions you can try.
- Gordon Ramsay Pub and Grill and his famous Hell’s Kitchen
- Pronto By Giada
- Guy Savoy Restaurant
- Mayfair Supper Club
Gordon Ramsay Pub and Hell’s Kitchen
No one entertains better than Michelin Chef Gordon Ramsay when it comes to cooking. He hosts popular shows like Master Chef, Hell’s Kitchen, and Kitchen Nightmares. He also owns 50 restaurants around the world in which 4 are in Vegas.
We went to Hell’s Kitchen and Gordon Ramsay Pub and Grill. We happened to pass by the Pub late one night and decided to just pop in for a late night snack.
The Pub is where I first had his Sticky Toffee Pudding. Mike had to try his burger and got the sliders with truffle fries. Everything was very good. The truffle fries were the best we ever had. It had real truffle sprinkles which elevates the whole thing with the truffle oil.
Gordon Ramsay’s Pub and Grill is a great choice if you can’t get in to Hell’s Kitchen. It’s much more low key and you can find all of his signature dishes here including the infamous Beef Wellington.
Hot Tip: If you can’t get reservations to Hell’s Kitchen, try going to his Pub and Grill located in Caesar’s Palace. You’ll find many of his signature dishes here, including the infamous Beef Wellington and Sticky Toffee Pudding.
We waited to have his Wellington at Hell’s Kitchen. We made reservations several weeks beforehand. This is his iconic restaurant, a standalone just outside of Caesar’s Palace.
We actually dined here for lunch just before heading to the airport. Inside, we saw the exhibit of Hell’s Kitchen contestant winners and tons of merchandising. We were on time for our reservation but they were running 15 minutes behind. There was a long line of walk ins. If you can, make a reservation well in advance or risk a very long wait.
The menu looked very good, it’s not a large menu but had variety and his best items. The only way to get the Beef Wellington here is to order his 3 course menu. It is not offered à la carte. If you want it à la carte, his Pub and Grill offers it as a standalone entrée.
Hell’s Kitchen Beef Wellington 3 Course Menu
Iconic Quick Bites
Along with full-service restaurants, many of the celebrity chefs have quick grab and go’s or cafes for those that don’t have time for full service. This is a great way to try some quality quick bites.
Pronto By Giada
Pronto by Giada is located in the Bellagio Hotel. It was very popular for business people to quickly get some coffee, pastries, sandwiches, or quiches, fresh fruit, yogurt parfaits, etc. during their conferences.
I really liked the quiche and iced mocha. Vegas is not cheap though. For a latte and quiche, you can expect to pay well over $20. Some places are better than others, but the quality is better than an amusement parks. I found the celebrity chef owned cafe’s like Pronto Giada was rather good and didn’t feel totally ripped off.
Brioche by Guy Savoy
This little expresso bar near the entrance of Caesar’s Palace was yummy. Everything from the drinks to the pastries to the French baguette sandwich reminded me of Paris. It’s also the only coffee place that offered Oat Milk as a milk alternative for the lattes.
Guy Savoy is a consistent 3 Star Michelin Chef and very well known in France. His quick espresso bar has amazing items if you’re in a rush but want a taste of Paris.
Guy Savoy Restaurant
Not only does he have quick bites but for a fancy dinner, Guy Savoy Restaurant is a place to indulge. If you’ve never heard of Guy Savoy, you don’t have to go all the way to Paris to find out. He’s an incredible French Chef who’s restaurant in Paris is almost impossible to get into. I was able to snag a last minute reservation at his restaurant in Caesar’s Palace due to a cancellation.
Guy Savoy is a 3 Star Michelin Chef. His style and reputation is the epitome of French cooking. He consistently maintains 3 stars every single year. If anything, you have got to try his breads. If anything can break a low carb diet, is this Chef’s breads and pastries. They are true bliss.
Once a year, the restaurant puts out a special 5 course menu that highlights his best of the best dishes for the entire year. It’s only offered for 5 weeks. We had an opportunity to try this iconic menu out.
The Crab and Caviar crowned in gold was incredible!
The Mayfair Supper Club
The Mayfair Supper Club is a brand new restaurant at the Bellagio Hotel. It’s not owned or run by a celebrity chef, but the food will entertain you at this swanky jazz restaurant.
It’s location is literally next to the Bellagio Fountains so you’re able to either watch the fountain show or the fun live singing and dance acts throughout the night.
They had really good food and when I asked for the recipe for the green beans, I was invited to the back kitchen where Chef told me himself on how to make it.
For a chic night, this is a great place to go before or after a Vegas show. Get the Baked Alaska for a fun table side dessert.
4. Luxury Vegas Shopping
The best thing about Vegas…the endless shopping. The worst thing about Vegas…the endless shopping. Whatever style you are, Vegas has some of the most iconic shopping you can find. If you’re into Hermès, Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Prada, Gucci, etc.. it’s all here in Vegas.
There are 10 Louis Vuitton shops in Vegas alone including the Flagship and largest location in the Americas. It’s located in The Shops at Crystals at the Aria Hotel. If you have time, there’s an exclusive art exhibit by artist James Turrell Akhob at this location. Only 6 people enter at time and you have to have a reservation. I wasn’t too interested in that but the 3 floor store was really nice.
Hot Tip: The best areas to shop the iconic designers are Bellagio Hotel, Caesar’s Palace, or The Crystal Shops at Aria Hotel.
Bellagio Hotel is my favorite because they have the top 3 designers known as the Holy Trinity: Hermès, Chanel, and Louis Vuitton all within close proximity.
Caesar’s Hotel would have to be my second favorite. They have the miles of shops with a really cool blue sky architecture and interesting statues. It’s fun to just walk around and shop til you drop.
No matter where you’re at on The Strip, there’s guaranteed to be amazing shopping.
5. High Roller Ferris Wheel
Right now in Las Vegas stands the “World’s Tallest Ferris Wheel” called the High Roller. This iconic wheel is recorded as 550 ft tall and 520 ft wide. The pods are internally modern and creeps really slowly to the top. It’s best to go at night as Vegas is not too pretty during the day.
We enjoyed seeing the pretty lights at night and it’s one of those novelties to say we did it once before it’s overtaken by another Ferris Wheel. Supposedly, Dubai is building even a larger one set to open later this year in 2020.
This activity is great for families and couples. Primetime is usually between nightfall to about 10pm. To avoid long lines, you may want to get there as soon as it gets dark or go really late. It’s open from 11:30am to 2am. We went really late and there wasn’t a large crowd.
Hot Tip: If you stay at Caesar’s Palace, they will send you an email with some great discounted amenities or add-ons like tickets to the High Roller.
Vegas keeps getting better and better…
as it continues to grow economically and expand its visitor base. Whatever your style from low key Keanu-Reeves to indulging Kardashians, Vegas has something to fit your style. If you’re looking for an Iconic Weekend, try some of these unforgettable places to do, see, and eat!
Whatever happens here, stays here…Vegas Motto