Las Vegas Correspondence – January 2019


Bodies are swarming Las Vegas in January!

After the holidays are over you would think Las Vegas would slow down for a month … not happening! January ramps up with bodies everywhere in town at the conventions, including the Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Adult Entertainment Expo (AVN) and at the hotels. Hundreds of thousands of people will be converging here to enjoy the week-long activities and to check out what they have been missing in the area of the Strip. Of course, you have to have the tickets to get into the conventions, which will not happen for most outside of those businesses because they are not open to the public. But you can get into the “bodies” exhibits, for a price, at both Luxor and Bally’s Hotels.

Real Bodies at Bally’s

The original Bodies The Exhibition at the Luxor ($32 per person) daily from 10 a.m. until 10 p.m. and Real Bodies at Bally’s ($29.95 per person) daily from 10 a.m. until 9 p.m. are the same and different at the same time. Both exhibits let you go at your leisure through them, some people staying only 15-20 minutes because of the yuck factor and others a couple of hours or more reviewing each of the exhibits and reading the narrative

While Bally’s Real Bodies allows you to take photos, Luxor’s Bodies does not. You will find workers to answer your questions. wearing lab coats to simulate what actual workers handling body parts might look like to the average person; however, you can gain a lot of knowledge about how the body works, its organs, diseases and varying age group afflictions by the displays. There is a fetal room, so be aware before you go in.

So you’ve had your fill of up close and personal inner bodies, now check out bodies from a distance! Well, you might not be able to see actual bodies from this distance, but you will see movement of vehicles, if nothing else.

Living in Las Vegas, natives rarely hit the Strip unless they work on it, have friends or relatives in town, miss the food at one of their favorite places, or absolutely have to go there for a show/event/meeting. But it’s always fun to go to the Stratosphere Hotel to look out over the Strip both day and night.

The Strat has many good features. You can park there for free! Okay, so it’s a little away from the main Strip hotels, but you can still walk to the SLS, Circus Circus and, if ambitious, to Encore, Wynn, Caesars, and Fashion Show Mall.

The Strat has a 360-degree Observation Deck which is open daily from 10 a.m. until 1 a.m. Sunday through Thursday and until 2 a.m. Friday and Saturday. Tower Admission is $25 during the weekends. The Strat tower is 1,149 feet tall and is considered a freestanding observation tower. You can view the Strip and surrounding area from the observation deck at the top of the tower inside or outside and even brave one of their rides.

There has been construction on the deck for the past few months. Before you purchase your tickets make sure it is not still on-going or you will miss the view from ¾ of the deck. If this is the case, you should go to the bar to view the surrounding area.

Important note: If you are just going to the bars for drinks or the restaurant to eat you do not have to pay for admission. Just inform them and you will be instructed on which elevators to take to your destination in the tower.

You can literally jump off the Strat on their Skyjump ride for $120, which happens to be the world’s highest commercial decelerator descent from a ledge, at 855 feet above the ground.  It is basically a bungee-jump ride with a controlled descent.  For the Skyjump you will be asked health questions and not allowed to jump if you have any relevant conditions, including high blood pressure.  This is for your safety and well-being!  If you get a Groupon discount, you will get a jump package which includes the jump, a GoPro wristcam with photo and video of your jump, and all for $119!  A steal of a deal!

Another ride choice is Insanity, the 3rd highest ride in the world, where you can sit hanging over the deck of the building.  Or you can try the Big Shot or X-Scream (get it?) if you are extremely ambitious about dares!  X-Scream is not actually that scary unless you are in the front seat.  There is just not enough time on the ride to enjoy it, given the price.

You can get unlimited rides during the week for $40 or $45 on weekends.  If you purchase your tickets online you can receive a web discount of $5 or more.

Check out this link for pricing, discounts, hours, and other information before you take the leap.

Top of the World Restaurant

If you are looking for a more relaxing (less stressful) visit to the Strat, try the Top of the World restaurant, which revolves 360o every 80 minutes at the 800 foot level.  This is a beautiful setting for dinner with your significant other, especially if you are seated just before sunset.  They are also open daily for lunch from 11 a.m. until 3:30,  and they serve from their dinner menu from 11 a.m. until 11 p.m.

If you want that window view, call and make a reservation.  And don’t be surprised if you see a body fly by your window!  The Skyjump thrill riders could be descending while you enjoy the scenery.

If you are just looking for a great view and a cocktail, you should visit the Airbar, which is at 800 feet on level 108 and has the title of the highest bar in Las Vegas.  Since the drink prices are high, for more than one reason, you are better off going during their happy hours, nightly from 7 p.m. until 10 p.m.

Skylounge at the Strat

Another bar high up at the Strat is Skylounge on level 107.  Their hours are 4 p.m. until 3 a.m., so a good late night place to go.  They have happy hours from 4 p.m. until 7 p.m., and Wednesdays are ladies nights, with 2 for 1 cocktails.  Their DJ’s start at 11 p.m. Wednesdays through Sundays with no cover charge.  You can order appetizers there which come from Top of the World restaurant, so you can enjoy the food without the higher prices of a full meal.

— Pauline Cimoch

Las Vegas is Las Vegas because the city has opened the world’s first immersive cannabis-themed attraction of its kind on Fremont Street in downtown Las Vegas. Cannabition Cannabis Museum has already captured the attention of the world for its revolutionary celebration of cannabis culture past and present, while anticipating the future of cannabis legalization across the country. It also represents downtown’s newest, flexible events venue with capacities for groups from 500 – 2,000.

With more than 10,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor space, Cannabition provides an ideal setting to host “highly” entertaining group outings. Its exhibits comprise elaborate, cannabis-inspired installations where visitors can interact with unique art pieces including Hunter S. Thompson’s Chevy Caprice (The Red Shark) from the film Fear & Loathing in Las Vegas and “Bongzilla,” the world’s largest bong at 24-feet tall.

Cannabition offers audiences an entertaining, educational and photogenic journey through 20 “Instagrammable” exhibits that allows visitors to interact with cannabis history, science, wellness and culture.           

There is no stopping the holiday season in Las Vegas and you can find the on-going beauty and color of the season at Global Winter Wonderland at the Rio All-Suite Hotel. This spectacular lantern festival and multicultural theme park, with an 80-foot Christmas tree, will continue to shine through Jan. 20 in the north lot of the Rio.  It spans more than 15 acres and features giant illuminated lanterns depicting scenes that include a Christmas holiday village and landscapes from around the world.

Highlights include recreations of some of the world’s greatest architectural achievements including the Taj Mahal and Eiffel Tower. The lanterns, some more than 50 feet high and spanning nearly 100 feet long, are illuminated with low voltage LEDs and fluorescent lights. This family event also features carnival rides and games, international cuisine, arts and crafts, live entertainment, and celebrations of holiday traditions from around the world.           

 The six best doctors in the world are sunlight, rest, exercise, diet, self-confidence, and friends. Maintain them in all stages and enjoy a healthy life.  Happy New Year!

— Diamond Jack Bulavsky

Van Morrison Adds Two Shows to Run At Caesars Palace

Due to overwhelming demand, legendary singer-composer Van Morrison has added an additional two show dates, Feb.8 and 9, to his Jan. 25 through Feb. 2 run at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace, for a total of seven nights in 2019. Morrison just released his 40th studio album, “The Prophet Speaks.” Tickets start at $59.50.        

Morrison has six Grammys and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. By age 13, he was a travelling musician playing guitar and saxophone in several bands. In 1964, he formed the group Them, which made the hits “Gloria” and “Here Comes the Night.” A few years later, he released the Top 40 pop sensation “Brown Eyed Girl” and began his long career as a successful solo musician.

Cannery Features Heart By Heart and Tina Turner Tribute

The Club showroom at the Cannery in North Las Vegas will welcome rock band Heart By Heart and a Tina Turner tribute with singer Cookie Watkins in January.

Heart By Heart

Steve Fossen and Michael Derosier, former Heart rock band members and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees, put together Heart By Heart to create music authentic to the original group’s sound and style. Heart By Heart’s impressive current lineup includes: bassist Fossen; drummer Derosier; powerhouse vocalist Somar Macek; guitarist, keyboardist and vocalist Lizzy Daymont; and veteran guitarist Chad Quist.Tickets start at $24.95.         

Cookie Watkins, known for her high-energy and powerful vocals, will recreate legendary singer Tina Turner’s hits including “What’s Love Got To Do With It,” “Better Be Good To Me,” and “Higher,” on Saturday, Jan. 26 at 8 p.m. With Watkins’ talent, she has been the hand-selected Turner tribute artist for “Legends in Concert” in Las Vegas, the TV Show “The Next Best Thing,” and several other shows nationwide. Tickets start at $19.95.

Topgolf Debuts First TCL Esports Lounge in January

Topgolf and television brand TCL have a national partnership now to generate esports entertainment starting in early January, aligning with the 2019 Consumer Electronics Show Jan. 8-11. Designed for gamers from all walks of life, the first TCL esports Lounge will open at Topgolf Las Vegas.

Topgolf will add esports lounges to six Topgolf venues nationwide creating an inclusive guest experience and offering daily esports play. Guests will be able to play esports games, participate in special events, coaching sessions, viewing parties, and meet pro gamers.     In addition, Topgolf is partnering with national esports leagues to host events, qualifiers, local and weekly leagues, and attract gamers, influencers and celebrities to compete in tournaments at Topgolf venues. TCL and Topgolf expect the partnership to reach more than 63 million guests annually over the multi-year partnership.

— Jackie Brett