Two weeks ago my mom and I went to Vegas for a few days on business. It was my first time in the city and granted, a work trip doesn't allow for quite the same experience as a vacation, but nevertheless I think I got a pretty good picture of what Vegas is all about- not as good as I had hoped and just as bad as I had expected.

I won't go into detail about the "bad"- my biggest disappointment though was that it wasn't really classy. Maybe I've watched Oceans Eleven one too many times, but I pictured the casino floor of the Bellagio to be a sight to behold. I thought Vegas was the #1 choice for the rich, elite and VIPs of the world - at least that's how it looks on the television series Las Vegas. But most of the people playing the slots were retired. No glamour there. And what's all this talk about how they pump oxygen into the casino floors to make you feel good so you can stay there longer (and play more)? It was so smokey I couldn't imagine how a child could retain consciousness after moderate indoor exposure (I was surprised how many kids were there).

Amanda did tell me we would be walking a lot on our trip. We walked a ton and since every casino is connected, just to get from here to there we would walk through several casino floors on the way to and from our meetings. If we had been there a different time of year, it would have been much more enjoyable since we could have walked outside more. But it was so HOT! It was 110 degrees our first day and with such a dry climate as theirs it was literally stifling.

Of all the hotels, I'm glad we stayed at the Mirage. One thing I didn't realize before arriving is that each hotel has a theme, per say, based on which show they offer at their theater (which is why you wouldn't want to stay at a hotel that was showing a scandalous show). Ours was showing The Beatles LOVE by Cirque du Soleil. The entrance to the theater was pretty cool - my mom and I thought it was a good photo op.

Every hotel had a lounge or two next to the theater. The Mirage's Revolution Lounge inspired by The Beatles was definitely the most impressive. The seating was inside the letters R-E-V-O-L-U-T-I-O-N.

We did have one free night to go to a show and everyone we asked said Cirque du Soleil's "O" was the best. It was fabulous! I have seen the Cirque's La Nouba several times in Orlando and "O" was so much better. I would definitely see it again.

Another highlight of the trip was walking outside after the show. The lights on the strip brought a whole other personality to the city that was quite energizing after being inside all day. Because it is so crowded in Vegas, they build these second-story overpasses so you don't have to wait for traffic to clear to cross the streets. This picture was taken outside the Bellagio with the Eiffel Tower replica in the background. I figured it was the closest I'm going to get to Paris for awhile.

On our way to dinner we caught the fountain show at the Bellagio. Classic Vegas.

We ate dinner at Mon Ami Gabi, a French restaurant in the Paris hotel, where they served warm baguettes in paper bags. The server sat us by a large group that were celebrating a friend's birthday (the Chanel bag was a dead giveaway). I recognized the name on the cute brown cupcake box and asked the girl sitting closest to us where I could find the nearest location. She pointed to the owner sitting at the other end of the table and before I knew it I was taking pictures with Pamela Jenkins, owner of The Cupcakery, and discussing my favorite cupcake flavor.

Pamela was everything you would hope a cupcake owner would be: adorable. She had on a short white dress with an oversized crystal necklace. She gave me a white cupcake with lemon-blueberry frosting. My favorite part was the pink glitter on the sides.

Before we headed home, we had a few free hours our last day. We went to The Forum Shops at Caesars and the first thing we tried was an oxygen bar where we breathed oxygen for 20 minutes and received back massages. It was an interesting experience but it was definitely relaxing and cleared our heads- who can shop with a head full of smoke?

I will credit Vegas with the highest concentration of designer stores of all the places I've been to. New York has lots of shopping but it's more spread out. After our morning of shopping, we ended with lunch at Spago, a Wolfgang Puck restaurant. I had some of the best spaghetti I've ever had while dining out. I can't think of a better way to end a trip than with some good food and a local cupcake.


  1. Well, I feel like I just got a good review of Vegas. I have never heard of an oxygen bar - very interesting!

  2. I think you summed up Vegas perfectly.. that's exactly how I would describe it. We went with my parents 2 years ago and also went to the grand canyon. Glad I've been, but I don't feel the need to go back.

  3. Vegas is definitely a place line none other... the food, sights, and shopping are amazing...(every once in a while). Glad you had time to have some fun on your business trip. Although I've only gone to Vegas in the winter, David's told me about the stifiling heat in the summer. The smoke inside the casinos is crazy....especially when it comes from the retired people who are playing slots, smoking, and wearing oxygen.

  4. Ha! Maybe the casinos stopped pumping oxygen b/c everyone was bringing their own!


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