For decades the once Western cowboy town was associated with lad’s holidays and stag parties, but world-class shows, outdoor adventures and a elaborate arts scene have become just as popular as poker tables and showgirls. Don’t worry, the promise of all-hours adventures on the brightly-lit Strip still awaits, as do the buzzing casinos and the city’s typical must-do attractions, but we’ve ventured to the dazzling city in the Mojave Desert to bring you a side to Vegas that you may not have gambled on.
Magic Mike XXL
Well, this was a given. Hosted in the Hard Rock Hotel, make your way to your seats through a gift shop of orgasm inducing memorabilia – but the flutters don’t stop there. A dimly lit room with velvet curtains, plush armchairs, strategically placed sofas and a VIP balcony, waiters mull around ensuring you’ve got enough booze to get you rowdy for this epic show. Not a strip show, but an exhibition of dance, comedy and downright steaminess, this incredible show is designed for women, with phrases like ‘safe word’, ‘permission’ and ‘no means no’ infiltrating the dialogue of the male dancers and the vivacious girl boss MC. Although not a strip show, do expect to receive a surprise lap dance or two from the hot dancers, who seem to come out of cracks in the wall!
We’re used to over-brewed coffee, a tasteless chocolate biscuit and a magazine dated two years previous at our local hair salons, but in Vegas hair salons are where the night begins. Drybar brings you blowouts, booze and beats, taking the stress out of getting ready and letting a professional take care of the pre-drinks. With styles named after classic cocktails to suit all hair types, a signature cocktail menu and tunes that’ll make it difficult to keep still for your stylist, you need to start at least one of your Vegas nights with this top-class experience!
Soaring 550-feet above the centre of the Las Vegas Strip on The Linq, a popular shopping and dining promenade, the High Roller eclipses both the London Eye and the Singapore Flyer. Even if you’re afraid of heights you’re guaranteed some phenomenal highs on this boozy tourist attraction. Literally taking happy hour to new heights, the High Roller offers a Happy Half Hour looking over the Las Vegas strip and valley in one of its egged shaped pods for just 40 bucks. That’s all you can drink booze and all you can see Vegas – a bargain in our eyes!
Grand Canyon Flight and Champagne Breakfast
Flying through the epic layered bands of red rock in the Grand Canyon, Arizona is high on many bucket lists. The national park reveals millions of years of geological history, spanning as far as the eye can see from the top down view of your helicopter experience. Led to believe that helicopters couldn’t land in the Canyon, we were elated to find that not only would we get to walk in one of the most wondrous sites in the world, but we’d enjoy a champagne breakfast after our light stroll. Sundance Helicopters offers this premium experience to groups – arrive at the airfield by chauffeured limousine from your hotel and enjoy the 2 1/2-hour round trip with a pit stop for champagne, bagels and fruit baskets. The epitome of a luxury adventure!
Sundance also offer a variety of other epic adventures, including a walk across the famous Skywalk Bridge and a riverboat cruise in the Canyon.
The Neon Museum
Founded in 1996, the Neon Museum is a non-profit organisation dedicated to collecting, preserving, studying and exhibiting iconic Las Vegas signs for educational, historic, arts and cultural enrichment. The Neon Museum campus includes the outdoor exhibition space known as the Neon Boneyard, a visitors’ centre housed inside the former La Concha Motel lobby and the Neon Boneyard North Gallery which houses additional rescued signs. In addition, the Neon Museum collection chronicles changes and trends in sign design and technology through pieces ranging from the 1930s to the present day.
Basically, this innovative space is an art gallery dedicated to the forgotten signs that gave Vegas it’s nickname, City of Lights, and we couldn’t love it more!
Seven Magic Mountains
Seven towers of colourful boulders stand 25 ft tall in the middle of the Nevada desert, just 10 miles from Las Vegas. Renowned Swiss artist Ugo Rondinone’s vibrant public artwork, Seven Magic Mountains, offers a creative critique of the simulacra of destinations like Las Vegas. According to Rondinone, the location is physically and symbolically mid-way between the natural and the artificial: the natural is expressed by the mountain ranges, desert, and Jean Dry Lake backdrop, and the artificial is expressed by the highway and the constant flow of traffic between Los Angeles and Las Vegas. Five years in the making, the sculptures are regarded as the largest land-based installation in 40 years. With their bright neon colours, you wouldn’t be crazy to think it’s a mirage as you make your way down the motorway to check them out, and of course, get that coveted shot for the ‘gram.
For a glimpse of where it all began, leave the Strip behind and you’re your way downtown to Fremont Street. It’s the historic epicentre of Las Vegas where you’ll find penny slots, cheaper Blackjack tables and fantastically terrible Elvis impersonators. Also, if you fancy getting hitched there are quite a few Little White Chapel’s down there!
Las Vegas North Premium Outlets
Too tired from partying to embark on adrenalin fuelled adventures? Spend the day at the best shopping experience in the city! This airy, outdoor village-styled centre is a must-shop for visitors of the famed Strip. Las Vegas North Premium Outlets features 175 designer and name-brand outlet stores offering savings of 25% to 65% every day including Coach, Kate Spade New York, Michael Kors, Neiman Marcus Last Call Studio, Nike, Saks Fifth Avenue Off 5th, Tory Burch and many more. Grab your gals and your bank cards but leave the heels at home, bargain hunting isn’t feet-friendly!