The world-famous Las Vegas Strip entices with its glittering neon lights, flashy cabarets and clanging slot machines. But there’s so much more to this celebrated boulevard than merely testing one’s luck. Dig a little deeper and you’ll find museum-worthy treasures, outrageous edibles, a snowy landscape and so much more. Read on to discover a side of the Strip that’s rife with hidden treasures.
What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas, right? If you’ve ever had a regrettable Sin City weekend you’ve no doubt uttered that phrase, but it also points to an indisputable truth: Las Vegas is a city full of secrets. Whether you’re a devotee of the World Famous Las Vegas Strip or turn your back on it entirely, chances are you have no idea how much is really tucked away along this iconic boulevard. Here are 10 secrets of the Las Vegas Strip revealed.
Vegas Visitors sink big bucks into rooms with eye-popping Strip views, but they need not. Instead, ride the glass elevators (which themselves offer amazing views) 64 floors to Skyfall Lounge at the Delano. For the cost of one cocktail visitors can indulge in 180-degree Strip views, but true penny pinchers can enjoy the same view from the convenience of the luxe bathrooms.
Location Mandalay Bay
Take a break from air-conditioned casino monotony at the Park, a lovely new green space. In addition to its desert foliage, park benches, misters and several enticing restaurants, check out “Bliss Dance,” a 40-foot sculpture of a dancing woman from San Francisco artist Marco Cochrane.
Location New York, New York
Art that will change your life
On the top floor of the flagship Louis Vuitton store is a secret (and free) art installation that will surely become your Vegas highlight. “Akhob” from artist James Turrell is a fully immersive installation that bends space, time and light and will leave you slack-jawed. Call the store (well in advance) to make an appointment and prepare to have your mind-blown.
Location The Shops at Crystals
Draped in some two million beaded crystals, the chandelier at the Cosmpolitan is a sight in and of itself, but step up to the bar of the same name and ask for a Verbana. This non-menu cocktail screws with your taste buds thanks to the Szechuan Button, an edible flower that is filled with a natural alkaloid. Take a bite and feel your taste buds get all tingly and wild.
Location Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas
Want to sink your teeth into the most expensive (as verified by Guinness) dessert in the world? Try the Golden Opulence Sundae at Serendipity 3, a sweet treat crafted of Tahitian vanilla bean and Ecuadoran chocolate ice cream, exotic fruits, imported chocolate truffles, micro mints anda flower made of white chocolate and dusted in gold pounded so thin it’s—get this—edible.
Location Caesars Palace
A winter wonderland
If the city’s relentless heat gets you down, cool off at Qua Spa, a Roman-inspired bathhouse where steam rooms, saunas, rain showers and hot tubs of varying temps will zap all stress. Best of all is the Arctic Ice Room, a domed and glass-tiled sauna cooled to 55 degrees and featuring actual snowfall smack in the middle of the Las Vegas Strip.
Location Caesars Palace
A woolly proposition
Looking for an “only in Vegas” moment? Look no further than T.I. (formerly Treasure Island), where just several feet away from the 24-hour clang of the slot machine stands a Siberian Woolly Mammoth tusk with hundreds of tiny figures intricately carved into it. A true sight to behold, the tusk itself is likely 10,000 years old and the carvings took generations to complete.
Grind it out
As visitors to Vegas meander in and out of the mega Strip resorts, most are blissfully unaware of neon-drenched diner and Sin City institution the Peppermill which opened in 1972 and has served as the backdrop in films like “Showgirls” and “Casino.” For best results, show up around 4am and order a 64oz. Scorpion to sip around the flaming reflection Pool. This is classic Vegas.
Location Kitty corner to Slots A Fun
Odds worth betting on
It’s hard out there for a penny-pinching gambler. These days the Strip is for high rollers, but there is a bargain to be had. Casino Royale is one of the few Strip casinos left with $5 tables coupled with 100X odds—a bet that gives the house zero advantage over the player and is thus a great bet. Of course, you can still lose so play wisely and may the odds be ever in your favor!
Location Casino Royale
A sky high happy hour
Move over London Eye, the world’s tallest observation wheel is the High Roller, which opened in 2014 and has become a dazzling way to see the city. Nighttime views are sensational, but an even better idea is to squeeze yourself into the booze-fueled Happy Half Hour cabin where the bar is open and all yours for the entire ride at a cost of $33 per person.
Location LINQ Promenade