Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Holiday in Las Vegas: Arriving and Wandering Around

We wrap up our final holiday celebrations and Laura and Jennifer's birthday with a few days in Las Vegas, where the weather is much nicer than New York.  We stay at Caesar's Palace on the Strip and get great rooms overlooking the pool, although not much is going on at the pool in January.

 Overlooking the pool at Caesar's

We walk down the Strip, past Bellagio, Paris, The Cosmopolitan, and wander into the The Shops at Crystals, next to Aria.  Holiday decorations are still up, including a tree decorated with 100,000 LED lights and 5,000 Swarovski Crystal ornaments, each costing $100-$200 (and a 24-hour security guard watching over the tree).

 Holiday decorations at The Shops at Crystals

 Swarovski Crystal tree

Inside Aria, holiday decorations are scattered around the hotel and casino, including a sculpture by Tatsuo Miyajima with 3827 LEDs flashing to represent the cycle of life.

 Holiday decorations and sculpture

Near the New York New York Casino and Hotel, there is a new park stretching from Las Vegas Boulevard to the T Mobile Arena, full of shops, cafes, restaurants, and places to hang out and enjoy the day.  Located at the corner of Las Vegas Boulevard and Park Avenue, this great place is called (very appropriately) The Park.

 The Park

On our way back up the Strip, we pop into Bellagio to see what is on display in the Conservatory and Botanical Garden, the 14,000 square foot (1,300 square meter) display area that changes floral displays for each season and for the Chinese New Year.  We find that installation of the Chinese New Year (February 16 in 2018) decorations is in full swing, with a large crew and many cranes and other equipment..  Next year will be the Year of the Dog and Bellagio will be ready!

 Bellagio lobby

Installing the Year of the Dog

Even the shops, Harry Winston, Tiffany, and Louis Vuitton are still decked up for the holidays.

Shop windows

But, today is about birthdays and we stop for drinks at our hotel, then head over to Wolfgang Puck's Spago for a wonderful celebration and delicious dinner.

Birthday cocktails, dinner

We share several fabulous wood-fired pizzas to start, then get serious.  I have the Sonoma duck breast, while others have wienerschnitzel, lobster and crab risotto, ravioli, and much more.

Ravioli, duck breast, wienerschnitzel at Spago

 And, to top it all off, we have an assortment of deserts from the menu.

 Desert, yummmm!

Heading back into Caesar's, we pay tribute to the Chinese New Year's dragon in the Forum and bring to an end this fabulous birthday celebration.

Dragon outside Spago

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