Pride Journey: Las Vegas
Everybody knows Las Vegas is the city that never sleeps. But did you know that Sin City has also become one of the nation’s top LGBT destinations. Almost every major casino in Vegas is competing for the gay dollar, offering a myriad of special events throughout the year to try to lure tourists to their property. Leading the pack is MGM Resorts International. With over a dozen properties to choose from, LGBT visitors are sure to find a destination that fits their taste and budget. For years, Luxor has been the casino which has targeted the LGBT market. With moderately priced rooms and dining options, Luxor’s popularity has grown tremendously. A highlight of a visit to the Egyptian-themed casino is Temptation Sunday’s, a weekly pool party which occurs during the summer months. The combination of strong drinks, great music and scantily clad men in enough to make anyone wish they were visiting Vegas for more than just a few days. During your stay, I recommend checking out MGM’s other properties including: New York-New York, Monte Carlo and Mandalay Bay. However, if you are looking for a taste of Australia, buy a ticket to Thunder from Down Under at the Excalibur. The all-male revue show has become one of the hottest shows on The Strip and should not be missed. After the show, head across the street to MGM Grand, a destination all its own. The sprawling hotel and casino is home to Hakkasan Nightclub, home to world-renowned DJs Tiësto, Calvin Harris and Steve Aoki and more, the club is consistently voted one of the best in the world. The hotel is also where you can find over a dozen fine dining establishments from celebrity chefs including Emeril Lagasse, Wolfgang Puck and Tom Colicchio.
Those looking for a show perfecting the art of female impersonation should look no further than Frank Marino’s Divas Las Vegas. The spectacular stars Frank Marino, Las Vegas' longest-running headliner and an all-star cast of female impersonators. Where else can you see Celine Dion, Cher, Diana Ross, Katy Perry and Shania Twain all on one stage? Foodies will be amazed by Vegas’ abundance of high-end dining establishments, but some of the best restaurants in Vegas might be the least expensive. One of my favorite meals was at Bobby’s Burger Palace, owned by Iron Chef Bobby Flay. On my first visit, I opted for the” Dallas” burger, a succulent spice-crusted patty topped with a delectable combination of coleslaw, Monterey Jack cheese, BBQ sauce and pickles. It was truly worth the visit and for less than $15 (including a side of sweet potato fries), you can’t go wrong. Las Vegas, which was recently voted Favorite American Destination by OutTraveler Magazine, is the host city for an exciting new event, Evolve Vegas NYE (New Year’s Eve), a 3-day gay New Year’s Eve experience that will bring men from more than 30 countries, on six continents, to the city.
Hosted at the world famous, MGM Grand Hotel & Casino, Evolve Vegas NYE takes place December 30, 2014 – January 1, 2015 and offers shows, receptions, parties, dining, shopping, tours and more. “I am so excited, as this will be the first time in my 30 year Las Vegas career that I will be performing for an all gay audience. Finally, I can do pop-culture jokes that everyone will get! This night is going to be one Big Party!” says Frank Marino, headliner of the Divas Las Vegas. The event will kick off with a private VIP reception, featuring Zumanity performers and champagne, followed by the sensual Cirque du Soleil performance that offers a seductive twist on reality. After the show, guests will party at the official opening reception at Liaison Nightclub at Bally’s Hotel & Casino. The package also includes visits to the Mob Museum, The High Roller, Madame Tussauds and more.
For more information about Las Vegas, visit www.lvcva.com