Monthly Archives: April 2014

Get an Eyeful of The Park Las Vegas at New York-New York and Monte Carlo

MGM Resorts has unveiled some sexy new renderings of The Park, an outdoor plaza that will connect New York-New York and Monte Carlo.

The Park Las Vegas

This is close as we’ve ever come to licking a rendering.

The stroll-friendly space will feature restaurants, bars and retail shops.

The renderings also show the location of MGM Resort’s 20,000-seat sports arena. A groundbreaking for the $350 million arena happens May 1, 2014. The arena will open in 2016.

The Park Las Vegas

Yeah, because in Las Vegas, drivers are known for stopping at crosswalks without traffic signals.

The new outdoor district follows a trend set by Caesars Entertainment with its new Linq outdoor pedestrian mall between Flamingo and The Quad, the centerpiece of which is the world’s tallest Ferris wheel, the High Roller. Both projects are a response to visitor demand for more non-gambling offerings.

The Park

All our brothers and sister were apparently not available to appear in this rendering.

A lot of the enhancements at The Park can already be seen at New York-New York and Monte Carlo, and restaurant offerings like Double Barrel Roadhouse have already opened. Soon-to-come is a massive Hershey’s Chocolate World store. Also on the way is a Shake Shack burger stand.

MGM Resorts has given a sneak preview of other offerings in the works, too, including Bruxie, a gourmet waffle restaurant; Sake Rok, featuring Japanese cuisine; a Robert Mondavi Jr. restaurant, lounge and wine bar; Dierks Bentley’s Whiskey Row, a country bar and restaurant; and a Beer Garden, because beer.

MGM Resorts The Park

Seriously, though, they couldn’t find even one virtual African-American? How about a Korean? Anything?

Read more about what’s up at The Park, a new way to experience outdoors in Las Vegas. If you’re into that kind of thing. Then again, if we wanted more outdoors, we’d live in Seattle. We’re just saying.

Well, At Least That’s Not Awkward

Oh, Las Vegas.

awkward showgirls

It’s all fun and games until someone accidentally loses their virginity. In public. As Mom snaps a photo.

SlotZilla Las Vegas Zip Line Opens at Downtown’s Fremont Street Experience

The SlotZilla zip line in downtown Las Vegas has officially opened. The new attraction opened at noon on April 27, 2014.

Las Vegas zip line

Four riders depart at once. Lighter riders arrive at the landing platform arrive last. It’s a gravity thing.

The new attraction has two take-off levels, but only the lower level is operating at the moment. The upper level (called a “Zoomline”) is expected to open in a few weeks. (Update: SlotZilla’s upper Zoomline is also open.)

Riders on the lower lines travel seated, while riders on the upper lines will fly prone, or superhero-style.

zip line las vegas

Zoomline riders will emerge from an opening just under SlotZilla’s simulated reels.

Rides on this new SlotZilla Las Vegas zip line cost $25 for the lower Zipline, $45 for the upper Zoomline. Friday and Saturday after 6:00 p.m. is “primetime” pricing, or $49 for the upper Zoomline. Save $5 on either zipline before 6:00 p.m. (Updated: 12/21/18)

Tickets can currently be purchased at the SlotZilla ticket office (at the base of the SlotZilla tower) or online.

SlotZilla zipline is open seven days a week. The Zoomline is open Sunday through Thursday, 12:00 p.m. (noon) to 1:00 a.m.; Friday and Saturday, 12:00 p.m. (noon) to 2:00 a.m. The Zipline is open Sunday through Thursday, 12:00 p.m. (noon) to 1:00 a.m.; Friday and Saturday, 12:00 p.m. (noon) to 2:00 a.m. (Updated: 12/21/18)

Las Vegas zipline

The view from the landing platform, halfway down the Fremont Street Experience canopy. Riders end up between the Fremont and Four Queens casinos.

What’s the age limit for the SlotZilla zipline? There’s no age limit.

What’s the weight limit for the SlotZilla zipline? Riders must weigh at least 50 pounds for the Zipline, 80 pounds for the Zoomline. The maximum weight for either ride is 300 pounds.

Is there a height limit for the SlotZilla zipline? Yes, guests must be no taller than six-foot-eight-inches.

Children younger than 13 must be accompanied by a riding adult.


We hate when kids are braver than we are. Upstarts.

SlotZilla’s first day of full operation was sold out, so that bodes well for the success of the new zipline.

Las Vegas zipline

Riders on the SlotZilla zip line take off 77 feet up. The upper lines will be 114 feet up.

The SlotZilla project began in November of 2012. See photos of SlotZilla’s construction.

SlotZilla zip line

The bags hold personal items like glasses, phone and purses.

If you have any other questions about Sin City’s newest thrill ride, just post them in the comments and we’ll get you an answer, because we are a Las Vegas blog and therefore know everything. And that’s the story we’re sticking to.

Three Panty-Dropper Cocktails at Commonwealth Las Vegas, Downtown

Downtown’s Commonwealth is a great spot to hang with friends and enjoy some libations. Some of the bar’s signature cocktails qualify as panty-droppers. Here are our top three picks.

First up, the Hot Little Mess.

The Hot Little Mess ($10) features Bacardi Dragon Berry rum, fresh lime, simple syrup and strawberry puree.


Limes contain flavonol glycosides, including kaempferol-related molecules. So, it’s a healthy kind of blitzed.

Our second panty-dropper is the Ello Guv’nor ($10), which, we should note, is impossible to say without a British accent.

The Ello Guv’nor has Stoli Elit vodka, fresh lime, simple syrup and cucumber soda.

Ello Guv'nor

Stoli is short for “Stolichnaya,” the adjectival form of “stolitsa,” which means “capital city.” Which you’ll promptly forget once you drink this.

And our last social lubricant at Commonwealth is the Men in Tights ($9).

This signature cocktail consists of Jameson Irish Wiskey, fresh lemon, honey and Cocchi Vermouth di Torino.


The Men in Tights cocktail has no relationship to the film that officially crushed any hope of ever seeing another good movie from Mel Brooks.

All delicious, all served with a friendly smile, and all a wonderful way to begin a downtown escapade.

Commonwealth is in the Fremont East District, about a block (wait for it) east of the towering SlotZilla zip line tower at Fremont Street Experience.


Commonwealth is one of the more boisterous night spots in the Fremont East District, but after a few cocktails, you won’t mind.

Find out more at Commonwealth’s Web site.

Downtown’s SlotZilla Las Vegas Zip Line Takes First Riders

The long-awaited, much-anticipated SlotZilla Las Vegas zip line at downtown’s Fremont Street Experience has launched its first riders!

SlotZilla zip line Las Vegas

We knew SlotZilla wouldn’t leave us hanging!

The new attraction, with an 11-story launch tower in the form of a giant slot machine, isn’t open to the public yet, but is expected to open within a few days.

Las Vegas zip line

Yes, we already said it’s a giant slot machine, but we never really grasped that whole “show, don’t tell” thing. So, now we’ve shown and told. Just pick one, and let’s move on.

A select group of riders are getting a sneak preview of SlotZilla to ensure ticketing and reservation procedures are up-to-snuff before the attraction officially opens to the public.

SlotZilla zip line

Fremont Street Experience President Jeff Victor waves to onlookers. Unlike this blog, who would be clutching to that strap thingy for dear life.

The aforementioned Fremont Street Experience President Jeff Victor was kind enough to don our GoPro video camera, resulting in a fairly stunning first-person view of the trip under the Viva Vision canopy.

The first group of riders, referred to as “flyers” by Fremont Street Experience (where this blog works, by the way), included Fremont Street Experience staffers, as well as VIPs from Fremont Street Experience partner casinos, including Derek Stevens, owner of The D Las Vegas.

Vegas zipline

Derek Stevens flew with one of The D’s flair bartenders, Ivan (calm), and casino host, Darren (collected).

The new attraction has two take-off levels, the lower (or “Zipline,” at 77 feet up) and upper (the “Zoomline,” at 114 feet), but the lower will open to the public first. The Zoomline is expected to open within a few weeks.

Zipline riders land on a platform about halfway down the Fremont Street Experience, between Four Queens and the Fremont casino. When it opens, Zoomline riders will travel the full length of the Fremont Street Experience, landing in front of the Golden Gate.

Riders on the upper lines will fly prone, or “superhero-style.”

Vegas zipline

Remember, this is the view from the lower level!

When SlotZilla opens to the public, tickets for the Zipline will be $20, available at the SlotZilla ticket office or online. The Zoomline will be $30.

SlotZilla riders must be between 60 and 300 pounds. The attraction is expected to open at noon each day, 365 days a year.

Downtown Las Vegas zipline

You’ll wish you had more eyes to take it all in.

There’s much more fun to come, so stay tuned. In the meantime, zip on over to our SlotZilla archive, or enjoy more pics in our exclusive SlotZilla zip line gallery thingy.


The Cromwell Has Opened Its Casino With Lots of Happy Surprises

If you have any lingering attachments to Bill’s Gamblin’ Hall & Saloon, it’s probably best to let go of them once and for all. The casino’s worthy successor, The Cromwell, has opened its casino, and we’re happy to say we love it.

The Cromwell

Old and musty, meet new and shiny.

Perhaps to be more accurate, we should say, “We’re both happy and shocked to say we love it.” Mainly because from what we’d heard, we expected the hotel to be pretentious and a little snooty. The casino is neither of those things, and it didn’t take long for The Cromwell to win us over.

The Cromwell cocktail waitress

What, you expected us to share a photo of the light fixtures first?

Oh, all right, here are some light fixtures.

The Cromwell

Sorry, Bill’s, we’ve moved on.

The casino’s first night open (officially a soft opening) appeared to be without any significant glitches. The Cromwell’s staff was appropriate perky and helpful, and guests seemed excited to break in the slot machines and table felt.

The casino is intimate and welcoming.

The casino is warm and easily accessible, much like your sister.

We were pleasantly surprised to see low table minimums, including $5 craps tables.

Other good news for fans of the former Bill’s is the layout of the casino feels very familiar. Though Bill’s was stripped down to its skeleton, the building is still long and narrow, so it’s impossible to get lost in the casino.

An appealing new addition, though, is a large lounge right in the middle of the casino floor. We liked the vibe immediately, although we had a minor palpitation when we saw a signature cocktail (The Lude, short for the lounge’s name, Interlude) priced at $19. Most ranged from $15-17.

The Cromwell

An appealing space, if you can handle the sticker shock.

Most uncomfortable cocktail name on the Interlude menu? Julio’s Hooch Juice ($17). We are not making this up.

The lounge has a number of intimate booths, separated by drapes (see below). The space seems ideal for small groups to gather, presumably before or after they head off to what are expected to be popular nightlife spots, the pool area on the hotel’s roof, or Drai’s After Hours club, downstairs. (The elevator to Drai’s After Hours hasn’t moved, of course, and they didn’t even swap out the vinyl sign on the elevator, so Drai’s fans won’t have any problem finding it.)

The Cromwell

The lounge is sort of the opposite of Bill’s.

Note how the pillars in the casino match the drink menu covers at the lounge.

The Cromwell

Nice touch!

What else?

We collect gaming chips, so we got our traditional $1 chip. A little underdesigned, but since that’s not a real word, we’re not going to get riled up over it.

The Cromwell chip

See our photo gallery for the flip side.

The Cromwell is still a work in progress, so there are still parts of the casino in flux. For example, this hotel bar isn’t quite open yet, but we already like it.

The Cromwell bar

We shall return.

The Cromwell doesn’t have a sports book, as Bill’s did, so these kiosks will have to suffice.

The Cromwell sports kiosks

Hey, The Cromwell’s casino is only about the size of a double wide trailer, so something had to give.

The hotel registration desk is, well, it’s petite, but the friendliness of the staff (photo, below) made it seem bigger. Or something.

The Cromwell

We don’t hold it against you that we can’t afford a room!

Yes, The Cromwell is taking room reservations, and the hotel will officially open May 21, 2014. Find out more at the official Web site.

The Cromwell, it turns out, surpassed our expectations by a mile, and we look forward to playing there again soon. We’ll be curious to see what affect the club crowd has on the pleasantness of the place once those nightlife venues open.

The Cromwell

That’s Giada’s first restaurant at the lower right. Looking forward to trying that, too.

Now, sit back and enjoy our exclusive gallery of more poorly lit, out-of-focus photos of The Cromwell Las Vegas.

The Cromwell Las Vegas Casino

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