Monthly Archives: September 2014

A Fresh Batch of Discoveries at The Linq

Las Vegas is a newness machine, and we’ve gathered a few new offerings at The Linq shopping promenade, including girthy public art, a free museum, Chinese tacos and more.

First up, murals! Apparently, the Linq has partnered with a group called I.S.I. Group (Industry Supporting Industry), and they’ve arranged for a number of murals all along the Linq’s promenade. While it’s likely they were commissioned to make unoccupied storefronts more appealing, they actually add a nice element to the district.

Linq murals

Proof that public art is sometimes polarizing.

I.S.I. Group is a local arts collective, whatever that might mean. Here’s an interview with one of the founders of I.S.I. Group if you’re into that kind of thing.

Linq mural

This is as close as you’re going to get to a political statement in The Linq’s mural collection, and we’re not even sure what the statement might be.

There’s nothing too edgy about the murals at The Linq, but middle-of-the-road is probably best given the vast swath of humanity that meanders its way down The Linq to see, and sometimes even ride, the High Roller, the world’s tallest Ferris wheel.

Linq Las Vegas murals

See all the murals we could find in our photo gallery, below.

As we were doing our own meandering, we stumbled upon another new offering at The Linq, a sort of Caesars Entertainment fun book. Caesars Entertainment is the company that owns The Linq and the surrounding hotel-casinos.

The coupon book has offerings from The Quad, Harrah’s Las Vegas, Flamingo and The Linq. The deals range from 2-for-1 and other cocktail discounts, match play and even a free admission to the Auto Collections at The Quad, an attraction that’s highly recommended for people who love cars or the people who love car lovers.

Linq fun book

Maybe we should have put “fun” in quotation marks.

If you don’t see people distributing the fun books, stop by The Linq’s concierge office. They seem to know everything.

Speaking of free museum admissions, because “segue” is our middle name, the Polaroid Fotobar store at The Linq has made the wise decision to drop the fee for its upstairs Polaroid Museum.

While we couldn’t recommend this lightweight exhibit when there was a charge (even at five bucks), we can heartily recommend it for free.

Fotobar Museum Las Vegas

Sorry, but Fotobar has no actual bar. Insert sad trombone here.

The museum has several classic Polaroid cameras and some history of this formerly-popular form of photography.

Polariod camera

There’s also this big-ass camera. It’s a Polaroid 20×24 camera, and if you try to lift it, you will get an instant hernia.

There’s also some weird enclosure with foil balloons floating around. We are a blog, not an art critic.

Polaroid Museum

Do not head scratch anywhere near this installation. It will telegraph the fact you failed art appreciation in college.

Here’s more information about the Polaroid Museum.

Moving on, there have been some changes to F.A.M.E. (Food, Art, Music, Entertainment), the Asian food court. Apparently, some of the Asian food wasn’t going over all that well, so F.A.M.E. now serves up pizza and tacos.

In an Asian food court.

FAME Asian food court

Quite possibly Sin City’s first Asian taco stand.

We’ve tried both the Chinese food at F.A.M.E. and the pizza, and we actually recommend the pizza. Las Vegas doesn’t live by society’s rules.

Pizza Buddha

Damn tasty stuff. You go, Asian pizza chefs.

Check out our photo gallery to see the menus at Pizza Buddha and Gangnam Taco Bar. We are not making those names up, and we really, really hope they’re being ironic.

Pizza FAME

Note: Serving pizzas in woks doesn’t make it Asian fare.

Also on the food front, there is absolutely nothing new to report at Tilted Kilt. We just needed to mention Tilted Kilt so we can share this photo.

Tilted Kilt

The aforementioned kilts.

Newness at The Linq often takes the form of street performers. You never know what you’ll see. There are often Taiko drum performances outside F.A.M.E., as well as random dancers and musicians who appear to have no set schedule.

Linq dancers

This Las Vegas blog does love it some free.

Our final find during our most recent visit to The Linq wasn’t actually at The Linq.

At the south end of Flamingo (that’s the Cromwell side), we discovered a young woman, Timmea, selling High Roller tickets. While the lines aren’t especially long at the High Roller a lot of the time, when they are, this is a convenient way to skip the ticket line at the High Roller ticket office.

High Roller tickets

We’d much rather get our High Roller ticket from Timmea than stand in line, any day.

Timmea said there are remote ticket-sellers outside Flamingo from noon to 8:00 p.m. Handy, and a great way to market the wheel to folks who might not necessarily turn into The Linq.

The Linq seems consistently filled with visitors, so we trust it’s been successful overall (albeit with a few unfortunate hiccups in the mix).

If you haven’t been to The Linq yet, check out our walk-through. There’s a lot to see and do and drink. And especially that last thing.

Murals at The Linq and More

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Dealertainers at The Quad, Formerly the Imperial Palace, Are No More

Sometimes, it’s just in the cards. During our last visit to The Quad (soon to be The Linq), we witnessed the sad state of the casino’s “dealertainer” pit and predicted the demise of a beloved, although outdated, Vegas institution.

Dealertainers, blackjack dealers who also perform as famous musical artists, have been around since The Quad was the Imperial Palace, but now the hotel’s approximately 30 dealertainers have been asked to take non-dealertaining positions at The Quad or seek new gigs elsewhere.

The dealertainers are done at The Quad.

Dealertainers The Quad

Black and white photos make things seem like a much bigger deal, don’t they?

The end of the dealertainer pit comes as The Quad Resort and Casino is being rebranded as The Linq Hotel and Casino.

This most recent rebranding is happening, in large part, because of a disasterous miscalculation by Caesars Entertainment, the company that owns The Quad and other Strip resorts. Imperial Palace, an Asian-themed hotel, was very popular with Asian gamblers, a lucrative source of revenue for Las Vegas casinos. Imperial Palace was renamed The Quad as an attempt to capture a younger audience (“quad” being a meeting place on college campuses), but overlooked was the fact “quad” also means “four,” which many Asians consider bad luck because “four” and “death” sound similar in Mandarin Chinese.

This gaff has sparked another multi-million dollar rebrand just two years after Imperial Palace was rebranded to The Quad.

Dealertainer

We’ll miss your twang, fake Garth Brooks.

The change from The Quad to The Linq hotel, in addition to the waning popularity of the dealertainers, made the removal of the quaint, but out of place, remnants of the Imperial Palace inevitable. (The dealertainers were originally inspired by the hotel’s “Legends in Concert” tribute show. That show is still going strong at Flamingo.)

Dealertainers

Back when the dealertainers were still sort of a thing.

An obvious sign the dealertainers were doomed was how their stage had been downsized since Imperial Palace became The Quad. Here’s a shot of the stage when the dealertainer pit first opened in its new location at The Quad.

Quad dealertainer

The former elevated stage drew crowds. The problem: Crowds don’t always translate into gambling.

During our most recent visit, the stage had been downgraded to little more than a couple of carpeted steps.

Dealertainers

The beginning of the end for the dealertainers.

Also, there was no signage featuring the dealertainers anywhere at The Quad. When The Quad was the IP, the dealertainers were promoted heavily, had their own blackjack table felts, a Big Six wheel devoted to them and they were the centerpiece of the casino.

Aretha dealertainer

Tamara as Aretha, back when the dealertainers had more to smile about.

During our visit, the frequency of performances by the dealertainers had been severely cut back. During more than an hour of play, there was one performance.

Remnants of the dealertainer era include a neglected page about the dealertainers on The Quad’s Web site that features a photo taken during the Imperial Palace days. We expect this page will face the same fate as the dealertainers and will soon have its plug pulled.

Dealertainer

Exactly, fake Wynonna.

While we’re sorry to see the dealertainers go, in Vegas, money talks, and their time had clearly come. The dealertainers were a cheesy vestige of a different time and a different Las Vegas. With it’s massive casino and room renovation, the new Linq Hotel & Casino is likely to market to a younger, more affluent customer as Sin City’s focus shifts away from gambling toward nightlife, as can be witnessed at the nearby Cromwell or the new SLS Las Vegas.

We’re happy to have had one more chance to play in the dealertainer pit at The Quad. Our dealer seemed resigned to her fate.

On a brighter note, a Caesars Entertainment source says the dealertainers weren’t fired, but rather offered other positions within the company. It’s not known how many took new gigs and how many decided to move on.

The curtain coming down on the dealertainers marks the end of an era in Las Vegas. They’ll always hold a special place in our heart.

Update (10/4/14): According to posts on Facebook, some of the dealertainers from The Quad have found a new home at Ellis Island casino, just off The Strip.

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“Pawn Stars” Boss Rick Harrison Leads “Pawn Stars Poker Run” to Benefit Epilepsy Foundation of Nevada

Rick Harrison, star of the Vegas-based reality show “Pawn Stars,” will lead motorcycle riders across the Las Vegas Valley to raise money for the Epilepsy Foundation of Nevada on Oct. 5, 2014.

Rick Harrison

We’re curious how Rick Harrison’s head holds so much history without it ‘sploding.

Rick Harrison suffered from seizures in his youth and serves on the Epilepsy Foundation’s National Board of Directors.

He’ll be accompanied on the ride for charity by his son, Corey Harrison.

Corey Harrison

Corey Harrison’s net worth is $2.5 million. It says so on Wikipedia, and if it’s on the Internet, it must be true.

The “Pawn Stars Poker Run” will start at the world’s most famous pawn shop, Gold & Silver Pawn.

Gold & Silver Pawn

Formerly a pawn shop. Now, a gold mine.

Stops during the ride will include the 100-year old Pioneer Saloon in Good Springs, Nevada and Distill Bar in Summerlin. The final stop will be at Hogs & Heifers Saloon, downtown.

Saloons and motorcycles, what could possibly go wrong?

Hogs & Heifers

Hogs & Heifers is next to Pizza Rock, Triple George Grill and Downtown Grand. And it could beat all three of those places up if it had to.

Mark Yuill, owner of a Las Vegas motorcycle dealership, Freedom Cycle, will donate a 2014 Triumph Bonneville motorcycle to the event. The bike is valued at more than $11,000, and will be auctioned off at Hogs & Heifers (the city’s best-known biker bar).

Pawn Stars

Awesome logo, “Pawn Star” dudes. Are you looking to pawn or sell it, and what are you looking to get out of it?

Registration for the ride is available online. Early registration is $30 per rider and $15 per passenger.

The “Pawn Stars Poker Run” coincides with Las Vegas BikeFest, held Oct. 2-5, 2014.

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Crazy Horse Too Strip Club Closes, Yet Again

The Crazy Horse Too strip club has a long and colorful history in Las Vegas, a history filled with legal battles, financial struggles and an ample supply of drama. Now, the storied club has closed (again) and an uncertain future lies ahead.

Crazy Horse Too closed on August 23, 2014 due to the establishment losing its temporary liquor license. Attempts to get a permanent liquor license have failed like Kate Upton’s training bra.

Crazy Horse Too strip club

Open, close, open, close. Tease.

The future of Crazy Horse Too is up in the air. The club’s owner, Mike Galam, appears to have passed responsibility for running the place to other parties. Presumably, the new management team will pursue a liquor license so the club can re-open. Alternatively, Galam may just lease the building to another operator.

In any event, it’s doubtful we’ve seen the last of the beloved fleshfest that is Crazy Horse Too.

Thanks to our friends at Las Vegas Advisor for alerting us to the Crazy Horse Too closure, and to the Las Vegas Sun’s John Katsilometes for digging up all the juicy details. Read more.

On a related note, if you find yourself between lap dances, feel free to take a peek at our expose about the Las Vegas hottie shortage.

Rest, assured, if there’s further news about Crazy Horse Too, we’ll be sure to keep you abreast.

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Today’s Panty-Dropper Cocktail: Blind Melons at Triple George Grill

Today’s panty-dropper cocktail is a simple but effective concoction. Triple George Grill serves up its Blind Melons signature cocktail with Grey Goose Le Melon, fresh lemon and basil ($12).

Blind Melons cocktail

We sort of just like saying “melons.”

Triple George Grill is in downtown Las Vegas, near Downtown Grand, formerly Lady Luck. Try the pot roast, and take a gander at all our panty-dropper cocktails (actual results may vary).

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