Monthly Archives: April 2019

FlyOver Las Vegas Virtual Reality Attraction Coming to Linq Hotel

It was recently announced a new flight simulator attraction is coming to the Las Vegas Strip, and now we know where it will land.

We’ve learned FlyOver Las Vegas will be located at the Linq hotel, on the resort’s third floor Vortex deck.

FlyOver Las Vegas

Las Vegas will soon have a new way to get your woozy on.

The attraction will feature two domes, one a high tech theater, the other a ticketing, merchandise and concession space.

So, what’s FlyOver Las Vegas?

According to the FlyOver Web site, “FlyOver Las Vegas utilizes state-of-the-art technology to give you the feeling of flight. You’ll hang suspended, feet dangling, before a 52-foot spherical screen as our film whisks you away on an exhilarating journey over and above Las Vegas, Nevada and more local wonders. Special effects, including wind, mist and scents, combine with the ride’s motion to create an unforgettable experience.”

The ride will feature destinations in and around Nevada with filming locations expected to include the Grand Canyon, Zion and Arches National Parks in Utah and Lake Tahoe. More Vegas, please.

Each virtual reality show will run 8-10 minutes.

Here’s a promotional video.

FlyOver Canada has already been a thing. Check out the official Web site.

Side note: The FlyOver Canada location has a pre-show presentation by a company called Moment Factory, featuring “2-D and 3-D animations as well as 360-degree video projection mapping.” These are the same folks who did the incredible video display outside the Forum Shops. Let’s have more of that in Vegas.

Here are some perfunctory details from the FlyOver Las Vegas permit filing:

The theater dome will be 7,854 square feet, 33 feet tall and 50 feet in diameter with about 1,963 square feet of floor area. The theater dome will accommodate 62 movie theater seats with bass shakers.

Fun fact: The Bass Shakers are one of our favorite bands, ever.

The ticket dome will be 17 feet tall and 26 feet in diameter, with approximately 531 square feet of floor area.

Thanks to @morenoapa on Twitter for pointing us toward the permit application.

The Linq’s Vortex deck has been one of the most underutilized spaces on the Las Vegas Strip. Why you’d take people inside a dome for simulated views, rather than taking advantage of the Strip views from the Vortex deck, we have no idea. But we quite enjoy sparkly new Vegas things, so there’s that.

If you have no idea what we’re talking about, here’s a look at the Vortex at Linq. You sort of can’t miss it.

Linq Vortex

Today’s reminder Vegas does eye candy like no other place on Earth.

Construction of FlyOver Las Vegas is expected to begin in late 2019. Which is weird when you consider the attraction is expected to open in early 2021. It’s domes.

Here’s the official FlyOver Las Vegas Web site.

As gambling revenue declines over time, Las Vegas casinos continue to seek out partners to help generate revenue in other ways, especially attractions appealing to younger visitors.

While we tend to avoid attractions featuring heights (yes, even virtual) and the potential of motion sickness, FlyOver looks like it could be a fun new diversion in very visible location, so it has the potential to make a killing. This is one to watch!

Update (6/14/19): Plans for a virtual reality attraction at Linq have been confirmed, but it’s called Fantasy Dome, “powered by Ominvision.” We have no idea where the dome is, nor have we seen any publicity for it, but presumably it opened June 14, 2019. Here’s the official site.

Hyde Bellagio Nightclub to Close for Rebrand

As we were the first to share back in March, Hyde Bellagio nightclub will close for a rebrand.

We told you to follow us on Twitter!

MGM Resorts has officially confirmed our scoop, saying Hyde will close July 6, 2019.

Hyde Bellagio

What a waste of a perfectly baffling logo.

While Bellagio hasn’t said what will take Hyde’s place, our source says the concept will be along the lines of Annabel’s, a popular nightclub and bar in London. Here’s a look.

The closure of Hyde isn’t just a way to update an aging nightclub, it’s also a way to boot out a partner in the club, SBE Entertainment, as a cost-saving measure.

Hyde is just too valuable a location to let others share in the windfall, so it’s believed the new club will be managed in-house.

Hyde Bellagio

The view from Hyde is about as Vegas as it gets.

MGM Resorts recruited some high-priced nightlife talent in Sean Christie, President of Events and Nightlife, and it’s time for Christie to show his mettle. Christie formerly worked at Wynn Resorts. At one time, he was a managing partner of Encore Las Vegas Beach Club, Surrender and Andrea’s Restaurant at Wynn. Prior to that he was managing partner of The Light Group.

Before Hyde, which opened in 2011 (or 1860 in Las Vegas nightclub years),
the space was occupied by the Fontana lounge.

One of Hyde’s claims to fame is its $250,000 bottle service package that let guests control the Bellagio fountains with the touch of a button. Oh, the package also comes with a 30 liter bottle of Ace of Spades champagne, so totally worth it.

The new nightlife concept in the Hyde footprint is expected to open in winter of 2019.

This spot at Bellagio has one of the most magnificent views in all of Las Vegas, overlooking the resort’s iconic fountains, so we expect something impressive to take Hyde’s place.

Uno Mas is a Step in the Right Direction for SLS Las Vegas

SLS has opened a new Mexican restaurant, Uno Mas, a step in the right direction for the casino likely to be rebranded as Grand Sahara Resort.

Uno Mas

If you don’t think of “Shanghai Noon” when you hear “uno mas,” we can’t be friends.

Uno Mas takes up residence in the space formerly occupied by Ku Noodle, near the resort’s Northside Cafe.

Uno Mas has a modest menu, but the tacos hit all the right notes, despite their being a tad on the pricey side. Three for $18 isn’t outrageous, though, for The Strip.

Uno Mas menu

It must be good if we cheated on Cleo.

We had the Pork al Pastor, Carne Asada and Vegetarian tacos.

You are so gullible! We had the Crispy Pollo.

Uno Mas SLS

A trifecta of tempting, titillating tastes. Alliteration not included.

The tacos are scrumptious, at the risk of sounding like we’re writing this blog post in 1830.

The tacos are served on fresh corn tortillas and the pastor is spit-roasted.

Beyond the tacos, there’s a healthy selection of specialty cocktails ($13). We tried the El Fuego, Spanish for, “Ah, so that’s what Jalapeno tequila tastes like.”

The El Fuego has Dulce Vida Pineapple Jalapeno tequila, banana liqueur, mango and ginger beer. The garnish is a pineapple kissed with Tajin.

Uno Mas SLS cocktail

This one’s like a brisk slap to the jowl.

The menu says there’s Tajin on the rim, but no such luck. If you’d like to try and make this cocktail at home, make sure to get a Tajin rimmer, which we didn’t know was a thing until just now.

Everyone who visits Las Vegas should make sure to get a rimmer!

Yeah, we should probably work for the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority.

Uno Mas has apparently done well since it opened March 23, 2019. The official opening date is April 12.

Uno Mas SLS

Solo-friendly counter seating gives guests a view of the open kitchen.

Expect more changes in the dining options at SLS Las Vegas as the resort transitions to Grand Sahara. (The new name hasn’t officially been announced, but all signs point in that direction.)

Another SLS restaurant, Katsuya, closed in March to make way for a relocated high limit room.

It’s expected Umami Burger and Cleo may also be replaced, as they are leftovers from an earlier era when the former owners of SLS partnered with SBE Entertainment. Now, these SBE licensing deals are just cutting into potential SLS profits, so out they go.

SLS Las Vegas

SLS isn’t looking much like SLS anymore, and that’s a good thing.

Word is Bazaar Meat will survive the resort’s evolution, and will even get an expansion.

One more juicy tidbit from SLS: We hear the former Foxtail nightclub space will be split up and part will be a lounge called Casbah, a throwback to the resort’s Sahara roots.

(Update 5/22/19): The new lounge is open, and it’s named Casbar, a clever nod to Sahara’s past with a twist that plays up “bar.” We approve!

SLS Las Vegas

We love this snazzy new SLS tagline, and we hate everything.

Uno Mas represents a solid move toward more accessible, crowd-pleasing dining options at SLS, and we look forward to tasting what’s next.

Uno Mas at SLS Las Vegas

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Hard Rock Releases Virgin Rendering and Rebrand Timeline

Hard Rock Las Vegas has provided a glimpse into its future with a rendering and a new timeline for the resort’s rebrand to Virgin Hotels Las Vegas.

Yes, they’re insisting on calling it “Virgin Hotels” when it’s only one hotel. Let’s not get distracted. Rendering porn!

Virgin hotel Las Vegas

Note: The way to a blogger’s heart is through renderings.

The Virgin Las Vegas resort looks pretty slick, with a more deserty, cactusy vibe than the Hard Rock. Look, if you want actual architectural design terms, read Interior Design magazine. Yes, there are still magazines, presumably.

Judging by the rendering, the feel is “classic, cool Las Vegas, reinvented for the 21st century with contemporary, desert-modern architecture.” Oh, wait, that’s the Red Rock Resort. You get the idea.

Apparently, the folks at Hard Rock decided to pass on our suggested Virgin design featuring a massive chastity belt.

Virgin Las Vegas rebrand

Their loss.

Along with the intriguing renderings, Hard Rock also shared a revised timeline for the resort’s rebrand.

The scope of the project has been expanded, so according to the casino’s owner, “significant construction activities remain 10 months away and the property will remain open for business without any disruptions to our guests and team members through Super Bowl of 2020.”

That means renovations will begin at Hard Rock in Feb. 2020, with a full closure from April to June 2020. A grand opening of Virgin Las Vegas is expected in Nov. 2020. No way we’ll be invited due to all the smartassery, but we suspect it will make a splash.

The transition to Virgin will now include an overhaul of the resort’s entertainment venue, The Joint.

Other changes at Hard Rock include the recent introduction of Breathe Pool Lounge and the opening of Craft + Community Bar & Grill, a replacement for Culinary Dropout.

Hotel officials have estimated the rebrand to Virgin will cost $200 million. Some of that cost could be recouped if Hard Rock has a garage sale for all that music memorabilia. Yes, the memorabilia was included with the purchase of Hard Rock.

Imagine Dragons memorabilia

Dibs on this stuff or anything Duran Duran.

We’ve heard some major announcements about the resort will be made soon, related to both entertainment and the casino.

You’ll know when we do!

Vital Vegas Podcast, Ep. 96: So Many Scoops

It’s time for another underwhelming episode of the Vital Vegas Podcast!

In this episode, we review “Absinthe” as the irrepressible show at Caesars Palace celebrates its eighth year on the Las Vegas Strip.

We’ve also got some kind, inarticulate things to say about a new restaurant at The Strat, Blvd. & Main Taphouse. The bottom line: We’d tap that again, anytime.

Blvd Main Strat

Listen in to get the early word on the new Blvd. & Main Taphouse at The Strat.

But wait, there’s more Vegas to shove between your ears in this hastily-slapped-together episode: We interview the merry miscreants of a far better podcast, Matt & Mattingly’s Ice Cream Social.

The crew at Matt & Mattingly’s Ice Cream Social are intimately involved with the world of Las Vegas entertainment and share inside scoop about shows past and present. Find out more at HeyScoops.com. Oh, and while you’re there, listen to episode 562, despite the fact we’re a guest on that episode.

If you’re not a podcast person, like we weren’t, this episode of the Vital Vegas Podcast sure as hell won’t turn you into one, but if you’ve got an hour to kill, maybe kill it with our grating, unlistenable voice in your head.

Take a listen! Or leave one. We’re not emotionally invested either way.

“Fuerza Bruta” Tanks, Closes After a Month at Excalibur

After a month’s run at Excalibur, “Fuerza Bruta” is pulling up stakes and closing.

“Fuerza Bruta,” performed in a tent outside Excalibur, translates as “brute force.”

The show opened March 7, 2019. Its final performance is April 7, 2019. It was slated to run six months. What’s the Spanish word for “awkward.”

Fuerza Bruta

Everyone who’s OK with not having seen this show, raise your hand.

A release announcing the show’s debut, said it “breaks free of the confines of spoken language and theatrical convention to transport audiences to a parallel reality where emotion takes control.”

How many red flags do you need in one sentence?

Oh, and there were no seats.

Yeah, the writing was on the tent.

Ticket sales were abysmal for the show, but to its credit, most of the people we’ve heard from enjoyed it. There just weren’t enough of them.

The show says it “has been seen by more than six million spectators in more than 34 countries and 58 cities since its launch in 2003.”

Those places, obviously, aren’t Las Vegas.

“Fuerza Bruta” will now give it go at MGM Cotai in Macau, where a show based largely upon movement, with no discernible plot, should fare much better. Just look at the Chinese box office numbers for the “Transformers” movies.

Eyes now turn to another circus-style show in a tent, “Celestia,” at The Strat. That show’s debut has been pushed back several times, and while there are deep pockets behind the production, it remains to be seen if “Celestia” can succeed where “Fuerza Bruta” failed.