Category Archives: Things to Do in Las Vegas

Kind Heaven at Linq Shares Fresh Renderings

One of the more enigmatic (ballsy) projects in the works on the Las Vegas Strip, Kind Heaven, has provided a fresh batch of renderings for the $100 million attraction.

And by “fresh,” of course, we mean they were released back in July but we do this blog as a hobby and never got around to sharing them, so sue us.

Kind Heaven is slated to open in 2019.

Kind Heaven

Kind Heaven should definitely have an acupuncture kiosk for the dude in the white shirt and his friend.

We’ve talked about Kind Heaven before, and here’s how we’ve decided to describe it: Kind Heaven is an Asian-themed walk-through attraction with music festival roots.

The attraction is a collaboration between the owner of Linq resort, Caesars Entertainment, and Jane’s Addiction singer Perry Farrell.

It’s a partnership one might describe as an “Odd Couple” rather than a “match made in Kind Heaven,” but the idea’s so crazy, it just might work.

Kind Heaven

Unless we’re mistaken, Kind Heaven is going to be body parts-friendly.

Read more about Kind Heaven.

Kind Heaven will take up 100,000 square feet and boast 40 food stations and bars.

Kind Heaven

We refuse to make smart-ass comments for every rendering. Even if one includes a military coup.

It’s also been promised Kind Heaven will feature 130 artists on five stages. Presumably, not all on the same night.

Kind Heaven is expected to dovetail into other offerings at Linq Las Vegas, including a new sports book called The Book (in the former Tag lounge space) and Fly Linq, a new zipline.

Kind Heaven

It’s tough to think about ziplines when Amorino gelato is also in this rendering.

Here’s a rendering of a cone we personally ate at Amorino gelato.

Amorino Gelato Las Vegas

Yes, it’s random, but we’re drunk.

Back to the subject at hand.

Fly Linq is scheduled to open Nov. 9, 2018.

Here’s what Fly Linq looked like the last time we visited the Linq promenade.

Fly Linq zipline

In our day job, we work at SlotZilla, the downtown zipline, so we’re Switzerland on Fly Linq.

That’s the take-off tower for Fly Linq (on Las Vegas Boulevard), and here’s a look at the landing platform, all the way back at the base of the High Roller, the world’s tallest Ferris wheel. Suck it, New York. And possibly Dubai.

Fly Linq Las Vegas zipline

Given the location of the landing platform, the Fly Linq zipline is poised to be a High Roller customer delivery system.

On the whole, Kind Heaven, the new sports book and zipline are intended to appeal to a younger audience than is typical for Linq and its surrounding casinos.

Caesars Entertainment and other casino companies are grappling with changing gambling habits, and Kind Heaven is one of the boldest moves on The Strip in some time.

Kind Heaven

Aw, crap, we’ve run out of blog post and still have more renderings. Proceed will the filler!

If you’ve ever had a fantasy about being hit on by a monk, Kind Heaven is going to be right up your alley.

Here’s another rendering!

Kind Heaven

Apparently, people who do renderings also have issues with alcohol.

Kind Heaven says it will make guests feel like they’re “walking through an actual night market, getting all the scents and smells.”

First, we’re a little unclear about the distinction between a scent and a smell.

Second, we’re not convinced that’s a selling point. Have these people ever been to an actual night market?

Either way, we’ve now had enough additional words to share another rendering.

Kind Heaven Las Vegas

This is the view of Kind Heaven from the Flamingo. We’ve got to say, Caesars Entertainment has done a kick-ass job of re-imagining what was previously the alley between Flamingo and O’Sheas.

Random O’Sheas memories here.

Here’s a teaser video for Kind Heaven. Please try and keep up.

Here are our top eight buzz phrases from that video, because somebody has to do it.

1. “Experience collectors.”
2. “Inspired to take the journey of transformation.”
3. “Adventurous, curious and connected.”
4. “Full immersion into culture and exhilaration.”
5. “Ready to catalyze change.”
6. “Rebirth your senses.”
7. “Revolutionizing the audio landscape.”
8. “Seekers of the elevated moments in life.”

Not all the announced elements of Kind Heaven—like holographic wrestling monkeys and  streetwalkers—are likely to survive the development process, but from what’s been shared, the entertainment district could very well deliver what Las Vegas visitors crave most, unforgettable experiences they can’t find anywhere else.

Golden Gate’s New High Limit Room Boasts Historic Surprises

Golden Gate has unveiled its new high limit room and guests can expect several surprises that highlight the casino’s colorful past.

Golden Gate high limit room

Same number of blackjack tables as before (three), but quite a bit more elbow room.

While the previous high limit room had only table games, now it boasts high limit slots as well. Note: Downtown, “high limit” is relative. Several of the slots are $1 machines.

The new high limit room (specifically, the slot machine area) integrates space previously devoted to the casino’s cashier cage. The cage has been relocated closer to the hotel’s registration desk.

But the games aren’t necessarily the most interesting aspect of Golden Gate’s new high limit room. That distinction belongs to several hidden gems guests are invited to discover during their visit.

For starters, there’s an unmarked door with an inconspicuous knob which serves as a sort of portal back in time.

Spoiler alert!

Golden Gate high limit room

Coincidentally, Inconspicuous Knobs was the name of our band in high school.

Behind the door is a section of the original brickwork of the Hotel Nevada, predecessor of the Golden Gate.

Hotel Nevada opened in 1906. The address: 1 Fremont Street.

Golden Gate high limit room

When it was built, Hotel Nevada was the only concrete hotel in southern Nevada.

Another charming surprise awaits nearby, tucked away in a hidden corner of the high limit room.

There’s an eye-catching photo op, a floor-to-ceiling “flapper,” but that’s not the surprise.

Golden Gate flapper

Fun fact: When the hotel opened, rooms cost $1 per day.

Next to the flapper, make sure to check out a fountain from the earliest days of the hotel.

It’s estimated the fountain was added in 1909.

Golden Gate fountain

It took hundreds of hours to painstakingly put these ceramic tiles into place. Then again, what the hell else did they have to do in 1909?

It’s unknown if the fountain was used for drinking, or if it was merely decorative, but it’s an utterly unique Las Vegas curiosity.

As you explore the Golden Gate’s high limit room, take special note of the archways.

Golden Gate arches

Arches utilize rigid, curved members to support loads. Architecture is hot.

The archways, too, are a nod to the casino’s history. Work crews realized early on the arches were an integral part of the building’s structural integrity.

Here’s a behind-the-scenes look at two of the arches before the build-out.

Golden Gate arches

“Best Las Vegas Blog” awards don’t just magically happen, you know. Things must be breached.

The arches inspired the design of the doorways—practically and aesthetically—between the table games area and slot machine area.

Golden Gate high limit room

If you’re a dude, you have to love dark wood. It’s the law.

Golden Gate’s new high limit room won us over immediately, not only because of its clever throwbacks, but because some of our favorite old-school Top Dollar reel slots were relocated from the main casino floor.

Hint: Never take the first offer!

Golden Gate high limit

You know where to find us.

The high limit room’s dark wood is very appealing, and the space manages to feel private while providing “windows” into the lively casino.

We especially like this framed window that looks out into the dice pit.

Golden Gate high limit room

You can call it “craps,” but the cool kids call it “dice.”

Another benefit of the new high limit room is it’s a good 30 decibels quieter than the main casino.

There are more surprises to come at Golden Gate.

The casino recently expanded into the former La Bayou casino, and another expansion took up the space previously occupied by Du-Par’s restaurant.

Next on the agenda at Golden Gate is a new sports book.

The casino is making the most of its tiny footprint, and remains one of our favorite places to play (and drink) in downtown Las Vegas.

Kudos to the Golden Gate for finding a way to provide shiny new things while giving a hat tip to history.

Golden Gate High Limit Room

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Fright Dome Haunted House is Done at Circus Circus

Popular Las Vegas haunted house Fright Dome is cancelled at Circus Circus and we’re your only source for behind-the-scenes scoop about the direful news.

Here’s the lowdown.

Fright Dome being canceled at Circus Circus is the culmination of months of drama between Circus Circus (owned by MGM Resorts) and Egan Productions, the folks behind the lucrative Fright Dome attraction.

Fright Dome

Fear taps into our fight-or-flight response, releasing a hormone called epinephrine. Yeah, we still don’t get it.

The conflict centers around another attraction by Egan Productions, the Saw escape room.

Never heard of it? That’s part of the problem.

Rumor has it the Saw escape room attraction has been bleeding money for months. According to our sources, Saw’s investors have bailed and insiders believe the demise of Fright Dome could also signal a nail in the coffin for Saw.

It seems financial pressures from Saw resulted in Egan Production’s Jason Egan demanding a bigger cut of Fright Dome profits. While Circus Circus is said to have been open to negotiating Egan’s percentage, Egan stopped returning calls and tensions ran high.

In July, we heard things got so bad, Circus Circus staff began tossing out Fright Dome equipment and sets.

You know how ugly break-ups can be.

The ongoing conflict reached Defcon 1 levels when Circus Circus expressed it would run its own haunted house, essentially cutting Fright Dome out of the annual windfall it’s enjoyed for 15 years.

It’s unknown if Circus Circus plans to follow through on its threat.

For its part, Egan Productions isn’t saying much. In a statement, the company said, “Circus Circus has informed Egan Productions that it will not move forward with Fright Dome for 2018. While we regret this bad news, we are grateful to the people of Las Vegas for supporting Fright Dome over the past 15 years. We look forward to many successful Halloween events in the future.”

The long and mutually-beneficial relationship between Fright Dome and Circus Circus has, it seems, is done for good. In fact, it’s as if the attraction never existed. The plug has been pulled on Fright Dome’s Web site.

Before Fright Dome closed at Adventuredome, it was considered the premier Halloween haunted house in Las Vegas.

It featured five acres of space and six distinct haunted house experiences. Favorites included homages to the “Texas Chainsaw Massacre” and others. Other themes in the mix have included “Hillbilly Hell” and “Flesh Feast.”

Other recent haunted houses included “Zombie City” with a zombie theme, “Fright Dome’s Urban Legends” and “The Anniversary,” Fright Dome’s homage to itself, as far as we can tell.

Of course, no self-respecting haunted house would be complete without an ample supply of killer clowns.

While we are not a haunted house person, we suspect more than a few Las Vegas visitors will be disappointed by the closing of Fright Dome.

Update (9/14/18): A representative of the Saw escape room contacted us with information that contradicts several of the things we’ve heard about the attraction. The rep says Fright Dome doesn’t store anything at Circus Circus, so that would presumably make it impossible for Circus Circus to throw anything belonging to Fright Dome out.  The rep also states the owner of Saw is a sole owner, with no other investors. Saw also claims it is not “bleeding money,” but is, in fact, selling out. The company claims Saw is one of the most successful escape rooms in the world.

 

Pinball Hall of Fame to Close, Seeks Funds for Strip Location

A popular Las Vegas attraction, the Pinball Hall of Fame, has announced it will close its Tropicana location.

The owner of the Las Vegas Pinball Hall of Fame Museum, Tim Arnold, shared the news in a forum catering to the pinball community.

Pinball Hall of Fame

The Pinball Hall of Fame is a beloved Las Vegas diversion, even for people who aren’t “pinheads.”

Arnold also shared he plans to move the Pinball Hall of Fame, which features hundreds of classic pinball machines, to a new location on the Las Vegas Strip.

The new site for the attraction is the former location of the Sombrero Motel, at 4915 S. Las Vegas Blvd. on the south end of the Las Vegas Strip.

The Sombrero Motel closed in 2000 and the site has changed ownership several times since.

The parcel, located near the “Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas” sign, has been purchased for $4.6 million, but Arnold is now seeking funds to build at the new site.

Pinball Hall of Fame new location

Thanks for not making us drive all the way over there, Google Maps.

No date was given for the closure of the existing Pinball Hall of Fame location, other than Arnold saying, “as soon as we can wind up our affairs.”

Funds for the new Pinball Hall of Fame will be raised through memberships, so it remains to be seen if the new location will become a reality. Read more.

Thanks to our friend @VegasInsight for tipping us off to this story.

The Pinball Hall of Fame has always been a blast and we hope plans for a new location pan out.

T-Mobile Arena to Offer Backstage Tours

Looking to diversify its sources of revenue, T-Mobile Arena will offer backstage tours starting July 30, 2018.

T-Mobile is offering “exclusive, behind-the-scenes access” to the facility that opened in April 2016.

T-Mobile is home to the Las Vegas Golden Knights hockey team, among other things.

T-Mobile Arena Las Vegas

T-Mobile Arena cost $375 million, and not a penny of it was taxpayer money. Looking at you, Raiders Stadium.

The new tours will give guests a look at areas described as “some of the most restricted” at the venue.

According to T-Mobile Arena, the tour “may include”: Luxury suites, Hyde Lounge, Press Ledge (whatever that might be), the arena’s video control room, the Vegas Golden Knights Zamboni room, dressing rooms and visiting team locker rooms.

Insert your favorite Zamboni joke here.

T-Mobile Arena

Now, visitors can get all up inside T-Mobile’s business.

Tours will take place Mondays and Thursdays, 2:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. The tours will last one hour.

Tours cost $25 per person.

Children four and younger won’t be permitted, which should sort of be a rule for Las Vegas in general, if you ask us.

Learn more about the new backstage tours at T-Mobile Arena at the official Web site.

You Could Soon Bungee Jump Off Stratosphere

We hate to spoil the surprise, but we’re hearing Stratosphere will soon add bungee jumping to its list of adrenaline-pumping thrill attractions.

Guests of the Strat can already do one of the most harrowing experiences in Las Vegas, the SkyJump.

SkyJump involves an open-air leap from 829 feet above The Strip.

Stratosphere Skyjump

Yeah, no. We are not a heights person.

Still, legions of Vegas visitors make their way to the Stratosphere’s collection of thrill rides.

Aside from SkyJump, there’s X-Scream (the gliding over the edge one), Insanity (the spinning over the edge one) and Big Shot (the straight up and down one).

These attractions are wildly successful and profitable, and Stratosphere wisely adds new rides to the mix to keep things fresh for repeat customers.

Next up, according to rumors, Stratosphere will offer a bungee jump!

To get an idea of what the experience could be like, if the rumor pans out, one need look no further than Macau Tower.

People be kray.

We hear the ticket price for the Strat’s bungee attraction could be as much as $300. The Macau Tower bungee jump costs more than $400 U.S.

From our four minutes of research on the topic, it seems Macau Tower holds the record for being the highest commercial bungee jump at 764 feet. That record-holding bungee jump opened in 2006.

Another is planned for the Zhangjiajie Grand Canyon Glass Bridge. When that opens in August 2018, it will be the highest at 853 feet.

Stratosphere

The Strat is just happy to see you.

Should Stratosphere’s attraction jump from 829 feet, it’ll be the highest in the world. Because Vegas, baby.

Bungee (sometimes spelled “bungy”) jumping from a tower comes with some technical and safety challenges. “Guide cables” are used to keep the jumper from bouncing into the hotel tower, for example.

The SkyJump at Stratosphere uses a “fan descender” to slow the rate of descent, and we trust a similar device will be used with the bungee attraction. Read more.

It’s unknown if the bungee jump will replace or augment SkyJump, but Macau Tower boasts both a SkyJump and bungee jump.

A new attraction wouldn’t be the first time anyone’s bungee jumped off the Stratosphere. During taping of the “Real World/Road Rules Challenge 2000” reality series, contestants bungee jumped off the Strat from a height of 660 feet. On the show, the bungee jump challenge was dubbed “Stratos-Fear,” which wouldn’t be a bad name for the attraction.

Everything’s bigger and bouncier in Las Vegas, so don’t be surprised if Stratosphere announces a new bungee jump attraction soon.