Las Vegas Casino And Entertainment News - Updated: March 16, 2011
Las Vegas Casino And Entertainment News

Palms Casino Resort Introduces New Fantasy Blackjack App For Iphone
Posted: March 16, 2011

A blackjack app that comes straight from the experts at Palms Casino? That’s right, the Palms Casino and Resort has created the Fantasy Blackjack application which you can add to your latest version of the iPhone or iPad and allows users to create leagues and add friends to make it more of a social experience.

The application is original in the sense that blackjack players normally play solo and don’t necessarily count on being part of a league but that is where Palms Fantasy Blackjack app is different. If you’ve ever played on an online fantasy league then you’ll know that creating a league and adding the right players is important with the added bonus of setting your own rules.

"While most blackjack app games are one-dimensional and played alone, we … created a socially interactive experience around a casino game," said Jason Gastwirth, chief marketing officer with the Palms reported the LVRJ.

The object of Fantasy Blackjack is to acquire the most blackjack dollars from your league members and your totals are then evaluated at the end of the season to help find the player with the most virtual cash which in turn is the grand winner.

The app is very social in nature and allows players to add new members easily via social networks such as Facebook, keep track of reports, buy fantasy credits, keep track of leader boards and even gives users the option to offer to deal during a round by placing a special offer.

It’s a new spin on standard blackjack apps which allows the player to play solo and if I ever get around to getting an iPhone I just may add it. You can download straight from the Palms Casino website of via the iPhone App Store.



Big-Mouthed Chef Gordon Ramsay Plans to Open Restaurant in Vegas

Posted: December 09, 2010

He seemed to make a name for himself on the reality television circuit with his no-nonsense, what-I-say-goes kind of attitude and it seems to be paying off because Chef Gordon Ramsey from "Hell's Kitchen" is now opening a steak house on the Las Vegas Strip together with Caesar’s Entertainment, which is set to open in January 2011.

He’s not just a celebrity television star, he’s actually a talented chef who’s earned Michelin stars for his various restaurants in the UK and together his celebrity status in the U.S., he’s made quite a name for himself.

According to the Las Vegas Weekly, he will be taking over the space which currently occupies Les Artistes at the Paris Las Vegas Hotel and Casino which will shut down early next year leaving Ramsay plenty of time to prepare for the grand opening of his restaurant in June.

Ramsay will be opening a steakhouse which will have mass appeal and will fit perfectly with the major restructuring of the Paris Las Vegas Hotel. According to the Las Vegas Weekly, they are trying to step away from the whole French vibe which is tough to ignore but there will be minor changes involved to help the cause.

Apart from Ramsay's latest venture, he has been making headlines lately due to his financial troubles which have led to a public family feud with his father-in-law who was once part of Ramsay’s corporation as well as the fact that he has completely over-extended himself with reality television appearances, restaurant openings, family troubles, you name it and is in turn hurting his restaurants.

Now that his father-in-law is out of his business dealings and not pocketing anymore cash, this restaurant venture at the Paris Hotel in Las Vegas may just be the fresh start he needs to get back on track.



Celine Dion Returns to Caesar’s Palace With a 3-Year Contract

Posted: December 03, 2010

After the birth of her twin sons Eddy and Nelson, some of Celine Dion's fans wondered how long it would take the songstress to return to the stage and while the Quebec native may have her hands full, she’s already making plans to return to the Colosseum at Caesar’s Palace for a three-year contract starting in March of 2011.

According to Celine’s website, her new show will feature 31 musicians including a full orchestra and band and the theme of the show will focus on the romance of classic Hollywood movies along with a supposed jaw-dropping visual presentation.

Her last residency in Vegas ended in 2007 with her show, “A New Day” which grossed over $400 million over a five-year period. The 41-year old will now fulfill her 3-year contract starting in March with a total of 70 shows which will no doubt be a success.

“Celine's impact on the entertainment standard in Las Vegas is the bar all others compare to. We look forward to her return to The Colosseum. We are excited about continuing our success with Caesars Palace and are optimistic on the future of Las Vegas,” says John Meglen, the President and co-CEO of AEG Live Concerts.

Tickets to watch Celine belt out the tunes are on sale now for her shows from March 15 – August 14.



Wayne Newton Wants to Turn Vegas Home Into Graceland of the West

Posted: November 19, 2010

Local Vegas showman Wayne Newton is looking for more ways than one to crawl out of his debts and his latest attempt involves turning his home into a museum where he stores valuable works of art and memorabilia from his old pals Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra and Johnny Cash. The only problem is that his neighbors are up in arms over the idea of turning Casa de Shenandoah into a Vegas attraction.

It’s true, Wayne Newton is planning on turning his 40-acre property into a place where tourists can take a historical tour of the “oldschool” Vegas that he remembers so well. According to KTNV, a local news outlet in Vegas, he is looking to create a museum and a night club as well. Apparently, he has purchased the piece of land next to him and is looking to develop it into what his neighbors feel may turn into a nightmare. The opposition from his neighborhood has been overwhelming but it he should be granted a permit from the city then he’ll be able to continue with his project. Wayne’s argument is that he would provide over 400 jobs to the area and that his intention is not to disrupt the neighborhood which is a hefty concern at the moment.

Vegas residents see Wayne himself as an institution; he has been part of Vegas for the last 50 years so why wouldn’t the world be open to seeing his South African penguins, sweeping crystal staircases, rare collections of Vegas memorabilia all while listening to ‘Danke Schoen’? They might, but some may wonder if he can draw the crowds much like Graceland has, especially after the closing of the Liberace museum which was very dear to Vegas.

This may be a way for Wayne to earn some cash to repay the $3.35 million loan he acquired to build the place, which he's being sued for lack of payment. But hey, it's Vegas Baby anything goes right?



Viva the Vegas Life: The Venetian and Palazzo Win 5 Diamonds Award

Posted: November 15, 2010

Casino players looking for the best place for Las Vegas gaming have been steered to The Venetian and Palazzo resort and casinos. Both are winners of the coveted AAA Five Diamonds Award, the pinnacle prize for any Resort & Casino in North America.

"We are extremely honored to receive these distinctions at both The Venetian and The Palazzo," said Rob Goldstein, president of both properties. "To have two hotels, with a combined 7,100 all-suite rooms, each receive this award is a testament to our team members and their continued dedication to personal guest service as well as their consistent high caliber attention to detail."

AAA defines Five Diamond properties as establishments with first-class accommodations and reflecting the ultimate characteristics in luxury and sophistication. Exceeding guest expectations, providing meticulous service and maintaining impeccable standards of excellence are the fundamental hallmarks of the AAA Five Diamond Rating. Essentially, you won’t find a better place bet your cash. The Venetian has 120,000 square feet of gaming space while The Palazzo next door has 105,000.

"Five Diamond establishments do more than provide luxurious surroundings; they consistently deliver a high level of personal attention to each guest," said Michael Petrone, director of AAA Tourism Information Development. "AAA is pleased to recognize The Venetian and The Palazzo with the AAA Five Diamond Rating."

For those gaming in Vegas comfort can be the difference between a good or bad weekend. Some days in Sin City won’t go as well as others. In fact you may leave the city with less cash than you came with more often than not. It helps to have a place that at least did their best to take care of you while you stayed.

The Venetian is one of the largest venues ever to receive Five Diamonds and has cool places to see like Grand Canal Shoppes, and indoor streetscape, a spa and numerous restaurants along with its gaming floor.

The Palazzo has 20 couture stores to spend your money and restaurants by Wolfgang Puck and Emeril Lagasse to ensure you’re eating well.



Las Vegas Welcomes Smokers With Open Arms

Posted: November 15, 2010

Most of us know Las Vegas to be a playground for adults where anything goes and that includes smoking just about anywhere your little heart desires. With the world honing in on the creation of smoke-free areas, Las Vegas casino owners feel that smoking in Las Vegas is a freedom that their customers enjoy and have no plans of jumping on the smoke-free bandwagon.

According to UPI, Las Vegas residents voted on an anti-gambling legislation that would tackle smoking issues but it seems that casinos somehow found a way to squeeze their way out of that one. While some casinos do offer smoke-free slot machine and table game areas including The Bellagio, The Mirage, and The MGM Grand many other casinos focus on pumping out on recycling the air and pumping out the smoke. While these casino’s efforts may show that they are taking a step toward keeping the air clean, it’s not nearly enough especially for the employees of the casinos who have to put up with the second hand smoke around the clock.

There’s currently a $5 million federal class action lawsuit against Wynn Las Vegas which was put into place by blackjack dealers who work the floor and are seeking some sort of protection from long term exposure to the smoky air. UPI also stated that the best their lawyers will probably be able to do for them is to help them put into place better air purification systems but this remains to be seen since the case is still active.

It’s truly a David and Goliath type battle unless the government decides to step in but good luck with that. Anything that will hurt revenues right now will probably be off the table for a long time and Las Vegas wouldn’t be able to stand taking a hit as far as their image is concerned for being an adult playground.



Steve Wynn Infuses His Vegas Casinos With New Vegan Lifestyle

Posted: November 10, 2010

He’s one of the most powerful casino moguls in Las Vegas and while Steve Wynn may be worth billions and institutes a tough-as-nails attitude, he’s also a vegan. Due to a completely new lifestyle change, Steve Wynn is now adding vegan options to all of the restaurants within the Wynn Las Vegas and Encore Las Vegas properties.

A vegan diet consists of zero animal products including dairy and while vegan menu items can be really difficult to find, Steve Wynn wants the world to know that his top chefs will be taking on the duty of creating multiple menu options for all of his vegan gamblers. I personally didn’t know those two words could go in the same sentence but there you go.

According to the Las Vegas Sun, Wynn attests his lifestyle change to his friend introducing him to the video “Eating” which breaks down all the “evils” of eating meat and dairy products. “The notion that you need animal food as protein is one of the great conspiracies by the government,” he says. He also claims he is a changed man and after his June decision to make the change, it looks like there is no going back. He’s even made thousands of copies of the ‘Eating’ video to give out to all of his employees hoping they make the change as well.

For Wynn and his wife, the change was simple because they simply alerted their personal chefs of the change and that was that. For some of us, the transition may be a bit more challenging but definitely worth considering. Would this mean no more hotdogs?

Will Wynn’s casinos and hotels turn into a haven for PETA supporters? Not quite, but the man just wants Vegas visitors to know that his restaurant menus are vegan friendly.



Vegas Casinos Want You To Have “Total Experiences”

Posted: November 10, 2010

A group of popular Vegas casinos including Caesars Palace, Paris Las Vegas and the Planet Hollywood Hotel and Casino have found a way to organize the perfect gift for that friend or family member who has it all – an individually planned trip to Las Vegas with all the bells and whistles that Sin City has to offer.

It’s the perfect gift for any family member from granny to that best friend of yours who impersonates Cher during their private moments. The name of their new VIP service is called Total Experiences and it gives that special someone in your life VIP access to nightclubs, shows, restaurants and more. Basically, you can pretend you’re Paris Hilton for the weekend and illegal drugs are optional.

Now, while you may send someone off to indulge their senses in the delights of Vegas, these VIP trips will set you back a pretty penny. For a “Total Experience” at Caesars Palace you’re looking at a $900 investment to $749 for Planet Hollywood.

Just think, while you’re good friend is off in Vegas gallivanting with their own personal VIP host, this means you can expect some awesome Christmas gifts for years to come as well as full rights to use the phrase “But remember when I sent you to Vegas that year…..”



What Do Casino Freebies Really Cost?

Posted: November 03, 2010
What makes casino gaming so great for players? Of course a big part of it is the money and how much potential dollars we can get paid if we play our cards right. But what makes playing games even sweeter is how much free stuff we can get.

For the live casinos, renowned casino book author Frank Scoblete broke down what players get in Sin City and how much you have to wager to get it. You'll be shocked at how much free stuff could be yours if you visit Sin City during these tough times.

Average Bet: $10

The Comp: For throwing down just $10 a wager you'll probably be lucky enough to grab free or discounted rooms during the week. Seriously, just $10. Small gifts like an umbrella, beer mug, hat, and buffet tickets will definitely be yours. Oh and some free drinks.

Average Bet: $25

The Comp: Free room during the week and even a discount on weekends can be yours. You'll be able to eat at restaurants, not buffets and garner some free stuff. Oh and lots of free drinks.

Average Bet: $100

The Comp: Now we're getting into the I-bet-so-much-I-better-get-something category. $100 gets your free rooms anytime, meals, free cell phone too and even a suite on a slow day. Oh and you'll get drunk for free.

Average Bet: $500

The Comp: Now you're stylin' and profilin'. This gets you the rapper treatment: Limos, suites, a Rihanna pool party or two and even Cirque Du Soleil tickets. You name it; you'll be able to see it. And your flight will probably be free too. And the drinking? You'll be hammered all weekend.

Average Bet: $10,000-Plus

The Comp: Some casino will return half a high roller's losses. So if you're rolling like this prepare to have a good time. Oh and as for the free drinks, prepare to be drunk after you hop on the plane and not remember anything until someone tags horrible pictures of you on Facebook.


Arizona Charlie’s In Vegas Opens a Smoke Free Casino Room

Posted: October 20, 2010

Vegas isn’t exactly a place where health conscious people go to have a good time but after Arizona Charlie’s Casino in Las Vegas received an overwhelming amount of customer requests to create a non-smoking gambling area, it was finally made a reality – putting to rest one their customer’s main concerns.

According to Nevada laws, casinos are exempt from providing smoke-free environments so the fact that Arizona Charlie’s customers are asking for this feature speaks volumes. According to the AC management team, the decision to create such an area wasn’t an easy decision since this move can definitely hurt business which they have witnessed from other casinos. They decided to go through with the renovation anyway and invest the time and money to please their customers.

According to Ron Laurie, the casino manager, “The company had to clean every slot machine that was going into the smoke-free environment because the tobacco smell tends to attach itself to the components. It was kind of a risk because no one has ever done this in Nevada.”

Charlie’s also used tracking devices to learn more about which slot machines and casino games smoke-free players were interested in so they could be added to the area.

After six months of opening the new smoke-free area, Arizona Charlie’s hasn’t noticed a decline in profits and it seems like their customers are happy with the new area since over 80% of their casino players are smoke-free anyway.



Pet Friendly Las Vegas

Posted: October 20, 2010

Just because the parents get to run off to Vegas for the weekend doesn’t mean that their beloved Fido can’t have a little fun too. Vegas hotels including the Caesars Palace, Imperial Palace and the Rio have launched the Pet Stay Las Vegas program which gives pet owners peace of mind with their special guide which outlines outdoor areas, dog walking routes and special pet room service menus (yeah, that’s right).

So while the parents are out enjoying all of the Sin City delights, your pooch will be lounging on his personalized doggie mat while enjoying room service. Although, lack of pet accommodation hasn’t really been an issue for quite some time in Vegas, more and more hotels are opening up to the idea of such a thing. I mean, where is Paris Hilton expected to keep her tiny pooch, while she’s out getting arrested?

According to USA Today, Las Vegas has over 42 pet-friendly hotels and two very famous dog parks including the Red Rock Canyon and the Desert Breeze which are big pet attractions in the city. So the big question is how much does all of this doggie pampering set you back? Many hotels charge a minimum of $15 to have your pet stay with you while others such as the Pet Stay Las Vegas program charge up to $25 per night for a pet 50 pounds and under. Larger pets will obviously cost more.

So get your pooch or cat suited up and packed in the car because now the whole family can have a Vegas vacation.



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