5 Insider Tips to Spice Up Your Visit to Vegas
Attendees of NAFCU's 47th Annual Conference and Solutions Expo already know there's plenty of opportunity for adventure in the city also known as Lost Wages.
The popular saying, “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas,” suggests secrets are safe in Sin City.
But some of the best kept secrets in Vegas are definitely worth sharing. Searching for clandestine tips along The Strip, CU Times found numerous hidden gems. Here's a look.
Secret Recipe for Success
Baker Buddy Valastro and his family, made famous by TLC show Cake Boss, recently opened a new store in the Grand Canal Shoppes at The Venetian.
That means NAFCU Annual Conference attendees won't have to go far to get a taste; the new bakery is adjacent to Buddy V's restaurant, which opened last year.
The original Carlo's Bakery, founded in 1910 in Hoboken, N.J., has been showcased as the setting for TLC's Next Great Baker. The Valastro family helped spearhead the recent custom cake craze sweeping the country, according to a press release.
“We’ve been working for a long time to make this happen, this is a great town and I can't wait to get everybody in here,” Valastro said during the new bakery's grand opening.
Cryptic Clues from Old Mobsters
The Mob Museum, also known as the National Museum of Organized Crime and Law Enforcement, recently unveiled two new displays featuring rare gambling artifacts from mobsters such as Bugsy Siegel, including items such as antique casino chips, gaming devices and photographs.
If the unique items in the displays could talk, they’d probably have plenty of juicy gossip.
This iconic sign welcomes visitors to old-school Las Vegas and the good times ahead.
The first display, located on the museum's second floor, features memorabilia from the 1946 opening of Bugsy Siegel's Flamingo Hotel. The second display, located on the third floor, presents artifacts from legendary illegal gambling halls around the U.S.
The Mob Museum is open 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., Sunday through Thursday, and 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.,
Friday and Saturday. More information is available online at www.themobmuseum.org.
One Way Money Disappears in Vegas
Mac King's name might not be as recognizable as David Copperfield or Siegfried & Roy, but the comedic magician who headlines at Harrah's Las Vegas has one of the longest-running shows in town and has entertained more than 1 million fans, according to the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority.
At first glance, his retro plaid suit and bowl cut may fool audiences, but King has been dubbed a “god” by fellow illusionists Penn & Teller, a “genius” by Playboy Magazine and has been called one of the city's best kept secrets and entertainment bargains by several national publications.
“I’m honored to be considered a ‘best kept secret,’ and a ‘cheap thrill,’ but would actually prefer to be ‘very well known’ and ‘priceless,’ King joked during an interview with CU Times.
For almost 15 years, the Kentucky native has hosted The Mac King Comedy Magic Show at Harrah's Las Vegas.
The 75-minute show features family-friendly humor, sleight-of-hand gimmicks and visual gags involving goldfish, a rain poncho and other unique props.
“My act has never been your typical Vegas extravaganza,” King explained. “My show is more about my personality, which is magical, to say the least.”
Before disappearing, the master of invisible cloak-and-dagger espionage confessed a few furtive facts about one of his favorite illusions.
“Without giving too much away, it involves an unsuspecting man from the audience and his money, and it's kind of the cornerstone to my act,” he said.
Curtains rise at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. for The Mac King Comedy Magic Show at Harrah's. More at www.mackingshow.com.
Buddy Valastro of Next Great Baker has opened a new store in The Venetian on The Strip.
New Fame Peddling Old Stuff
PAWN SHOP LIVE!, a comedic multimedia salute to the popular Pawn Stars reality show, recently debuted at the Riviera Hotel & Casino's Starlite Theatre.
The live show, based on the World Famous Gold & Silver Pawn Shop on Las Vegas Boulevard, is fully endorsed by the TV show's stars, a press release said.
Shop owner Rick Harrison stated in a press release that the key to his family's success as reality stars, and in life, is the ability to laugh at themselves.
PAWN SHOP LIVE! features video clips of the reality show stars, a comedic puppet, Vegas showgirls and special guests, the release said. It revs up at 4:30 p.m. daily (except Friday) at the Riviera. More at www.pawnshopshow.com.
Historic Area's Facelift Funded by Feet
Fremont Street, which dates back to 1905 when Vegas was founded, had slipped off the tourism radar.
But the historic downtown area has undergone a recent facelift, thanks to a $350 million downtown rejuvenation, funded, in part, by Zappos founder Tony Hsieh.
The Vegas resident, who launched his shoe mecca in nearby Henderson, Nev., decided to take a gamble by developing an urban oasis to lure techies and creative types.
Others have also invested. In 2007, the Las Vegas Redevelopment Agency and Fremont East property and business owners committed $5.5 million to develop Fremont East Entertainment District, which is now filled with iconic neon signs, small clubs, local restaurants and live music, according to the city's website.
One of the area's popular attractions is the Fremont Street Experience. The pedestrian mall is covered by a giant canopy with state-of-the art audio, video and lighting that offers free power-packed shows once an hour in the evenings, according to its website.
More at www.vegasexperience.com.