don't care what they sayIf you're like us, you think paying
$100 a pop to see French Canadian clowns is ridiculous.
That's a hundred hands of dollar blackjack, for Pete's sake.
In Vegas, they want over $200 to see some washed-up, fat
broad belt out bathhouse tunes. Ask yourself, would you
pay that to see these people back home? We sure as hell
You can't spend
your whole vacation gambling, though, especially not if
you play roulette. So what to do? Sit in your hotel room
for hours on end watching free preview after free preview
of the pay-per-view adult movies? Or go do a free sightseeing
tour? We vote for the latter. The shows we list are free,
meaning you don't pay a dime, which is right about our budget
- The MGM Mirage's fanciest attempt to show that they know
what it means to be sophisticated. Apparently, class has
to scream at the top of its lungs, so they created an elaborate
fountain show in front of this dump. Basically, it's the
same thing as the old "Dancing Waters" at Sea
World, except MGM Mirage has the money to make it bigger
and use fancier music. The fountains spurt every half-hour
and can be seen from the street or by hanging around on
the casino's front porch.
- There is a lot of tacky crap in this casino and just wandering
through it might take a while. Take the time to walk around
and marvel at how beautifully tacky it all is. Honestly,
this place takes glitz to a new level of artfulness. It
used to be even tackier and more glorious, but it still
outdoes its neighbors.
Forum Shops - Two seemingly inanimate fountains come
to life every hour on the hour in the shopping mall attached
to Caesars. The latex-covered characters resemble marble
statues, and are animatronic. The first show features Bacchanal
realizing that gambling at Caesars is good. The other relates
the story of the sinking of Atlantis. Neptune gives his
offspring the King Lear treatment and he dooms them to an
early and watery, grave. Both shows are non-spectacular
but they draw big crowds. If you want to watch them, find
a spot near the back that allows you to slip out quickly
and easily. As long as you're in the Forum Shops, wander
around and marvel at the sort of crap rich people buy. Wealth
and good taste are not synonymous.
- The AdventureDome, a mini-amusement park under a huge
pink glass enclosure behind the hotel is a pretty lame attempt
to assuage parents' guilt while they go and gamble. The
theme is supposed to be the Grand Canyon and the hotel may
actually be proud of the amateurish animatronic dinosaur
display and papier-maché looking cliffs and rocks.
A decent but short roller-coaster (among other rides) can
be ridden for a fee, but entering the park and walking about
is free of charge.
Also, every 20
minutes from 11 a.m. to midnight, circus acts perform on
the midway above the casino. Once we saw a man spinning
with towels in his mouth. On the other end of the towels
were dogs, swinging through the air. Now that's entertainment!
- If you want to see cool art, this is the choice. The second
through fourth floors are littered with interactive and
playful art displays that don't feel all stuffy and pretentious
like the junk at Aria. If you just want to shoot
some pool for free, then head upstairs fromt hej casino
to the game room. There is a pool table, board games and
plenty of comfortable places to sit and hang out. Nobody's
gonna make you pay any dough.
Experience - Don't get us started. A four block long
canopy of lights covers Fremont Street. At night, the little
lights twinkle every hour on the hour to produce elaborate,
four block long, overhead cartoons. The resolution is about
what you would get on a normal television. The animation
is mostly hoaky, the music is brutally loud and the whole
thing is unavoidable when you are downtown and outdoors.
A few dozen people crowd the streets to "ooh"
Fremont Street has lots of events, like concerts and street
artists. You may be lucky enough to catch us giving one
of our famous "breakdancing" seminars, or giving
the street artists a few painting tips we picked up from
- In the courtyard at the center of the Flamingo compound
is a "wild habitat" that lovingly recreates what
koi, turtles and flamingoes look like in their natural setting:
an artificial oasis between massive Las Vegas hotel towers.
No matter the absurdity, the animals are pretty fun to look
at. There are also swans and ducks, which makes it nearly
a petting zoo.
- Fittingly, this casino is home to the largest gold nugget
in the world. It is the size of a small child but weighs
considerably more. They keep it behind glass so that you
cannot touch it and we cannot steal it.
Hotel - Besides being the ideal place to hang out if
you have never bothered to develop a personality and would
rather use the one conveniently pre-packaged by the Hard
Rock chain, there is a lot of rock and roll crap on the
walls. Most of it is from artists that mean as little to
today's society as Kid Rock and Lionel Ritchie.
- Breasts in tight t-shirts on display.
- The Quad car collection can be seen for free by finding
a coupon in town. If classic and unique cars interest you,
this is a pleasant, air-conditioned way to spend an hour
Station - Ever wanted to urinate on the Berlin Wall?
Well, the men's room near the buffet has the pee stations
built into a big chunk of that famed relic. Come on in and
make a statement while you relieve yourself.
- The House of Blues club features bands just about nightly,
but tickets cost a pretty penny. Looking at the cool art
on the outside of the club's walls, though, sets you back
nothing. They actually had a real "outsider" artist,
Leonard Jones, do the sculpture, featuring a massive collage
of bottle caps, rusted cans and other found objects.
- This place tries to impress you into thinking it's really
a classy joint, but when was the last time you went to a
Ritz-Carlton with a phony volcano belching out flaming methane
gas at night? It's just a more expensive mouse trap and
they can't keep out the occasional rat like you and me.
The volcano (neé waterfall) out front is free to
watch. Behind the registration desk is an enormous aquarium.
Imagine the fish bowl you have at home being 100 times longer
and containing eels and sharks. Actually, it's pretty cool.
- After taking a quick look at the stunted Eiffel Tower
(which costs a small fortune to go up), wander inside this
joint and look for the gendarmes. And don't forget to wander
the cobblestone streets, admiring the Frenchness of it all.
And occasional exclamation of "Sacré Bleu!"
In the Masquerade Tower, the noisy Parade in the Sky takes
place in the evenings. The show includes floats that travel
hung from the ceiling, and a stage with dancers. It might
be fun if it weren't in the middle of a casino, a shopping
pavilion and competing with both for attention and noise.
They hand out a few beads sometimes, though, and the music
is sometimes pretty cool.
- They have something called the Mystic Falls Park, which
is really a giant atrium in the middle of their hotel tower.
Inside there, the Sunset Stampede tramples innocent onlookers
every day at 2, 6, 8 and 10 p.m. Don't worry, though, they
don't literally trample you, they just clobber you with
laser lights and dancing waters in what is described as
a "musical journey across the Great Plains." Boy,
I bet the pioneers wish their journeys were this pain-free,
musical and laser-filled. They also have free shuttle service
to the Strip and downtown.
- Another huge aquarium with some cool fish lies at one
end of this casino. Nearby is a bar with live jellyfishes
floating around behind glass. Sorry, they don't have a "Get
stung by the jellyfish" attraction, despite the numerous
times we've asked. Next door and attached is a massive Bass
Pro Shop with simulated ponds with big bass and trout. occasionally,
someone from the shop demonstrates a new lure and hooks
- Every two hours in the evening, when the weather permits,
a hokey "sexy" pirate battle takes place at the
entrance to this casino. Two ships shoot cannons and lots
of bad actors dressed as pirates fall into the phony lake.
The sexy part comesin when the "sirens" sing and
expose midriffs. they are the lusty wenches on one of the
ships. It's overlong, overwrought and silly to the point
of tedium. Truly, trust on this one.
- It costs dough to ride around in the gondolas, but they
can't make you pay just for walking around their make-believe
canals of Venice with the mini-golf blue water (the real
one's water is filthier than the Western's toilets) and
watching the singing gongoliers make some people cringe
and others swoon.
Wynn Las Vegas
- There are a myriad of ways for this place to remind you,
for free, that you're not rich. Wander around the man-made
mountain out front. If you like flowers, walk around the
conservatory, which is a lot like the one in the Bellagio.
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