DINING – LAGO, Bellagio
LAGO is the first Mediterranean tapas-style restaurant from award-winning Chef Julian Serrano. Facing the Bellagio Lake, the restaurant boasts a bright interior and decor of marble and metal tables set against oversized windows. From your seat, enjoy charming vistas of the Italian Riviera and impressive views of the iconic Paris casino. We opted for the 3-course prix fixe menu and enjoyed tasty starters, perfectly executed mains and were lucky enough to sit outside to enjoy our desserts while watching the fountain show. LAGO offers excellent food at a very reasonable price point for Vegas, smooth service, catchy music, and the most exclusive views of the fountain show.
DINING – Bacchanal Buffet, Caesars Palace
Buffets are a Vegas institution and it’s no surprise that Caesars Palace created a lavish feast fit for emperors. Bacchanal has been named #1 buffet in the US by the New York Post. On the main floor of the casino, the restaurant is accessible through separate check in lines, depending on your status with Caesars Entertainment. Despite being designed to welcome masses at a time, the decor and layout make the restaurant function very well. An unbeatable selection of dishes awaits: 500 items on display will satisfy any cravings. From the sushi station to freshly cut meats, from the Caesar Salad to the Nutella crepes, every dish is elegantly presented, flavorful, and enjoyable.
WELLNESS – Dolphin Yoga, The Mirage
Morning classes cater to all levels of practice and are kept intimate with a maximum of 10 participants: an ideal number to receive personal advice from Stephani, the instructor. Check in at the Spa & Salon and settle in a beautiful and quiet space. A few moments before the class, an attendant brings you through the Secret Garden towards the dolphins’ pools, before doors even open to the public. The yoga room is located underwater, with large windows inside the pools. Practicing your flow among these gracious animals, in absolute silence and semi-obscurity is humbling. In a crowded space like Vegas, finding that type of cocoon feels priceless. If you want to challenge yourself and test the limits of your balance, try following the dolphins chasing each other while maintaining perfect poses. Booking a yoga class gives you full spa and fitness facility access for the day.
WELLNESS – Get Fit Package, Encore
Encore is one of the most luxurious destinations in Las Vegas. A place defined by authenticity, service, and exclusivity. The Get Fit Package I chose includes a 1-hour session with a personal trainer followed by an 80-minute Thai massage. I checked in at the desk and was immediately escorted by Erika – my personal trainer for the day – to the private studio where I could warm up before the session began. Surrounded by mirrors and Wynn-style curtains, the floor is garnished with mats, free weights, dumbbells, and any equipment you may need. Erika made sure the music was motivating, that I remained hydrated at all times, and that the session met my personal objectives. I left the studio with solid advice for the future, feeling energized, yet craving the coming massage. Walking into the main lobby of the Encore Spa is like diving into the world of the 1001 Nights: the scent, the music, and the tranquility are an invitation to indulge, admire, and feel. My masseuse, Audrey, met me right at the door and walked with me to the treatment room. Since the very beginning of our encounter, she had been attentive to my body and wellbeing, soft-spoken, and an example of hospitality. I chose lemongrass flavored oil, medium strength, and laid down on the table where 80 perfect minutes could have gone forever. Going back to reality felt sweeter knowing that booking the package allowed me full-day access to the Forbes 5 Star spa and fitness facility at Encore.
WELLNESS – Qua Baths & Spa, Caesars Palace
Located on the second floor of the Augustus Tower, Qua Baths & Spa offers a unique mineral decor made of stones and water fixtures. The design, with its separate pools, whirlpools, and alcoves, perfectly mimics what your idea of an Ancient Rome thermal baths looks like. I booked the 50-minute Hydratherapy Facial treatment and started to enjoy the facility. We started with a suction of the skin to remove impurities, a much-needed step to detoxify your face from oil, lotion, and pollution residue. Next step, the treatment specialist applied a Vitamin C mask that she would let sit while massaging my arms and shoulders. As she removed the mask, she gently rubbed and massaged my face. This was an absolute sensation of heaven. I also appreciated her guidance on daily skin care maintenance.
GOOD TO KNOW:
– should you decide to attend a show at the last-minute, purchase discounted tickets from Tix4Tonight kiosks around town.
– distances are longer than they appear. Consider taking free trams along the strips when you’ve reached your walking limit. Trams run between Mandalay Bay, Luxor, and Excalibur, between Monte Carlo, Aria (access to Vdara and Mandarin Oriental), and Bellagio, and between The Mirage and Treasure Island.
– most venues in Las Vegas allow smoking. However, establishments like the Wynn and Encore manage to eliminate the smell and eye itchiness more efficiently than others. Select hotels like the Mandarin Oriental are entirely smoke-free.
Over the past years, Las Vegas has once more reinvented itself and offers much more than gambling. The destination is now synonymous with fine dining, world-class entertainment, and energetic nightlife. It’s hard to find time and availability to do everything on your Vegas to-do list, so plan ahead and come back as much as you’d like: there will always be something new to try. After exploring the Strip at length, it’s time to plan the next trip to visit the Red Rock mountains, the Canyons, and the region’s gorgeous lakes for which Las Vegas makes the perfect base.
Founder of UNITIATE, Geoffrey is a Marketing Expert, Luxury Specialist and Hospitality Enthusiast. Wherever he goes, his early career and personal interests have always helped him nurture and cultivate a passion for the Travel and Leisure industries. French born, Geoffrey has accumulated an extensive experience abroad, thanks to regular visits to foreign countries but also thanks to years of expatriation. Currently based in Chicago, Geoffrey has already lived and worked in New York, Shanghai, Singapore and Monaco. You can meet Geoffrey on Twitter and Linkedin.