As a twist on an old adage, I often say Vegas is a great place to live but I wouldn't want to visit it.
You know I love living here, but I don't gamble (except in the race and sports book during Saratoga season, and that's a $20 maximum) (which I make up in free drinks) and like most locals, I have a love/hate relationship with the Strip. I avoid it at all costs, but I like knowing it's there if I want it. The beauty of living in Las Vegas is that there's so much to do, we don't have to go to the Strip. In fact, when guests come, it might be days before they see the Strip, other than out the window of my apartment.
One of my readers, Mikey's Other Julie, emailed me last week and asked for suggestions for what to do on her next visit to Vegas. I'm happy to oblige. Here are the places I like to drag my guests to, and yep, a couple are even on the Strip.
Linda's best places to have a drink:
1. Ellis Island. Don't miss this place, especially if money is tight. For full details, read my Living-Las-Vegas article.
2. The bar at the top of the Stratosphere. Tell the security people at the bottom that you're going up to the bar and you not only bypass the line of tourists, but avoid the admission charge.
3. The Fireside Lounge at the Peppermill. Love, love, love it! It's on the Strip, just north of Convention Center Drive. A great place for a romantic date. Don't be surprised when you walk in--you'll think you're in Denny's. But in the back, you'll find an old-style Vegas lounge.
4. The Yard House in Town Square. If you haven't been to Town Square yet, you must check it out! Lots of shops, bars, restaurants... one of the few places in Vegas besides the Strip where you can actually park and walk around. The Yard House has about 200 beers on tap, included my beloved Young's Chocolate Stout, and the music is always good old classic rock--need I say more? I wouldn't eat there, though--not the best value for the buck. (In my opinion.)
5. ghostbar at the Palms. Cliche, I know, and there are other rooftop bars that are a lot less touristy and less expensive. But everybody has to go to ghostbar at least once.
Want live music? Here are some bands/venues to check out.
1. The Michael Grimm Band. They play at the Ovation Lounge in Green Valley Ranch every Friday and Saturday at 7:00. Don't miss them. I wrote about them in my "dancing with myself" post a while back. I dragged Hurricane Mikey there last week--read his write-up here.
2. Yellow Brick Road. This band rotates through the Station Casinos' showrooms, including the Ovation Lounge. I recently heard from a reader who saw YBR on my advice and he agreed--it's the best classic rock tribute band you're likely to see. I'll send you to another Living-Las-Vegas article for more.
3. Thursday night Boulder Blues. Great scene, a different national blues act each week. In the Railhead in Boulder Station on the east side of town.
4. The Lon Bronson Band. I haven't seen them in a couple of years, but they're fabulous. Right now they're at Ovation Lounge on Thursday nights. I gotta get my ass there, but usually if I go out on a Thursday night, I'm up at the Railhead. So much music, so little time...
In short if you love good music or, I should say, if you share my superior taste in music (ha), I recommend you check out the Stations Casino website and see where these bands are playing. You can also find out what's going on by visiting the website for the Las Vegas Blues Society--they won't steer you wrong, either.
As far as food goes...
You're on your own people. I'm not a big eater (remember this pic of my fridge?)
Here is my idea of a perfect dinner:
When I have guests, I take my peeps to Baja Fresh, Chipotle, Metro Pizza, and of course, In-and-Out. It doesn't get any better than that!
Yeah, I couldn't care less about the fine dining experience. Food is just future shit to me--terrible, huh? Hey, speaking of shit, I lost two followers after my last post with the picture of my fake dog Stiff's fake "accident." Can you imagine?
One more thing while we're on the topic of shit. (Sorry.) If you're looking for clean bathroom in Vegas, check out my new blogging buddy Vegas Flea's post. We gotta talk this guy into posting more frequently. Funny stuff there.
So there's a start. Anybody have any questions?