Anthony Curtis nationally syndicated weekly column.
Feb. 17, 2010
After last week’s announcement that one of the two hotels at Lake Las Vegas would close later this year, this week came news that… the area’s lone casino would do the same. Casino MonteLago will shut down March 14, a direct result of the closing of the neighboring Ritz-Carlton in May. Since MonteLago relied on customers from the Ritz, as well as Loews Lake Las Vegas (which remains open), the loss of the former will cause too much of a reduction of the casino customer base.
Viva Elvis: Friday marked the official debut of the new Cirque du Soleil show Viva Elvis at Aria. Reviews have been mixed, but steadily improving as the show gets its legs. Tickets are $116-$200.
Hopper: A distinctly smaller, but only slightly less hailed addition to the Las Vegas entertainment scene is the return of Jimmy Hopper, who’s playing The Lounge at the Palms. Hopper was the most celebrated lounge performer in town when he played the Bellagio five years ago. His shows at the Palms are from 7 to 10 p.m. and they’re free.
Dice Man Moveth: In a third entertainment development of note, Andrew Dice Clay has moved from the Riviera to the LV Hilton where he stages an 11 p.m. show (one of the latest start times in town). Tickets are $27.50-$116.
Some Dim Sum: Want a snack before taking in Dice Clay? The Paradise Café (coffee shop) at the LV Hilton is one of the few coffee shops in Las Vegas to offer a dim sum sampler. At $9.95, it’s an unusual alternative to the typical coffee shop’s $10.95 hamburger.
Question: I’ve been told the odds are much worse playing blackjack on machines than at the tables. Is that true and why?
Answer: That used to be the case, because all of the machines paid even money on natural blackjacks, compared to 3-2 at the tables. These days, though, many table games pay 6-5 (and some even money), while more sophisticated machines are paying 3-2. Hence the rule no longer (necessarily) applies.