Anthony Curtis’ nationally syndicated weekly column.
Jan. 19, 2011
It’s not a wholesale renovation, but the Stratosphere is sprucing up its rooms and casino to the tune of $20 million. So far 900 rooms in the Premier Tower have been upgraded and more are due to follow. There’s also a new high-limit casino area, a new lounge on the 108th floor called Air Bar, and the buffet has been updated and renamed Plate. Even though the renovation is limited, the upgrades take on additional significance given that Stratosphere is known for having some of the consistently lowest room rates on the Strip.
Rabbits: If you like furry little critters with big floppy ears, Vegas is your place this month. Celebrating the Chinese New Year and Year of the Rabbit, you’ll find a bunny-themed display in Bellagio’s Conservatory & Botanical Gardens, a 16-foot-tall animated bunny at Palazzo, and a 1,200-pound, 11-foot-tall, 12-foot-long rabbit in the Crystals Mall at CityCenter.
Bigger at Smalls: A good ongoing all-you-can-eat small-plates promotion at Johnny Smalls at the Hard Rock has changed slightly. You now have to show the Hard Rock’s Rockstar players club card to get the $19.99 price; otherwise it’s $23.99. No big deal, since the players club is free to join for anyone 21+. You can eat triple the price here without trying too hard.
P.J. Clarke’s: The famed New York eatery has opened its first West Coast location at the Forum Shops at Caesars Palace. Founded in 1884, P.J. Clarke’s is a saloon-style restaurant known for its classic hard-liquor cocktails and a menu of steaks, seafood, burgers, and sandwiches.
Question: Can you explain the “gold machine”?
Answer: Downtown’s Golden Nugget has installed an ATM that dispenses gold instead of cash. One of only 16 such machines in the world, you can use a credit or debit card at the “Gold to Go” machine to purchase gold coins and 24-karat bars weighing from 1 to 250 grams (at current prices, worth about $11,000).
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