Access Vegas Insider Vibe – November 14, 2007 Insider Vibe

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Newkirk’s Notes – comments on Las Vegas from AccessVegas.Com publisher Ted Newkirk:

Hello From Las Vegas! The Frontier went boom with one of the better implosion shows in recent memory. Things have come a long way from the attempt to make a big show out of the Hacienda Implosion (Broadband Video Link).

We had various invitations (both official and unofficial) to cover it. However, we couldn’t hold a candle to what some of the local TV stations did (including 12 camera coverage in HD by KLAS Channel 8). Here are some great links to stories, photos, and video of the implosion:

The old saying notes “Out With The Old, In With The New” and our photographer Mark Jacobs captured this telling photo of The Frontier (as it is prepared for implosion) and of the new Wynn Las Vegas Encore Tower, which sit across the street from each other:

See more of Mark’s photos of the construction of Palazzo Las Vegas.

A quick follow up on my speculation last week of a future implosion at The Tropicana: I have a good source that The Tropicana is getting very serious about imploding their rear tower. This after months and months of The Tropicana publicly noting that their expansion would be built around (and incorporating) the existing towers.

This makes an immense amount of sense when you look at The Tropicana’s lack of interest in cutting a new contract with their workers union. Also, this would accomplish two other goals: 1. Give them much greater options about the design and layout of the new expansion and 2. Let them keep the casino and one tower open so they can continue to service guests and bring in revenue.

Monty Python’s Spamalot has a very cool V.I.P.P. (Very Important Person) Package that is pretty much unique to the Las Vegas show scene. For $159 per person plus tax, you get the following:

  • Premium Seating
  • A 45-minute “Secrets of the Grail” backstage tour right after the show
  • A commemorative Grail cup (filled with your beer or soft-drink)
  • Once-in-a-lifetime photos with cast and crew, set pieces and props.

As I noted, this is unique among Las Vegas shows (especially a show of this caliber). The tickets are extremely limited and well worth grabbing if you can get one during your visit. Visit the official Monty Python’s Spamalot Las Vegas show site for details and availability.

Enjoy This Issue!

Associate Editor: Amy Rayner-Cooley
News Researcher/Editor: Mark Jacobs

Cast Members Of Phantom – The Las Vegas Spectacular Celebrated The Holiday Season By Sponsoring A Tree In The Magical Forest At Opportunity Village – In support of Opportunity Village’s annual holiday celebration, The Magical Forest, Phantom – The Las Vegas Spectacular (Tickets) cast members decorated a tree and took a tour of the beautiful campus. The Magical Forest, featuring hundreds of trees frosted with millions of lights, incredible holiday displays, rides and a visit with Santa, opens its doors to holiday revelers November 22 – December 30. Opportunity Village is a not-for-profit organization that serves people with intellectual disabilities by providing them with vocational training, employment and social recreation services that make their lives more productive and interesting. Click to Read The Full Story … From Sugarplums To Snowflakes… Nevada Ballet Theatre Brings It All Together For Locals And Tourists Alike – Guests And Surprises Add To The Excitement Of This Year’s Nutcracker – Colored lights, hot cocoa, parties, shopping.and The Nutcracker! A Las Vegas Valley tradition for over twenty years, a joyous and jubilant season begins with Nevada Ballet Theatre’s tale of warmth and wonder. The most famous holiday fairytale of all brings Clara, Fritz and all of their friends to life at UNLV’s Judy Bayley Theatre, from December 14 – 27, 2007. Sugarplums will be dancing in the heads of children – from thousands who live here to the almost one-hundred that are in the production! Click to Read The Full Story …

Legendary Performer Wayne Newton Brings His Holiday Show Back To Harrah’s Las Vegas – Fresh from appearing on television’s “Dancing with the Stars,” Wayne Newton, whose voice and singing style are synonymous with great Las Vegas entertainment, returns to the stage at Harrah’s Las Vegas with his exhilarating Holiday show (Tickets). “Mr. Las Vegas” will perform an exciting compilation of his classic hits, holiday tunes and favorite songs of the season on a winter wonderland set. Click to Read The Full Story …

Lance Burton, Mary J. Blige, Sheryl Crow, Barry Manilow, Lyle Lovett & His Large Band And Wayne Newton Are Among The Acts Lined Up For Ellen’s Really Big Show, TBS Comedy Variety Special Presented By Ellen DeGeneres – Ellen’s Really Big Show (Tickets) Premieres on TBS Monday, Nov. 19, at 9 p.m. with an encore immediately following at 10:30 p.m. and will be taped during HBO and AEG Live’s The Comedy Festival at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas Recording artists Mary J. Blige, Sheryl Crow, Barry Manilow, Lyle Lovett & His Large Band, and Wayne Newton are among the stars on tap for ELLEN’S REALLY BIG SHOW, Emmy«-winning talk show host and comedian Ellen DeGeneres’ throwback to the beloved variety shows of years past. Click to Read The Full Story …

Jay-Z and Friends to Host New Year’s Eve 2008 Bash at The 40/40 Club Las Vegas – WHO: Legendary business mogul Jay-Z and celebrity friends from the world of sports, entertainment and music. WHAT: The ultimate New Year’s Eve bash at Jay-Z’s highly anticipated addition to the Las Vegas Strip – The 40/40 Club. WHEN: Monday, December 31, 2007 Doors open at 9 p.m. WHERE: The 40/40 Club Located inside The Palazzo 3325 Las Vegas Blvd. South Las Vegas, NV. Tickets for the ultimate New Year’s Eve 2008 bash are on-sale now and available: 800-696-5721. Click to Read The Full Story …

Featured Book: Historic Photos of Las Vegas By: Jeff Burbank – (Amazon Review) Las Vegas is the most populous city in the State of Nevada and a hub for entertainment. Attracting millions of visitors each year, the Entertainment Capital of the World is the largest U.S. city founded in the 20th century. With nearly 200 photographs of this dynamic city like no other city, this coffee-table book like no other book is sure to be a hit with residents, visitors, and history buffs alike!

About the Author: Jeff Burbank is a longtime journalist and editor who has been writing about Las Vegas history since the 1990s. He has been published in many venues, including The Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Hartford Courant, San Francisco Chronicle, Boston Globe, Las Vegas Review-Journal and Sun, Reno Gazette-Journal and Newsweek.

Book available for purchase: Historic Photos of Las Vegas By: Jeff Burbank

Vegas Photo Set Of The Week: Palazzo Las Vegas Construction Photos – The Palazzo Casino Resort opens in late December and will include over 375 concierge-level suites. The hotel lobby will feature a 60-foot glass dome, multiple two story fountains, imported marble, bronze case columns and special custom wall finishes. Guests arriving from the street will enter the domed entry lobby. The landscape will be made up of palm trees, tailored paintings and exotically shaped topiaries.

Members Mania – We Love Our Readers!

Reader Submitted Photos:

Hi Ted:

Here is a picture of the flamingos at the Flamingo. They are so pink and the sunlight makes them shine and shimmer! Can’t wait to return to Vegas.

Boston Sheena


Hint: Click on the photo to see photos of Flamingo Wildlife Habitat

Ted Responds:

Thanks for the great photo! Despite the Flamingo Wildlife habitat being so huge, beautiful, and free to the public… it is still continues to be a “best kept secret” in Las Vegas. Finding it is easy:

Head toward the back of the Flamingo Hotel and out the back doors. Let them blow up The Frontier, but I hope that Flamingo doesn’t do away with this incredible area anytime soon.

My husband and I love getting your newsletters and boy, how we love your lovely Las Vegas. We have been 13 (unlucky for some!) times now. Planning to visit again in October. My husband reckons he owns half a hotel now because of all the money he has left there….ha! ha! Great place.We look forward to receiving your next newsletter so we can get some of the fantastic offers you have advertised.Bye for now – see you in October hopefully and thank you for a brilliant newsletter.

Pat & Doug Johnstone – London – England

I am traveling to Vegas with a group of friends, both male and female. A few of them have never been to Vegas before.I would like to maybe get them to go dancing however the lot of them are not “club chic”. We are staying at South Point Casino/Hotel. Is there a club where us 40 somethings could go and not feel too out of place. Money is an object so paying for bottle service and such is out of the question. Help!


Ted Responds:

South Point actually has a fun atmosphere with various live bands coming through. One of our staffers is 40 and enjoys it on a regular basis. The first thing to do when you check in is ask what/who is playing there. Once in a while it will be a bigger act with a regular ticket price, but usually it is free or a small cover charge.

Mix at Mandalay (The Hotel) is usually free until 8 PM, and with the sun setting at 7 PM, a good place to kick things off. Also, South Point shuttle runs to Mandalay so your trip is free. Voodoo at Rio similar… go early and the cover will be free or cheap plus you get to watch the sunset and The Strip light up. Plus, a wide range of ages. Very important: Times and prices are subject to change. Ask the desk at South Point details on their club, and call ahead on other stuff so no surprises.

South Point is really nice for the money. Only downside is the shuttle ride to The Strip, but you might find yourself having quite a bit of fun right there on property. Also, the intersection it is located on has a mini-mall with really good (no frills) BBQ place, and the wine/liquor store in that mini-mall has free wine tasting on Thursday evenings plus a nice cigar selection for those inclined.

More Las Vegas News – Concerts – Events

Coming Hot Holidays – The following dates are huge times to be in Las Vegas, and rooms are in high demand. Booking in advance is the best way to save. Visit our friends at Las Vegas Hotel Deals and spend one of the following hot dates having fun in Las Vegas:

  • Christmas December 25 (4 day weekend – Christmas on Tuesday)
  • New Year’s Eve-Day December 29 – January 1 (4 day weekend – New Years on Tuesday)

Link To Us! – Have a home page, web page, or blog? Link to us, and give yourself and your friends a quick link to find us from your site. Simply link to and name the link Access Vegas!

RSS Feed – We now have an RSS/XML feed! Most RSS programs let you visit and automatically pull the feed. For those who want to enter it manually, the feed is:

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For comments or questions regarding our content or this newsletter write us at to the list? See our Newsletter Archives for back issues and subscription info. Don’t hesitate to forward this newsletter to friends and associates.

All contents copyright 2007 Ted Newkirk. All Rights Reserved.

November 14, 2007 ISSN: 1529-2770 About Us Privacy Policy

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Access Vegas Insider Vibe – November 8, 2000

WELCOME to Access Vegas News and Reviews, now with subscribers in over 40 countries around the world! This is the official newsletter of We talk about the Las Vegas attractions, dining, and shows that YOU really care about.

This is not spam. If you receive this by mistake, unsubscribe information is at the bottom. Click here to recommend us to friends! This newsletter is free. To subscribe, simply send a blank email to below

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This Issue: American Superstars

Curious about a show, restaurant, or other Las Vegas attraction that looks fun? Let us review it for you first! Suggestions are always welcome at:

LAS VEGAS NEWS – of interest to tourists:

INTERACTIVE GAMBLING – Slot manufacturers continue to look at interactive multimedia ways to get you more interested in their machines, and playing them longer. Full story on some of the more interesting games you will soon be seeing on the casino floor at

CELINE DION – Rumors have this pop music diva putting down roots in Las Vegas soon. Her first child is due in February, she has expressed a desire to stay off of the road, and talk is that she is looking to sign a casino headliner deal here. Full story at

WYNN AGAIN – Aruze Corp. of Japan, one of the largest gaming machine manufacturers in the world, is cutting a $260 million check to buy half of former Mirage and Bellagio visionary Steve Wynn’s new company primed to develop the Desert Inn property. Full story at

MOVIE POSTERS – The history of Hollywood will come alive Nov. 29 at 6 p.m. as Re Galleries/Atelier in the Paris Las Vegas, in association with the American Film Institute, presents the premiere public exhibit of “AFI’s 100 Years… 100 American Movie Poster Classics.” Full story at

HAPPY DINING – If that dealer across the table from you looks well fed, they should be! One of the perks of working at a casino is the employees’ dining area, which rivals the buffet in most of the newer resorts. Full story at

BALI HAI GOLF CLUB – This new golf course just south of Mandalay Bay features 4,000 palm trees and more than 100,000 tropical plants and flowers, and little rough on the course veers away from the typical desert golf course stylings. Full story and photo at

STRATOSPHERE TOWER – is undergoing a $65 million expansion, adding 1002 rooms, a 67,000 sq. ft. pool and recreation area, and 24 hour coffee shop with buffet. With new owner Carl Icahn at the helm, the hotel’s financial difficulties appear to be a thing of the past. Full story at

WE’RE #1 – Nevada has overtaken Kentucky as the state with the highest percentage of smokers. Nearly 1 in 3 Nevadans light up as a result of the state’s unrestrictive “live and let live” attitudes towards what many consider traditional vices. Full story at

$25 HOTEL REBATE — you pick the hotel! Our partners at Hotel Reservations Network are giving you $25 back on any 2+ night stay in Las Vegas or any major city they reserve. Claiming your cash is simple:

1. Print out:
2. Book a room online at
3. Send in for your rebate when you get home.

It doesn’t get any easier than that, and you get their low price guarantee
to boot!

RESTAURANT REVIEWS – Recent reviews appearing in the media:

* Anasazi of Santa Fe (Dessert Passage) –
* Josef’s Brasserie (Dessert Passage) –
* Lotus of Siam (near The Sahara) –


SHOWS – See which shows are playing during your stay and book reservations EVEN if the tickets aren’t on sale yet. Let ShowVegas takes care of all your needs directly online! Search by dates at

ESPY’S – The ESPN Espy Awards play the MGM on Feb 12. Tell your wife or girlfriend that you are talking her to Vegas for Valentine’s Day if you need an excuse! Tickets available at (800) 929-1111 and MGM discount rooms are available at (MGM link).

JERRY LEWIS – plays The Orleans Nov. 16-19. You can read our archived review at Tickets at (702) 365-7075 and Orleans discount rooms available at (The Orleans link).

C2K – As reported last week, this nightclub at The Venetian is reopening but with a different theme. The new management is going after a more upscale (read: older) customer by making it a more inviting place. Our take? The problems of the past summer (including a young woman dying from a drug overdose) gave the resort a perfect opening to bring in new operators who would run a club targeted at people with money to gamble, which is the reason they built the property. Full story at

SHOW REVIEWS – Recent reviews appearing in the media:

* Hot Trix –
* Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus – and

CONCERTS and HEADLINERS – Our listing is available online anytime at

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LAS VEGAS WEATHER – This 4 day forecast is courtesy of Weather.Com:

Thursday – 60/40 Partly Cloudy
Friday – 56/37 Partly Cloudy
Saturday – 59/34 Scattered Showers
Sunday – 58/34 Partly Cloudy

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FEATURE STORY: American Superstars

american-superstars-01.jpg (29008 bytes)Long time readers know that I enjoy hitting similar shows or restaurants in a short amount of time. I’m still on a diet from visiting three of the best steakhouses in town in three straight weeks (Harrah’s Range, Binion’s Ranch, and Delmonico in The Venetian). Having lived here eight years but never checking out any of the celebrity impersonator shows, I thought it would be fun to see Legends In Concert (reviewed last week) and American Superstars pretty much back-to-back.

American Superstars features tributes to Madonna, Michael Jackson, Charlie Daniels, Elvis Presley and Gloria Estefan (with a “limited engagement” Ricky Martin at time of review). The show is a hybrid: One part celebrity recreation, one part 80’s rock concert, and one part Vegas show.

Elvis hit the stage first, with over-the-top renditions of classics like “Viva Las Vegas,” “Blue Suede Shoes,” and “Jailhouse Rock.” Done with elaborate lighting, sexy female dancers, and a live video shot of the fanfare shown on sidestage screens (hallmarks of every act), he set the stage for an energy level that seldom let up.

Gloria Estefan put on a passable set of the singer’s hits, although getting by more on staging and movements than being a complete look-alike as was the case with most of the performers. However, with any “tribute” show, one must understand you are attending for the music and emotions recreated in a live setting.

american-superstars-02.jpg (19459 bytes)I’m not a traditional country fan, but Charlie Daniels put on a rousing rendition of “Devil Went Down to Georgia” and patriotic favorite “God Bless the USA” as well as displaying some mind-bending fiddle work.

Madonna put on a nice set of hits from across her entire career, and (understandably) had great choreography with the dancers as well as displaying both the 80’s and 90’s Madonna look. Ricky Martin was next. Even though he was getting by more on looks and attire than singing ability, he seemed to be a hit with the ladies. Michael Jackson capped the show with a drop-dead rendition of his greatest hits, a look that could be mistaken for the real thing, and dancing moves that had to be seen to be believed.

American Superstars features Darren Lee as Elvis, Sandy Taggart as Gloria Estefan, Coty Alexander as Madonna, Damian Brantley as Michael Jackson and Johnny Potash as Charlie Daniels and also had an energetic 4 piece live band. One nice feature is that all of the performers as well as the dancers (in full Vegas showgirl costume) appeared in the lobby after the show to meet and greet and pose for photos with attendees.

Tickets for American Superstars at The Stratosphere are $26.95 plus tax for adults and $21.95 plus tax for children ages 5 to 12. Children under 21 must be accompanied with an adult, but with the exception of bare buns on the dancers during a couple of numbers, there is nothing remotely adult in the content.

American Superstars Ticket Info

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Jenn Power wrote:

>What will be going in Las Vegas for New Year’s?

For those new to the newsletter, there are going to be fireworks this year! Past that, the 300,000 people that line the 3.5 miles of the Strip (which is closed to traffic that night) are quite the show in and of itself. Here is a repeat of our previous story:

FIREWORKS – LVCVA has authorized a half-million dollars for New Year’s Eve fireworks this year. Full story at New Year’s Eve discount rates already available at and prices have already risen since we published the story a few weeks ago so now is a great time to think about locking your room up.

Mona Zwilling from Minnesota wrote:

>I had to write and tell you how much I enjoy your newsletter.á When I
>didn’t receive one last week, I realized just how much I look forward
>to receiving it.á I came to Vegas for the first time in 1996.á It was
>going to be a one time thing, to be able to say I was there.á I will
>be coming there again in February, 2001 for my 4th visit.á I’m hooked.
>It’s going to be a “girls vacation” and we are staying at the Golden
>Nugget.á All the info in your newsletter really helps plan a great
>vacation, and makes me feel like I’m not so far away.á I was wondering
>how far in advance we should book shows, or how early would you know
>which performers will be there in February?á Thanks again for a GREAT

Thanks for missing us! I publish this 46 – 48 times a year. Sometimes my travel, or a tight schedule with other professional obligations do force me to skip a week but I dearly appreciate those of you who support the newsletter by comparing our room and rental car rates for all your travel, as well as checking out our advertisers.

You can check headliners at and shows at Really popular shows such as O, Mystere, Danny Gans, and Siegfried & Roy generally need to be reserved well in advance You can do so at (Note: not all shows will be available more than 30-45 days ahead of time, so keep checking back).

Most other shows can be reserved the day you get to town by calling the hotel they are playing in, although many people utilize the above link if coming on a weekend or busy period when shows fill up fast. They charge a service charge of $9.95 a ticket — not bad to guarantee something you really want to see.

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Your input is welcome. Write us a “letter to the editor” at While space doesn’t permit publishing every letter, we do certainly read them all and they help shape our content. Please include your name if you wish to have it published (stating your city is optional). Also, guest article submissions are welcome with full credit to you, your website, etc., if accepted.

ONLINE POLL – How do you usually get from the airport to your hotel? Let’s hear your opinions at — results will be published next week!


RULES: (unless otherwise noted or link to outside contest): You may enter every contest, but only one entry to each. The 20’th entry in each contest will be the winner. Send a blank email to the specified email address — we’ll get your mailing address from you only if you win. Also, please do not enter if you have won within the past month.

VIDEO POKER – Our friends at gave us 3 multiplay video poker CD-ROMS to give away. This is a full-featured video poker game where you can multiplay 3, 5, 10, or 50 hands of 11 different popular variations of video poker. Still trying to learn or perfect the game? This software notes the correct play for each hand, and comes with the “bells and whistles”! We’ll take the 20’th and 40’th entries at (contest closed)

Note: I’m noting the following contest again because I personally use WeatherBug and love it! Not only up-to-the-minute info (the same that the TV stations access) for your area, but you can click “setup” on the menu and enter in a zip code from another city, and instantly get info from anywhere in the US. Once you get the program, use the zip code 89119 to get Las Vegas Strip weather!

LIVE LOCAL WEATHER & A FREE TRIP TO VEGAS!! – It now PAYS to keep an eye on the weather! Download and register your own weather bug today, know what your local weather, alerts, storm watches, local satellite, and INSTA-CAM shots from your town all from a single click of the mouse. Lets not forget the chance at a FREE TRIP TO LAS VEGAS! Click to:

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Have a request for a review? Boggled when you come to town and see the hundreds of dining, attraction, and show opportunities? Let us know what you’d like to hear about! Unlike the tourist magazines where all of the “articles” are really paid ads, we give you the honest scoop. If you appreciate this service, please consider booking your rooms and rental cars for ALL destinations with us at You get secure ordering with the convenience and savings of booking online!

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New to the list? Back issues and subscription info can be found on the web at:

Don’t hesitate to forward this newsletter to friends and associates,
but please ask for permission before reproducing the content in any
form — we would just like to know who you are, that’s all. Thanks!

All contents copyright MM Ted Newkirk. All Rights Reserved.
October 11, 2000
ISSN: 1529-2770