Access Vegas Insider Vibe – November 8, 2000

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