Out's Favorite Spots to Play in Las Vegas
By Andrew Belonsky
Next to gambling, the next best sport in Vegas is shopping.
Any and all major luxury brands have outposts there, many of them conveniently located in upscale hotels. The Forum Shops at Caesars Palace has a wide selection of high-priced duds for you. More than 160 boutiques, including designers like DKNY, Burberry and Valentino and affordable yet still fashion-forward retailers such as The Gap, Banana Republic and H&M.
The appropriately named Fashion Show Mall is the place to go for mega-stores Saks Fifth Avenue, Neiman-Marcus, Macy's and even Dillard's, which is a woefully under-appreciated department store for shoppers hoping to save money for the card tales. And outlet shopping is the name of the game at the Fashion Outlets of Las Vegas and the Vegas Premium Outlets, where you can score some great deals on Levi's, Nikes and Calvin Klein, among others.
After that, head over to the LGBT-centric Get Booked shop to catch up on some essential reading. After all, being attractive isn't just about threads.
And there's plenty of art to be found in Vegas, a land known for its kitsch. Of course there's the Bellagio's amazing collection, where a new Andy Warhol exhibit is set to open next month and run through October of this year. You'll be sure to see some eye-popping works at the Erotic Heritage Museum and the Smithsonian's Atomic Testing Museum gives visitors a look at the city's role in the Manhattan Project.
The Auto Collections, home to classics like a 1964 Alfa Romeo and a 1936 BMW, will get car lovers' motors going. And the Fremont Street Experience (pictured above) brings the flashing neon lights, many of them from Vegas' Golden Age, under one canopy with frequent live performances that capture Vegas' over-the-top glitz.
Also, we definitely recommend checking out some fish at Mandalay Bay's Shark Reef Aquarium, home to endangered green sea turtles, scores of jellyfish, a rare golden crocodile and over 2,000 other creatures. The truly adventurous, and already dive-certified or annual pass holders, will really get off diving into the aquarium's dive with sharks program, which takes you into a 1.3 million gallon underwater world you won't find anywhere else.