Lux Vegas!

Yes I’ve written about Las Vegas trips before, but I’m gonna keep doing it because every time is different and every trip is uniquely fabulous!! The main purpose of this trip was to see Lady Gaga in her residency at the Park MGM for two concerts. We went in style!! Stayed at the Aria Sky Suites, which begins with a limo pick up from the airport!

Not too shabby… upon arrival, it was past lunch time according to our tummies, so we hit an excellent pizza joint in the Aria – 550 Pizza. Some of the best pizza on the strip. We got the spinach ricotta and the meatball and sweet pepper slices and they were both equally delicious!!

I highly recommend a meal here, it’s delish, the slices are huge, and the whole pizzas (which we did another night- the perfect midnight snack in the room!!) are also super yummy with lots of creative options.

Our first dinner we spent at Eataly in the Park Hotel. The Park is the renovated Monte Carlo. And Eataly is a big Italian market-like expanse with many dining options in a food court style, all Italian and all looked mouthwatering. We settled on some great pastas – a short rib over pasta marinara and a meat-filled tortellini.

I definitely want to spend some more time here. Plenty of good looking spots to try out. Good wine selections too!!

Then we were off to the rock concert of Lady Gaga’s for night number one of our double-header!!

Of course she put on fun pop show and she’s a great performer!! Nice venue, not too big, peacefully pleasant crowd and lots of good vibes!!

But her jazz concert the next night blew…me…away! Total throw back to classic jazz standards, but with her unique edge and open heart-and-soul style. It was amazing!!

Our seats were unbelievable. Five rows back, right in front of the piano. Her performance was flawless and she had a great big jazz band backing her up, but also she broke it down with just her on piano a little too!! Such a great experience! I could go back and see the jazz concert again and again!!

Ok, so the concerts were the highlights and our main reason for going out to Vegas this time, but we had plenty more fun up our sleeves!! We decided to spend a little time at Siegfried and Roy’s Secret Garden in the Mirage, which I hadn’t been to in years!! But first, a hearty breakfast at my favorite breakfast spot on the strip – Mon Ami Gabi in Paris Paris.

This is the best breakfast, coffee and ambience spot for a solid breakfast to fuel you for an active Vegas day. I ordered one fo my standards, the smoked salmon platter. The hubs got the blueberry French toast and we split some crispy date glazed bacon. Mmmmmm!!

Copious amounts of their nice, rich coffee all around!!

And then it was time to see the dolphins and big cats at the Secret Garden. I hadn’t been in years and it’s a great place (especially in the gorgeous weather we had) to spend some time with beautiful creatures – and not the sparkly people ones on the strip!! There was a baby dolphin, only two months old, and some talented dolphins who paint on canvass with kids!!

They don’t have shows, but they free train, feed, and play with these gorgeous creatures and educate the crowd as they do so. They’re a research facility and I believe they said they have the oldest dolphin in captivity here, age 44, so it must be a pretty happy place for them! I love dolphins.

There’s also a few regal big cats – white tigers, white lions, and a couple jaguars. Beautiful!!

No petting!

We couldn’t have asked for nicer weather. After we spent some great time with Lady Gaga, we had an extra day to go out and do one of our favorite things here – hike in the Red Rock Canyon!! It’s only about a 20 minute drive from the strip and totally worth it! Rent a car for the day and drive out there, pick any of the two dozen trails and enjoy!!! My favorite trail so far is the Calico Tanks.

It is just enough of a challenge to be tough and a little scary but still doable enough to have fun. It’s a great work out and ends in a beautiful view where you can even see the strip!!

After working up quite an appetite for lunch, we were in the mood for a good beer and a good bite. Found a great new joint just a few minutes outside the canyon on the way back to town. The Scenic Brewing Company. They had a very nice selection of brews made right there. I settled on the coffee stout and it was gooooood!!!

We had some nice and juicy burgers and everything comes with house made chips! I love love love chips!!! And these ones were sinfully delicious. I ate them all.

My burger had just about everything on it – thick slabs of bacon, yummy kohlrabi slaw, crispy onions, and a savory spicy bbq sauce. Mmm, mouthwatering. The hubs got a burger topped with copious amounts of portobello mushrooms and caramelized onions.

The burgers and beer totally hit the spot, and as an added bonus, there was a Monday special where a burger and a beer was only $10!! Score!!!

We relaxed a bit back at the hotel pool (you get a private pool for Sky Suite patrons only) and dipped in the hot tub to take the edge off our tired bods from the hike!!

Our last night, we went to Sage in Aria for light dinner and drinks. I’ve been before, nice spot, fun cocktails, oh but wait!!! Did our eyes deceive us?!? It was true – the best bourbon barrel hard-to-find stout was actually on Sage’s menu!!! The Goose Island Bourbon County. It’s amazing!! What a special treat to find a fave (which is only put out by the brewery around Thanksgiving time, so it ain’t easy to find) on tap!!

Cheers!!! We had a couple yummy salads (since we indulged in those big burgers for lunch, we needed to go light for dinner). I had the beet salad with a coffee vinaigrette and hubs had a pear and Gorgonzola salad over arugula. Very fancy plating, unfortunately the lighting didn’t lend itself to good food pics. But it still tasted yum!!

What a fantastic trip!! Thanks Gaga for being our main reason to come out, Aria Sky Suites for the Lux Vegas experience, and all the comforts I know and love in Sin City!!

See ya soon, Vegas!!

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