Vegas, Baby: Part 2

Vegas Day 2 started off waaaayyy too early. For some reason, my body thought it would be a great idea to wake up at 5:00 a.m. raring to go.

This is what just before dawn looked like from our hotel room:

Rising dawn from our window
Rising dawn 2

Since it was ridiculously early, we decided not to bother the brother. We went on a little picture taking exploration walk instead.

City Center
The Cs at City Center
City Center
City Center, Mandarin & Aria

City Center is a pretty cool high-end mall, with spectacular versions of pretty much every luxury store you could want.

Planet Hollywood
Planet Hollywood - the sexiest of the hotel/casinos
Planet Hollywood's aptly named halo bar

With its sparkle and hot pink decor scheme, Planet Hollywood was definitely the sexiest hotel/casino/shopping complex we visited. It’s a pretty nice venue as well, with a connected Miracle Mile high-end mall.


Paris had an interesting feel. Not for us, but worth the visit.


The Bellagio was not our favorite. Kinda boring inside, but with pretty skylight adornments. Also, not our favorite smell–kind of like old men.

Perhaps our favorite-looking hotel--Cosmopolitan
The 3-story crystal bar @ Cosmopolitan
4th floor ceiling @ Cosmopolitan
Soon-to-be-opened sushi bar @ Cosmopolitan
Light reflection on a foosball table outside Jose Andres' place, Jaleo
I am completely in love with the classic styling in the seating nooks @ Cosmopolitan
*hee hee

The Cosmopolitan was our favorite hotel/casino on the strip and where we definitely want to stay during our next visit. Not only is it freakin gorgeous inside, the floor security was super friendly and helped point out different vantage points for picture taking.

After coming back to the hotel and taking a little nap, it was time for our vow renewal at A Little White Chapel. We opted for the drive-through ceremony, no Elvis (we just couldn’t go that tacky) and on-site picture taking. The woman that married us this time was great. (our first wedding was fraught with drama and the officiant read the wrong wedding ceremony–our first ceremony was spent talking to each other quietly and calming me down). This ceremony was relaxing and perfect.

This is my favorite picture of the wedding, taken by the brother
I so love this face
Not half bad. I'd say good enough to re-again-some more-marry
Matching Chucks, 'cause we're just that cute
My zippy little hair piece
Goin' to the drive-through. And we're. Gonna' get married...
I'm still short
Only slightly creepy intense eyes 🙂

The photographer wasn’t half bad, either. My DH has creepy eyes in most of the pics, but that’s not the photographer’s fault entirely. That’s just what happens when Chris is forced to smile.

After the ceremony, it was back to the Cosmopolitan for lunch at Holsteins, a totally kick-ass burger & boozy shake joint.

Truffle Popcorn!
Tenderloin Rossini Mini Buns

Tenderloin Rossini: Tiny little perfectly-cooked and super tender beef medallions with foie gras, wild mushroom duxelle, baby arugula and truffle mayo on adorable little buns. This was my DH’s favorite dish of the entire trip. And it has mushrooms. I see a glimmer of hope in my future! Not only did he like the pear on the Fleur burger, he liked the mushrooms on this one. So, what have we learned about vacation, class? That it’s the perfect time to spring foods my DH doesn’t think he likes on him in the guise of gourmet. Bwa-ha-ha.


Bratwurst: Baby braised brats with bacon and potato on pillowy little rolls.

I didn’t get a picture of the Black Cow Bam-Boozled Shake my DH had, but it was awesome and if I could eat that much ice cream without expiring, I would have had 2. Black Cow: Coca-Cola, vanilla ice cream, chocolate-covered Pop Rocks and Three Olives cherry vodka.

After lunch, it was just about time to make our way to Caesar’s Palace for dinner reservations at MESA.

The Forum Shops at Caesar's Palace

Getting semi-lost in the massive Caesar’s Palace Forum Shops complex. Luckily, I was able to pull up a map on my phone.

Bobby Flay's MESA

What we had:

Dry and fairly tasteless cornbread
Venison with sweet sauce, basil oil drizzle and joyless tamale
Perfectly-cooked spice rubbed NY strip with sickly sweet BBQ and nice chipotle sauces and basil oil trickle
Tender lamb stew with decent if sweet flavor

I hate to admit it, but MESA was underwhelming. Maybe it’s because we are fans of Bobby Flay and love watching him battle it out on Iron Chef, but the meal just wasn’t that great. This should serve as a good object lesson, just like Paula Deen’s restaurant: just because they’re on TV and you like their recipes at home doesn’t mean their restaurants are going to be any good. Go by accolades, not air time. Chef Keller’s place was amazing, and he doesn’t spend near as much time in front of the camera (at least not on big budget networks).

What a pair!

My DH (now sporting my garter for luck and still trying to wrap his head around being a "little brother")
And his long lost-now-found older brother sporting an amount of facial hair my DH wishes he could sprout

And then, the time I’d been waiting for. The show. Both the boys were excited about the show we were going to, and I’m happy to say Circ didn’t disappoint. The show was pretty awesome. Unfortunately (or not), no pictures at all whatsoever were allowed. You’ll just have to go check it out for yourself ;p

Beatles Love
The Love Hallway

On the way back to the hotel, we stopped to watch the Bellagio fountain show, which was every bit as amazing in person as it is on TV.

Bellagio Fountain
Bellagio Fountain

Upon returning to the casino, I crashed and the boys played a little blackjack.

More Vegas vacay pics

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