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An Insider's Guide to Las Vegas  

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International Builders' Show

An Insider's Guide to Las Vegas  

The hottest things to do in Vegas, the city that is constantly reinventing itself


January 3, 2024
View of Las Vegas at night
This article first appeared in the 2024 IBS Preshow Planner issue of Pro Builder.

Las Vegas is a global hub for entertainment. From Cirque du Soleil to Caesars Palace, Vegas is full of iconic landmarks. But what about when you want to spend your free time outside the International Builders’ Show doing something new, something you can post on social media and have your friends say, “Wow, how did you know about that?” NAHB spoke with Lisa Phelps, sales executive at the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, to get her insider take on the hottest things to do in Vegas, the city that is constantly reinventing itself. 

Dinner  

VANDERPUMP À PARIS 
... inside the Paris Hotel and Casino features delectable dishes, whimsical and unique cocktails, and a lush, elaborate atmosphere. The eclectic, Parisian-inspired design details come from celebrity owner Lisa Vanderpump of hit Bravo shows Vanderpump Rules and The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills. They serve a cocktail called “Louvre at First Sight,” which is delivered in a mini version of the Louvre’s glass pyramid in France. That rules. 

NELLIE’S SOUTHERN KITCHEN 
... at the MGM Grand is owned by the Jonas Brothers and brings comfort food, hospitality and Southern charm to the Strip. Fans of the famous trio—and those who aren’t (yet) fans—will want to check out this cozy space for biscuits to soak up their evening libations. 

THE BEDFORD BY MARTHA STEWART 
... is a replica of Martha’s 1925 farmhouse. Nestled in the Paris Hotel and Casino, an authentic, immersive experience awaits diners at The Bedford, which recreates the atmosphere of a dinner party and takes culinary inspiration from Martha’s legendary gardens and love of French cooking.   

Drinks   

COUNT ROOM 
... is an intimate speakeasy bringing old-Vegas charm to the Flamingo Hotel & Casino. Adventurous visitors can enjoy a casual atmosphere with handcrafted cocktails and vintage elegance at this classic space inside Bugsy & Meyer’s Steakhouse. 

BREWDOG 
... a rooftop bar on the Strip with an on-site microbrewery offers more than 30 craft beers on tap and signature dishes from lobster mac ’n’ cheese to Wagyu burgers. Head here if you want to catch some of the most spectacular views of Las Vegas Boulevard; Las Vegas Now called it the “best view on the Strip.” Bonus: This is the location of the IBS Young Professionals Party. 

Group Activities  

FLIGHT CLUB SOCIAL DARTS at The Venetian Resort Las Vegas is a prime target for groups aiming to unwind after a long day of business. Darts are the name of the game here—perfect for attendees looking to shoot the breeze (or maintain and build connections). 

According to Phelps, golf is “definitely having a moment.” You can get your fix in the desert at ATOMIC GOLF on Las Vegas Boulevard near The STRAT. Atomic Golf opened recently, so you can be among the first to hit those (indoor) links. 

If you’re looking to walk a real course, the WYNN GOLF CLUB is close to the Strip and the CHIMERA GOLF CLUB offers you the chance to get out of the city a bit and head out to Henderson to relax and unwind from business and get down to the business of working on your swing. 

The local newspaper, Las Vegas Review-Journal, also offers a list of 47 area golf courses to check out. Visit reviewjournal.com/golf-guide to learn more. 

Bring Your Kids!

If you’re looking to expand your business trip into a family trip, there’s plenty to do with kids in Vegas. Activities like THE TANK POOL at the Golden Nugget in downtown Las Vegas (make sure to check the official, to-be-announced, season-opening date in February), a family-friendly pool that features a slide that (safely) passes through an aquarium with five species of shark, can be a great way to spend a couple of days before or after the Show. There’s also the Circus Circus Hotel & Casino’s splash zone and pool, with three different slides—and zero sharks. 

Tank pool in :as Vegas with sharks

 

Another cool animal encounter can be found at the LION HABITAT RANCH in Henderson, not far from the Strip. The ranch is home to retired MGM exhibit lions and other exotic animals and offers guided tours from trainers, education about lion conservation and the opportunity to see Ozzie, the painting giraffe. If your kids are super outdoorsy, you can also head to the SPRINGS PRESERVE, 180 acres of botanical gardens, walking trails, wildlife habitats and more, or go hiking in the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area. 

There’s a whole host of kid-friendly shows, too. Cheer on your knight and eat with your hands at EXCALIBUR’S TOURNAMENT OF KINGS. MYSTÈRE BY CIRQUE DU SOLEIL at Treasure Island is great fun for adults and kids alike. And don’t be embarrassed to boogie in the aisles with the slick moves of the JABBAWOCKEEZ at MGM Grand. 

A few more fun-for-kids ideas: 

•    Hershey’s Chocolate World at New York-New York Hotel & Casino 
•    Fun Dungeon at Excalibur Hotel & Casino 
•    M&M’s World in the Showcase Mall 
•    Shark Reef Aquarium at Mandalay Bay 
•    Marvel’s Avengers S.T.A.T.I.O.N. at Treasure Island 
•    Discovery Children’s Museum in downtown Vegas 
•    Downtown Container Park 
•    The Adventuredome at Circus Circus  

 

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