Destination: Las Vegas
If there’s a hotel in Vegas to rival the Wynn, this is it. And no wonder—Steve Wynn created it (he sold it in 2000 to MGM/Mirage properties). Its fountains out front, which dance to the music of Andrea Bocelli, Frank Sinatra and others, are among the city’s most spectacular sights.
The reception area is remarkable, with a ceiling that blooms glass flowers created by sculptor Dale Chihuly and a 13,573-square-foot indoor conservatory whose botanical display changes with the seasons. The last time I was there, it was a splendor of red dragons and horses, in honor of Chinese New Year. On the third floor of the main tower are nine high-roller villas available for rent. Each has a private pool, tight security and a twenty-four-hour butler staff.
Ask for the Chairman or Presidential Suite in the Spa Tower, which opened in December of 2004 with an additional 928 rooms and suites, bringing the total room count to 3,933. The Chairman and Presidential suites, the only ones on the top floor, come with special touches, such as full dining rooms, solariums, mother-of-pearl-inlaid floors and soaking tubs that overlook the city. The Jean Philippe Patisserie in the Spa Tower has the world’s tallest and largest-volume chocolate fountain in the world. At least stand at the window and drool as two tons of brown gold circulate through the sculptured device.
The Spa Bellagio is an enormous, and lovely, 55,000-square-foot Zen-influenced structure with fifty-six treatment rooms, three Vichy rooms—even a Watsu room. The Salon Bellagio has eighteen stylist stations and a barber shop.
Wynn Las Vegas Resort & Country Club
This is probably the best hotel in Las Vegas. Steve Wynn, the master who is generally credited with inaugurating the new, luxurious age of Vegas when he built Bellagio, in 1998, unveiled this $2.6 billion, 2,700-room-and-suite palace in 2005, and it is now the only AAA five-star, five-diamond casino resort in the world. (It’s also the only Strip resort with its own golf course on the grounds.) Even the simplest rooms are expansive, with cozy beds and great linens. Reception is close to the room elevators, precluding long walks with luggage, and crowds are always at a minimum, so it’s ideal for a romantic getaway.
Although Wynn is known for bringing the “wow” factor to Vegas (he built the fountains at Bellagio), this time he kept the atmosphere more Zen, using lots of light and foliage inside the casino. The best suites are the thirty-six one- and two-bedroom Fairway Villas, situated right on the golf course.
The $2.1 billion Encore tower with 2,034 suites, duplex sky villas and penthouses is separate from the Wynn but connected via public areas. Encore has its own restaurants, nightclubs, shops, spa, salons and 72,000-square-foot casino.
TIP*: Ask for a room in the South Tower, which is a bit more expensive but where you’ll have a private entrance and pool area.
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