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The Flamingo may not be the most luxurious hotel in the world, as it was billed when Bugsy Siegel first opened its doors inand it's certainly not the classiest — but this pink emblazoned establishment has retro charm and a whole lot of history. Legend has it that the hotel's name was inspired by Bugsy's admiration for his girlfriend Virginia Hill's enviably long legs, which reminded him of a Flamingo.
The faint smell of coconut in the corridors, coupled with black and candy-pink decor, might make you think of an X-rated Willy Wonka 's Chocolate Factory, but in Vegas you just have to embrace the bizarre. The El Cortez is vintage Las Vegas at its best. Once owned by mobster Bugsy Siegelthis intimate s casino has retained all its gangster style while recent renovations have brought the hotel up to date. Don't expect porn-star pool parties and tequila fountains, but this is the only casino in Vegas where you play slot machines with real quarters, and one of the few casinos never to have changed its exterior facade.
In the main building guest rooms are unspectacular, except for their reasonable price, but in the powder-blue Cabana Suites building across the road rooms are deed in the style of Miami beach houses with white-slatted shutters on the windows. For old-Vegas ambience but with the scale and luxury associated with modern Vegas, this is your place. No longer the world's largest casino, as it was on opening init's still the swankiest place to gamble downtown.
The lagoon-like swimming pool circles a three-story shark tankwith a water slide running right through it, and the casino houses what is said to be the largest single golden nugget in the world, a boxing-glove shaped rock weighing 61lb Las Vegas Nevada charming looking for his girl 11oz. The Rush Tower rooms are the most comfortable, sporting great views of the strip and tucked safely away from the bustle and noise of Fremont Street.
This antique cluttered hotel in downtown Vegas is charmingly surreal. You'll find carved-oak fireplaces looted from Scottish castles, play blackjack under chandeliers from a Parisian Opera House and a Texan Coca-Cola building, then saunter through a pair of bronze doors that originally adorned the Kuwait National Bank. To top it all off, why not take a leak on a piece of world history?
The men's urinals in the casino are built into a graffiti-covered portion of the Berlin Wall. The rooms in the floor guestroom tower are bright and clean with a more modern vibe than the rest of the hotel. Despite being named after the state of California, Hawaiian tourists have made this laidback downtown hotel their home away from home.
One block from the Fremont Street ExperienceThe Cal' has a mellow atmosphere with dealers in colourful shirts and guests sipping tropical cocktails. The food is almost worryingly inexpensive, but the "graveyard specials" menu at the Market Street Cafe is famously tasty, with revellers queuing for steaming bowls of oxtail soup long late into the night.
The rooftop pool is a great place to cool off, although not a comfortable place to while away whole days. The rooms are simple, but bright and reasonably priced. This wild-west themed hotel on Boulder Highway, a couple of miles from the strip, is full of Vegas locals and regulars letting their hair down. Visit the hotel's Screen movie theatre, or its hour Bowling Center, but definitely don't miss its surreal indoor "park" called Mystic Falls, which has a laser light and water show three times a night.
Las Vegas local, and award-winning author, Alissa Nuttingbelieves this to be one of the best people-watching spots in town.
Rooms are well-priced and spacious; great for families — and there are free shuttles to the strip and downtown. The Artisan would be the perfect lair for an urbane yet sinister vampire, as imagined by a B-movie set deer. You wouldn't know it from the off-strip boxy white exterior, but through the inconspicuous doors is a gothic underworld of gilded statues, candlelight and marble.
Reproductions of Cezannes, Chagalls, Rembrandts, and Van Goghs tile the walls and ceilings at worrying angles, while tipsy locals wind their way around velvet-furniture carrying martinis and caipirinhas. If rest isn't on the agenda, though, the Artisan patio is the perfect place to watch the Vegas sunrise. This no-frills hotel is an old-Vegas classic with friendly service and small, clean rooms in a great location.
It's bang in the middle of the Fremont Street Experience, where low-rolling locals, clued-in tourists, Elvis impersonators, Flamingo girls and street performers all congregate long into the evening. Further down and across the road from the Fremont, a giant neon cowboy named Vegas Vic has been tipping his hat over this cluster of casinos and other retro neon since The Fremont Hotel isn't glitzy but has a loyal following among downtown-lovers.
This non-gaming hotel is a refuge from the chaos of the Strip, while being conveniently located walking distance from the action. All of the rooms have kitchens and many have balconies with spectacular views. Casino hotel windows don't open more than a few inches, which can create a cloying, claustrophobic atmosphere. So, the Platinum Hotel and Spa — with its smokeless air, balconies, and unpretentious swimming pool — is literally a breath of fresh air in the Vegas hotel scene.
The Ravella Resort is a tranquil Mediterranean-style hotel couched in the middle of the desert, overlooking a acre manmade lake. The hotel forms a horseshoe around a Tuscan-style garden, which le you out towards a slightly eerie "village" of ice-cream parlours, chocolate shops and restaurants. With its Zen Gardens, Spa and the encircling calm of hot desert air, Ravella would be a great place to recuperate from the bright lights, late nights and all you can eat buffets of the city.
While most of the hotel appeared almost deserted on my visit, the high-tech gym was packed with beautiful women in spandex. This may just be where Vegas finds the energy to be Vegas. Las Vegas city guide Top 10s. Las Vegas's alternative hotels blend vintage charm and kitsch with affordability and Las Vegas Nevada charming looking for his girl facilities, says Anna Stothard As featured in our Las Vegas city guide.
Anna Stothard. Flamingo The Flamingo may not be the most luxurious hotel in the world, as it was billed when Bugsy Siegel first opened its doors inand it's certainly not the classiest — but this pink emblazoned establishment has retro charm and a whole lot of history. Reuse this content.Las Vegas Nevada charming looking for his girl
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Fremont Street Experience