Las Vegas Sun

August 29, 2014

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Robin Leach

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LDW celebrity preview: Keith Urban, Nico & Vinz, Jason Derulo, Ed Sheeran, Lil Jon, Puff Daddy
Friday, Aug. 29, 2014
It’s a holiday weekend almost as big as New Year’s and certainly with as many big-name entertainers and star-DJ party people as you would expect for Dec. 31. Our LVCVA is predicting that Labor Day Weekend will attract 313,000 visitors, giving us a $208 million economic boost.
Nightlife at SLS Las Vegas: Life Nightclub, The Sayers Club and Foxtail
Thursday, Aug. 28, 2014
Tonight, the five-day LDW party at SLS gets underway with the grand opening of The Sayers Club with Swedish pop star Tove Lo. She’ll christen the Hollywood music venue’s stage with raw lyrics and candid performances including “Habits (Stay High).”
Strip Scribbles: Miss Nevada, Men of the Strip, Mariah Carey, Adele, Ana Julaton
Thursday, Aug. 28, 2014
Miss Nevada 17-year-old Henderson beauty Ellie Smith plans a Labor Day Weekend bon voyage party as she departs for the 2014 Miss America Pageant in Atlantic City. The pageant preliminaries for the 53 contestants are Sept. 9-11.
New book ‘Remember the Time’ offers different take on Michael Jackson
Thursday, Aug. 28, 2014
The King of Pop would be celebrating his 55th birthday Friday if he were still alive and hadn’t died in June 2009. Books have been written about Michael Jackson, shows have been staged, and a legion of lookalike dancers have tried to duplicate his moves.
Dining at SLS: Bazaar Meat, Ku Noodle, Cleo, Katsuya, 800 Degrees, Griddle Cafe and more
Wednesday, Aug. 27, 2014
SLS Las Vegas is unequivocally a restaurant-, bar- and nightclub-themed hotel, although the 74 casino tables and 790 slots are seeing action. Food, drink and parties are the big draw, but take time to peek into ...
Strip Scribbles: Diana Ross to add more Caesars shows in Celine’s absence?
Wednesday, Aug. 27, 2014
“They’re definitely together looking at possible other dates,” I was reliably told — and might Katy Perry be there for the New Year’s Eve Weekend dates Celine will miss after her successful secret high-roller show there last Dec. 31?
Holly Madison rides the High Roller at the Linq Promenade
Tuesday, Aug. 26, 2014
On Sunday afternoon, reality-TV star and former “Peepshow” at Planet Hollywood headliner Holly Madison made the prettiest of pictures when she took her first ride aboard the High Roller at the Linq Promenade.
Strip Scribbles: New cause for Rick Harrison of ‘Pawn Stars’; Phil Varone’s 3,000+ women
Tuesday, Aug. 26, 2014
Rick Harrison is partnering with a major pharmaceutical company to launch a national awareness campaign now that he realizes he has a medical condition that requires a drug, not a dietary deficiency that needs to be supplemented.
SLS Las Vegas opening: Iggy Azalea, Bahamas prime minister, Joe Francis, Pamela Anderson, Tiesto
Tuesday, Aug. 26, 2014
There were a number of eyebrow-raising moments during the star-studded opening of SLS Las Vegas over the weekend. Where else would you simultaneously see the prime minister of the Bahamas and notorious Girls Gone Wild founder Joe Francis? ...
‘The Beatles’ Love’ cast takes Southwest flight from S.F. to L.V. to mark anniversary
Tuesday, Aug. 26, 2014
Cast members from Cirque du Soleil’s “The Beatles’ Love” at the Mirage joined with Southwest Airlines and our McCarran International Airport to commemorate the 50th anniversary of The Beatles’ historic Las Vegas arrival in 1964.
N.H. couple hope $2.4 million ‘Lion’s Share’ slot machine will be shipped to them as gift
Tuesday, Aug. 26, 2014
If Nevada and New Hampshire regulatory authorities permit it, the “Lion’s Share” one-armed bandit that finally paid out its $2.4 million jackpot after 20 years Friday night at MGM Grand will be shipped as the ultimate souvenir to Linda and Walter Misco.
Strip Scribbles: Charlie Chaplin show, Celine fan Richard Dunn, Britney Spears’ charitable act
Monday, Aug. 25, 2014
“Limelight,” named after entertainment legend Charlie Chaplin’s classic film, will bring the wild side of The Roaring ’20s to the downtown Plaza starting Sept. 12 for a run through Nov. 1 with a mix of singing, dancing, comedy and magic.
After 20 years, ‘Lion’s Share’ slot machine at MGM Grand pays out $2.4 million jackpot
Saturday, Aug. 23, 2014
A lucky New Hampshire couple leaves the Strip tonight for their flight home as winners of a $2.4 million jackpot from the legendary “Lion’s Share” slot machine at MGM Grand. The machine hit the big jackpot on Linda and Walter Misco’s last night in town.
SLS Las Vegas opens with global guests, shows by Iggy Azalea and Lenny Kravitz
Saturday, Aug. 23, 2014
The star-studded preview party began on the red carpet with Lenny Kravitz, Aaron Paul, Emile Hirsch, Kellan Lutz, Dita Von Teese, Chuck Liddell, Brittany Snow, Maria Menounos in the clingiest, curve-hugging gown imaginable, Holly Madison, Sabina Kelley and many more.
Celebrity preview: Iggy Azalea, Sharon Stone, Dita Von Teese, John Legend, Bruno Mars, AFAN
Friday, Aug. 22, 2014
Music heavyweights Bruno Mars and John Legend have back-to-back concerts at the Chelsea in the Cosmopolitan, and Saturday night’s 28th Anniversary AFAN Black & White Party at the Joint in the Hard Rock Hotel will be all showstoppers.
A record 151 businesses are participating in Las Vegas Restaurant Week
Thursday, Aug. 21, 2014
Las Vegas Restaurant Week, one of the most-anticipated food events on the calendar, starts Friday and continues through next Thursday. Some 151 Las Vegas businesses, a record, will serve delicious prix-fixe lunch and dinner menus.
SLS Las Vegas preview: Dancers in birdcages; 30-foot Cleopatra; peekaboo glass showers
Thursday, Aug. 21, 2014
The luxury SLS Las Vegas has 1,620 guest rooms created by cutting-edge French designer Philippe Starck, but it’s the restaurants, pool and nightclubs that will have the town really talking. Philippe is even bringing hip-hangout Katsuya from Los Angeles to SLS.
Strip Scribbles: L.V. stars chill for ALS ice-bucket challenge; The Beatles; Men of the Strip
Thursday, Aug. 21, 2014
The ALS charity ice-bucket challenge is spreading in leaps and bounds across Las Vegas, and Strip entertainers aren’t walking away from the cold water. In less than 24 hours, ‪#CrissAngel’s ALS IceBucketChallenge garnered 100,000 views.
Jason Tenner’s 17-year tribute-show career as Prince started with Halloween costume
Thursday, Aug. 21, 2014
“I certainly didn’t start out planning to be his double. In fact, I didn’t love his music back then. I was more into classic rock,” Jason Tenner told me. “I became aware of the reaction as people at the party first noticed the lookalike. That’s when I really fell in love with his music, too.”
SLS Las Vegas celebration will be a night of champagne wishes and caviar dreams
Wednesday, Aug. 20, 2014
Friday night’s celebration for the grand opening of SLS Las Vegas, followed by the midnight debut to the public, will be one epic fete — a true champagne-and-caviar blast. Let’s look at the staggering party numbers.
Strip Scribbles: ‘Sin City’ star Jaime King; ‘Panda!’; Steve Martorano; Ted Baker; Chloe Crawford
Wednesday, Aug. 20, 2014
Jaime King’s big break came as Johnny Depp’s daughter in “Blow” and quickly followed playing a nurse in “Pearl Harbor.” Jaime admits that she turned down the “Sin City” role several times before agreeing to the unique shooting situation.
Zak Bagans’ hit ‘Ghost Adventures’ returns for Season 10 on Travel Channel
Tuesday, Aug. 19, 2014
“We’re going big this season,” said Zak Bagans, who is the lead investigator. “From the massive Queen Mary ship in California to Ireland’s Leap Castle and Mexico’s Island of the Dolls, each location is embedded with layers of paranormal activity to explore.”
Strip Scribbles: Penn & Teller, Murray Sawchuck, Nathan Burton on TV; Miss Nevada pageants
Tuesday, Aug. 19, 2014
Magic and its Las Vegas magicians are everywhere you look on television this week in what’s become known as the “Wizard Wars,” which also is one of the shows premiering tonight on Syfy and is hosted by Rio headliner magicians Penn & Teller.
Star names are surfacing to fill in for Celine Dion at Caesars Palace
Monday, Aug. 18, 2014
Celine’s absence started rumors as to whom might fill her shoes and walk in her footsteps. Many of the Asian arenas and theaters on Celine’s now-canceled November tour have opened up for Mariah Carey, and she could be added to the open dates at Caesars.
Strip Scribbles: Britney Spears is baaack; ‘American Ninja Warrior’ in Las Vegas
Monday, Aug. 18, 2014
As Britney Spears promised, there were new costumes and dance routines, and she changed up the song set to include new material mixed in with her big hits. Everybody, though, was talking about her new slimmed-down, trimmed-down, taut-and-toned body.
Celebrity preview: Britney Spears, Fall Out Boy, Al Pacino, ZZ Top, Cesar Millan, Big Knockout Boxing
Friday, Aug. 15, 2014
Call this one incredible knockout weekend! Britney Spears is back, legendary Oscar-winning actor Al Pacino makes his Las Vegas premiere, and a new sport, Big Knockout Boxing, also debuts on the Strip. Plus, concerts by Fall Out Boy, ZZ Top, Jeff Beck and more.
Strip Scribbles: Slimmer Britney Spears set to return to ‘Piece of Me’ at Planet Hollywood
Thursday, Aug. 14, 2014
Pop princess Britney Spears has transformed herself with a dramatic weight loss thanks to regular yoga workouts and a low-carb diet and will proudly show off her new toned and slim, trim look for the resumption of her residency.
Strip Scribbles: Dog the Bounty Hunter, Corey Harrison target missing ex-MMA fighter
Wednesday, Aug. 13, 2014
Watch out, Jonathan “War Machine” Koppenhaver. The former “The Ultimate Fighter” and MMA athlete is wanted for the alleged beating of girlfriend and adult entertainer Christy Mack in Las Vegas, and two high-profile people have joined the manhunt.
Celine Dion cancels Caesars Palace shows through March, Asia tour
Wednesday, Aug. 13, 2014
Superstar Celine Dion confirmed the news at 6:25 a.m. today, over fears that began in December, that she will cancel her Caesars Palace shows and postpone all her showbiz activities indefinitely, including a planned fall tour to Asia.
Star Surveillance: Jen Selter, Henry Rollins, Floyd Mayweather Jr., John Popper, Uncle Kracker
Tuesday, Aug. 12, 2014
Instagram sensation Jen Selter kicked off her birthday weekend at Tao in the Venetian on Friday. As the clock struck midnight, the newly 21-year-old headed upstairs to the nightclub to continue her celebration weekend with friends and family.
Reprieve might save topless ‘Sydney After Dark’; changes are in the works
Tuesday, Aug. 12, 2014
One knowledgeable Strip-show insider told me: “The girls are gorgeous, but the production numbers and costumes were too ambitious. They planned it in Australia as a big spectacular when it should have stuck to a sexy vibe in the intimacy of a cabaret room.”
Strip Scribbles: Talking about Robin Williams with Fox News; Bob Markworth; The Beatles
Tuesday, Aug. 12, 2014
I joined Greta Van Susteren on her Fox News TV show this afternoon (4 p.m.) to talk about my memories of working with Robin Williams and the great charity work he did here in Las Vegas for Keep Memory Alive, Andre Agassi’s Grand Slam for Children and many more.
Las Vegas brothers star on AMC’s ‘4th & Loud’ with Gene Simmons, Paul Stanley of KISS
Tuesday, Aug. 12, 2014
When the new AMC series “4th & Loud” premieres tonight, it will feature two Las Vegas brothers, Beau Bell and B.J. Bell, former UNLV athletes who play for the Arena Football League team the L.A. Kiss. The team’s inaugural season was documented for the TV series.
‘Ghost The Musical’ brings movie magic and romance to the Smith Center stage
Tuesday, Aug. 12, 2014
“Ghost,” nominated for five Academy Awards, brought new meaning to the art and skills of pottery and starred Demi Moore, Patrick Swayze and the comedic talents of Whoopi Goldberg, who won an Oscar for Best Actress in a Supporting Role. ...
We have lost an incredibly talented and kind star in Robin Williams
Monday, Aug. 11, 2014
Robin Williams was often here in Las Vegas — with fellow comic Eric Idle at Steve Wynn’s rebirth of Monty Python at Wynn Las Vegas. He was here for the HBO Comedy Festivals in a celebrity event with Billy Crystal. And he supported Andre Agassi’s Grand Slam for Children.
Strip Scribbles: Red Bull BC One, Great Santa Run, Rita Rudner and Murray Sawchuck
Monday, Aug. 11, 2014
Las Vegas will be one of six global cities hosting an epic breakdancing showdown before November’s world finals in Paris, France. On Friday, Red Bull BC One, the world’s most prestigious one-on-one B-Boy competition, is at Brooklyn Bowl.
Photos: Knockout weekend for boxer and MMA friend Ana Julaton and yours truly
Monday, Aug. 11, 2014
What an honor for me to be inducted into the 2014 Nevada Broadcasters Hall of Fame as its first Mark Smith Ambassador Award recipient Saturday night. I was humbled by the kind words and outpouring of support from colleagues and friends.
Cheaza departs ‘Jubilee’ for yearlong tour dates in Asia, Europe and Middle East
Monday, Aug. 11, 2014
“You never know if it’s the right move, but I love the challenge of change. I think the aspect of the challenge is what I need at this moment,” Cheaza told me moments after ending her run in “Jubilee” at Bally’s last week.
Celebrity preview: Will.I.Am, Justin Timberlake, Jake Owen, Mario, Counting Crows, Lynyrd Skynyrd
Friday, Aug. 8, 2014
If laughter is the best medicine, we’ll have a lot of very healthy people on and off the Strip this weekend. The kings and queens of comedy are reigning along with crown prince of pop Justin Timberlake, who leads a music invasion that includes a two-day ukulele festival.
Strip Scribbles: The mystery of the ‘Sydney After Dark’ grand-opening cancellation
Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014
I’m reliably told that much has changed with the Australian production since I watched its first night at Planet Hollywood. The Aussie girls are gorgeous, striking and sensual, and it’s a wonderful 75 minutes with erotic thrills from Down Under.
Two Las Vegas cafes face off Sunday on Jon Taffer’s ‘Hungry Investors’ on Spike TV
Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014
“Top Chef” star Tiffany Derry and chef-restaurant owner John Besh join Jon as cameras filmed at Kailyn’s Kitchen and Rambo’s Kitchen. Kelly and Bob Reyes pit their 1960s-styled Rambo’s against the Robert Polk and Carolyn Jones kitchen named for their daughter.
Sabina Kelley hopes for new stage career after ‘Pin Up’ guest-starring week
Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014
After Sabina Kelley exited stage left as the curtain came down on her final — for now — performance standing in for Claire Sinclair at “Pin Up,” she told me: “Man, I loved this. I feel so good, it’s been so fun; the cast has been amazing.”
Photos: ‘Le Reve’ dancer among Season 5 finalists on ‘American Ninja Warrior’
Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014
One of the most ambitious — if not the largest ever — reality-TV contests is set to give Las Vegas extraordinary exposure during four weeks of finals and a wrap-up special of NBC’s “America Ninja Warrior” Season 5 with a $500,000 prize at stake for the winner.
Strip Scribbles: ‘Top Chef Duels,’ ‘Ink Master,’ ‘Dating Naked’ and plans for Pure at Caesars
Wednesday, Aug. 6, 2014
It’s a TV battle of another kind when the kitchen heat gets turned up on Bravo’s new “Top Chef Duels” premiering tonight with Las Vegas star chefs Wolfgang Puck and Daniel Boulud and pop princess Pink as judges and former Cosmopolitan chef Shirley Chung as a contestant.
Photos: Holly Madison shares her dream closet of Disney and sparkle
Wednesday, Aug. 6, 2014
In the new issue of Life & Style on newsstands now, former “Peepshow” at Planet Hollywood star Holly Madison provided Las Vegas-based photographer Erik Kabik with an exclusive tour inside her 500-square-foot dream closet.
Strip Scribbles: ‘Skin Wars’ on GSN; Johnny Thompson turns 80; Ana Julaton’s next fight
Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014
Two hometown personalities are featured on the Game Show Network’s newest series “Skin Wars” premiering Wednesday night. Supermodel actress Rebecca Romijn hosts the inaugural season of the eight-episode, hourlong competition programs.
Celine Dion cancels more shows at Caesars Palace while fighting throat ailments
Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014
Hopes for Celine Dion’s speedy recovery from throat ailments and a return to her Colosseum stage at Caesars Palace this Friday were dashed when doctors ordered the Canadian-superstar Strip headliner to cancel more shows late Monday.
‘Purple Reign’ at D Las Vegas is sexy, fun, sassy and far more than a tribute show
Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014
The night belongs to Jason Tenner, who is uncannily brilliant as Prince in “Purple Reign.” He has Prince’s moves down to a T and just like the superstar himself is nonstop energy. The audience loved him as much as the superstar himself.
Celebrity preview: Lady Gaga, Aerosmith, Daughtry, Goo Goo Dolls, Dave Koz, Crystal Hefner
Friday, Aug. 1, 2014
It’s music mayhem because in addition to Lady Gaga’s second time at MGM Grand in two weeks, there’s Daughtry, Goo Goo Dolls and The Plain White T’s at Red Rock Resort; Journey and The Steve Miller Band at Mandalay Bay; Aerosmith at MGM Grand; and more.
Seth Gold of ‘Hardcore Pawn’: ‘If pawnshops didn’t exist, there’d be very big problems’
Friday, July 11, 2014
Seth Gold, at the 2014 Pawn Expo of the National Pawnbrokers Association at the Mirage from Tuesday through Thursday, talks “Pawn Stars,” lessons learned and the best and worst aspects of being a pawnbroker.

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