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April 21, 2014

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Robin Leach

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Q+A: Olivia Newton-John plans to get ‘Physical’ in Flamingo residency
Tuesday, March 18, 2014
“I’m really looking forward to it very much,” Olivia told me. “After traveling my whole life and being on planes and in airports and hotel rooms and different beds and buses, the idea of being in one place for five nights in a row or more is a dream come true.”
Photos: TSA agent, single mom, MMA fighter Kari Lichtenwalner formerly tipped scales at 200
Monday, March 17, 2014
Kari told me: “It’s not easy waking up at 3 a.m., going to work, coming home to get homework done, household duties, studying and still managing to put in a solid two to three hours at the gym. I take power naps like a champ and have a great mom and friends who help me out a lot.”
Strip Scribbles: The Spice Girls in Las Vegas? Plus, CinemaCon, Smith Center and ‘Jubilee!’
Monday, March 17, 2014
Emma Bunton, aka Baby Spice, said: “We’re happy doing our own things, but who knows?” I do know that Scary Spice Mel B, who has been a Las Vegas regular after opening “Peepshow” at Planet Hollywood, is enthusiastic about a run of Spice Girl shows on the Strip.
David Brenner a remarkable man for his humor, friendship, parenting and steadfast belief in justice
Sunday, March 16, 2014
David made his name as the comedian on “The Tonight Show With Johnny Carson” who had the record number of appearances as a guest and a stand-in host, yet, at his first audition, he was told that he’d never enter the NBC building at 30 Rockefeller Center again.
Celebrity preview: Elvis Costello, Mint 400, Kathy Griffin, Bill Cosby, ‘Supernatural’ and Tool
Friday, March 14, 2014
It’s a weekend where one could accurately say, “In with the new, but not out with the old.” As a brand-new concert venue officially opens on the Strip with more modern acts, we have several legends still in the spotlight, plus, the official openings of some familiar dayclubs.
Photos: ‘Top Chef’ finalist Shirley Chung’s culinary adventures in South Korea
Friday, March 14, 2014
During our weekly coverage of her progress on Season 11 of “Top Chef,” Shirley Chung, who had worked here for acclaimed culinary kings Thomas Keller, Guy Savoy and Jose Andres, told me that she was weighing several offers to open her own dining venue here.
Strip Scribbles: Bikini tops drop as pool season opens; Daniel Boulud Brasserie confirmed; SHM film
Thursday, March 13, 2014
It’s opening day in Las Vegas of the new summer pool season for Liquid Pool Lounge at Aria and Tops Drop at Bare Ultra Pool adult pool in the Mirage. Friday is opening day for the renovated Wet Republic at MGM Grand.
2014 Miss USA Pageant heads to the Louisiana bayou in June
Thursday, March 13, 2014
Donald Trump, the owner of the parent Miss Universe Organization, revealed this morning on NBC’s “Today” that this year’s competition will be in Baton Rouge on June 8 and broadcast live on NBC from 8 to 11 p.m. ET.
Photos: Miss Nevada, Frank Mir and Jeff Timmons and Men of the Strip toast Rockhouse’s first anniversary
Thursday, March 13, 2014
All eyes were on 2014 Miss Nevada USA Nia Sanchez, who wowed the crowd at the Venetian. Nia told me that she’s eagerly awaiting today’s announcement from Donald Trump of where the 2014 Miss USA Pageant takes place in June. Will it be back in Las Vegas?
Q+A: Jason Alexander talks hair, his new Strip show, ‘House of Cards’ and politics
Thursday, March 13, 2014
Jason Alexander begins a one-month run April 11 at Harrah’s after the resident show “Million Dollar Quartet.” Referring to his last Las Vegas run, the one-man show “The Donny Clay Experience,” about a mixed-up motivational speaker, he said, “This will not be him. This is me.”
Strip Scribbles: Graffiti artist Alec Monopoly, ‘Ink Master,’ Da Vinci and Bobby Flay
Wednesday, March 12, 2014
Street artist Alec Monopoly will join DJ Avicii, top vegan chef Tal Ronnen and “Extra’s” Mario Lopez for the first Hi Festival party. Alec’s paintings, which often use satirical spins of the board game Monopoly, have sold for as much as $3 million.
‘Pin Up’ celebrates first anniversary at Stratosphere; ‘Divorce Party: Las Vegas!’ opens at Bally’s
Wednesday, March 12, 2014
The saucy and sassy musical and adult cabaret “Pin Up,” which began with 2011 Playboy Playmate of the Year Claire Sinclair covered up, has undergone changes during its first 12 months. Now, thankfully, we’ll see even more of the curvy charmer.
Las Vegas’ Tenaya Creek Brewery lays claim to most expensive bottle of beer
Wednesday, March 12, 2014
James Watt and Martin Dickie of “Brew Dogs” decided that a bottle of Lowenbrau saved from the ill-fated Hindenburg airship that sold for $17,000 did not qualify for the craft beer record. That turned out to be another bottle of beer sold for $2,330 last year.
Photos: Guy Fieri chooses name for his first Las Vegas restaurant
Wednesday, March 12, 2014
UNLV graduate turned Food Network superstar chef Guy Fieri has settled on the name for his first Las Vegas restaurant opening near the Quad’s main entrance and Harrah’s Carnival Court next month. The center-Strip venue will be known as Guy Fieri’s Vegas Kitchen & Bar.
Q+A: Frank Gatson Jr. adds ‘the collagen and Botox’ to revamped ‘Jubilee!’ at Bally’s
Wednesday, March 12, 2014
New “Jubilee!” director and choreographer Frank Gatson Jr., who is the creative director for Beyonce and a Grammy Award nominee for his music videos, ran the new “Jubilee!” in its entirety for the first time Monday evening.
Wicked Whispers & Racy Rumors: Britney Spears, Lego, Miss USA Pageant and Gallery Nightclub
Tuesday, March 11, 2014
Rumors were rife at midday that The Linq has set its High Roller observation wheel opening for April to coincide with pop princess Britney Spears’ “Britney: Piece of Me” residency return to The Axis at Planet Hollywood.
Strip Scribbles: ‘Resort Recon,’ Brooklyn Bowl, free beer, Yusho, Giada and Gonzaga
Tuesday, March 11, 2014
Utah hospitality consultant Shane Green, who works with the Venetian, the Cosmopolitan and MGM Resorts International as a cultural consultant, has won a 13-episode deal for giving troubled resorts across the country an action plan for improvements.
Photos: A sneak peek at new Leonardo da Vinci exhibit at the Venetian
Tuesday, March 11, 2014
On Wednesday, “Da Vinci: The Exhibition,” a comprehensive look at Leonardo da Vinci’s life, work and Italian heritage, opens for an unlimited run at the Venetian, and it’s much bigger and better than the first exhibition in 2012.
Photos: Terry Fator’s fifth-anniversary show is packed with laughs from current events
Tuesday, March 11, 2014
“I’m working with one of Jay Leno’s comedy writers who doesn’t have that late-night television gig anymore. We follow the news, we follow tabloid targets, we follow people’s stupidity, and if it’s funny and doesn’t hurt anybody, we’ll write jokes and one-liners to add to the show.”
Strip Scribbles: Master Chefs, First Friday, Yard House, Brooklyn Bowl, ‘Teen Swingers’
Monday, March 10, 2014
Restaurateur Elizabeth Blau (Honey Salt, Simon, Buddy V’s, Stewart +Ogden) was honored and named Dame de L’annee (Woman of the Year) for her nearly three decades of commitment and contribution to the betterment of the Las Vegas and U.S. culinary experience.
Will bottle of beer in Las Vegas featured on ‘Brew Dogs’ break $17,000 record?
Monday, March 10, 2014
TV cameras from “Brew Dogs,” now in Season 2 on the Esquire Network (formerly Style), will record the frenzied bidding at a tasting party with Scottish stars and co-hosts James Watt and Martin Dickie supervising the action.
‘Bachelor’ star Juan Pablo Galavis visits Forever Grand Wedding Chapel at MGM Grand
Monday, March 10, 2014
Juan Pablo Galavis checked out MGM Grand’s Forever Grand Wedding Chapel while here and took photographs of the venue. He even smiled for a selfie there but captioned it with three emoticons of a face screaming in fear!
Television: Floyd Mayweather Jr., Nigel Lythgoe, ‘Jersey Boys’ and ‘Pawn Stars’
Monday, March 10, 2014
Floyd “Money” Mayweather Jr. purchased two new vehicles for approximately $500,000 from Towbin Motorcars here in Las Vegas while filming the Showtime series “All Access.” He paid cash and took home a Ferrari 458 Italia and a Bentley Flying Spur.
Photos: Celebrities turn out in force for NASCAR Weekend as LVCVA officials negotiate second race
Monday, March 10, 2014
It’s all about split-second timing even before the NASCAR racecar drivers roar onto the track of Las Vegas Motor Speedway at exactly 16 minutes and 30 seconds after midday Sunday for NASCAR’s 400.5-mile, 267-lap Kobalt 400 Sprint Cup Series.
Keith Urban, Rascal Flatts, Florida Georgia Line, more to party at the Linq in 22 hours of music
Monday, March 10, 2014
Rascal Flatts and Florida Georgia Line will headline the Friday concert for Outnumber Hunger, with performers Danielle Bradbery, Justin Moore, Cassadee Pope, Thomas Rhett and The Cadillac Three. Plus, Will Hoge, Chase Rice and Charlie Worsham are at the Party Stage.
NASCAR Weekend photos: LVMS practice sessions; Joey Logano wins pole; Claire Sinclair, Marie Osmond
Sunday, March 9, 2014
“Pin Up” at the Stratosphere starlet Claire Sinclair, in a sexy red bustier, matching pumps and black short shorts, was on parade for Stratosphere Pole Day on Friday that declared Joey Logano the No. 1 slot for today’s Kobalt 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series..
Celebrity preview: Terry Fator, Alvarez vs. Angulo, Nick Cannon, Sofia Vergara, REO Speedwagon
Friday, March 7, 2014
There is plenty to do in Las Vegas this weekend for sports fans, from the high-speed excitement of two NASCAR races at Las Vegas Motor Speedway to a welterweight boxing battle at MGM Grand Garden Arena and a debut kickboxing event at Planet Hollywood.
Q+A: Cirque’s new-look ‘Zarkana’ showcases amazing acrobatics, high-flying Atherton twins
Friday, March 7, 2014
These may well be the largest number of amazing athletes ever put together in one show anywhere in the world. Cirque du Soleil has delivered a powerful punch with “Zarkana” by putting the spotlight solely on their remarkable talents and skills.
Strip Scribbles: New name for Wet Republic? Adam Lambert + Queen, Olivia Newton-John, ACM Awards
Thursday, March 6, 2014
Executives at Hakkasan and MGM Grand have had serious discussions about renaming Wet Republic at the casino resort. With all the logos and branding in place for the new season, expect it to remain Wet Republic this summer and then change over to Hakkasan.
Las Vegas tattoo artists are still in the hunt on Spike TV’s ‘Ink Master’
Thursday, March 6, 2014
After two weeks of competition on Spike TV’s new Season 4 of “Ink Master,” 15 tattoo titans remain, including our hometown Club Tattoo artist Walter “Sausage” Frank and King Ruck, owner and artist of Black Spade Tattoo and Red Elephant Tattoo.
NASCAR Weekend: Hauler Parade; Saturday, Sunday races at LVMS; Kurt Busch to race twice May 25
Thursday, March 6, 2014
At this moment, William Hill bookies have set 8-5 odds for hometown hero Kyle Busch to win Saturday’s Nationwide Series Boyd Gaming 300, although he’s never won it on his home track. He’s the all-time leader with 64 victories in the Nationwide.
Photos: Creativity abounds at Ernesto Zendejas’ Chayo Mexican Kitchen + Tequila Bar at Linq
Thursday, March 6, 2014
Chayo is a two-level, 300-seat, 14,000-square-foot monument to authentic and innovative Mexican fare from executive chef Ernesto Zendejas. Dinner is a memorable experience, with the kitchen turning out gourmet treats and authentic Mexican dishes.
Counter Intelligence: French Master Chefs; 2014 Vegas Uncork’d demand skyrockets
Wednesday, March 5, 2014
The Venetian and Palazzo executive chef Olivier Dubreuil, who also is a Master Chef of France, masterminded the five-day event at the Venetian and Palazzo. “Being a Master Chef of France is the most envied title that chefs aspire to have.”
Celine Dion discusses her friend (and Strip rival) Veronic DiCaire at Bally’s
Wednesday, March 5, 2014
“Veronic has one of the best voices in the world. She doesn’t do just one style. My God, it’s like she sings one way, then she sings in another voice that’s better than the original. And then she sings one that nobody has ever touched,” says Celine Dion.
Strip Scribbles: New NASCAR prediction; magician Tommy Wind; big Hershey bar
Wednesday, March 5, 2014
The Hauler Parade starts at 6 p.m. from South Point and proceeds north to Sahara Avenue before heading north on I-15 to Las Vegas Motor Speedway. On Thursday, the NASCAR Sprint Cup teams will be testing the new rules package from noon to 4 p.m.
More than 100 Cirque du Soleil performers to take part in ‘One Night for One Drop’
Wednesday, March 5, 2014
Award-winning vocal group The Tenors will be joined by violinist and YouTube sensation Lindsey Stirling, Season 6 “America’s Best Dance Crew” champions IaMmE and the return of spoken-word artist In-Q, who dazzled at last year’s premiere at Bellagio.
Photos: Victor Drai’s at Cromwell will be ‘the most beautiful nightclub you have ever seen’
Wednesday, March 5, 2014
It will be the only rooftop dual-floor dayclub and nightclub on the Strip. The cost of the 65,000-square-foot venue at the Cromwell is reportedly $100 million. It will open at the first standalone boutique hotel on the Strip with 188 suites on Memorial Day Weekend.
Photos: Four weekend St. Baldrick’s head-shaving events raise more than $519,000
Tuesday, March 4, 2014
Paul Catania, principal at John Bonner Elementary School, brought 26 students — including one girl — who braved the shave. Monte Carlo headliners Blue Man Group turned up to shave the head of Shadi Omeish, the resort’s VP of hotel operations.
Strip Scribbles: ‘Mamma Mia!’ casting; 75-foot-tall Hershey bar; GOP convention in Las Vegas?
Tuesday, March 4, 2014
Between now and mid-April, there will be “Mamma Mia!” rehearsals in New York. Then Las Vegas and New York crews, casts and musicians will start joint rehearsals at the Tropicana for the first performance May 8.
NASCAR Hauler Parade on the Strip ushers in annual NASCAR Week
Tuesday, March 4, 2014
The excitement of NASCAR Week in Las Vegas has begun. The odds-makers at William Hill are already favoring six-time Sprint Cup series champion Jimmie Johnson to win Sunday’s Kobalt 400 at our Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
Photos: Nia Sanchez aims to be first Nevada winner of Miss USA Pageant
Tuesday, March 4, 2014
Vegas DeLuxe has Nia’s first official glamour photographs shot by Miss USA photographer Fadil Berisha, her current photo shoot by Oscar Picazo and more photos from Georgina Vaughan. If Nia wins, she would then represent the USA in the Miss Universe Pageant.
Q+A: Cirque du Soleil’s ‘O’ at Bellagio celebrates 15 years, technical wizardry
Tuesday, March 4, 2014
Barry Farley, head of aquatics for “O,” told me: “The technical part of this show is just as large a star as the divers and the acrobats. I don’t want to take anything away from them because everybody has a huge part in this. But if you’ve seen the show, you have to be fascinated by the technical aspect of it.”
Strip Scribbles: Burlesque redhead Holly Madison? Plus, Jerry Lewis’ birthday salute, ‘Voice’ party
Monday, March 3, 2014
I’ve never seen Holly more radiant under the cloche-style hat she wore to shave my colleague John Katsilometes’ head at the St. Baldrick’s Foundation children’s cancer fundraiser at New York-New York’s Brooklyn Bridge on Saturday afternoon.
What’s next for Kerry Simon in his battle against Multiple System Atrophy
Monday, March 3, 2014
Now with a staggering $540,000 raised at last week’s first charity benefit Simon Says Fight MSA, a Kerry Simon Comprehensive Clinic and a neuroimaging program will be established at our Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health.
Was a Britney song on? Miley Cyrus parties in … Beacher’s Madhouse and MGM Grand
Monday, March 3, 2014
Two Beacher’s Madhouse performers were recruited by Miley for the “Bangerz Tour”: Amazon Ashley, regarded as the world’s tallest stripper, and Little Britney, who celebrated her 21st birthday.
Photos: Struggling student from South Africa wins International Model Search at MGM Grand
Sunday, March 2, 2014
When 23-year-old Adeline Mocke of South Africa arrived here earlier in the week to prepare for the Model Search pageant at Hakkasan, the first thing that went wrong was she came down with a cold and lost her voice, and her eyes flared up.
Celebrity preview: Miley Cyrus, St. Baldrick’s, Siegfried & Roy, ‘Zarkana,’ ‘Iron Chef America’
Friday, Feb. 28, 2014
Miley Cyrus and her dancers will wear as little as possible when her “Bangerz Tour” lands at MGM Grand Garden Arena on Saturday night. The movie superstars may love Valentino and Balmain, but Miley and crew go for furry animal see-through suits and skimpy underwear.
Strip Scribbles: Vegas Uncork’d, Mario Batali, Britney Spears, Vanilla Ice and divorce parties
Thursday, Feb. 27, 2014
Eight new attractions were revealed this morning, including a first-time collaborative dinner with star chefs Bobby Flay and Giada de Laurentiis; lunch with Thomas Keller; and celebrity golf at the Cascata course and a Burger Bash with Mario Batali.
Wanted: Beatles fans who watched their concerts at Las Vegas Convention Center in 1964
Thursday, Feb. 27, 2014
Thousands of screaming fans greeted The Fab Four when they landed at what is now McCarran International Airport. Even more fans followed them to start a vigil at the old Sahara, where they stayed the night before the concerts.
Kerry Simon chefs-and-concert MSA benefit tonight at Keep Memory Alive is sold out
Thursday, Feb. 27, 2014
Kerry and restaurant partner Elizabeth Blau hosted a “Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas” dinner Wednesday night with George Maloof at Buddy V’s Ristorante in Palazzo for key supporters and Alice Cooper, Sammy Hagar and chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten.

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