One of the last cities to recover from the US real estate bust, Las Vegas enjoyed one of its top tourism seasons in years with its best August on record and rise in room rates for the strip over the previous year. Two new hotels also arrived onto the market including the re-branded THEHotel that’s now the Delano at Mandalay Bay. The property buts an urban Miami spin on what was the first boutique-hotel concept on the strip while maintaining its MIX by Alain Ducasse rooftop and Bathhouse Spa. Delano competes against current it-hotel The Cosmopolitan and SLS Las Vegas that’s the third installment to date of the Hollywood-born luxury boutique brand. Plans have also moved forward on the former Stardust/Echelon site that was acquired by Malaysia’s top casino operator with plans to create an Asian-theme casino resort and possible 20th Century Fox theme park on the stalled construction site.
With the arrival of the SLS Las Vegas came a slate of restaurants including a carnivore spin on Jose Andres’ Bazaar Meat, Katsuya and Cleo that brings posh Middle Eastern cuisine to the strip. The restaurant line-up is perhaps the strongest offering of the SLS that occupies a lesser-convenient strip location towards downtown. Nearby, Container Park is a retail and entertainment refuge that reaches beyond the usual Vegas mall for a bohemian mix of lifestyle boutiques and hip eateries like The Perch. Further down the strip, other culinary newcomers include the first flagship for our beloved Daniel Boulud with his DB Brasserie at the Venetian as well as Giada - The Restaurant by TV-chef Giada DeLaurentis and her designer dining room inside The Cromwell that's been the hit of summer. And luckily in Las Vegas, summer can last well into November.