Vegas is the worst city in the world, yet somehow I end up there at least once a year. Last year I went for NBA Summer League and for my interview with Richard Quest for CNN Business Traveller. This year I once again returned for NBA Summer League. I went Monday-Friday, ideal times to avoid amateur hour and overpriced everything. Here’s a list of what to do and where to stay based on my last trip.
- NBA Summer League: This event gets bigger each year. I go searching for legal clients and to see the inner-workings of free agency, international basketball, and the business side of basketball. There’s also basketball going on for those that are trying to see up and coming stars.
- Hotels: Westin vs MGM vs SLS: This time I stayed at the Westin followed by the SLS and then the MGM. I picked the Westin for SPG requalification and the SLS both because I had not stayed there and for SPG reasons. I concluded with two nights at the MGM because of the accessibility to nightclubs and pool parties.
- Nightclubs: What’s still cool.
- XS at Encore: Encore is the best hotel in Vegas and XS is the best club whether it be day or night.
- Hakkasan at MGM: I was too tired to make it out to Hakkasan but the word on the street is that it’s the place to be on a Thursday. I also heard Mandalay Bay for the night swim.
- Marquee at Cosmo: Like XS, Marquee has stood the test of time.
- 1-Oak at Mirage: 1-Oak isn’t as popular as many of the clubs in Vegas but it’s still a solid choice. It’s easier to get into this venue of the franchise than the one in New York.
- Pool Parties:
- Wet Republic: I went on a Thursday so it wasn’t very packed but still fun enough.
- Encore Beach Club: If you’re there on the weekends, go here.
- Food: There are many high-end restaurants in Vegas. I usually end up not eating or binging at a buffet like the one at Luxor.
- Shows: Not for me.
- Strip Clubs: I’ve heard the following are great.
- Spearmint Rhino: Apparently, it has been redesigned.
- Sapphire: There’s a great Mexican restaurant next door.
- Crazy Horse 3
Obviously, there are tons of other options in this land of filth, but that’s more or less what I managed to do the four nights I was there. I hope never to return.