In Chic Holiday News: Vegas Transforms Into a Winter Wonderland for the
Downtown Las Vegas kicks off the holiday season with the annual Grand Menorah Lighting Ceremony on Nov. 27 at 4 p.m. The Grand Menorah will be lit by Mayor Carolyn G. Goodman and on display through the holiday season at the Fremont Street Experience. Mayor Goodman will also help Santa Claus light Las Vegas' official Christmas tree on Dec. 11 at 5 p.m. The 50-foot tree will be decked out and shine brightly below the 12.5 million lights of the Viva Vision Canopy.
Bellagio Resort & Casino will unveil its winter display Dec. 6 at Bellagio's Conservatory & Botanical Gardens. Guests can stroll the winter wonderland that's filled with more than 32,000 fresh poinsettias. The centerpiece is Las Vegas' largest indoor holiday tree standing at 45-feet tall and weighing 8,000 pounds. Also on display is an eight-foot reindeer crafted of chocolate and a life-size candy house.
For the first time, the Neon Museum will be illuminated with lights this holiday season, beginning Nov. 30, through Dec. 31.
The Ethel M Holiday Cactus Garden is open for the season through Jan. 1. The garden is lit nightly from 5 to 10 p.m. and admission to this desert spectacle is free. Guests are also invited to peek in on the Ethel M Chocolate factory which is in full swing for the holiday season.
The Las Vegas Motor Speedway hosts Glittering Lights, Nov. 15 through Jan 5. And will feature more than 400 animated, LED lights along the 2.5-mile racetrack. The displays light up nightly at 5:30 p.m.
Sam's Town Hotel and Gambling Hall flips the switch on its Mystic Falls Park Light and Water Show on Nov. 27 at 4:30 p.m. This winter wonderland experience also includes a 15-minute laser light show starting nightly at 5 p.m. Cowboy Santa also makes an appearance Thursday-Sunday from Nov. 29 to Dec. 23. Underwater Santa will also take a plunge in the resort's 117,000 gallon aquarium. He'll pose for pictures from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. every weekend in December, leading up to Christmas.
Santa pulls out his naughty and nice lists when he stops by Fashion Show Mall on Nov. 21 at 10 a.m. Located on the main level near Macy's Men's store, Santa will take toy requests through Dec. 24. Proud pet owners and their furry, four-legged friends can pose with Santa on Monday nights through Christmas Eve.
Mandalay Bay's Shark Reef Aquarium also gets a special visit from jolly Old Saint Nicholas. Guests can share their last-minute holiday wishes with Santa in the aquarium's shipwreck exhibit from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. every Saturday and Sunday from Dec. 7 to Dec. 15 and then Dec. 21 through Dec. 24.
Winter Wonderland Activities & Entertainment
Lace up your ice skates, The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas transforms the iconic Boulevard Pool into an Ice Rink on Nov. 22. This year it features an expanded skating area along with new cocktail and culinary offerings. The Ice Rink opens at 3 p.m. during the week and noon on weekends and will entertain guests through Jan. 5.
Get into the holiday spirit while building your own Gingerbread house. Wynn Las Vegas' pastry chefs will help guests create their own gingerbread design adorned with delicious confections on Dec. 7 at 2 p.m. Or toast to the season with The Twelve Cocktails of Christmas starting Dec. 9 through Dec. 24 (weekdays only). Wynn Las Vegas guests will also receive take-away recipe cards to recreate the cocktails at home.
The Venetian and The Palazzo Las Vegas are home to the third-annual Winter in Venice celebration, running Nov. 18 through Jan. 5. The memorable Italian-inspired experience includes an enchanting parade, whimsical tree-lighting ceremony, 3-D light projection show and the return of the picturesque skating rink above The Venetian's romantic outdoor Grand Canal. Winter in Venice will also host Celtic Woman: Home for Christmas - The Symphony Tour, at 8 p.m. on Nov. 22-23 and Nov. 27-28. Other festivities include two culinary events featuring celebrity chefs. The La Cucina Italiana Food & Wine Festival takes place from Dec. 5-8 and showcases Chef Mario Batali and Wolfgang Puck. Attendees will enjoy intimate dinners, family-style feasts along with other food events. Culinary Clash Weekend, with Chef Emeril Lagasse takes place Dec. 13-14 as fans watch resort chefs compete to win the second Culinary Clash Master Chef Competition.
Snag some dessert and keep an eye out for the Grinch! He's overlooking Jean Philippe Patisserie at Bellagio. His once-empty heart is now filled with goodness -- not to mention 50 pounds of chocolate and 112 pounds of sugar-rolling fondant, an icing-like decoration.