Las Vegas is a city of sequins and showtunes – so it’s no wonder it makes for the perfect LGBT getaway. As Vegas Pride swoops into town on lamé wings, we take a look at the top seven reasons to visit Sin City.
Whether you like to play the dice or the cards, enjoy sightseeing or Instagramming, love big shows with plenty of camp or a big night out on the town, Vegas is one of those holiday destinations that should not be missed!
1. Landmarks and landscapes
With both natural and man-made wonders, Las Vegas is the perfect combination of modern comforts coupled with some amazing natural scenery just on the edge of town. Travel easily to Red Rock Canyon, the famous Death Valley and the Grand Canyon, all of which are within driving distance. There are numerous lesser known places to visit like parks and reservations, and it’s easy to find tourist-friendly tours if you want them.
Plus, if you want to take in some of the culture via a museum or art gallery, then Las Vegas has those too.
Of course Las Vegas is well known as the city that never sleeps which makes it perfect for party-goers! Here you’ll find stag and hen parties, of course, but you’ll also find a range of LGBT venues that cater to celebrations of all types.
Every inch of the Strip provides some type of entertainment and inside each of the casinos you will find performers, singers, comedians and others who are simply living life to the full and having a great time whilst they are doing it!
3. Vegas Pride (…and queer cowboys)
This year’s Vegas Pride kicks off Friday 21 October with the 2016 PRIDE Night Parade at downtown Las Vegas from 7-10 p.m. This weekend you can also join more than 100 exhibitors at the PRIDE Festival at Sunset Park from midday until 10pm on Saturday 22 October and from midday until 6pm on Sunday 23 October. Expect live music and performances, plus a range of activities for all age ranges.
If you’re more into the authentic Brokeback Mountain experience, there’s the International Gay Rodeo Association’s signature event, the World Gay Rodeo Finals. This returns to the South Point hotel Friday 21 October until Sunday 23 October for its 30th anniversary celebration.
Las Vegas provides some truly amazing shopping opportunities. Fashion Show on South Las Vegas Boulevard is a mall with over 250 shops, eight department stores and two dozen restaurants. Las Vegas North Premium Outlets on South Grand Central Parkway has about 150 shops, with plenty of designer and household brands on offer. If you want to check out Caesars Palace (why wouldn’t you?), then make sure you check out The Forum Shops too. The Miracle Mile Shops and The Shoppes at the Palazzo are also must-see destinations. Chocolate lovers can head to M&M’s World.
5. The shows
The Cirque du Soleil, Penn and Teller’s Magic and Vegas showgirls all have spectacular shows to see but tickets tend to sell out quickly so book in advance if at all possible. With all the feathers and flashy outfits, it’s a queer paradise! Plus you get to see stars like Celine Dion and Britney performing in the most decadent of settings.
Note: If sequins aren’t your thing, check out our Las Vegas style guide to make sure you get the look right.
6. The accommodation
Over the years I’ve stayed in way too many hotels to be healthy. That means I’m very, very picky about where I stay. I prefer to have privacy and a high standard of service, so that I don’t need to worry about fiddling details like where my next glass of prosecco is coming from or whether the room will have bubble bath…
Luckily, hotels in Vegas offer complete and utter luxury and truly are like no others with all the major chains modelling their hotels on something famous which makes staying there such a treat, there are lower budget hotels too for those whose budget does not quite reach to the big guys, these are equally impressive but do not have quite as many amenities.
7. The food
Las Vegas is foodies’ paradise as you can get anything from a high class banquet to a foot long hotdog, the choice is yours in the popular diners and classy restaurants the city has on offer. The best breakfasts in town can be found at Mr Mamas, Raku serves mean sushi, and Andiamo Italian Steakhouse is the place to go if you love your meat!
Sadly, not all of us can afford the luxury of actually travelling to Las Vegas. Some of us will have to settle for emulating the glitz and glamour of Las Vegas right to our own homes with an evening of swankybingo.com and a DVD of Britney live in concert. But if you do make it to Vegas this year, let us know your favourite places by using the hashtag #vadalasvegas! We’ll post the best pics on our social media.
For more information on LGBT Las Vegas, check out lasvegas.com.