Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Sin City (Day 1)

Oscar Wilde wrote, "I can resist everything except temptation." Well Mr. Wilde would have been in trouble in Las Vegas, because its a city full of temptation--gambling, girls, gluttony, and everything in between.

After working Thursday night, I got home around 1 am and started packing for my flight at 6am. Excited for my trip, I thought it was a good idea to skip sleeping so I stayed up and watched Top Chef reruns till 4, when I decided to start my trip to the airport. After an uncomfortable flight and still no sleep, I landed in Vegas. You feel like a different person as soon as you land and that person doesn't usually return till you're in transit back...when you're hating yourself for being so hungover.

I arrived at the Hard Rock Casino and barely had enough time to change before we hit the Marquee pool party at the Cosmopolitan. Here we got a Grand Cabana, which featured individual infinity pools, TVs, and smoking hot cocktail servers. The servers were not only beautiful, but they provided us with awesome service--never letting our drinks be empty. Not only did they attend to our every need, but they also facilitated our experience by pouring us shots whenever we looked "too sober".

They also brought us pretty good snacks as well, including some delicious guac. The pool party got pretty crowded and soon the dayclub was packed with people dancing to house music. The cabana next to us provided us with entertainment as he sprayed girls with 35 bottles of Dom P. Not a bad way to spend $35 grand.

Beautiful woman, gambling, drinking, pools, and food all came together in one spot to give a one-of-a-kind experience. Awesome time--can't wait to go back.

After the club, I decided to gamble for a little. After several donations, I headed back to the Hard Rock where we got ready for dinner. We headed over to the Palms to their Italian restaurant on the 51st floor called Nove. WOW! This was hands down one of the best dinners of my life. The atmosphere of the restaurant was incredible and the view was breathtaking. We sat on the 2nd floor of the restaurants and had the space to ourselves. Floor to ceiling glass provided us with spectacular views of Vegas. "To add to your sensory experience, there is a fantastic use of color and texture throughout the restaurant. Look up and iridescent mosaic tiles line the inverted tray ceiling. In the middle of each dome is a contemporary chandelier. Shelves lined with pillar candles jet out from the crystal and tile-lined columns. Rococo gold picture frames, gilded furniture and crocodile upholstery all add to the restaurant's appeal. "

The service was just as good as the view. We had 2-3 servers ready to jump at our every need. Although very attentive, they weren't stuffy and overbearing. They had great knowledge of the food/wine while also showing personality and warmth.

We started with a bunch of antipasti that were all so good. We got a salumi and cheese board full of Italian cured meats and cheese. Buffalo Mozzarella and Prosciutto di Parma were just two of the many options. The burrata and crostini were also solid appetizers worth mentioning. Don't overlook the pizza, because Nove does it right whether you want the traditional buffalo mozz, tomato, basil or the sausage, peppers, and oregano. The pizza had beautiful thin crust that melted in your mouth and made you hum that beautiful song "Mmm".

Almost full from all the antipasti, my friend Ed and I split the caesar salad which is simple; but well done. We also split our entree course and we both felt like steak and pasta. We split the 24 oz bone-in Ribeye and the Nove Pasta. The Nove pasta was a mixture of house-made spaghetti and squid-ink pasta with an array of seafood tossed in including scallops, lobster, crab, and calamari. Although the dry-aged ribeye was incredible (topped with 8yr old balsamic) , the pasta just had me going back. I remember having a glass of Sauvignon Blanc to pair with my pasta while I had a glass of Red Angel (Pinot Nero) to go with my steak. Yeah, the pinot was probably a little light to pair with the steak, but anything heavier would have been dangerous as I already felt myself in a food coma. We also had some solid side dishes such as polenta. potatoes, and asparagus. The gnocci was so good, I'd be lying If I said I didn't dream about it.

For dessert, they brought out our friend Dave a platter of desserts. After finishing up dessert, taking a few shots, having some espresso and sambuca--we finally left! We took the "secret, VIP" escalator upstairs to the Playboy club where we got a table and continued the party. Although the Playboy club was good, our curiosity brought some of us upstairs to Moon. Before you knew it, we had two different tables at two different clubs; but being only a floor apart--it was do-able. Most of the group stayed at the Playboy Club gambling while I was upstairs with the birthday boy, popping bottles. Moon's DJ reflex played some great tunes and kept us dancing all night. The view from Moon was probably the best view from Palm's fantasy tower and now I know why its such a popular spot.

The Palm's fantasy tower has it all and you would be a fool to not check it out on you're next trip to Vegas.

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