This article originally appeared on the Journeys Near and Far blog and has been updated.
While attending a conference in Las Vegas, Nevada, I had the opportunity to tour Caesars Palace Hotel & Casino, an iconic Las Vegas Strip luxury hotel designed with a Roman theme – a theme that is done so well it makes you want to don your toga, hop on your chariot, and head off to the Colosseum.
Unlike the Colosseum of ancient Rome, however, instead of Gladiators, the stage at Caesars Palace, also called the Colosseum, offers performances by the likes of Rod Stewart, Celine Dion, and Shania Twain. It’s an amazing venue with almost 4,000 seats, none of which are further than 125 feet from the stage.
When we arrived we entered a spectacular lobby, where we met Celena Haas, Director of Public Relations, who took us on a stroll through the hotel and casino.
As we passed the Bacchanal Buffet, she told us they offer more than 500 items daily — a mind-boggling number if you try to figure out how they manage to prepare so many different foods. The food is prepared by a team of master chefs, she said, in nine globally-inspired kitchens. The 25,000-square-foot dining area has space for 600 guests. And that’s only one of the 24-some restaurants at Caesars Palace.
From there, we walked past the private check-in area for guests in the new Octavius Tower and the Augustus Tower. Cesar, one of the hotel butlers (and yes, that’s really his name), joined us for a ride up the private elevator to the 68th floor.
There, fourteen penthouses, all larger than 8,000 square-feet, are offered to invited guests, including dignitaries such as President Obama, high rollers, and, sometimes even Hollywood folks — at the time of our visit they had just finished filming the third version of The Hangover here.
After touring several of these opulent penthouses, we were welcomed with a champagne party in one of the penthouse living rooms.
Next we learned about the Nobu Hotel, the first celebrity chef-branded hotel venture. Designed with a fusion of Japanese and other Asian traditions, the guest rooms include custom art by up-and-coming Japanese artists that feature a mix of traditional prints and expressionist designs. Each room features a wall that displays a custom ‘shodo’ style calligraphy.
If you enjoy gambling can try your hand at games of chance in the casino, or visit another nice feature at Caesars Palace — the Forum Shops, deemed by some as “the Shopping Wonder of the World.”
If you can’t step back in time to the ancient markets of Rome, this modern day Roman Empire-themed shopping area is the next best thing. With 160 stores to choose from, you’ll have no trouble finding something you can’t leave without.
The tour ended in Gordon Ramsay Pub & Grill, which I loved before I even sat down, due to the atmosphere reminiscent of an English Pub. It’s actually designed in two sections: the pub section features British pub food, such as shepherd’s pie, English ale onion soup, and classic pub fish and chips, along with entertainment systems broadcasting sporting events around the world. The grill section of the restaurant offers dishes such as Scottish Salmon, whole brick pressed Cornish chicken, and spotted dog.
In the center of the restaurant is a bar with a slew of beer taps. Rugged serving vessels and rustic tabletops add to the cozy atmosphere, and the food is delicious. I could have stayed there all evening. In fact, I think we did…
Caesars Palace is an enticing place to stay during a trip to Las Vegas. And if you’re not staying there, stop in for a meal or drink at Gordon Ramsay Pub & Grill. You’ll be glad you did.
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