The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas

To be a follower of my columns is to also know that I love Las Vegas and it loves me. I’ve happily visited many times and as I sat and counted this last adventure I added up that I’ve stayed at a dozen or so of the different hotels and resorts throughout the years. Yes, I’m a connoisseur of the finer things my one life may provide and Las Vegas makes me happy. If I wasn’t here in Palm Springs I could definitely see myself there dancing in a topless review balancing a stunning cobalt blue feathered headdress with beads and rhinestones atop my beat mug. Some dreams are just that, I’m guessing.

Some of the hotels have gone and become new. The Dunes dropped to rubble as the Bellagio was erected by Steve Wynn who then in turn moved to the former Desert Inn property and birthed a new home at Wynn/Encore. Others reinvented themselves to compete with the growing trend of the mega-luxury resort that The Strip has found as the places-to-be along Las Vegas Boulevard. Allow me to introduce the newest original creation of fabulous that has landed in Sin City known as one overwhelmingly magnificent firecracker, The Cosmopolitan.

The grand 2995-room resort sits between City Center and Bellagio, and boasts “steering clear of sameness, seeing the world through fresh eyes and wasting no opportunity while minding every detail.” With my man’s birthday and our anniversary running near on the calendar we tend to plant ourselves in Las Vegas for a weekend of culinary debauchery, a mountain of martinis and the rejuvenation only the power of bright neon lights can provide to celebrate. I knew a big time would be had after setting up a reservation that won us over from, “Please check in at VIP.”

Pieces of the puzzle continually fell in place from magazine reviews of the resort to the common man offering his take on the mega-structure. I decided to let the place to speak for itself and boy did it do some talking! After arriving we checked in to our spacious suite with its breathtaking view that made me gasp slightly as the fountain show at the Bellagio was just beginning. The premium view of The Strip is amazing. When I saw on their website that the rooms had open-air balconies (unheard of in the Gambling Capital) I knew it would become home. I need fresh air in my room and when windows don’t open even slightly, no way. Knowing what I know now, how could I ever stay somewhere else?!

After a quick refresh and change of drag, Jacques and I ventured downstairs. The casino was jammed, bartenders were serving poison by bucket loads and it was loud everywhere you went. Anyone we came in contact with from scantily-clad cocktail divas, to enthusiastic and engaging servers to the charming handsome valet were completely service oriented and extremely attentive to every moment. There was quite a “melting pot” of characters keeping the pulse going as we sniffed around. The hotel gives you a feeling of nothing you’ve ever experienced in Las Vegas. Pluck a stunning high-rise residential building out of Manhattan with amazingly decorated accommodations and impeccable service. Drop that in Sin City while placing inside a bustling casino and essential shopping floors below. That’s The Cosmopolitan.

The tranquil Sahra Spa & Hammam provides an escape away from it all. As I was led to my much-needed Sunday morning massage I walked long quiet hallways that winded and transported me to a place of forgetting where I really was. The evening before we were running late from dinner and had to basically run to catch Coco Montrese in Diva’s Las Vegas at Imperial Palace and then over to Piranha for a cocktail with Larry Edwards so the detoxing in the relaxing spa was so necessary. After the massage I steamed a bit and soaked in their all-to-myself jacuzzi pool before meeting Jacques for brunch.

Listening to Fleetwood Mac’s “Dreams” later that day playing among other ambient chill-tastic tunes as we relaxed by the Boulevard Pool that overlooked The Strip, I felt there was nowhere else on earth I should be. Jacques won at slots which was nice and we enjoyed our weekend getaway deservedly and thoroughly. I didn’t want to leave! I wept slightly when I was packing for departure. The hospitality we experienced from the hotel was mind-blowing and deserving of your visit very soon. As I soaked in the traditional Japanese tub that looked out at The Strip after a delicious dinner on Sunday I took a minute or more to become serene and be thankful for what I have and what I will have.

Now onto the culinary deviancy that made us ridiculous with full content stomachs and tantalized taste buds. We fell in love with Scott Conant’s soulful menu at Scarpetta on Saturday evening. As we sat drinking wine watching the twinkling bulbs of Las Vegas chase one another we were delivered plate after delicious plate of such stunners as Duck/Foie Gras Raviolis that made us both melt and their signature Spaghetti. My mouth is watering just remembering it. Crispy Fritto Misto, Braised Short Ribs and Tuna “Suchi” also won our hearts. Jacques had the Black Farfalle and clapped his hands afterwards in delight. I screamed for the Napoleon Crème Brulle and coffee as the finale of our meal.

Sunday for brunch we found that José Andrés’ China Poblano infused the dishes of China and Mexico in a way that blew us away! I had two Mexican Mimosas but that’s my vacation thing. Our yummy menu included Huevos Con Chorizo which was served in a cast iron skillet, multiple rocking tacos, When Pigs Fly pork steam buns and Har Gau shrimp and pork belly Dim Sum. I devoured fresh warm Churros with cinnamon and caramel con leche sauce for dipping. I’m telling you, to die!

Sunday evening we finished off the weekend with more unparalleled 5-Star dining at Stephen Hopcraft’s popular “Not Your Daddy’s Steakhouse” STK. If you’ve ever tried to get into the location in L.A. then you know of its popularity and exclusivity. We started off with a round of oysters for Jacques and I had tuna sashimi. Wow! So damn good. And surprise, we both had bone-in rib steak for dinner and was presented with a wicked round of desserts including mini ice cream cones, pudding bread with salted caramel sauce and cheesecake lollipops. Yes, I admit it… I’d hate me too!

The Cosmopolitan impressed with the brilliant marketing campaign “Just the Right Amount of Wrong” which was an eye-catcher in all of the trendy and hip magazines. That’s the crowd that finds themselves there. However, we also saw an overzealous granny with her “Sophia Petrillo” wicker purse playing slots and a squealing cougar with her Italian boy toy winning at roulette. I offer, “When the world tells you ‘No,’ find yourself at The Cosmopolitan.” That would be my marketing campaign for them. From the world’s largest chandelier encasing a three-story cocktail bar to go-go goddesses in Victoria’s Secret runway fashions dancing in glass cases above The Strip, this is where the glamorous go to have a good time in Las Vegas. We’ll be back very soon!

2011 © PULP

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