Saturday, November 3, 2007

Starbucks + Hooters = Sexxpresso

I would say this is such an only-in-Vegas moment except that this concept started not in the world's sex capital but instead in the world's coffee capital, Seattle.

Still, it's a good chuckle. A pair of businessmen here are about to open -- the debut is supposed to be Wednesday -- Sexxpresso, a drive-thru coffee stand where their baristas wear lingerie at work and flirt with customers. The owners, Massimo Catinella and Dennis Morrison, got the idea when Morrison's 70-year-old mom came across the following newsclip about the same concept in Seattle. They found this coffee-cup-shaped building a mile east of the Strip on Flamingo Road and rewrapped it with the above decor.

So far as I can tell, other than Seattle, this is the second national example. Could make a fun story and certainly will grab some local headlines.

Friday, November 2, 2007

Those naughty, naughty uniforms

Miles and I mulled this over this week on the podcast based solely on the press-release description, but here are the pix of the uniforms to be used in the Strip House restaurant at Planet Ho. For some reason I had more of a slutty-French-maid kind of image in my mind, but this is what it really is:

The press release called this the "sexiest uniform in fine dining" and said designer Kiki de Montparnasse “heats up the Las Vegas Strip with Studio Manasse-inspired cocktail dress uniforms. Strip House’s coy but classic cocktail mini-dress, designed by Kiki de Montparnasse, is perfectly executed in a soft, black, fine rib jersey. A high elegant front harmonizes a dangerously low back to reveal a signature satin lace-up corselette bra embellished with tulle lace. Complete with flutter sleeves, Kiki de Montparnasse’s style reflects the sexy sophisticated atmosphere of Strip House.”

Any thoughts on how the words match up to the pictures? I do think there's a story in this, the trend of having designers create special uniform lines for specific restaurants and clubs. Thing is, other than Roberto Cavalli's Playboy Club designs, I can't think of any others.

Nominated for 3 Trippies!

The Trippies nominations are out at VegasTripping.Com and I'm not sure how to say this so I figured I'd just provide the screen shot above. I'm in the running, for, uh, Person of the Year? Really? Oh my. OK then.

The Strip Podcast and this blog are also in the running. That's cool, too, and Miles and I are both grateful for the support. Now go ahead and vote for us. But make sure you've got a few minutes. It's quite a survey.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

The WSJ piece... online and in Friday's edition. I'm quoted and the book is mentioned and I'm pleased as punch. Read it here.

When sycophancy -- and spin -- becomes idiocity

That yutz Michael Politz evidently modified his silly Carrot Top post. He still says Mr. Top is "sold out for six months" but then indicates:

The Luxor on-line ticket office says tix are available so take advantage of it. We have just been notified that other writers in Las Vegas are blogging their opinions against my selection of this show.

Umm, no. I don't know that anyone with either high-brow or low-brow taste can believe that Carrot Top is the best show in Vegas, but I hold no grudge against him and enjoyed his show well enough.

No, Mr. Politz, it's the entire item, taken together, with its absurd notion that this show is sold out -- but now, lucky you, there ARE tickets which means it's NOT sold out -- that drives me bananas. That and that obvious effort to shill your opinion in order to appear on someone's advertisements and marquee. You know, I can see it now. "Best Show in Vegas! -- Michael 'Rent-a-quote' Politz"

I'm gonna try that! The only marquee I'm on that I know of is for Phantom, and I didn't really mean it but a phrase from my USA Today piece on the show made it. My name did not, sadly. So let's see if I can right that wrong here and now!

Here are my candidates:

Dixie Dooley is the biggest thrill you'll ever have in a Vegas theater!
Steve Wyrick is the new Harry Houdini!
Bill's Gamblin' Hall and Whachamacallit is the height of elegance and first-class service!

Any others, friends?

Boy, is Wynn cocky or what?

The vaunted Michelin Guide is about to debut a Vegas edition. This is a very important, exclusive dining guide and truly proves that Vegas has arrived in the highest echelon of food scenes. Read the Wikipedia entry for more.

The guide is due out by Friday, Nov. 16. But on Monday Nov. 12, they will announce via press release which restaurants receive "stars." That is, even one star from Michelin is a very, very big deal. Most don't get any, and that doesn't mean they dislike you.

What's funny is that on Thursday, Nov. 15, there's "an exclusive reception at Blush Boutique Nightclub at Wynn Las Vegas" to "celebrate star-recipient chefs and publicly unveil the 2008 Los Las Vegas [sic] Guide." (They're also doing their first Los Angeles guide this month, but at least they didn't write Las Angeles!)

Can you imagine if none of Wynn's chefs get stars? He must be very, very confident there that Alex and/or Bartalotta are in line. And, on a side note, I feel for whoever from Wynn catering has to assemble the food for this particular crowd.

Here's my predictions for star-rated restaurants in Vegas: Picasso, Alex, Bartalotta, Robuchon at the Mansion, maybe Guy Savoy and, of course, Cravings at Mirage. HAHAHA. Just kidding there. But I do suspect Caesars and the Venetian will be shut out of the stars -- if they give one to Bouchon they've lost all credibility. Poor Sheldon. How Wynn will gloat.

News Flash (?): Hans Klok Is Gay

Brava to Erica Grimaldo and the crew at Q Vegas for insisting on asking Hans Klok about his sexual orientation, which produced the news-breaking cover story in which he comes out. And shame on the handlers who forced him into the closet and a pretend romance with Pamela Anderson. (Note: You have to download the PDF of the issue to read the story.)

I'm going to opine in depth on this in my Weekly column next week, so I'll hold off until then. But this is a fascinating textbook case of too many cooks in the kitchen. Had Hans Klok burst into town as an openly gay headliner and Pam had played the campy fag hag that she is, the entire tone of the media surrounding him would've been different and a certain loyalty would've been earned about an important constituency.

Not, of course, that it would've saved a bad show. But when you read Erica's story and realize what kind of foolishness went on surrounding this matter, you'll realize that someone didn't get the memo that out gay performers are IN. Sheesh.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Butterfingers: It's What's For Dinner

So we bought sacks of Starbursts, Butterfingers, Take Five and Kitkats and we had a grand total of six groups of kids go ding-dong. So guess what I ate for dinner!!!

What'd you give out? Did anyone come by for Halloween?

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

When sycophancy becomes idiocity

I like Carrot Top well enough. He was an affable guest on "The Strip" back in 2005 and I gave his show at Luxor a respectable B- in my book, "Gay Vegas." It's not brain surgery but he's likeable and he tries so hard you have to give him props.


Do you recall a number of months ago, I wrote about a fellow named Michael Politz, who runs Las Vegas Food & Beverage Magazine and has a blog called The Vegas Eye?

Well, Mr. Politz's insistence on sucking up to his favorites has now made him seem even more ridiculous than he already did. Today he not only called Carrot Top the "best show on the Strip," but he claimed it's sold out six months in advance. (I'm including a screen shot because Mr. Politz is known for removing stuff and claiming it never existed.)

That, my friends, is not only false but silly. There is no such thing as that kind of advance booking in Las Vegas. I can't imagine what Politz was thinking and I imagine Mr. Top himself would be embarrassed by such a claim.

See to your left. You can buy tickets to his show any day you'd like. And you should. It's a fun time.

OK, Geeks: Does This Make Any Sense?

I asked today for a specific explanation for the computer mess at seven MGM Mirage properties last week. Yvette Monet, one of the spokeswomen, wrote me this response:

Our guest reservation system is now fully operational with no outages. We determined the source of the dormant “bug” to be within the Microsoft Windows 2003 operating system and a patch has been applied. The cause, or the “trigger” of the bug is still being investigated.

I'm not enough of a geek to know if it makes any logical sense or not. Anyone?

The Strip is LIVE tonight with BONNIE TYLER

Come join us as always tonight at about 7:05 p.m. for an hour of rollicking and occasionally obscene fun (aka the Miles-curses drinking game) as we record this week's episode of "The Strip." Our guest is Bonnie Tyler, who's got a greatest-hits record out and a concert in Vegas this month.

Plus, more on the MGM Mirage mess, McCarran's growing pains, Steve Wynn sort of offends the Chinese, street closures for O.J. and much more.

Join us at LVRocks.Com or wait till Thursday to grab the podcast!

P.S. Who knew Tyler looked so much like Baby Spice?

Monday, October 29, 2007

Weird, Erroneous LV Sun Report on MGM mess

Liz Benston and the Las Vegas Sun are usually a lot better than this.

On Friday, she had this short report about the MGM Mirage computer mess. It implied that the mess was over by Tuesday (it was not, as evidenced by postings here) and had a really strange line about how lucky MGM Mirage was not to have had these problems over a weekend when there's a Jimmy Buffett concert.

It's a weird comment in part because MGM Grand was not one of the affected properties (the much-smaller Signature at MGM Grand was) and, also, as one of my front-desk sources chuckled, "What, do Jimmy Buffett concerts sell out 5,000-room hotels?"

But, more importantly, it continues to downplay this event, which caused disruptions for thousands and cost the company millions in lost business and comps.

Sheldon Adelson's Response

On Sunday, the R-J published this response by Sheldon Adelson to an attack by Review-Journal Editor Thomas Mitchell and the general topic of why he continues to press his libel suit against bankrupted columnist John L. Smith.

Read it here. I'm very curious your reaction. I'll comment on it later, after I hear what y'all think.