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Las Vegas Business Travel Guide

Mixing Business with Pleasure in Sin City

An aerial view of Las Vegas, Nevada

The Best Hotels, Restaurants and Activities for Las Vegas Business Travelers

Las Vegas drew in nearly 39.7 million people in 2013, but interestingly, not all of them came to gamble. According to the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, convention attendees accounted for 7.7 percent of the total visitors to Las Vegas in 2013. There were over 22,000 conventions that year alone, which cumulatively pulled in close to 5.1 million attendees. In addition to the monstrous Las Vegas Convention Center, almost all of the major hotels have their own vast meeting centers, so it's no wonder Las Vegas hosts some of the largest and most widely attended conferences in North America. Although hit hard by the recession, Las Vegas continues to bounce back with steadily increasing visitor numbers. In Las Vegas, virtually all business is "show" business. The city's economy — which is driven by the hotel, gaming and recreation industries — accounts for approximately 70 percent of Nevada's taxable revenue, and seven of the city's top ten employers are casinos. Now that's entertainment.


Facts to Know Before You Go -
Las Vegas Business Travel


McCarran International Airport Map:
 
McCarran International Airport (LAS) | Airport Map by

Transportation

Rental Cars – Most of what happens in Las Vegas happens on the Strip or Downtown, and almost everything is a short cab, limo, tram or monorail ride away. For business in neighboring areas, we recommend a rental car. Most national car rental chains such as Avis, Budget and Hertz can be found at the Las Vegas McCarran International Airport. Some have several locations at most of the major resorts on the Strip, such as Avis at Aria, Bellagio, The Palazzo and The Venetian, and several have lots on Fremont Street.

Taxis and Shuttles – Taxis are metered and most will accept credit card payments. A ride from the airport to the top of the Strip will run you about $17, but expect to pay approximately $25 for a trip Downtown. For those willing to share an airport shuttle with up to 20 passengers, a ride to a destination on the Strip can cost less than $10. On a side note, when leaving the airport by taxi or shuttle, please insist that your driver avoid taking the 215 airport tunnel to get to the Strip (this longer route can add $10 to $15 to your fare).

Limousines – Limousines are a popular way to travel in Las Vegas and can be arranged at the airport without a reservation. The usual fare is generally around $45 for a minimum of two hours. Limos that are available will frequently line up outside hotels to offer special deals and, remarkably, they often cost about the same as a taxi.

Monorail – The Las Vegas Monorail stops at the Las Vegas Convention Center and travels the entire length of the east side of the Strip from the SLS Station (at Paradise Road & Sahara Avenue) to the MGM Grand Hotel & Casino. It runs between 7 a.m. and midnight on Monday, 7 a.m. and 2 a.m. Tuesday through Thursday, and 7 a.m. to 3 a.m. Friday through Sunday. A single ride costs $5, an all day pass costs $12 and passes for three days are available for $28. Be prepared to do some walking though, as all of the stations (save for one) are located a bit of a distance from most major resorts and hotels.

Trams – Three free trams are located on the west side of the Strip, on the opposite side of the monorail's route. Trams connect Treasure Island to the Mirage Hotel, the Monte Carlo to the Las Vegas CityCenter and the Bellagio, and the Excalibur to the Luxor and the Mandalay Bay.

Media

The Las Vegas Business Press is published online daily and covers business news from Southern Nevada. The Las Vegas Review-Journal and Las Vegas Sun are currently published jointly, and both cover local, national and international news.


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Where to Stay — Las Vegas Business Hotels


Alexis Park Resort Hotel
375 E. Harmon Rd.
Las Vegas, NV 89109
702-796-3300

The Crown Loft Suite at the Alexis Park Resort Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada

Set within 20 lushly landscaped acres (with a sprawling courtyard as its centerpiece), this smoke-free, all-suite resort offers a quiet alternative to the Strip's hustle and bustle. Although within walking distance of the Strip, the property is casino-free — there isn't a slot machine in sight! Some of the suites are two stories and feature fireplaces, European wet bars, high-speed Internet access and refrigerators. On-site facilities include a bar and grill, lounge with live entertainment, a fully equipped health spa and an exercise room. This property is popular among business travelers for its audio-visual and secretarial services as well as its newly remodeled 50,000-square-foot meeting space for up to 1,600 people.



Aria Hotel and Casino
3730 Las Vegas Blvd. S.
Las Vegas, NV 89109
866-359-7757

The Center Suite at the Aria Resort & Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada

Situated on the Strip in CityCenter, the Aria Hotel boasts technologically advanced guest rooms and an environmentally friendly policy that has been awarded several LEED Gold certificates by the U.S. Green Building Council. The casino resort features guest rooms equipped with a touch screen remote for integrated one-touch control of room features, including dimmable lighting, room temperature, television/video systems, music, wake-up calls, drapes and service requests. Dining options include Lemongrass, Sage, Bar Masa, Jean-Georges Steakhouse, Javier's and Julian Serrano. Resort-wide Wi-Fi access is included in the daily resort fee, thus allowing you to spend your downtime surfing the Internet. The property also boasts 300,000 square feet of meeting space: there are four ballrooms ranging from 20,000 to 50,000 square feet and 38 meeting/executive rooms. A free tram connects Aria to the Bellagio and the Monte Carlo. Entertainment options include Gold Boutique Nightclub and Lounge and Zarkana, which is a Cirque du Soleil acrobatic spectacular.



Caesars Palace
3570 Las Vegas Blvd. S.
Las Vegas, NV 89109
702-731-7110, 877-427-7243

A guest room at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, Nevada

Since it opened in 1966, Caesars Palace has become synonymous with Sin City. Thankfully, this Las Vegas icon has been able to survive thanks to its ability to consistently reinvent itself. The casino is constantly expanding, and several new suite towers — including the rather regal-sounding Augustus Tower — and the world's first Nobu Hotel were recently added to provide additional rooms for guests. The rooms at the Augustus Tower are modern and spacious with amenities ranging from 42-inch plasma screen TVs to oversized soaking tubs. Nobu's rooms feature over-sized walk-in showers made with traditional black Umi tiles with multiple showerheads and a teak bathing stool, a fixture of traditional Japanese bathhouses. Some 240,000 square feet of meeting and convention space house events and gatherings of all sizes, with rich furnishing for a truly executive feel. Entertainment is always top notch, with headliners such as Reba McEntire and Brooks and Dunn, Elton John or Rod Stewart in residence at the Colosseum. Dining can be as casual or as formal as you choose, with options such as Payard Patisserie & Bistro, New York's legendary Rao's and Old Homestead Steakhouse, Gordon Ramsay Pub & Grill, Bobby Flay's Mesa Grill and Restaurant Guy Savoy.



Westgate Las Vegas Resort & Casino
3000 Paradise Rd.
Las Vegas, NV 89109
702-732-5111


A guest room at the Westgate Las Vegas Resort & Casino LVH in Las Vegas, Nevada

Opened by billionaire Kirk Kerkorian in 1968 as the International, this hotel pioneered some of Las Vegas' top entertainment artists including Barbra Streisand and Elvis Presley. Adjacent to the Las Vegas Convention Center, the hotel draws a substantially large business crowd. Its own 200,000-square-foot meeting and conference space includes the LVH Ballroom and Pavilion that seats more than 10,000 guests. The amenities in the 3,000-plus rooms range from high-speed Internet access to even visual strobes for the hearing impaired and view of the Vegas Strip. A high-tech business center also offers shipping, binding and computer rentals in addition to the expected copying and fax services. The dining options include a Benihana restaurant and a TJ's Steakhouse.



The Venetian
3355 Las Vegas Blvd. S.
Las Vegas,  NV 89109
702-414-1000

A guest room at The Venetian in Las Vegas, Nevada

The 63-acre resort recreates the romantic, Old-World charm and festival-like atmosphere of old Venice. The rooms (among the most spacious in town) are done in a rich blend of burgundy and gold with plush queen-sized pillow-top beds. The suites are even larger and feature sunken living rooms and enormous marble bathrooms. All of the rooms have high-speed Internet access, while a business center provides computer rentals, shipping services and photocopies. Just steps away is the Sands Expo and Convention Center with 1.8 million square feet of combined meeting and event space, making it one of the largest show floors and meeting facilities in the world; and, conveniently, the Las Vegas Convention Center is only a two-minute cab ride away. Whether or not you stay at The Venetian, make sure to enjoy the savory fare at Emeril Lagasse's Delmonico Steakhouse.

See GAYOT's list of Las Vegas' 10 Best Business Hotels

Where to Dine — Las Vegas Business Restaurants


Aureole
Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino
3950 Las Vegas Blvd. S.
Las Vegas, NV 89119
702-632-7401
American/French/Contemporary 16/20
$$$$$


The dining room at Aureole at the Mandalay Bay Casino & Resort in Las Vegas, Nevada

Dine at this Mandalay Bay restaurant just to see its unique four-story wine tower. Showgirl-style wine "angels" ascend the tower with the help of cables and pulleys to choose your trophy bottle. The menu features small plates to share, such as yellowfin tuna poke with seaweed salad, or sirloin sliders with guacamole, chipotle sauce and crispy bacon. Choosing dessert may be difficult — the chocolate torte may sound tempting, but wouldn't it be more fun to order a dessert wine and watch an "angel" soar into the air to secure your sweet libation?



Botero
Encore Las Vegas
3131 Las Vegas Blvd. S.
Las Vegas, NV 89109
702-770-3463

Steakhouse/Seafood/Contemporary
15/20
$$$$$

The dining room at Botero in Las Vegas, Nevada

Named after Colombian artist Fernando Botero (several of his works are on display), this chic restaurant offers an experience almost like visiting an art museum. Executive chef Mark LoRusso has crafted a menu divided into three unique sections: Farm and Fields, Inspired by the Sea, and Surf & Turf. A vegan/vegetarian menu includes crispy tofu loin with ratatouille and broccolini. A highlight from the sea menu is the hamachi tartare composed of yellowtail, crispy rice cake and sweet chili vinaigrette. Turf offerings feature steaks with four choices of preparation — pepper steak, blue cheese crusted, chimichurri and traditional — as well as options for filets, which include New York strip, bone-in rib-eye, porterhouse and Japanese Omi beef A5. Any selection from among the more than 600 available wines will complement your meal wonderfully.



Nobu
Caesars Palace
3570 Las Vegas Blvd. S.
Las Vegas, NV 89109

702-785-6628

Japanese
15/20
$$$$$
 

The dining room at Nobu Restaurant Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, Nevada

Nobu Restaurant at Caesars Palace is the first restaurant in chef Nobu Matsuhisa's collection to open on the Las Vegas Strip; it's also the first to reside alongside a Nobu Hotel and offer teppanyaki tables and an in-room dining menu. Design elements include bowed columns of bamboo, colorful private dining pods and oversized light fixtures inspired by Japanese tea whisks. Begin with yellowtail sashimi with jalapeño, cilantro and garlic purée; or the thinly sliced tiradito-style white fish with Peruvian chili paste and dehydrated soy salt. Among toban-yaki offerings is beef tenderloin enlivened with flamed sake, deglazed yuzu, caramelized onions, and shiitake and enokitake mushrooms. A brick oven allows the signature dish to shine: Alaskan black cod miso that is marinated and broiled to the point that it melts in your mouth. The house special sushi roll consists of yellowtail, salmon, tuna, whitefish and snow crab wrapped in paper-thin daikon. Be sure to take advantage of a list of nine sakes, imported by Hokusetsu exclusively for Nobu in the U.S.



Picasso
Bellagio
3600 Las Vegas Blvd. S.
Las Vegas, NV 89109
702-693-8105
French/Contemporary
18/20
$$$$$


The dining room at Picasso in Las Vegas, Nevada

At famed chef Julian Serrano's contemporary restaurant, guests are surrounded by authentic Picasso originals — not reprints. Whatever is served is dramatically presented and ultimately delicious. Surrender to such delicacies as warm lobster salad with mangoes; langoustine pulled, then grilled and drizzled with porcini oil; sautéed foie gras with Madeira sauce; squab breast cut into tiny slices and moistened with jus spooned from a tiny copper pot; and truffle-crusted lamb with Parmesan potatoes. In a town full of splendid fine-dining restaurants, this one is hard to top.



Twist by Pierre Gagnaire
Mandarin Oriental, Las Vegas
3752 Las Vegas Blvd. S.
Las Vegas, NV 89109
702-590-8888
French/Contemporary
16/20
$$$$$


The dining room at Twist by Pierre Gagnaire in Las Vegas, Nevada

Nestled away on the 23rd floor of the luxurious Mandarin Oriental, Twist by Pierre Gagnaire provides an extravagant dining experience as well as an oasis of serenity. The design mixes elegant white cracked-eggshell walls and scattered, suspended pearls of illuminated bulbs while 20-foot-high windows overlook the action of the city skyline. We suggest opting for a tasting menu, though there are also items available à la carte. Sommelier Julie Lin oversees the impressive wine selection, which is housed in a dramatic glass-enclosed loft above the dining room.


 

Off the Clock — Las Vegas Business Entertainment

Celine Dion, Reba McEntire and Brooks and Dunn, Elton John, Rod Stewart and more at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace
Caesars Palace
3570 Las Vegas Blvd. S.
866-227-5938

Celine Dion performing at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, Nevada

There are some 4,300 seats in The Colosseum, and they're filled almost every night during Reba McEntire and Brooks and Dunn’s (McEntire and Brooks and Dunn is one show, not two separate shows) Elton John's and Rod Stewart's shows. Reba McEntire teams up with the reunion of Brooks and Dunn performing their top hits in country western music. Elton John, one of the top-selling solo artists of all time, performs his hits that have sold more than 250-million records worldwide. Legendary rock icon Rod Stewart performs a set list of the classics that span his five-decade-long career. Five-time Grammy Award winner Dion will return to The Colosseum this August. The entertainment icons alternate their schedules.




"O" - Cirque du Soleil
Bellagio
3600 Las Vegas Blvd. S.
Las Vegas, NV 89109
888-488-7111


The water theme, which is the leitmotif of the Bellagio, is glorified in the "O" show by the versatile artists

Cirque du Soleil promotes its spectacular "O" as an aquatic celebration of life, love and death. And oh, what a celebration it is! Taking its name and theme from the French word eau for water, the extraordinarily talented cast performs in, on and above the water in a show that dazzles all the senses with its colorful tableaus and state-of-the-art synchronization, backed by the magnificent music of a ten-piece orchestra. The quality of "O" and its spectacular ever-changing settings have made this one of the most popular shows in town since its debut in 1998.




Red Square
Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino
3950 Las Vegas Blvd. S.
Las Vegas, NV 89119
702-632-7407


The dining room at Red Square restaurant in Las Vegas, Nevada

After a day in the city of capitalist decadence, take a trip behind the Iron Curtain to Red Square, Mandalay Bay's swanky Soviet-style lounge. The Communism-themed nightspot comes complete with a headless statue of Lenin, an extensive caviar menu, a bar topped with a sheet of ice and a frozen locker chilling more than 100 brands of vodka. Guests don fur coats and caps, then brave the walk-in freezer to hand-pick their poison.




Scenic Airlines
2705 Airport Dr.
Las Vegas, NV 89169
800-634-6801, 702-638-3300

Short trip? No problem. See as much as you can, as fast as you can, with this bird's-eye tour. With door-to-door service, Scenic Airlines will show you Las Vegas, the Hoover Dam, the Colorado River and the Grand Canyon — and you'll be back at your hotel within three hours. The airline offers seven different Grand Canyon tours, and those pressed for time will appreciate this type of rapid sightseeing.



TPC (Tournament Players Club) Las Vegas
9851 Canyon Run Dr.
Las Vegas, NV 89144
702-256-2000

The golf course at the JW Marriot Las Vegas in Nevada

Located in the Summerlin area twenty minutes from the Strip, this 7,063-yard golf course features vistas of the Las Vegas skyline, surrounding mountains and the backdrop of the beautiful Red Rock Canyon. A PGA Tour facility, it offers the same links that some of the biggest names on the professional circuit have played. This is a course that will challenge all aspects of your game and require the use of every club in your bag. The fairways are wide, as much as 50 yards on some holes.



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