What Happens in Vegas…
Richard John takes a gamble on activities away from the Roulette table
So IMEX America is over for another year. Did you indulge in plenty of drinking, eating and gambling?
Well, if so, you missed a trick. Yes, Vegas has a well-earned reputation for all those things, but sometimes reputations can work against you. For a start, it’s a ‘destination’ rather than a ‘city’. After all, the unmissable trips to the Hoover Dam and Grand Canyon are an hour – and a world – away from The Strip.
Repositioning regions in the eyes of the consumer is both a risk and a challenge. Of course, Las Vegas is a city built on meetings and conventions, and is renowned for hosting some of the largest exhibitions in the world, including CES. And all the big names in entertainment (including some I’d assumed were dead) are performing night after night.
But if you were thinking of gastronomy, would Vegas immediately spring to mind? Get off the Strip and check out restaurants such as Sparrow and Wolf, with grub on par with the best of Europe. In fact, Vegas offers so much choice, consider the Lip-Smacking Foodie Tour, where your group can sample a different course at four world-class restaurants. There are also options such as Eataly, where you can eat your way to gluttony paradise and then stock up in the onsite shops.
For delegates who like to do more than just sit, there are new attractions such as the Fly LINQ zipline. Take in the views – or scream abuse at shoppers below – from 12 storeys that begins near Las Vegas Boulevard and ends at the High Roller, with up to 10 people whizzing down the lines at any one time.
And for venues that are very different, what about the Neon Museum? Whilst a location ‘dedicated to collecting, preserving, studying and exhibiting iconic Las Vegas signs for educational, historic, arts and cultural enrichment’ may sound dull, I promise you’ve never seen anything like it. If the Vegas of your childhood memories exists anywhere, it’s here; be here when the sun goes down and the signs come back to life.
Maybe it is time for a new strapline: “What Happens In Vegas… Is much more than you realise…”