Saturday, January 31, 2009

The Venetian

Understatement has no place at the Venetian Resort. An extravagant barrel-vaulted passage connects the hotel lobby to the casino. Click photo to enlarge.

3355 Las Vegas Blvd South
Las Vegas, NV 89109

The ten year old Venetian Resort Hotel Casino, with 4,049 rooms (all of them suites at a minimum of 700 sq. ft.) is the largest AAA Five-Diamond rated Resort in the Americas. This Venice-themed luxury property is located on the east side of the Las Vegas Strip on the site of the old Sands Hotel, between venerable Harrah's and the The Palazzo (opened January, 2008). Combined with the adjacent Sands Expo Convention Center and The Palazzo Hotel and Casino Resort, The Venetian is part of the largest hotel and resort complex in the world – totaling 8,108 hotel rooms and suites.

Among the room features are marble foyers, step-down living rooms, dining tables and chairs, remote control Roman shades and curtains with “Touch Control” technology, wireless dual-line telephones, in-room wi-fi, minibars, bathroom with dressing tables (see photo below), dual sinks, whirlpool tubs and separate glassed-in showers and toilets in a separate room.

For guest’s entertainment and comfort, each suite has three TVs: a 17" LCD in the bath, a 32" in the living room, and a 42" plasma in the bedroom area, which boasts Sealy pillow-top mattresses, 100% Egyptian cotton Anichini bed linens with 100% white goose down duvets, along with angora wool throws from New Zealand.

The Venetian has an extensive indoor retail mall called the Grand Canal Shoppes, which houses stores and 17 restaurants situated along artificial canals and a mock-up of St. Mark’s Square in Venice, where costumed singers perform Italian opera arias several times each day. In addition to the lake in front of the casino, the indoor canals are used to provide gondola rides. The hotel also hosts the Las Vegas Madame Tussauds wax museum.

Reproduced at full size are Venice’s Campanile and Rialto Bridge at the entry to the resort complex. A production of Phantom of the Opera is housed in a theater that is itself a replica of the Paris Opera House (Palais Garnier), the setting of the Andre Lloyd Webber musical.

Entrepreneur Sheldon Adelson spent $1.5 billion to complete the first phase alone, which included a fine art museum branch of the Guggenheim museum, called the Guggenheim Hermitage Museum. The first exhibit of paintings was called Masterpieces and Master Collectors: Impressionist and Early Modern Paintings.

The "understated" check-in lobby:

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