Go to Vegas...to go somewhere else

One interesting thing about Vegas (at least on the Strip anyway) I've observed is that lots of people come here just to go to a replica of somewhere else. Just about everything on the strip seems to be a replica, down to the fake stone benches outside in the valet pickup areas.

This morning started off with dim sum, something we look for everywhere we go since there isn't any in Charleston. The one we found, Chang's Hong Kong Cuisine, wasn't too far away, so we headed out there mid-morning and fortunately weren't disappointed. The selection wasn't extremely large, but they were good and had all my favourites. The prices were decent too.

Then, with full bellies we headed off to the Luxor, that large pyramidal behemoth of a resort. We wanted to check out the King Tut exhibit and the Lion Habitat. Both were a little disappointing and didn't quite measure up to our expectations. The Lion Habitat consisted of a smallish glass enclosure housing two lionesses, both of which seemed to be pretty domesticated. At least they weren't trying to eat the handler in there with them at the time anyway. Inside, you could shell out $25 to have your photo taken with a lion cub if you wanted and if the cubs were in the mood for it.

We wandered around the rest of the Luxor to check out the scenery, shops and restaurants. Like Mandalay Bay, Luxor had lots of pricey upscale restaurants with famous chef's names attached to them.

Then it was off to MGM Grand to have a look around there. MGM Grand seemed to have about the largest casino floor of all the ones we'd seen so far. It also seemed to have the largest sports book area of the four resorts we'd been to so far. For the more budget conscious diners, MGM at least had a food court area where you could get some McD's, a Nathan's hot dog or even some Haagen Daaz. MGM also had its share of upscale restaurants too, including a couple of places with Joel Robuchon's name on them, although most of them were priced a little more reasonably than the ones at Mandalay Bay or Luxor.

We finished off the afternoon with a much anticipated trip to M&M's World just up the block from MGM. Four floors of just about every conceivable item you can think of related to M&Ms. Pillows, key chains, magnetic letters, dominos, cookie jars, candy dispensers and more. The place was packed too, particularly around the M&Ms Wall of Colour. It's hard to resist a wall of M&Ms even if they are $9/lb, so we ended coming out with about four pounds worth of them.

The wife's parents made it back from their side trip to LA, so it was dinner at the Bayside Buffet at Mandalay Bay. There was lots of tasty food with a couple of carving stations and a pasta bar where it's cooked right in front of you. Not quite as large as the buffet at The Bellagio, but I thought the food was better. At $25/person for the dinner buffet, it's a little pricey, but you can stay pretty much as long as you want and eat as much as you like.

The evening's entertainment was La Femme at MGM, a topless cabaret style show brought over from the Crazy Horse Saloon in Paris, France. Interesting show and very entertaining.