Bellagio (casino)

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Bellagio
Bellagio Hotel and Casino.svg
Bellagio Las Vegas.jpg
Bellagio
Bellagio is located in Downtown Las Vegas
Bellagio
Address 3600 Las Vegas Boulevard S.
Las Vegas, Nevada 89109
Opening date October 15, 1998
Theme Bellagio, Italy
No. of rooms 3,950
Total gaming space 116,000 sq ft (10,800 m2)
Permanent shows "O"
Signature attractions Bellagio Gallery Of Fine Art
Conservatory
The Fountains of Bellagio
The Bank Nightclub
Notable restaurants Le Cirque
Circo
Picasso
Michael Mina
Jasmine
Jean-Georges' Prime
Olives
Sensi
Casino type Land
Owner Bellagio LLC (subsidiary of MGM Resorts International)
Architect DeRuyter Butler and Atlandia Design
Years renovated Bellagio Spa Tower, 2004, 2006, 2011
Coordinates 36°06′47″N 115°10′35″W / 36.11306°N 115.17639°W / 36.11306; -115.17639Coordinates: 36°06′47″N 115°10′35″W / 36.11306°N 115.17639°W / 36.11306; -115.17639
Website bellagio.com

Bellagio is a luxury hotel and casino on the Las Vegas Strip in Paradise, Nevada. It is owned by MGM Resorts International and was built on the site of the demolished Dunes hotel and casino.

Inspired by the Lake Como town of Bellagio in Italy, Bellagio is famed for its elegance. One of its most notable features is an 8-acre (3.2 ha) lake between the building and the Strip, which houses the Fountains of Bellagio, a large dancing water fountain synchronized to music.

Inside Bellagio, Dale Chihuly's Fiori di Como, composed of over 2,000 hand-blown glass flowers, covers 2,000 sq ft (190 m2) of the lobby ceiling. Bellagio is home to Cirque du Soleil's aquatic production "O".

The main (original) tower of Bellagio, with 3,015 rooms, has 36 floors and a height of 508 ft (151 m). The Spa Tower, which stands to the south of the main tower, has 33 floors, a height of 392 ft (119 m), and contains 935 rooms.

The Bellagio Fountains
The Bellagio Fountains during the day
Bellagio Casino and Hotel at Night

History[edit]

Bellagio at day, front view
Bellagio and Caesars Palace

Bellagio was conceived by Steve Wynn and built by his company, Mirage Resorts, Inc. following the purchase and demolition of the legendary Dunes hotel and casino in October 27, 1993 after the Grand Opening of Luxor Las Vegas. Bellagio was designed by DeRuyter Butler and Atlandia Design. Construction on the Bellagio began in May 1996.[1][2] Bellagio had an original construction cost of US$1.6 billion.[3]

Bellagio opened on October 15, 1998, just before 11 pm, in a ceremony that was reported to cost US$88 million. The VIPs invited to the grand opening were expected to donate to The Foundation Fighting Blindness US$1,000 a person or US$3,500 a couple, which entitled them to an overnight stay at Bellagio's suite rooms.

Opening night's entertainment began with Steve Wynn giving a 40-minute welcome speech followed by the opening of the Cirque du Soleil production "O". Performing in Bellagio lounges that night were New York cabaret and recording artist Michael Feinstein, George Bugatti, and John Pizarrelli. When it opened, it was the most expensive hotel ever built.

In 2000 it became an MGM Mirage property when Mirage Resorts merged with MGM Grand Inc. to create MGM Mirage. In 2010, the company was renamed MGM Resorts International in a move to go worldwide with its brands.

Bellagio employs approximately 8,000 people. In the fall of 2006, the casino floor was remodeled and new uniforms were issued, changing the original color scheme to a more elegant type.

On December 15, 2010, a helmet-wearing gunman robbed the casino of $1.5 million in chips.[4] In August 2011, he was convicted to a prison term of 9–27 years.[5]

Bellagio has won the prestigious AAA Five Diamond Award (the highest level of the AAA Diamond Ratings System for restaurants and lodgings) 11 times.

Bellagio completed a $70 million upgrade in December 2011, remodeling all of the main tower's 2,500 rooms.

Gaming[edit]

Poker room[edit]

Many professional poker players prefer to play at the Bellagio poker room, calling it their home base (or more commonly "The Office") due to the high table limits, including the high stakes Big Game located in "Bobby's Room", named after Bobby Baldwin. The stakes at the Big Game can range up to $4,000/$8,000, and are frequented by such poker pros as Doyle Brunson, Daniel Negreanu, and Jennifer Harman. It is reported that the pots during this game can far exceed the $1 million range.[6]

Bellagio has also partnered with the World Poker Tour to host several of their tournaments.

Attractions[edit]

Fountains of Bellagio[edit]

The Fountains of Bellagio as seen from the Paris Las Vegas hotel, across the Strip from the Bellagio.

The Fountains of Bellagio is a vast, choreographed water feature with performances set to light and music. (See musical fountain.) The performances take place in front of the Bellagio hotel and are visible from numerous vantage points on the Strip, both from the street and neighboring structures. The show takes place every 30 minutes in the afternoons and early evenings, and every 15 minutes from 8 pm to midnight. Before a water show starts, the nozzles break the water surface and the lights illuminating the hotel tower turn to a purple hue (usually), or red-white-and-blue for certain music. Shows may be cancelled without warning because of wind, although shows usually run with less power in face of wind. A single show may be skipped to avoid interference with a planned event. The fountain display is choreographed to various pieces of music, including "Time To Say Goodbye", "Your Song", "Viva Las Vegas", "Luck Be a Lady", and "My Heart Will Go On".[7]

The Bellagio and nearby Caesars Palace, with the fountains in the foreground

The fountains are set in a 8-acre (3.2 ha) manmade lake. Contrary to urban myth, the lake is not filled with treated greywater from the hotel. The lake is actually serviced by a freshwater well that was drilled decades prior to irrigate a golf course that previously existed on the site. The fountains actually use less water than irrigating the golf course did.[8] They incorporate a network of pipes with more than 1,200 nozzles that make it possible to stage fountain displays coordinated with more than 4,500 lights. It is estimated that the fountains cost $40 million to build. The fountains were created by WET, a design firm specializing in inventive fountains and architectural water features.[9]

Four types of nozzles are used for the various effects:

  • Oarsmen – jets with a full range of spherical motion
  • Shooters – shoot water upwards
  • Super Shooters – send a water blast as high as 240 ft (73 m) in the air.
  • Extreme Shooters – send a water blast as high as 460 ft (140 m) (added in 2005)
Bellagio Fountain show (view in high quality)
The Fountains at night, as seen from Paris Las Vegas

Conservatory and botanical gardens[edit]

Conservatory

The hotel also contains a Conservatory and Botanical Gardens. In total, there are five seasonal themes that the Conservatory undergoes: Chinese New Year, Spring, Summer, Fall, and Winter.[10] From January to mid-March, the Conservatory celebrates the Chinese New Year with a display dominated by flowers bromeliads and Orchids, as well as the animal of that particular year that the Chinese zodiac celebrates. The theme then changes over to the Spring display, which lasts until May, and usually features a butterfly house as well as many varieties of tropical flowers. During Memorial Day weekend, Bellagio then switches over to its All-American Summer display, featuring a large recreation of the Liberty Bell, as well as several American flags throughout the Conservatory.

A summer display

The Summer display is usually very patriotic featuring a lot of red, white, and blue, and is dominated by hydrangeas. From late September until Thanksgiving weekend, the Conservatory then puts on it Fall display featuring several varieties of chrysanthemum and several large pumpkins throughout the display. Finally, the Conservatory then switches over to its winter holiday display after Thanksgiving, which is dominated by its large centerpiece Christmas Tree and several varieties of poinsettia. Whatever the season, colorful displays are decorated with many real fragrant flowers, and fountains may also be present. The Conservatory is located next to the lobby of the hotel and is open to the public.

Bellagio Gallery of Fine Art[edit]

In addition to the numerous works of art found throughout the public areas of the resort, Bellagio also houses a special exhibition space displaying art work on loan from various museums and private collections from around the world. Originally the space that displayed the personal art collection of Steve Wynn, the Bellagio Gallery of Fine Art has since become a rotating exhibition space after he sold his hotels in 2000. In the past, the Bellagio Gallery of Fine Art was located near the grand staircase in the Conservatory that Julia Roberts descended in the movie Ocean's Eleven, but was then moved to its larger current location along the pool promenade eight months after Bellagio opened to better accommodate larger crowds.[11]

Past exhibits at the Bellagio Gallery of Fine Art include:

  • A Sense of Place: Landscapes from Monet to Hockney
  • Figuratively Speaking: A Survey of the Human Form
  • 12 + 7: Artists and Architects of City Center
  • American Modernism
  • Classic Contemporary: Lichtenstein, Warhol, & Friends
  • In the Master’s Hand: Picasso’s Ceramics
  • Ansel Adams: America
  • The Impressionist Landscape: From Corot to Van Gogh
  • Monet: Masterworks From the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
  • Treasures from Chatsworth: A British Noble House
  • Andy Warhol: The Celebrity Portraits
  • Faberge: Treasures From the Kremlin
  • Alexander Calder: The Art of Invention
  • Kindly Lent Their Owner: The Private Collection of Steve Martin
  • Impressionism: Art in Bloom

Awards[edit]

Bellagio has won the AAA Five Diamond Award fourteen years in a row, from 2000 to 2014; it was the first Strip hotel to receive the award ten or more times in a row.[12] Two of its restaurants, Picasso and Le Cirque, have also received the Five Diamond award.[12] The hotel is a member of The Leading Hotels of the World. In addition, Picasso has received two Michelin stars. Le Cirque and Michael Mina have each received one Michelin star.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ American Institute of Architects, America's Favorite Architecture website and Bellagio Hotel and Casino on Archiblog
  2. ^ Big, Bigger, and Bellagio, Inland Architecture (undated), pages 53–59. Accessed March 13, 2010.
  3. ^ "Bellagio Resort & Casino | Buildings". US /: Emporis. Retrieved February 24, 2012. 
  4. ^ "BBC News – Bellagio casino in Las Vegas robbed of $1.5m in chips". BBC. December 15, 2010. Retrieved February 24, 2012. 
  5. ^ Toplikar, Dave. "Bellagio ‘biker bandit’ to serve at least 9 years in prison – Thursday, Aug. 25, 2011 | 9:14 am". Las Vegas Sun. Retrieved February 24, 2012. 
  6. ^ The Bellagio Poker Room
  7. ^ "Bellagio Fountains – Las Vegas". Bellagio.com. December 15, 2011. Retrieved February 24, 2012. 
  8. ^ According to J. Cruz, the Director of Energy and Environmental Services for MGM Mirage from http://www.kued.org/productions/desertwars/cruz_jamie.php
  9. ^ WET Design: Water Fountain and Water Features development for Architecture, Urbanism, and Landscape[dead link]
  10. ^ "Bellagio Conservatory and Botanical Gardens – Las Vegas". Bellagio.com. Retrieved February 24, 2012. 
  11. ^ Gary Thompson. "Wynn to double size of Bellagio art gallery – Friday, June 11, 1999 | 11:31 am". Las Vegas Sun. Retrieved February 24, 2012. 
  12. ^ a b Stutz, Howard (November 19, 2010). "Bellagio earns 11th straight AAA Five Diamond award". Las Vegas Review Journal. Retrieved August 9, 2011. 

External links[edit]