Every year party-goers flock to Las Vegas to ring in the new year. They brave the cold and wind on the Strip to catch fireworks at midnight or cram into one of the many bars and clubs offering champagne toasts and balloon drops. Admission to these parties start at $150 and go as high as $250 for some of the more popular clubs. Jay-Z’s grand opening for the 40/40 club will cost you $800 per person! Big pimpin’ indeed.
We locals prefer to stay away from the madness and celebrate with friends and family at home. A City Life poll found that 60% of area residents planned to stay at home.
Here’s an excellent run-down of the real estate situation (disaster?) in Las Vegas. Prices are expected to fall another 15% with two years of supply on MLS and 48% of the inventory sitting empty. But it’s not all gloom and doom.
There is $15B being invested in new casino and residential developments along the Strip. This will generate an estimated 100,000 new jobs or +12% to the current 900,000 positions. This growth should create demand for housing and drive a turnaround in the next few years.
We decorated a Christmas tree this year. It is fake, 9 foot tall and slightly tilted but does the job. My neighbor bought a real tree but ended up discarding it after a week because it was too dry and a fire hazard. Another victim of the desert’s super-low humidity.
The holiday was fun with more family coming to stay with us. We went out to the casinos a few times but did not come back with any “gifts” to speak of. As usual, the casinos were packed with lots of people celebrating Christmas in Sin City.
Las Vegans now have a new place to buy groceries: Fresh ‘n Easy Neighborhood Market. I mistakenly thought the store would be similar to Trader Joe’s when I first saw it. However, upon visiting I learned that the Fresh ‘N Easy is more like a convenience store . . . with groceries. They offer fresh produce, meats and a selection of gourmet foods. You’ll also find dry goods, canned foods and basic necessities like household cleaning supplies. Shoppers check themselves out and bag their own groceries.
There are currently six stores in the valley with eleven more planned. The one I visited was located near the Southpoint Casino:
Fresh ‘N Easy
467 E. Silverado Ranch Blvd., Suite 155
Las Vegas, NV 89183
There were a string of police raids on suspected brothels in several neighborhoods last week. One of the common misconceptions about Las Vegas is that prostitution is legal here. In fact the skin trade is illegal in Las Vegas and throughout Clark County.
I saw a hilarious story on KLAS tonight. There are two major events taking place in Las Vegas this weekend: the National Finals Rodeo NFR and big boxing match between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Ricky Hatton who hails from Great Britain. A British fan in town for the fight was being interviewed down on the strip and he said he had no idea that the rodeo was in town. He just assumed that everyone in Las Vegas wears cowboy hats. LOL!
Today California Pizza Kitchen announced the opening of their newest location in Las Vegas. The Town Square restaurant is the third in town with the other two located at Fashion Show Mall and inside The Mirage.
Eat there on December 17th and help support Child Focus a local non-profit organization that provides resources and services to Clark County children in foster care. CPK is donating 100% of all dine-in pizza sales to this worthwhile charity.
Las Vegas was recently recognized as the American City of the Year by the World Leadership Awards committee. We were the only American city to receive this honor. From the official website:
The World Leadership Awards are given to cities whose leaders have shown exceptional imagination, foresight or resilience in a number of key fields – especially cities that have reversed trends, shaken off traditional images, and acted as an example and inspiration to others.
Specifically, the Centennial Hills Master Planned Community and the city’s Alternative Fuel Program were cited as examples of innovation and responsible government planning.