Y’all, I LOVED Vegas. I went in super apprehensive, and Adam even told me after we left that he had been concerned I wasn’t going to enjoy it. I’ve never been someone that wants to go to a club or spend all night on a dance floor. I’ve never gambled and have zero interest in losing a bunch of money for fun. However, there’s SO much to do in Vegas that you never even have to sit down at a blackjack table if you don’t want to.
WHAT HAPPENS IN VEGAS…
We all know the saying, what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas. Fortunately, that wasn’t the theme of our weekend, though of course the opportunity to take full advantage of sin city is always there and was certainly being taken to heart right in front of our eyes. We may have over imbibed in cocktails both evenings, but we kept the bad decisions to a minimum. Which, luckily for you, means I remembered enough of my weekend in Vegas to put together this guide for you!
WHAT TO WEAR
Honestly, this might have been my biggest concern going into my weekend in Las Vegas! What does someone who’s not there for a bachelorette party, but instead with their future in-laws, wear to Vegas? Better yet, what does someone who just isn’t into bandage dresses, no matter what the occasion, wear?! I had no idea how dressed up people get during the day or what exactly I could get away with at night, so I’m here to help you so that no one else has my same dilemma.
- For daytime, go comfortable and casual. You’re going to be walking A LOT. Whether you’re shopping, taking in the strip, or even just getting around the hotel, there’s going to be a ton of walking. It’s great for burning off all those drinks and decadent meals, but it means you’ll definitely want to look super casual.Since we were dealing with cooler temperatures, I wore leggings and booties with a casual sweater or top and leather jacket two of our three days in Vegas. The third day, mostly because I wanted to wear the previous day’s purchases, I got a little more dressed up for brunch and strolling around with this cobalt blue bell-sleeve coat with a striped top and gold mules. Honestly though, you could even get away with athleisure if you wanted to.
- At night, it’s Vegas, anything goes. We weren’t going out to clubs later in the evening, so I didn’t want to go too over the top for dinner, but believe me, people are wearing anything you can think of. For our more casual night out, I went with something I’d wear any night out here in DC – high waisted jeans, a tan leather jacket, a silk leopard blouse, and gold mules.The next night, however, I went the anything goes route, with black leather leggings, leopard heels, a black sequin top, and a vintage collarless white blazer with feather cuffs. My advice? Take the item that feels a little too crazy for your hometown and make it work.
WHAT TO DO
There is so much to do in Vegas besides gamble! No matter what you’re looking for, you can make Vegas your own. I was only there for two days, but I felt like I saw
- Shop. I’m not a huge shopper typically – I prefer to do most shopping online, but there was everything from high end to middle of the road to Forever 21 in Vegas. You could spend hours popping in all the designer shops that are within the hotel complexes and at the mall. I actually had pretty good luck while shopping…and even ended up deciding fanny packs are a trend I’m on board with.
- Relax at the pool. While our weather was less than ideal, we did get one afternoon to sit by the pool and sip on cocktails. That’s how I could spend an entire day if it were nice out – under an umbrella of course.
- Neon Museum. All of the pictures here are from the Neon Museum, which was one of the coolest museums I’ve ever been to. If you’re a fan of Vegas history, mid-century design, or just anything that errs a little bit on the tackier side of things, you must check this place out. It’s full of decades of discarded signs from Vegas’ past and the tour guides are seriously top notch.
- Bellagio Art Museum, Conservatory, and Botanical Garden. We ended up running out of time and skipped the art museum, but we did check out the impressive Chihuly ceiling and the colorfully playful Japanese Spring exhibit within the Conservatory and Botanical Garden.
- See a show. While we didn’t have time to see a show while we were there, I’ve heard wonderful things about all of the Cirque du Soleil shows, especially the new Beatles Love Show and the water themed O show. This is definitely on the list for next time.
- Sports betting. We went for the first weekend of March Madness, but, of course, there’s always a sport to bet on. For some reason, this seems like the odds might be a bit more in your favor than just sitting down to a craps table, but really it’s all a gamble, right?
- People watch. How could I not include people watching? That was our main activity for the two days we were in Vegas. Both nights we just found a perch right outside the club, enjoyed our drinks, and took in the entertainment that the lines provided for us.
WHERE TO EAT
The best part of any trip! The food! We had some many fabulous meals while in Las Vegas – including some much needed late night food both nights, and I’ve rounded up my absolute favorites here.
- Lotus of Siam. This Thai restaurant, located off the strip, was, hands down, the best meal of our trip. It will definitely require a reservation, but it’s well worth both the planning in advance and the uber ride. Get ready for major spice.
- The Wynn Buffet. Apparently buffets are a thing in Vegas, and the Wynn does it better than anyone. I really did not understand what I was getting myself into – there’s everything from crab cakes to pancakes to ribs. At brunch. Come hungry and be prepared to either walk it off or do absolutely nothing for the rest of the afternoon.
- Andreas. This Asian inspired restaurant had my mouth drooling with Waygu sliders and spicy fried chicken. The small plates were inspired and perfectly sized for a dinner before a night out – you still want to fit in to those sexy Vegas clothes you brought, right?!
WHERE TO STAY
You definitely want to stay on the strip for at least your first trip, even if you don’t think you’re going to be into the bright lights of Vegas. It’s part of the experience to walk right out of your hotel into the craziness of the city. Plus, most of the hotels and resorts feel like an oasis in the middle of the bustling desert that is sin city, so you won’t be up all night just because you’re staying in the heart of the action.
We stayed at the Wynn, which I absolutely loved. The flower displays, including the flower carousel, as soon as you walk in are unreal. The casino floor was always busy. The dining options were all delicious. The pool was a relaxing place to kick back with a cocktail – even if the temperatures were a bit below average for our stay.
Would I go back to Vegas? 100%. Seriously, there’s so much there that I didn’t even have time to do. We didn’t go to a show, we didn’t really get to experience the pool scene due to the weather, I probably should see a DJ in Vegas at least once, and so on. So, now it’s just time to start planning the next trip…
Also, a note on logistics: flights can be expensive out of DC. We took a Frontier flight out to Vegas late Thursday night that ended up being delayed, so we got in around 3 AM Friday morning. Then, we left at 9 PM on Sunday night, getting in at 4 AM Monday morning. Definitely not ideal, but it’s an option if you’re looking for a cheap flight.
And, if you’re looking for a budget-friendly Las Vegas adventure, no matter what you’re looking for, you can make Vegas your own—check out these top tips for saving for the big trip!