“Winter In the Desert: A Holiday Guide To Las Vegas - CURVE - Curve Magazine” plus 1 more

“Winter In the Desert: A Holiday Guide To Las Vegas - CURVE - Curve Magazine” plus 1 more

Winter In the Desert: A Holiday Guide To Las Vegas - CURVE - Curve Magazine

Posted: 09 Dec 2009 12:00 AM PST


Las Vegas Strip view from Mandalay Bay
Las Vegas Strip view from Mandalay Bay

There's no mistaking it's anything but a true winter wonderland in Las Vegas when speakers in the cavernous lobbies of the various grande dames of hotels and resorts sound out Sting's "On a Winter's Night."

Decking the halls has never been more fun and fabulous than doin' it Vegas style during the Thanksgiving-into-New Year holidays.

Las Vegas, the No. 2 destinations for lesbians, in winter is hotter than ever with many avenues for fun and frolic. Now that air fares are falling along with the North's and West's temperatures, the frosty holidays are a perfect time to travel. Amazing holiday offerings make Vegas an all around sexy destination to beat the cold weather blues. Hovering in the upper fifty to low sixty degrees Fahrenheit during the day, snow rarely makes an appearance. The nights might get a bit chill, all the better to cuddle and snuggle with your gal, and Vegas is a mighty fine place to find loads of new and established houses of slumber.

You can locate great values at most any venue, including The Venetian (venetian.com), the MGM Grand (mgmgrand.com) and Caesars Palace (caesarspalace.com).

Everyone knows shows are truly spectaculars in Vegas. Take in the scenery over at Planet Hollywood's "Peepshow" starring former Curve cover girl Aubrey O'Day (lasvegaspeepshow.com). And hey, Cirque du Soleil's Zumanity rejoices in the recent Nevada domestic partnerships law. Zumanity, celebrating all aspects of sensuality and sexuality, is honoring the new legislation with a special commitment ceremony package. In partnership with New York-New York Hotel & Casino, Zumanity will be offering the LGBT community the opportunity to acknowledge our unions with a special Commitment Package created to pay tribute to queer love (nynyhotelcasino.com/promotions).

The new kid on the block—CityCenter—is set to be a landmark destination, one of the largest sustainable developments in existence and bringing with it a new level of environmental consciousness to the world-famous Strip.

CityCenter offers an extraordinary collection of resorts and residences including ARIA Resort & Casino, Vdara Hotel, Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas, Veer Towers and Crystals retail and entertainment complex (citycenter.com).

The luxurious Vdara Hotel—set to open December 1st—is an all-suite hotel and spa designed for folks who love the excitement of Las Vegas, but prefer to enjoy it in a non-gaming and smoke-free setting. Vdara offers access to all entertainment, gaming, shopping, dining and nightlife in Las Vegas, while providing an exclusive place to retreat from it all (vdara.com).

Love art? You can't beat the world-class public fine art collection set to enliven the street and engage passersby inside CityCenter. Guests will "happen upon" works by world-renowned artists such as Jenny Holzer, Maya Lin and Nancy Rubins while wandering through walkways, hotels and residences (www2.citycenter.com/vision/vision_art.aspx).

After a romantic walk through artistic masterpieces, you might want to try your hand at seducing your sweetie with sumptuous dining at Vdara's Silk Road Restaurant. With Executive Chef Martin Heierling (the innovator behind Bellagio's renowned Sensi) at the helm, this spicy joint was inspired by the ancient trade route spanning from Venice to the Far East. The restaurant will incorporate subtle spices and exotic ingredients to create modern trans-ethnic cuisine. Fresh and lively at daybreak to chic and sexy at nightfall, Silk Road will evolve just as your day does (vdara.com/amenities/silk-road-restaurant.aspx).

For more show spectacular, enjoy the majesty of LE RÊVE presented exclusively at Wynn Las Vegas. Highlighting performances in an intimate aqua theater-in-the-round, this show features aerial acrobatics, provocative choreography and artistic athleticism. Think LAVA livin' large—and under water (wynnlasvegas.com/#entertainment/leReve). Fancy a more traditional performance? Snag some choice tickets to the one-week-only exclusive engagement (December 18-24) of the Nevada Ballet Theatre's "Nutcracker" for a special Christmas treat (nevadaballet.com). Squeeze your honey real tight while sugarplum fairies dance onstage and your holiday getaway progresses to more of the hundreds (thousands?) of other attractions.

Get some R&R at one of Vegas' many opulent spas. Qua Baths & Spas (harrahs.com/qua/) Roman Baths at Caesars Palace are its signature experience. Sit with your honey (or go it alone) and get revitalized through the natural healing properties of this ancient treatment handed down through the ages. Or, try the Couples Reflection Package at the Bellagio Spa & Salon (bellagio.com/spasalon/spa.aspx), including a custom couples massage, Watsu therapy, facials, guided meditation accompanied by a spa drink and snack.

So many choices, you don't know where to ring in the New Year? How about New Year's Eve in Paris? The hotel that is. AAA Four Diamond Award-winning Paris Las Vegas is already lit up for the party. And, one of the most romantic spots in town to kiss your girl at midnight 2010 is atop the Eiffel Tower Experience. A breathtaking view of the panoramic Las Vegas Valley awaits from 450-plus feet above the heart of the Strip. The replica Eiffel Tower at Paris Las Vegas is a half-scale exact reproduction of the famous French landmark (parislasvegas.com/casinos/paris-las-vegas/casino-misc/eiffel-tower-detail.html).

The shopping in Vegas is more robust than ever: CityCenter's stunning retail district, Crystals, will feature high-end retail. Be there for the December opening of the core of CityCenter's futuristic urban metropolis and roam from Tiffany to Bulgari to Mikimoto in search of the perfect gift for your gal (crystalsatcitycenter.com).

Can't afford Mikimoto's black fresh water pearls? Then try a new tact: seduce your sweetie with sumpuious treats by Jean Philippe Maury (jpchocolates.com) at the Bellagio. The World Pastry Champion created, in 2005, an imaginative 25-tiered chocolate fountain that stands 27 feet tall and circulates 120 quarts of chocolate per minute. Sweet nothings indeed. Or, try a sweet of a different sort: Saturday night at the Candy Bar, the hottest girl party in Vegas, located at Krave inside Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino (kravelasvegas.com).

Warming the cockles of your heart in welcoming Las Vegas might be just the ticket to air out the ghosts of holidays past.

For more information about Las Vegas for the holidays, log onto VisitLasVegas.com/gaytravel.

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CELEBRITY HOT PROPERTIES: Will Arnett lists award-winning home for $11 million - Sarasota Herald-Tribune

Posted: 02 Aug 2020 03:16 AM PDT

The actor's steel-framed house is a reimagining of a design by the late modernist architect Ray Kappe known as the RK2 model

There's always money in the banana stand, to borrow from the show "Arrested Development." But it might take a few more frozen banana sales to afford the Beverly Hills Post Office-area home of Will Arnett, who plays Gob Bluth on the show.

Listed for $10.995 million, the actor's steel-framed house is a reimagining of a design by the late modernist architect Ray Kappe known as the RK2 model.

The L-shaped residence consists of six modules that were designed and built off-site by Succi Reddy in collaboration with LivingHomes, the design subsidiary of Rialto-based builder Plant Prefab. Completed in 2017, the project received an "Award of Excellence" the following year from the L.A. Business Council.

Clean lines, an open-concept layout and walls of glass reinforce the modernist architecture. Overhanging eaves — a Kappe trademark — provide protection from the sun while diffusing natural light indoors.

A chef's kitchen with built-in booth seating, a two-story living room, five bedrooms and 4.5 bathrooms are among the living spaces. The master suite is lined with sliding glass doors that open to a private deck.

Tiered decking, a dining patio, a fire pit, a swimming pool and a separate spa fill out about three-quarters of an acre.

Arnett, 50, currently appears on the show "The First Team" and is set to reprise his voice role as Batman in the upcoming sequel to "The Lego Batman Movie." His other credits include the shows "The Millers" and "30 Rock," as well as the film franchise "The Lego Movie."

Spending spree for pop star

Count Ariana Grande among the big movers and shakers during the pandemic. In recent months, the actress turned pop star has purchased two multimillion-dollar homes in Southern California.

Her first splash into the housing market came in May, when she purchased a Montecito home from Ellen DeGeneres and Portia de Rossi for $6.75 million. She followed it a month later by snapping up a contemporary showplace in the Hollywood Hills' Bird Streets for a cool $13.7 million.

Her new place in Montecito is a Tudor-style home that was constructed in the 1980s using two antique barns sourced from the English countryside. Called the Porter House, the renovated estate sits among stone walls, flowering gardens and mature trees on more than an acre of grounds.

The two-bedroom, three-bathroom house features painted brick floors, white walls and sets of period windows that afford leafy views. There are chef's kitchens in both structures, which are connected by a central breezeway.

The Hollywood Hills home is a sleek three-story designed to capture canyon-to-ocean views from every room. Floor-to-ceiling windows line an entertainment level, which features 16-foot ceilings and hardwood floors. Pocketing walls open directly to an infinity-edge swimming pool.

More than 10,000 square feet of living space holds a minimalist kitchen, an office, four bedrooms and seven bathrooms. A fitness studio, cedar-lined wellness center, lavish bar and 300-bottle wine cellar are on the lower floor.

Grande, 26, got her start on Broadway before pivoting to a role on the Nickelodeon series "Victorious." As a singer, she has released five studio albums, including last year's "Thank U, Next." She won a Grammy for best pop vocal album in 2019 for "Sweetener."

Deal or No Deal?

In Hidden Hills, a 10,000-square-foot farmhouse tied to TV personality Howie Mandel hit the market for $10.495 million.

A family trust for Mandel and his wife, Terry, owns the property through a limited liability company, and one real estate source said it's probably an investment property, not his personal home.

Set on more than an acre, the three-story house joins a slew of other celebrity listings in the neighborhood. In June alone, NBA star Paul George, pop star The Weeknd and comedian Russell Peters all put their Hidden Hills properties on the market.

Completed this year, the home draws the eye with a bold exterior of sleek gray tones and stone accents. Inside, wood finishes touch up open living spaces with white walls, white ceilings and floor-to-ceiling windows.

Glass encloses an office and wine cellar; other highlights include a custom kitchen, yoga studio, movie theater and indoor-outdoor lounge with wet bar. There are six bedrooms and 7.5 bathrooms.

A spacious patio encloses a living and dining area. Beyond the patio are a swimming pool, spa and lawn.

A native of Canada, Mandel appeared in "Walk Like a Man" and "St. Elsewhere" before hosting the popular game show "Deal or No Deal." More recently, he joined "America's Got Talent" as a judge.

Spinning up interest in Laurel Canyon

In Hollywood Hills, a 1960s home and hangout for artists such as Tom Petty, the Eagles and the Doors is up for lease at $11,750 a month.

The Laurel Canyon pad was owned for decades by legendary Southern California rock DJ Jim Ladd, who hosted his musician friends and recorded his SiriusXM radio show from the bedroom, with guests such as Bonnie Raitt and Carlos Santana. He paid $245,000 for the property in 1988 and sold it for $1.1 million in 2018 to director-producer Jane Clark.

A private tram ascends to the two-story home, which takes in sweeping views of Laurel Canyon, Griffith Park and the Hollywood sign from a pair of covered decks. Redwood wraps the exterior, and living spaces have been modernized in shades of white and gray.

Spanish tile and mahogany counters touch up the kitchen. The living room has a brick fireplace. The 1,100-square-foot home has two bedrooms and two baths.

Ladd, 72, has been broadcasting since the '60s with stops at KMET, KLOS and SiriusXM. In 2005, the free-form rock DJ received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Rolling the dice in Vegas

Casino mogul Steve Wynn has put his Las Vegas mansion on the market for $25 million following a $16-million renovation, making it the most expensive home currently listed in Sin City.

The 13,500-square-foot mansion sits on 1.4 acres in a double-gated community a few miles west of the Strip. Dramatic columns and a fountain frame the approach to the home. Inside, the living spaces have been remodeled with high-tech upgrades and custom finishes such as copper ceilings, gilded doors, silk carpeting and fabric walls.

Eucalyptus-lined arches connect a floor plan that includes an indoor-outdoor living room, modern kitchen, rounded breakfast nook and massive office. For amenities, there's a wine closet, a movie theater, a game room and a gym.

Six bedrooms and 10 bathrooms include a master suite with a private balcony. The scenic lookout takes in mountain and golf-course views. Multiple lawns, patios and a pool and spa fill out the yard.

Wynn, who has spent the last half-century developing hotels and casinos across the country, is no stranger to buying and selling impressive estates. After buying the Beverly Hills mansion of Guess co-founder Maurice Marciano in 2015 for $47.9 million, he quietly listed the property earlier this year for $135 million.

The 78-year-old Wynn served as chief executive of Mirage Resorts before selling the company to MGM Grand Inc. and forming Wynn Resorts. He stepped down as CEO of that company in 2018 after accusations of sexual misconduct, which he has denied. Forbes puts his net worth at $3.1 billion.


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