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Posted by on Mar 22, 2015 in Blog, Las Vegas, Personal, Travel, Uncategorized | 13 comments

Living in “The Lakes” (Las Vegas) — A Narrative History and Photo Tour




[Writer’s Note:  See more photos of “The Lakes, Nevada” below]


When people ask me where I live — I answer “Las Vegas.”

However, when asked this same question by someone local, that calls for a more specific answer.  My reply is that I live in a section of Las Vegas called “The Lakes.”

The Lakes seems like an odd name for a residential community anchored in the middle of the desert.  I can’t blame people when they get confused, hearing about “lakes.”  Some misunderstand the reference and think I live way out near Lake Mead.  Others associate the name with “Lake Las Vegas” — a ritzy golf course development with million-dollar homes located on the eastern edge of the city.

Actually, The Lakes is located right smack in the middle of town on the west side.  It’s about seven miles away from the Las Vegas Strip (a.k.a. Las Vegas Blvd.).  It’s bordered by Durango to the east, and Hualapai to the west — then Sahara to the north, and Desert Inn to the south.  If you keep on heading west from where I live, the next development towards the mountains is called Summerlin, which most people have at least heard of.  Not so, with The Lakes.

The Lakes has an interesting history.  In today’s column, I’m going to tell you more about The Lakes and convey its uniqueness as a desert paradise, and a really nice place to live.

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Posted by on Mar 21, 2015 in Blog, Las Vegas, Music and Concert Reviews, Travel | 0 comments

Las Vegas Show Review: “Frank: The Man, The Music” (at Palazzo)




Of all impersonations, Frank Sinatra’s might be the toughest to pull off convincingly.

The baritone voice, the tuxedoed savoir faire, the quirky and often comical mannerisms, the working-class New York accent — all these classic Sinatra trademarks are relatively straightforward to copycat with some practice combined with the proper flair.

What isn’t so easy to incorporate is the epochal stage presence and the personal charisma.  More like impossible.  Like all of our most celebrated musical icons — Elvis Presley, Judy Garland, Louis Armstrong, The Beatles — the tribute shows might look and sound like the real deal, but they never quite spark the same electrifying voltage of atmospheric energy.  We’re never quite able to shake the awareness that we’re consuming Spam from a can instead of real meat.

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Posted by on Feb 4, 2015 in Blog, Las Vegas, Restaurant Reviews | 7 comments

Warning: Do Not Eat At This Chinese Restaurant!



Rice Republic is a great Chinese restaurant….if you’re on a low-calorie diet.


Rice Republic recently opened up a new restaurant in Downtown Summerlin.  It’s in the epicenter of a neo-urban commercial enclave adjacent to the Red Rock Casino, which will eventually have more than 100 new shops and restaurants.  Think of a sparkling new downtown area, with plenty of parking and no crowds (at least, not yet).

From the outside, the popular Taiwanese-themed eatery seems quite appealing.  Everything looks clean and new.  The restaurant offers both indoor and outdoor seating, which is divided by a huge glass window.  Yesterday afternoon while Marieta and I were standing outside pondering the menu which was posted on a marques near the front door, we were greeted by an aggressive host who invited us to take a seat.  We’d heard of Rice Republic before and we certainly love good Asian food, so this was the perfect occasion be adventurous and try out a new restaurant.

We were seated.  Then, things quickly went downhill until the unforeseeable edge of a cliff was reached.

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Posted by on Jan 28, 2015 in Blog, Las Vegas, Restaurant Reviews | 6 comments

I Refuse to Eat Ghetto Burgers




So, White Castle finally opened up it’s first fast food location on the Las Vegas Strip.

No thanks.  You won’t catch me wolfing down this kind of junk food.  Not unless I was broke and starving (which I’ve been more than a few times, especially at the tail end of football season).  I’ll pass.  Now, would you kindly point me in the direction of the closest In and Out Burger?  All this talk of burgers is bringing out the animal in me.

White Castle is basically known for serving those square mini- “hamburgers” about the size of a hockey puck, with about the same nutritional value.  It’s ghetto food, plain and simple.  Heart attack heaven.  White Castle is to hamburgers what Milwaukee’s Best is to beer.  Pure fucking garbage.

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Posted by on Jan 27, 2015 in Blog, Las Vegas, Restaurant Reviews | 2 comments

Handel’s Ice Cream Comes to Las Vegas




Up until now, Las Vegas had been missing a few things.  One of these voids was the perfect spot to venture for fresh homemade ice cream.

Well, the search is now over.  Handel’s has arrived.

Handel’s Homemade Ice Cream is a family-owned creamery originally from Youngstown, Ohio.  The first store opened up in 1945.  Handel’s began expanding a few years ago, and now has 37 franchises.  It’s consistently ranked as one of the top quality ice creams in the United States.  And now, the very first Las Vegas location has opened up, on the far west side of town off of Tropicana, in Summerlin.

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