Chinese New Year in Vegas

My wife and I will usually celebrate Chinese New Year locally instead of making it a destination holiday. Unfortunately, we currently live somewhere that does absolutely nothing for Chinese New Year. Las Vegas is the closest big city that also has a big Chinese community, and rumor had it that the casinos and resorts go all out in decorating. Obviously, this would change year to year, though, so my highlights from 2022 won’t necessarily be the best places to visit in future years.

We started at Treasure Island and walked up and down the main stretch of the strip, checking out each resort’s New Year decorations along the way. Some resorts, like MGM, did the bare minimum and weren’t worth walking that far down the strip to see. Caesars Palace didn’t have a lot of decorations up, either, but it was on the way, and their single dragon display was still fun:

A lit up red dragon at Caesars Palace

The Bellagio next door, however, had very extravagant decorations. They’d completely transformed the conservatory into a Chinese-themed garden with several statues and a tea house. It was by far our favorite stop:

The Bellagio botanical garden with Chinese statues

The ARIA was another highlight, for a number of reasons. First, the main casino entrance had a long, golden dragon hanging from the ceiling amongst clouds and Chinese lanterns:

A golden dragon hanging up in the ARIA casino

All of the shopping centers leading to the casino had their own displays, too. Plus, the ARIA was one of the few casinos that held a lion dance ceremony in front of the entrance. The ceremony was clearly aimed at their VIPs, but that didn’t stop looky-loos like us from stealing a peek!

On the way back down the strip, The Venetian was another highlight with their own dragon and dolled up garden:

A dragon swimming in front of the letters LOVE at the Venetian

Our “tour” ended at the Wynn, where the decorations were mostly limited to a smaller red dragon suspended in some trees:

A red dragon hanging from the trees at the Wynn

The Wynn also had a lion dance outside, though, so we were glad we stopped by. Again, this dance was totally aimed at their VIP guests, which I’m sure the decorations at large play into. But as long as Vegas resorts are going to take those measures, it still makes the city fun for everyone else who wants to celebrate Chinese New Year a little differently.

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