Luxe Life Blog
Strip Scribbles: Hypnotist cheats death with Catherine Hickland’s text
Hypnotist Marc Savard is regarded as the best in the world, and because he teaches only once a year, students travel from all over to his seminars here. Among this year’s class at V Theater in Planet Hollywood’s Miracle Mile were students from Russia, Sweden and England -- and former Baywatch actress beauty Catherine Hickland, who recently moved here. She sat enthralled in the first eight-hour class but the next morning fell ill and missed day two.
Catherine told Vegas DeLuxe exclusively: “I’d felt a little cold coming on and decided it was best to get some sleep so I could make the seminar the next day. Anyone who knows me knows my work ethic is off the charts. Unless I am in the hospital on death’s door, I show up for shows, lectures, appointments, you name it. I woke up and felt just awful, I could hardly move. I just got worse by the minute. I hated doing it, but I could not lift my head. I texted Marc to let him know I would be absent and how disappointed I was about it. Like me, Marc rarely talks on the phone. I am a serial texter. Same with him.
“So I texted my apologies about missing the day. For some unexplained reason, he decided to read my text at the next light. Since he does not read texts while driving, he slowed down to do so. As he stopped, the light turned green but a woman coming from the cross light ran the red light going very fast. If he had not stopped to read my text, he would have been in a bad accident, hit right on at high speed on the driver’s side. He called me to thank me for saving his life. In a year and a half I’ve been his student, that may be the only time I've ever heard his voice on the phone. You can call it whatever, but Marc Savard and his hypnosis show at The V lives on because I got sick. Only in Vegas!”
Catherine, who will be appearing on Fox next week from New York, is developing a hypnosis and magic show while here in Las Vegas.
Wicked whispers & racy rumors
The rumor mills are abuzz from Las Vegas to Atlantic City about an alleged romance between a brilliant veteran standup comic and the attractive, brainy divorced wife of a gaming executive. Coincidentally, both hail from the same East Coast city, and she’s admitted that she’s trying to help expand his career. … An entertainer thought to have gone AA sober has apparently fallen off the wagon and turned up at a recent show wasted. One spywitness reported: “They had a hard time getting him onstage, and he spent more time getting the audience to sing along with him instead of his own expected performance.” … Is a controversial TV producer behind ambitious plans for a rock and rap peace concert to be staged for world broadcast from China within the next 90 days? … Just how many reporters from the national media are here in Las Vegas trying to get to the bottom of the Tiger Woods connection with Sin City? I’ve given up counting, and they keep winding up at the same two top sources for their information that you’ve already digested.
*Aria President Bill McBeath is a weekend road racing junkie. He placed fifth in the 16th Annual Desert Challenge Score Trophy 100-mile, 16-lap race for production trucks in Laughlin ahead of Baja California races. Only 61 drivers finished from 126 starters. Bill drove his Chevy Silverado and is ranked seventh in the overall Top 12, with Las Vegas drivers Kory Scheeler in second and Rob MacCachren in 11th.
*The Godfather of Impressionists Rich Little has spent the past two years while living here writing a play on Jimmy Stewart and completing his manuscript titled Little by Little: Celebrities I’ve Known and Been. He’s in talks now to find a publisher. An accomplished artist, Rich created a charcoal drawing of the celebrity for each chapter.
*A 70-year-old grandmother, Rita Jaraczeski, won the heads-up Final Nine table at the Heartland Poker Tour’s celebrity game I co-hosted at Red Rock Resort last weekend. Rita beat Kathy Liebert, aka as the most winning woman in poker. Actor Lou Diamond Phillips also made it to the Final Nine in the Disabled American Veterans. In the regular weeklong Heartland tournament, Kimbo Ung, a 41-year-old unemployed Cambodian refugee living here, defeated four-time WSOP bracelet winner Tom McEvoy, David Chicotsky and other poker pros to win the $125,901 pot.
*I like to keep my eye on the happenings in Macau, where so many of our Strip moguls have massive business interests. Here’s an updated report from one of my spies yesterday: Business is still booming over here; there are so many Chinese in this part of the world, and they like to gamble. Despite suffering from a stroke and undergoing brain surgery, Stanley Ho still leads with his SJM Casinos pumping out cash. Steve Wynn and Sheldon Adelson are tied for second, and both company’s hotel casinos are unbelievably full of customers. It is truly amazing as to the amount of business that goes on over here. Every day in Macau is equal to New Year’s Eve in Las Vegas.
However, the Chinese prefer to play rather than spend time in Las Vegas-styled shows and fine dining restaurants. That’s why rumors are rampant that the Cirque du Soleil show Zaia at The Venetian is about to close. The celebrity chef restaurants also are struggling. The more affluent guests from Hong Kong, Shanghai or Beijing enjoy a good dining experience, but the vast majority of players just want to stick to their noodles and get back to playing as fast as possible.
*Buon appetito! A new price is right Pizza in the Park lunch service is being added at Rao’s in Caesars Palace. Guests can enjoy a new menu served in Rao’s indoor patio modeled after New York’s Jefferson Park. Chef Carla Pellegrino showcases antipasti, pizza and desserts, with prices ranging from $7 to $17, making it affordable and delectable.
Singer and Dancing With the Stars runner-up Mya dazzled with her performance and appearance at Jet in The Mirage. After performing two songs, she handed out her new CD, and she and her girlfriends danced all night. … The All-American Rejects frontman Tyson Ritter received a surprise when pop princess Avril Lavigne showed up at The Bank Nightclub in the Bellagio and performed two songs with him. … Larry Johnson of the Cincinnati Bengals dined at N9NE Steakhouse in the Palms and sipped on a vodka cocktail and Fiji water while enjoying signature rock shrimp, a tomato salad and chicken rigatoni for dinner. Larry went back into Chef Barry Dakake’s kitchen after the meal to sign his door, as did St. Louis Rams running back Steven Jackson. Also at N9NE: golf player Tommy Armour III, who sat at the bar to chat with friend and bartender John O’Donnell. … At Rain, Izabella Miko, star of the upcoming Clash of the Titans with Sam Worthington, partied at a VIP stage table with eight friends. Izabella wore a black dress to celebrate her 29th birthday, hit the dance floor and went on to The Playboy Club and Moon before calling it a night. Musician Kid Capri also was at Rain with five friends. … Gerry McCambridge, star of The Mentalist Live! at V Theater, taped segments for FX’s DVD on TV along with hosts Dave Holmes and Jennifer Lothrop.
Good Charlotte rocker Joel Madden makes a guest DJ appearance at Moon after DJs Brandon Kent and Steve Walker start the wheels of steel a-burning. … Frank Sinatra’s former musical director Vincent Falcone will join Grammy Award-winning saxophonist Gary Anderson in the Marquee Room at the newly opened Las Vegas Rocks Cafe downtown on Fremont Street. … Multi-platinum recording artist Jay Sean will be “Down” at Blush in the Wynn. … Comedian Rocky LaPorte headlines at Harrah’s Improv through Sunday with Nikki Glasser and Jerry Rocha.
Across America, 53 beautiful young ladies are doing their final packing for Las Vegas as they prepare for 10 days of work in the 2010 Miss America Pageant that starts here on Thursday. I talked with reigning Miss America Katie Stam about her yearlong duties and what the glamour girls can expect once they arrive. … It’s the first meet-and-tweet get-together at Sushi Samba in the Palazzo and at the restaurant’s other locations in New York, Chicago and Miami, and funds raised will go to the American Red Cross for the Haiti earthquake victims.
Robin Leach has been a journalist for more than 50 years and has spent the past decade giving readers the inside scoop on Las Vegas, the world’s premier platinum playground.
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