Luxe Life Blog
Exclusive: Theater acts among Strip attractions for new party season
Wicked Whispers & Racy Rumors! Three exclusive nightclub news items today: The outrageous The Box nightclub from London and New York is headed to The Strip; Cirque du Soleil founder and billionaire Guy Laliberte is partnering with The Light Group in a venture at Mandalay Bay; and the wild Pink Elephant club is integrating the showgirls in Crazy Horse Paris at MGM Grand.
Theater in the form of outdoor burlesque cabaret is coming to town, and its proponents predict that it’s The Next Big Thing for The Strip’s most profitable growth entertainment engine. From now on, it’s not just about DJs and dancing; it’s also about performance artists.
Don’t confuse Rent or The Book of Mormon with what nightclub operators have up their sleeves before spring. This ain’t no Chorus Line: This will be wild, wanton and wacky with an emphasis on sex!
London and NYC’s The Box
First, let’s open The Box. New York Magazine described the three-level, 5,000-square-foot nightclub as a “mezzanine of armchairs and velvet-curtained booths with a state-of-the-art stage graced by circus stars, human oddities and avant-garde thespians from France, Russia and Brooklyn’s Brighton Beach. The mix is as incongruous as its wallpaper of Chinese fighting fish and flappers.” Call this dinner, drag and dancing!
What did Absinthe start when it landed at Caesars Palace? Now the shenanigans are moving indoors as a nightclub attraction with a naughty, nightly presentation at 1 a.m. rotating 200 production numbers. The British outpost proudly presents “unspeakable burlesquery, the most risque burlesque acts known to man in an infamous underground vaudeville den with anything from scantily clad trapeze tricks to a woman playing dueling banjos without the benefit of those musical instruments.”
I’m guessing that our straight-laced commissioners will have a few words to say about the definitions of performance art in the setting of an illicit hole-in-the-wall bar. Performances continue to 4 a.m. five mornings a week.
Here’s what Nightclub & Bar magazine had to say in May about the merger of nightlife and theater: “ ‘Everybody wins’ in this insane, interactive nightlife experience of Eyes Wide Shut come to life.”
Cirque Meets Light at Mandalay Bay
The new teaming between The Light Group and Guy’s Cirque in a new “performing nightclub” in Mandalay Bay takes over the shuttered Rumjungle. It’s being overhauled, rebuilt and redecorated with theater spectacle and performance stages being added to the nightclub attractions of DJs and dancing.
I have been unable to ascertain an opening date or a new name, but I’m reliably told that the deal is done, and Cirque meets Light will be the casino resort’s top new nightclub attraction. Imagine an elevator from the dance floor to a swimming pool. Cirque’s expansion into nightlife is logical, plus its Michael Jackson: The Immortal World Tour becomes a permanent attraction in 2013. The smartest move, though, is to team with Light, who knows Vegas nightclub business inside out with 19 bars, restaurants, clubs and daylife pool venues on The Strip alone.
Pink Elephant is a delightful euphemism for drunken hallucinations, but there’ll be no mistaking this elephant in the room at MGM Grand. We hinted this story weeks ago: The 7,000-square-foot jewel box Crazy Horse Theater is expanding into the 10,000-square-foot Pink Elephant Club on the casino floor.
Don’t fret, fans of the fabulous felines. Those delicious topless dancers aren’t going anywhere; in fact, they become the high-kick start show for every night at Pink Elephant as the Brazilian and Mexican hotspots transform from striptease to party headquarters the moment the garters and fishnets have been picked up. MGM also has changes underway for Studio 54 and Tabu Ultra Lounge.
Here’s a YouTube video of DJ Erick Morillo at Pink Elephant in Playa del Carmen.
*It’s interesting to note that the new Tropicana nightclub team taking over the Club Nikki space has already started integrating solo star dancers on elevated stages as part of the nightclub parties.
*The new edition of DJ Magazine has raised eyebrows with its listing of Top 100 Clubs around the world. Congratulations go to Marquee at the Cosmopolitan at No. 80 and Encore Beach Club at Steve Wynn’s Encore at No. 91. They were the only two in Las Vegas this year; last year, there were none! No XS, Tryst, Tao and Pure, but clubs in Bulgaria, Estonia, Croatia, England, Ireland and Australia made the list.
The Top 100 DJ category included names familiar to Las Vegas: David Guetta (No. 1), Armin van Buren (2), Tiesto (3), Deadmau5 (4), Afrojack (7), Calvin Harris (34), Dada Life (38), Steve Aoki (42), Wolfgang Gartner (56) and Sidney Samson (92).
*Paul Oakenfold, who just ended his two-year contract at the Palms, will now appear at Chateau Nightclub & Gardens at the Paris starting this weekend.
You’ll always get the most up-to-date, exclusive breaking news of Las Vegas nightlife developments first at VegasDeLuxe.com.
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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