Greet the day from one of the blue mohair banquettes inside world-renowned chef Thomas Kelleru2019s light-filled Bouchon at the Venetian. The menu features a range of deftly executed bistro classics, like a springy chive cru00eape filled with brie and jambon de Paris and a housemade merguez-sausage hash. The Venetian is also home to two Bouchon bakeries, so donu2019t skimp on dessertu2014especially not the sturdy cheese danish, topped with a dollop of cream-cheese frosting.
Leave the casinos for later and head to Las Vegas Motor Speedway to act out your favorite Fast and the Furious scenes at Exotics Racing. Choose from a selection of 50 high-performance vehicles, including a McLaren 570S, Lamborghini Aventador LP700, or even a race car like the EXR LV02. (Multicar packages are also available.) After sitting in the passenger seat for two u201cdiscovery laps,u201d put the pedal to the metal on the 1.2-mile tracku2019s seven turns and 1,800-foot straightaway.
For almost two decades, one of Americau2019s best Thai restaurants has drawn foodies like Jonathan Gold and Anthony Bourdain to an anonymous mall far off the Strip. At the end of last year, Lotus of Siam opened a second location closer to the action, on East Flamingo Road. Here, James Beard Awardu2013winning chef Saipin Chutima continues to serve northern Thai dishes inspired by family recipes, while her husband, Bill, oversees an impressive wine list of more than 300 varieties. A dry riesling cuts the richness of the crispy duck with panang curry especially well.
Take a breather at your hotel, the Mandarin Oriental. As one of the Stripu2019s few non-gaming properties, the 392-room hotel offers a welcome respite from smoky blackjack tables and flashing lights without killing all the fun (keep an eye out for the Mou00ebt & Chandon vending machine near the 23rd-floor check-in). With sleek decor inspired by 1930s Shanghai, each room features floor-to-ceiling windows and spacious bathrooms outfitted with deep soaking tubs. Cool off in the outdoor lap pool on the eighth floor or get a treatment at the bilevel, East-meets-West spa.
The Strip has become a magnet for celebrity chefs, as hotels seek to distinguish themselves by attracting top culinary talent. Twist by Pierre Gagnaire, inside the Mandarin Oriental, is the three-Michelin-starred French masteru2019s only stateside restaurant. The modern French menu offers rich yet refined dishes like Royal Ossetra caviar and bone marrow toasts and an A5 Japanese wagyu beef filet. If views of the city lights 23 floors below and the glimmering globes hanging from the ceiling above have you feeling especially extravagant, opt for one of the seasonal tasting menus, like the Lucky Number 7, which features seven courses inspired by seven outstanding winesu2014for $777 a head.
Las Vegas history is written in lights at the Neon Museum, a nonprofit that collects and rehabs iconic Sin City signs from properties like the Golden Nugget and El Cortez, the longest continuously running hotel and casino in town. During the hour-long tour, youu2019ll learn about the personalities who built Vegas, from Bugsy Siegel to Howard Hughes. Be sure to nab a spot on a nighttime tour (check the schedule, which changes seasonally) so you can see the museumu2019s 11 restored neon signs in action.
Itu2019s time for another drinku2014this is Vegas, after all. Catch an Uber to The Palazzo, where last year New Yorku2013based mixologist Sam Ross (of acclaimed speakeasy Attaboy) and NYC nightlife vet David Rabin opened the elegant cocktail lounge Rosina. The menu is devoted to classics like the old fashioned and the Jimmie Roosevelt, but if you order a glass of bubbly, you can use one of the baru2019s Champagne call buttons for an effortless top-off. Rumor has it thereu2019s a secret menu with five variations on the mint julep, including one made with mezcal and rosewater.