With its bright lights, multitude of attractions and all-round ostentatious allure, there’s no denying that Las Vegas is one of the most enticing cities in the United States for tourists, and a bucket list essential for anyone eager to experience first-hand what it feels like to rub shoulders with the rich and famous.
Attracting high-rollers from the world over to its glitzy casinos and hotels, there’s no city in the world quite like it – but thanks to the current global Covid-19 pandemic and the ongoing travel restrictions it has brought, it might feel a little difficult to get there this year than it has done before.
If Nevada is a no-go for you in 2020 but you have long had your sights set on a trip to Sin City, the good news is that all is not lost – because this is where the world of entertainment steps in to provide equally satisfying experiences.
If you’re unable to get out there yourself, then don’t worry: there are plenty of ways to bring Las Vegas to you. Whether you’re settling down in front of a television screen, exploring Las Vegas via a game, or losing yourself in some of the city’s finest cultural exports, there’s no reason why you can’t bask in the glow of the City of Lights from the comfort of your own home.
Want to know how? We’ll tell you.
Thanks to the glitz and glamour of Las Vegas, it has been chosen as the backdrop to multiple famous movies. The 1960 flick Ocean’s 11 brought together some of the biggest names of the Rat Pack (Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr.) for a heist adventure, which went on to inspire the creation of Steven Soderbergh’s 2001 remake. The second version of the film featured a similarly glittering cast (Roberts, Pitt, Clooney, Cheadle) and once again showcased the lights of Las Vegas. Organising a movie night in your private home cinema and popping on this classic is the perfect way to immerse yourself in the magic of Sin City, all from the comfort of your sofa.
The Hangover explores Las Vegas in a different fashion. The successful 2009 comedy follows a group of men as they embark upon a raucous a bachelor party in the city, and is a hilariously alternative way to get a feel for the bright lights and ostentatious nature of the city. Of course, you don’t need to recreate the hangover part yourself if watching at home.
James Bond is perhaps a bit more classy than the characters from The Hangover, with Sean Connery’s 007 pursuing a shadowy villain in the Las Vegas valley in Diamonds Are Forever. Many of the film’s locations are authentic, while its car chase sees Bond rocketing down the Las Vegas Strip. The Strip is traditionally celebrated for its fine dining rather than fast driving, but the presence of Bond and Las Vegas means that the car chase still exudes an unmistakeable aura of luxury.
If you want more agency in your virtual Las Vegas exploration, gaming could provide the answer. With Need for Speed: The Run, you can emulate the experience of Bond by racing through the streets of Las Vegas. Obviously, this is not something that anyone can do in real life, but the video game provides a realistic tour of the Nevada streets.
Golf is undoubtedly one of the classiest sports, with The Falls Golf Club at the Lake Las Vegas Resort among Nevada’s most iconic courses. The video game Tiger Woods PGA Tour 07 allows you to complete eighteen holes at The Falls, while your player soaks up the classic Vegas sunshine.
Outside of video gaming, there is a massive selection of Vegas-style online slots that digitally bring to life the luxurious casino action of the city. These top titles pay tribute to both classic and contemporary Vegas casino trends, with mobile slots allowing you to take the city’s pizzazz with you wherever you go.
A less practical way to experience Las Vegas is through the Vegas-themed Monopoly board game, although the properties on the board do give players a tour of the city’s sights. The Strip and Downtown Las Vegas are the two most expensive properties; owning those in the game is a good way to feel like you’re living an utterly lavish life.
Another way to immerse yourself in the delights that Las Vegas has to offer is through a 360-degree virtual tour of The Neon Museum, which allows visitors to feel like they are physically within the attraction in real life. The tour takes users through the Neon Boneyard, a collection of sign descriptions and historical images that provide real insight into the city’s glamorous past.
If you’re an avid reader, then get lost in Joe McGinniss Jr’s 2008 novel, The Delivery Man. The 2008 release focuses on a group of adults who are looking to make their way in this great American city, with a particular focus on the forgotten sides of Vegas. If you’re after a page-turner, then this book won’t disappoint.
Finally, it is fitting to end with an appreciation of Frank Sinatra, a man who embodied the charm, extravagance and sheer sophistication Las Vegas more than any other individual we can think of (although Elvis might like a word on this one). If you want to bring Las Vegas to your living room, lie down on your sofa, turn out the lights, and play Sinatra at the Sands in its entirety. This live album contains many of the finest interpretations of classic cuts from Sinatra’s repertoire, with listeners transported to the Sands Hotel and Casino in 1966.
Las Vegas is synonymous with a luxurious way of life, so indulging in some Vegas-themed entertainment is a great way to inject a little more elegance into your own home. If you’ve visited the City of Lights before, then enjoying a bit of Las Vegas-style cinema, gaming or culture is a wonderful way to reminisce about your trip. You might have regretted leaving Las Vegas, but now you can experience the city without leaving your home.