Viva Lago, Las Vegas!

We’ll be real. Vegas is not our favorite place in the world. A statement like that could get us barred for life by some travel circles, but it’s true. The saving grace for Vegas, in our minds, is the food and the architecture.

We first went to Vegas several years ago when I attended a conference there. Tim traveled along since we decided this might be the cheapest Vegas trip we could ever take–the hotel room, my flight, and all my food was covered by my company. Tim spent the days walking aimlessly, playing in the casinos, or trying to find Morgan Freeman (who was filming in our hotel). In the evenings, we visited almost every location on the strip and tried some of the cheaper restaurants that weren’t chains. In the end, we were glad to head home. The smoky interiors and the people with glazed-over eyes at slot machines made Vegas a less than glamorous experience.

When I had a chance to attend the same conference this year, I invited Tim along again, primarily because I didn’t want to go alone. We both decided after the last trip that the only way we’d go back is if we had enough disposable income to eat in the finest restaurants and see the best shows. With a three-week trip to New Zealand on the horizon, we knew that wouldn’t be the case this time. I suggested maybe we spend the time adventuring outside Las Vegas: go to the Hoover Dam or back to the Grand Canyon perhaps?

With the promise of an outside-of-Vegas adventure, Tim booked a flight to join me the day before my conference ended. That meant one night in Vegas to live up our finest restaurants/best shows dreams. Tim was put in charge of making our dreams come true, and I headed out for the conference.

By the time Tim arrived, the chances of us making dinner and a show were slim. Tim made the executive decision that food was a better dream come true than a show, so we headed to dinner.

Lago at the Bellagio was a perfect pick for dinner. Not only did we enjoy a delicious meal, but our table had a view of the famous fountains outside. We enjoyed several “shows” over the course of our meal.


Our view for dinner

The food was excellent. Served tapas style, each dish brought a new flavor and another reason to close our eyes and savor each bite. The Kobe beef and braised duck dishes were our personal favorites. The wine was perfectly paired, and the waiter was attentive to refilling as many glasses as needed. And can we talk about the flourless chocolate cake? A gluten-free eater’s dream! I was glad Tim isn’t a sweets-after-dinner guy because it meant I got to enjoy it practically to myself.

We would recommend Lago in a heartbeat. Reservations are ideal to ensure you get a table with a view. If the weather is cooler, make sure you bring a jacket or dress warmly–the insulation in the windows isn’t the best, and I did feel a bit cold during the meal due to unseasonably cold temperatures creeping inside.

Maybe we’ll go back to Vegas, and maybe our opinion of the place will change if we have more experiences like the one at Lago!

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