Christmas in Las Vegas

Las Vegas lights up for Christmas and New Year’s By: Janeen Christoff
The Venetian welcomes its second annual Winter in Vegas celebration. // © 2012 The Venetian Resort Hotel Casino
The Venetian welcomes its second annual Winter in Vegas celebration. // © 2012 The Venetian Resort Hotel Casino

The Details

Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority

Las Vegas is even brighter this holiday season with its recent transformation into a winter wonderland.

The Venetian Resort Hotel Casino and The Palazzo Las Vegas welcome the second annual Winter in Venice holiday celebration. This year’s festivities feature an exclusive six-week run of “Mannheim Steamroller Christmas Las Vegas, by Chip Davis,” featuring beloved and iconic holiday music in The Palazzo Theatre. Additionally, a schedule of memorable Italian-inspired experiences include an enchanting winter parade, a new 3-D light-projection show, a Winter in Venice fantasy scene at Palazzo’s Waterfall Gardens and the return of the skating rink above The Venetian’s romantic outdoor Grand Canal. To cap off the winter fete, the Venetian’s Doge’s Palace hosts the 3-D holiday light show “Lights of Venice” every night. The display concludes with a live finale that illuminates the plaza and the 65-foot Christmas tree. Winter in Venice runs through Jan. 6, 2013.

Holiday-themed prix fixe menus and specials will also be offered at the following restaurants inside The Venetian and The Palazzo: Aquaknox, B&B, Bouchon, Canaletto, Canyon Ranch Cafe, Delmonico, First Food & Bar, Grand Lux Cafe, Pinot Brasserie, Postrio, Table 10, LAVO Italian Restaurant and Valentino.

Clients heading to Vegas during the holidays can also ring in the season at Bellagio’s Conservatory & Botanical Gardens, which is home to a 45-foot-tall holiday tree and a family of floral polar bears and penguins. Guests can take advantage of a photo opportunity with a large floral card inside a six-foot-tall elaborately carved frame. Visitors will also be greeted by the sounds of music with live performances by a harpist and the wondrous sight of a classic gingerbread village created by the Bellagio pastry chefs. The Conservatory’s holiday exhibition is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week and will be on display the entire month of December.

Visitors to the Bellagio will also be treated to holiday music at the Fountains of Bellagio. With a diverse repertoire of musical tunes, the holiday selection includes classic hits such as “Hallelujah Chorus,” “Carol of the Bells,” “O Holy Night,” “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas,” “The Most Wonderful Time of the Year” and “Santa Baby.” The Fountains dance for visitors every 30 minutes beginning at 3 p.m., Monday to Friday, and noon on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays. After 7 p.m., performances are every 15 minutes until midnight, daily.

At the Mirage Hotel & Casino, Terry Fator has gotten into the Christmas spirit with “A Very Terry Christmas,” featuring special holiday-themed performances by Fator. During the run of special performances, the stage is transformed into the Fator Family’s “living room” in a journey featuring all of the show’s loveable puppets as they come home for Christmas. “A Very Terry Christmas” will take the stage at 7:30 p.m., Tuesday-Saturday through Dec. 22. 

The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas will transform its iconic Boulevard Pool into a winter wonderland overlooking the heart of the Las Vegas Strip with an ongoing variety of special holiday-themed events. Hours of operation are 3 p.m.-11 p.m., Monday-Friday, and 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., Saturdays and Sundays. Holiday hours will be in effect from Dec. 24 to Jan. 4 and will be 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., daily. All-day skating access is $10 for Nevada residents and $15 for non-residents. Visitors are allowed to bring their own skates or can rent a pair for $5.

Sam’s Town Hotel and Gambling Hall will once again transform its Mystic Falls Laser Light and Water Show into a magical holiday experience with festive lighting, decorative snowflakes, garland streams, wreath-adorned lamp posts and snow-covered trees that fill the atrium. For the first time ever, Sam’s Town will present the 15-minute laser light spectacular hourly during the holiday season. The show can be seen 5-10 p.m. through Jan. 1, 2013. Cowboy Santa will appear through Dec. 23 beginning at 4 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays and at noon Saturdays and Sundays.

Speed up to the Las Vegas Motor Speedway to check out Glittering Lights, Nevada's largest drive-through Christmas light show. Glittering Lights is open nightly through Jan. 6, 2013. Motor through 5:30-9 p.m. Monday-Thursday and 5:30-10 p.m. Friday-Sunday.

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