Friday, Jan. 9, 2009 | 10:14 a.m.
Beyond the Sun
An estimated 130,000 people came to Las Vegas to attend the annual Consumer Electronics Show, which got underway Thursday. At 6:01 p.m. that night, it seemed about 129,999 people were in Las Vegas and looking to party.
And party they did.
The first day of CES was full of fun and excitement, so it was fitting that the night that followed was similarly fun and exciting, albeit in a whole other way.
A wide assortment of CES-related cocktail receptions, events and parties were hosted Thursday night at hotel ballrooms, nightclubs and restaurants across the city. It was hard to walk through a casino and not see a sign indicating a CES-related event or function.
The nerds truly have invaded.
One of the more well-known and highly anticipated events of the night was hosted by CNET at Palms Place. Rather than an isolated penthouse suite way up above the Strip, the CBS-owned venture rented out the sleek and sexy surrounds of Simon restaurant.
The party started at 9 p.m. and didn’t take long to get going, thanks to a fun live DJ, an energetic crowd and a fully equipped bar.
Naturally, the Simon kitchen ensured no tummies were left grumbling and a range of sushi, sliders and sweets were prepared and passed. Chef Kerry Simon’s signature “junk food platter” was spread across an entire table, with mountains of homemade cotton candy, chewy Fruit Loop treats (think Rice Krispy treats, but with Fruit Loops), cookies, cupcakes, caramel corn, brownies and snowballs piled so high you could almost feel your teeth rotting as you glanced in its direction.
The dance floor had to be expanded to accommodate the footloose and fancy-free attendees. Well before midnight, tables were pushed aside to make way for the dozens of people who took to the floor.
Outside, poolside heaters were constantly aglow, keeping guests warm as they mixed and mingled well into the night. The party went until 1 a.m.
It would be hard to describe the event, from a party perspective, as anything but a success. The food was good, drinks were eagerly refilled, the music was decent and everyone seemed to be having a genuinely good time.
In fact the mood was so infectious that even the Simon staff joined in, dancing and joking around with the rest of the party people as they cleared tables and manned their stations.
CNET’s soirée set the bar for the remainder of the post-conference parties. Luckily for party-hardy CES attendees, there are even more parties on Friday night and many of them promise to be even bigger than the kick-off night’s celebrations.
Monster Cable’s Friday night fete at Paris will likely be one of, if not the biggest, events of the night. The industry giant is hosting an awards ceremony earlier in the evening, followed by a concert by the Queen of Motown herself, Diana Ross.
Like CNET’s party, Monster Cable’s concert is invite-only and the public will not be allowed inside. CES, too, is a closed event. The trade show is limited to technology and electronics industry insiders.
Other events Friday include what appears to be an unofficial bloggerpalooza, the “It won’t stay in Vegas” blogger party at the Atomic Testing Museum, and Intel and PC.com’s joint CES party at LAX with Brooke Burke and the Counting Crows. Both events are also for invited guests only.
Find an extensive list of CES-related parties here.