Wednesday, Sept. 25, 2013 | 5:55 p.m.
Hollywood goes gaga over the Oscars, Emmys and Grammys. In the global-gaming world, the equivalent is the G2E Casino Entertainment Awards. Award-winning comedian and Plaza headliner Louie Anderson hosts them tonight at his downtown hotel showroom.
Presenters include Mayor Carolyn Goodman and her husband former Mayor Oscar Goodman, Mary Wilson (The Supremes), Robert Nash as Robert De Niro, Murray Sawchuck and Chloe Crawford, ventriloquist Kevin Johnson, entertainment journalist rival Norm Clarke and yours truly for Vegas DeLuxe.
I’m presenting the Comedian of the Year Award, and the three finalists are Venetian headliner Rita Rudner, Flamingo resident George Wallace and Ron White, who regularly appears on the Strip. Our Vinyl at the Hard Rock Hotel is one of three finalists for Theater of the Year, while MGM Grand Garden Arena is up for Arena of the Year.
Former Las Vegas resident Tom Cantone is tapped as Entertainment Executive of the Year from the Mohegan Sun casino in Massachusetts. I’m rooting for my pals Motley Crue, who are up against Lynyrd Skynyrd and Ronnie Dunn for Entertainer of the Year to be presented by Mary.
PALMS RESTAURANT CHANGES: The sports-driven, high-vibe bar, restaurant and lounge Heraea at the Palms suddenly shut down Monday with email notices to staff that it had closed. Palms hotel execs confirmed Tuesday night that they will take it over and manage it under a new name in about two months. Thanks to Joe Vargas at KingofNightclubs.com for monitoring the abrupt exit for me. He advises that the staff will be paid Friday from the corporate office.
I’ve tried to reach Jonathan Segal of the One Group, who operated Heraea to ask if the next-door Asian fusion restaurant Xishi they planned to open also will be mothballed. At the time of this post, he had not responded. Meantime, Joey says the Palms has indicated that the restaurant partnership is finished. One Group’s STK in the Cosmopolitan remains a huge success in addition to other locations.
Their Bagatelle Club closed at Tropicana this year but still runs successfully in New York and Los Angeles. One Group also is associated with the Gansevoort Hotel group in New York that opens its boutique hotel at center Strip next year. (Check back Thursday for Editor at Large John Katsilometes’ report on One Group.)
ZIP LINE SETS OPENING: VooDoo zip-line operators at the Rio connecting its two towers have set a November start date. The attraction more than 400 feet high will begin on VooDoo Steakhouse patio, on Masquerade Tower’s 50th floor, and will propel riders at fast as 33 mph to the 20-story Ipanema Tower. Guests make a return trip to the starting point, traveling backward at 20 mph. The feet-dangling adrenaline rush will accommodate two riders at once more than 490 feet above the ground.
VooDoo Zip Line will boast a 360-degree panorama of the Strip and views of the mountains. The adventure will cover one-third of a mile in 70 seconds. Riders can dine, gamble and enjoy hotel facilities while waiting for their reserved ride time, when an alert is sent to cell phones that their reservation is ready.
FASHION FLIRTS: Shapely starlet Claire Sinclair, who headlines in “Pin Up” at Stratosphere, turned heads Tuesday at the International Lingerie Show in the Rio. She dazzled as the spokeswoman modeling thigh-high stockings Kix’ies, and fans besieged her for autographed copies of her Playboy pictorial. She also gave away “Pin Up” tickets and is the keg tapper at Hofbrauhaus on Friday.
A new Las Vegas-centric fashion website launched today. Susan Stapleton is editor of Racked Vegas, with stories on our local designers, boutiques, store openings and closings and models and others who make shopping cool in Sin City. Check out Vegas.Racked.com.
The second-annual Style With a Cause is tonight at Stitch Factory downtown with guests Joshua Christensen and Carlos Casanova of “Project Runway.” Las Vegas fashion stylist Jenna Doughton created the event to salute inspiring women in the community and our hometown designers to help them win recognition in New York and Los Angeles.
Reality TV star Farrah Abraham, who has become an overnight media mogul with her celebrity sex videos, will launch a Topco Sales line of “Teen Mom” sex toys, adult novelties and clubwear when she hits Las Vegas in January for AVN/AEE Expo.
Paris headliner and “American Idol” winner Taylor Hicks joins the cast of “Million Dollar Quartet” at Harrah’s for the show’s finale.
The sixth-annual Road Rally with more than 70 beautiful collectible cars for the Barrett-Jackson Collector Car Auction parades from the Convention Center along the Strip to Mandalay Bay.
Lon Bronson and his All-Star Band are at Cabaret Jazz in Smith Center.
Downtown’s future plans are the topic of a free lecture at Historic Fifth Street School.
Jimmy Eat World and Matt Pond are at House of Blues in Mandalay bay.
Photographer Mark Weiss unveils his Theater of Paint photos with a salute to Motley Crue at Rock Paper Photo gallery in the Hard Rock Hotel.
Cold Blue Rebels, Mortified Mortician and Wednesday 13 are next door at Vinyl.
And congratulations to Tao Group partners and execs at the Venetian for the black-tie celebrity opening of Tao in Manhattan.
98 Degrees singer and founder Jeff Timmons gets ready to set out on a cross-country tour of his new adult-male revue Men of the Strip; “America’s Got Talent” stars embark on their tour; plus, I head off to New York shortly to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Food Network I helped launch.
Robin Leach has been a journalist for more than 50 years and has spent the past decade giving readers the inside scoop on Las Vegas, the world’s premier platinum playground.
Follow Robin Leach on Twitter at Twitter.com/Robin_Leach.
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Follow Sun A&E Senior Editor Don Chareunsy on Twitter at Twitter.com/VDLXEditorDon.
Palms Casino Resort has come a long way since its "Real World" debut in 2002. The boutique property features three distinct towers and a diverse mix of bars and restaurants across a 95,000-square-foot casino.
Palms, which features more than 1,200 rooms and fantasy suites, is currently undergoing a multi-million dollar transformation that will encompass an Ivory Tower room and suite redesign, new culinary additions, re-imagined gaming spaces and new, distinctive nightlife experiences.
In addition to newly designed rooms, during the first phase of the renovation, Palms will welcome Heraea, a high-energy American restaurant and lounge, and XISHI, a pan-Asian restaurant and lounge.
Fantasy Suites include the Hardwood Suite, the only hotel room in the world with its own basketball court.
Other amenities include the all-new Cantor Gaming® race and sports book, one of the few sports books in Las Vegas to include a poker room; SOCIAL; Scarlet; Chocolat Bistro; tonic bar; ghostbar; Pearl Concert Theater; Moon Nightclub; N9NE Steakhouse; Nove Italiano; Simon Restaurant & Lounge; Palms Pool & Bungalows; Kim Vō Salon; Drift Spa & Hammam; Brenden Theatres, a 14-theatre cineplex and more than 60,000 square-feet of meeting space.
The Plaza, renovated in 2011, has a lobby that features marble and inlaid mosaic tiles, chandeliers and a plush front desk that matches the classic Las Vegas feel with a contemporary look.
The hotel has 1,003 rooms and suites that showcase views of the Las Vegas Strip and downtown Las Vegas. Amenities include world-class entertainment, a casino floor that offers an array of classic gaming choice, which include 600 slot machines, a 400-seat bingo room, 18 table games and 57,120 square feet of casino space.
Among the dining options is Oscar's Beef * Booze * Broads, a steakhouse opened by former Las Vegas Mayor Oscar B. Goodman, which is located in the glittery dome enclosure above the hotel's main entrance.
The Plaza sits at the west end of the Fremont Street Experience on the site of the first train depot and auction site in Las Vegas, dating back to the San Pedro-Los Angeles-Salt Lake Railroad in 1905. The railroad was sold to Union Pacific in 1921 and the depot was demolished in 1970 to make way for the Union Plaza Hotel, built in 1971.
The hotel has been featured or is visible in several movies, including the 1971 James Bond film, "Diamonds are Forever;" the 1989 film "Back to the Future Part II;" the 1995 move "Casino," and the 2000 movie "Pay it Forward."