Las Vegas, Nevada is the modern day equivalent of Mammon.
There are certainly other cities in different parts of the world that may try to compete with it, but it has a personality and reputation all its own.
Here are 30 things you probably never knew about the famous Sin City.
The disgraced baseball star, Pete Rose, can be found frequenting many of the Las Vegas casinos, ready to give his autograph and share a picture with you. These souvenirs are rumored to come with a price tag of about $99 to $199.
The “Godfather” actor, James Caan, briefly got back into the limelight many years after the movie with a lead role in the show, Las Vegas.
The recent heavyweight clash between Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather Jr. was held in Las Vegas, specifically in the MGM Grand Garden Arena. A fun fact about this arena is that Barbara Streisand had inaugurated it in 1993 by performing live for the first time after almost three decades.
Quite a few Vegas casinos claim to offer the biggest slot machine jackpots available in the entire world. Regardless of who is actually on top, some of the biggest slot machine jackpots in the world are, in fact, right here in Las Vegas.
Elvis Presley enjoyed a career revival through his Las Vegas concerts from the late 1960s till his untimely death. If there is one place in the United States that is still so closely associated with a musical performer after such a long time, Las Vegas and Elvis Presley take the cake.
Las Vegas’ modern avatar emerged during the construction of the Hoover Dam in the 1930s, when the workers doing construction there made a temporary home of the city.
Hunter S. Thompson would write probably the most famous novel about the hedonistic experiences in Las Vegas. His novel, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas would go on to be made into a hit cult classic film starring Johnny Depp.
The famous astronomer, Carl Sagan, the actor Martin Sheen, and the singer-actor, Kris Kristofferson, have all been notable figures who were at one point arrested for their anti-nuclear demonstration against the Nevada Test Site, which was held in Las Vegas.
The usual Las Vegas experience can be summed up by the ubiquitous phrase, “what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas”, which is now used in a variety of situations demanding secrecy.
The boxer, Joe Louis, was a part owner of the Moulin Rouge Casino, one of the few casinos to welcome both blacks and whites back when segregation was widespread.
The Southern Nevada Foreign Trade Zone ensures that a wide variety of goods can be bought at the McCaran Airport in Las Vegas at either duty-free or low excise tax rates.
You can see spectacular imitations of worldwide hotspots, such as the Eiffel Tower and the Egyptian Valley as well as a faux English castle, all in Las Vegas.
The Bellagio has occasionally and memorably been used as a painting exhibition featuring past masters such as Vincent Van Gogh, Jackson Pollock, Pablo Picasso, and Henri Matisse. The Bellagio isn’t the only place in Las Vegas to showcase works of art – Artwork from the Hermitage Museum in Russia has been showcased at the Rio All-Suite Casino.
The show never ceases to stop in Vegas. O Sirque du Soleil is among the prominent shows enjoying continuous tourist attraction. You can easily be intoxicated just by the choices of entertainment on display.
In 1999, Luciano Pavarotti, the most famous of the Three Tenors, was invited to grace the opening of the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino.
There are some state parks located within the vicinity of the casinos if one is feeling nature-inclined. There are skiing facilities available as well in the Spring Mountains. So one can move beyond the desert to other landscapes.
In Spanish, “Las Vegas” translates to mean “the meadows”.
There is a Madam Tussaud’s Wax Museum here that features figures just as striking as they would be at the museum’s home location in London.
Las Vegas has an interesting mob history. Numerous violent turf wars that have taken place in the background of the desert. As the city expanded, so did the blood. The Mob Museum featured here recounts that gritty background.
You are likely to see celebrities hang out together here. The likes of Serena Williams and Neymar often spend holidays in Vegas.
51% of the world gambles, yet there is not much disparity in terms of the number of men and women who come to Vegas. Besides the on-site gambling resources, there are various online resources for the risk takers who can’t make it to Vegas physically, but who still want to indulge.
You have to be wily enough to be aware of the tricks used by casinos on players. The line between being a prince and a pauper on the strip is a thin one.
Nicholas Cage, the often derided actor, would win an Academy Award in 1995 for his role of an alcoholic writer in the film, Leaving Las Vegas.
The urinals of the main street station at Las Vegas have been made by mounting a portion of the Berlin Wall. These can be seen by females too if they are interested in viewing the remnants of the Cold War in the Mojave Desert setting.
There is the Red Rock Canyon which is located on the west side of the Las Vegas city. It is an ideal climbing area, though caution is advised at the same time. There is a pleasant drive in prospectus for those who feel like wading through the canyon.
The “Welcome to Las Vegas” sign was done by Betty Willis who did not copyright it as she felt that the city needed it to garner publicity back when she introduced it.
Las Vegas does not play host to any major sporting entity.
The city has earned the sobriquet of the “ninth island of Hawaii” as it is popular with Hawaiians who often come here either for work or pleasure. Elvis Presley was also known to spend his time divided between Las Vegas and Hawaii.
Las Vegas has numerous Hispanic and Asian groups as a part of its demography, making it one of the largest multi-racial populations in the country.