Sunday,  March 24, 2019  8:10 pm

Las Vegas turns up the heat and brings the sizzle to Calgary


Las Vegas turns up the heat and brings the sizzle to Calgary

The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority hosted a sold-out event for 130 travel agents at the Trollery 5 Brewpub in Calgary on March 20, 2018.

Travel partners featured new and unique experiences to Las Vegas and hotel suppliers represented 80 per cent of the city’s room inventory.

Canada is the number one international market to Las Vegas, with over 1.44 million travellers and representing 25 per cent of their international market. Over 50 per cent of Canadian travellers come from Western Canada, including Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba. From Calgary, there are 27 weekly flights to Las Vegas, seven with Air Canada and 20 from WestJet.

Fernando Hurtado, International Market Manager, attributes much of this increased travel to hockey and sports.

“Sports marketing has been a huge factor with the arrival of the Las Vegas Golden Knights NHL hockey team. Between one-quarter to one-third of the fans in the stands are from Western Canada cheering on their teams.”

Some new and notable experiences arriving in Las Vegas include the opening of Hell's Kitchen Restaurant by world-renowned celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay at Caesar's Palace and a new show, “The Voice: Neon Dreams”, from the NBC hit TV show, opening in September at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Las Vegas.

The Park MGM, formerly The Monte Carlo, recently completed a $150 million overhaul renovation from the ground up to open as the newest hotel in the MGM property line-up.

Adrenaline junkies can experience the thrill of driving super fast cars on the fastest and safest race track designed by professional race car drivers at Exotic Racing.

Machine Guns Vegas offers the ultimate shooting experience with options to shoot a wide variety of machine guns, handguns, and rifles in the safest indoor and outdoor shooting range. The South Point Hotel has an equestrian area with 1,200 climate controlled horse stalls and the Graceland Wedding Chapel offers bragging rights for wedding and vow renewals at the oldest chapel in Las Vegas (71 years old).

Blair Hirtle, Account Manager for Western Canada, wanted to bring a little bit of the Vegas experience to Calgary with a sneak peek of Magic Mike Live. Serena Villamor, Director of Sales for Base Entertainment, brought dancers Sebastian, Kyo and Brandon from Magic Mike Live Las Vegas to showcase the popularity of the show.

“The show was created and directed by actor Channing Tatum, who also designed the theatre and handpicked all 13 dancers for the show with the aim of highlighting the talent and athleticism of the performers. Our biggest audiences are birthday parties and bachelorette parties.”

The show is different and unique in that it celebrates and empowers women in an intimate and fully immersive experience, Villamor said. “It's not about us, it's about the women. You feel confident, empowered and celebrated by the end of the show.”

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