Hello from Paris! Err… I mean, Vegas!
Don’t let the palm trees fool you — it’s COLD here!
Meghann, new blogger friend Stephanie, and I had fun exploring Vegas yesterday! Since, you know, walking around for 8 hours straight (after having already gone out dancing the night before) is a really good idea before running a half marathon.
Yesterday’s highlights included checking out the beautiful Christmas displays in the Bellagio hotel:
How cute are these penguins?!
These polar bears are made entirely out of flowers!
I was also seriously impressed with this display:
Which was made out of real trees, flowers, branches, etc. SO creative! It smelled great, too.
For lunch, we walked over to Caesar’s Palace to hit up Mesa Grill (one of Bobby Flay’s restaurants).
Caesar says “holla”
The restaurant was packed — we had to wait about 30 minutes for a table. Luckily we were able to get a bread basket to tide us over while we waited. Starvation was imminent. I didn’t get a photo, but they had seriously THE best cornbread. Spicy and delicious!
When we were finally seated, I ordered the Ancho Chile Honey Glazed Salmon with Spicy Black Bean Sauce and Roasted Jalapeno Crema.
It was AMAZING — loved the honey glaze on the salmon and the black bean puree. It was all so flavorful! There was some sautÃ©ed spinach buried under there, too.
After lunch, we continued on our mission to destroy our feet/legs before race day and walked over to the Ghirardelli shop for a big running blogger meet up! There’s a TON of people in town for the race this weekend.
Photo courtesy of Janae’s Twitter feed
It was fun meeting some new friends! Meghann and I took advantage of the opportunity to hand out some Attune Foods coupons to everyone, too.
Following the meet up, more walking ensued — it was off to the official Vegas Rock n Roll race expo!
And this hilarious video happened, too. I need to work on my slow motion running skills, apparently — oh and yes, I always run in peacoats, jeans, and boots. Doesn’t everyone?
The official race shirts are cute, too! I like the guitar.
By 5 p.m., Meghann and I were feeling like this:
But apparently Vegas doesn’t believe in benches (unless they are in front of some sort of gambling device), so we walked back out into the Venetian shopping area and basically collapsed on the floor in the middle of a hallway. Win.
After 30 minutes of really entertaining people watching and relaxing, we decided to be grandmas and go to dinner at 6 p.m. sharp. Which technically was 9 p.m. for us east coasters, anyway, so whatever.
I was in LOVE with the Venetian hotel. How cool is this place?!
There’s even art on the ceilings, just like in Italy.
That sky below is fake — it’s the ceiling! Doesn’t it look real?
What do you guys think? Fake Venice here in Vegas:
Vs. real Venice (picture from my trip there last winter):
We had dinner at a place called Otto in fake Piazza San Marco!
We both loved this place — great food and fun ambiance, too!
We sat “outside” and they even dimmed the ceiling just like it was dusk.
Meghann and I decided to share a bunch of stuff — I love sharing since it means you get to taste more of the menu!
We started with a salad — escarole, pear, and walnut:
Plus some roasted beets in balsamic:
And a pizza! This was the pancetta and goat cheese pizza with tomato and caramelized onions. REALLY good.
I ordered some tea after our meal — a peach green tea that I thought was just a normal bagged tea. Then… this arrived:
A wine glass with hot water and a flower sitting in it!! SO cool! I was clearly unnecessarily excited.
I took out the flower after about 5 minutes of steeping and it tasted just like normal green tea! So unique and fun. I liked having tea in a wine glass, too.
After dinner, Meghann and I wandered around a bit more killing time and making our way over to Planet Hollywood.
We figured that while in Vegas, you should go see a risquÃ© show, so earlier in the day we bought tickets to see Peepshow, which is starring Holly Madison (Hugh Hefner’s former girlfriend featured on the TV show “Girls Next Door”).
It was an AWESOME show — there were some seriously impressive dance skills and acrobatics! There was a girl up on a swing blindfolded for awhile doing all sorts of gymnastics moves and a guy who did this crazy cool performance climbing up and down a rope (he was even hands free flipping down it for one heart attack inducing moment) — you have got to be SO strong to do that sort of thing! I was sufficiently impressed.
Time to get organized and head off to brunch! The half marathon starts at 5:30 tonight — so weird to not have gotten up early and went off to run this morning! I’m hoping that my stomach holds up okay — trying to stick to breakfast type foods until the race just in case. We’ll see! Given how tired my legs feel right now (and how crappy my throat/lungs feel from all the stupid secondhand smoke everywhere here), this likely will not be a fast race — but it should be a REALLY fun one, and that’s our main goal.
Vegas half marathon or bust!! Stay tuned for a race recap!