OLD VE­GAS

Canadian Geographic - - DEPARTURES - By Aaron Kylie

EAT

Start your gritty, Old Ve­gas ex­pe­ri­ence by gam­bling with your life at the Heart At­tack Grill on Fre­mont Street. The hos­pi­tal-themed diner of­fers su­per-high calo­rie items such as “by­pass” burg­ers with up to 8,000 calo­ries. En­joy more el­e­gant, old-school din­ing nearby at his­toric Top of Bin­ion’s Steak­house or swank Hugo’s Cel­lar, both lo­cated in casi­nos.

STAY

Once owned by mob­sters in­clud­ing Bugsy Siegel and Meyer Lan­sky, the El Cortez Ho­tel & Casino is vin­tage Ve­gas — its ex­te­rior hasn’t changed since 1952 and it’s on the Na­tional Reg­is­ter of His­toric Places. The Golden Nugget, mean­while, com­bines clas­sic Ve­gas chic with some over-thetop Strip-style so­phis­ti­ca­tion, as ev­i­denced by The Tank — a la­goon-like pool sur­round­ing a three-storey shark tank that you can blast through on a wa­ter­slide.

PLAY

The Fre­mont Street Ex­pe­ri­ence, a canopied, five-block, pedes­trian-only stretch of neon-sign-fronted casi­nos, restau­rants and ho­tels (in­clud­ing all the above), is the cen­tre of Old Ve­gas ac­tion. The area is also home to the city’s old­est gam­bling es­tab­lish­ment, the Golden Gate Ho­tel & Casino, and

hosts reg­u­lar free con­certs and nightly light shows, which ap­pear on a 457-me­tre-long by 27-me­tre-wide video screen, the world’s largest. Ex­plore more of Ve­gas’s past steps away at the ex­cel­lent Neon Mu­seum ( LEFT) and Mob Mu­seum.

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