Half-Day Afternoon Tours
Join us for in-depth explorations that take us behind the scenes at one of the world’s top leisure and meeting destinations. Designed to reveal the unexpected side of Las Vegas, half-day tours offered the morning and afternoon of Wednesday, October 7 illuminate the vast array of amusements and unusual story angles this city offers—downtown, on the Strip, and beyond.
Tours will be offered to delegates a la carte—the add-on fee designed to help SATW defray transportation and meal-related expenses.
Afternoon Half-Day Tours (including lunch):
- Active $25
- Associate $35
- Alumni $40
- Spouse $40
All afternoon tours depart our host hotel, the Downtown Grand, at 1:00 p.m. and return at 4:30 p.m. All afternoon tours will include lunch.
Questions? Contact Las Vegas Tours Chair David Swanson: firstname.lastname@example.org
Fat Tires on the Mustang Trail
Sample the great outdoor adventures that are only minutes from Las Vegas with this mountain biking tour in the scenic Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area, about 30 minutes from the Strip. The tour suits all levels, from the athletic beginner to experienced riders. It’s a 7-mile ride with minimal climbs, but those who want more challenge can do extensions up to 12 miles. Escape Adventures provides bikes, water and helmets. While basic riding skills are a prerequisite, participants will be divided into beginner, intermediate and possibly advanced groups, each with a guide. The ride lasts about 2 hours. Maximum: 50.
Excavate & Exfoliate
Where else but Las Vegas — a tour that combines the excitement of playing around in full-size bulldozers and excavators and the serenity of a spa visit. Dig This is America’s first heavy-equipment playground where you don a hard hat, learn to maneuver big earth-moving machines and then dig, claw, drag and play games in a safe, fun environment. By contrast, the luxury setting of the Canyon Ranch SpaClub at The Venetian and The Palazzo invites you to relax for a conditioning scrub, providing the exfoliation. The group will split, with half doing the excavation first and the others beginning with the exfoliation; then they will trade places. Maximum: 20.
NOTE: This tour is also offered in the morning, as HDA-02.
Cirque du Soleil Behind the Scenes: LOVE and Mystère
A visit to the set of The Beatles LOVE will give fans a chance to experience the musical legacy of the Beatles featuring a state-of-the-art sound demonstration with more than 6,300 custom-made speakers in a 360-degree theater. Guests will have the opportunity to delve into the Cirque du Soleil set pieces, props and costumes used in the performances. Participants also meet the fantastical characters of Mystère and its artistic director to learn about the inspiration and story behind some of Cirque’s most beloved characters. Maximum: 50.
Cirque du Soleil Behind the Scenes: Zarkana and Zumanity
The Zarkana cast and crew put on their teaching caps to give guests a hands-on class in some of the essential parts of the Cirque du Soleil show, both onstage and off. Courses may include rigging, clowning, wardrobe, sand painting and juggling. At the Zumanity production, participants observe a rehearsal of one of the sexy show’s new acts, followed by a Q&A session with the artists and crew. Maximum: 50.
HDP-05 – SOLD OUT
Las Vegas Arena/The Park Development
Look into the future and learn about the shift in outdoor entertainment and experiences Las Vegas has seen over the past two to three years. MGM Resorts International and AEG are building a $375 million privately funded 20,000-seat arena on the Strip. The Las Vegas Arena will be the centerpiece of a revitalization of the area between the New York-New York and Monte Carlo hotels dubbed The Park. With new shopping, dining and entertainment venues, the project will create an outdoor destination spanning more than eight acres. Mark Prows, senior vice president of Arenas, MGM Resorts International, will guide the tour, giving a construction update and a perspective on the
economic impact. The tour includes lunch at Shake Shack,
New York-New York’s modern “roadside” burger stand. Maximum: 15.
HDP-06 – SOLD OUT
Green Vegas: Desert Resort Sustainability
“Green” is not necessarily a term that comes to mind when you think about Las Vegas, but behind the indulgences of Sin City is a commitment to sustainability that is carried out without guests ever having to lift a finger. This tour will examine highlights of efforts to keep the Vegas party sustainable. At Della’s Kitchen, a historic farmhouse meets urban eatery at Delano Las Vegas, you sample tidbits from a menu featuring regional ingredients including sustainably grown herbs from the hotel’s own greenhouse and Nevada-sourced beef. At the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino convention center, you see one of the world’s largest rooftop solar photovoltaic arrays and tour
the hotel’s recycling sorting center. You conclude at ARIA
Resort & Casino, an icon of environmental sustainability. Maximum: 15.
Above the Strip and Behind the Scenes at Las Vegas High Roller
In a skyline that dazzles, the Las Vegas High Roller stands out. After lunch at The LINQ Promenade, the Strip’s newest outdoor shopping, dining and entertainment district, you join Eric Eberhart, general manager of the High Roller, for a tour of the world’s tallest observation wheel. Take a peek at the inner workings and discover more about the design, construction and operations of the 550-foot-tall structure. After the tour, guests will enjoy the 30-minute High Roller experience offering spectacular views of Las Vegas. Maximum: 30.
NOTE: This tour is also offered in the morning, as HDA-07.
Luminaries from the spa world take you on a guided tour of three of the city’s top spas and share trends. Start at ESPA at Vdara, an 18,000-square-foot, two-level haven where you learn about the secrets behind its signature treatments inspired by the desert landscape. A tranquil water garden welcomes guests to The Spa at ARIA, an 80,000-square-foot complex featuring a balcony with an infinity-edge pool resembling a Japanese open-air hot bath. The ARIA stop includes a toast in a private spa suite designed for couple’s treatments, bachelorette parties or small group events. Complete the tour at BATHHOUSE at Delano Las Vegas, where an expert will explain its treatment philosophy
of utilizing local resources. You will get a first-hand taste of the
menu with a custom 25-minute foot or shoulder massage. Maximum: 10.
Art and Culture in Las Vegas
Fine art and wine pair in this outing, starting at the Bellagio Gallery of Fine Art, which displays museum-caliber exhibitions. You will see the current presentation, “Picasso — Creatures and Creativity,” and experience the resort’s Art & Wine: A Perfect Pairing series. Meet Bellagio Director of Wine Jason Smith and Executive Director of Fine Art Tarissa Tiberti as they pair wine from Bellagio’s cellar with legendary works of art. At Picasso, the iconic restaurant by renowned chef Julian Serrano, the group will enjoy a champagne toast on the patio overlooking The Fountains of Bellagio and view the restaurant’s collection of original works by Pablo Picasso. The last stop will be a stroll
through ARIA’s Fine Art Collection. Maximum: 20.
Look Who’s Watching You — Behind the Scenes of ARIA Surveillance — SOLD OUT
Get a peek inside one of the most fascinating elements of Las Vegas, today’s gaming surveillance techniques. In the early days of gambling, activity was scrutinized from catwalks high above the casino floor. This tour shows you the high-tech scene now, taking you inside the surveillance center beneath the floor at the ARIA Resort & Casino. ARIA’s director of surveillance explains the technology of protecting the casino, focusing digital eyes on the movement of money throughout the gaming areas, lounges and cash-count rooms. Maximum: 8.
NOTE: This tour is also offered in the morning, as HDA-10.
The Height of Luxury Shopping
Adjacent to the ARIA, The Shops at Crystals is one of the world’s only shopping destinations dedicated exclusively to high-end brands. It’s home to North America’s largest Louis Vuitton store as well as flagship boutiques for Prada, Gucci, Tiffany & Co., Roberto Cavalli, Tourbillon and Ermenegildo Zegna. Senior Vice President and General Manager Farid Matraki, who was instrumental in bringing the luxury concept of Crystals to life, will be your guide, sharing details of the intricately designed shops. There will be VIP experiences and takeaways from retailers such as Lalique, Sisley, Mikimoto, Porsche Design and Rodney Lough Jr. Gallery, among others. You also will encounter
a living-flower carpet, ice sculptures and exceptional displays of
public art including an immersive James Turrell installation. Maximum: 15.
HDP-12 SOLD OUT
MGM Resorts Mixology
You may mix a mean martini or Manhattan, but wait until you see what some of the city’s top mixologists whip up at several MGM Resorts. From diamond-shaped ice cubes and cotton candy creations to liquid nitrogen libations, their cocktails will provide a sneak peek into the future of mixology. During the session, guests will taste delicious cocktails, enjoy small bites and participate in an exclusive M life Moment, a special mixology class created for members of M life, MGM Resorts’ premier rewards program. Maximum: 10.
Grand Canal Shoppes at the Venetian and Palazzo
We start with lunch at Anchor Bar, winner of the James Beard Foundation’s 2003 “America’s Classics” award and creator of the original Buffalo chicken wings. Receive a Premier Passport with thousands of dollars in savings and offerings and a VIP ‘swag bag’ with a GGP shopping gift card. Explore the Shoppes, where 160 specialty brands and world-class restaurants nestle around a reproduction of Venice’s Grand Canal. Signature brands include Nevada’s only Barneys New York, Jimmy Choo, Diane von Furstenberg, Christian Louboutin, Tory Burch, Bottega Veneta and Fendi, among others. Restaurants include Wolfgang Puck’s CUT, Emeril Lagasse’s Delmonico Steakhouse and Table 10,
Mario Batali’s OTTO Pizzeria, Buddy V’s and dozens more. The center
is home to entertainment superstar venues, TAO Asian Bistro &
Nightclub and Lavo Italian Restaurant and Nightclub. Maximum: 50.
NOTE: Guerlain will provide a complimentary makeup application to
the first 10 individuals to sign up for this tour.
Sushi Rolling at Rice & Co.
Learn the steps to preparing sushi rolls from one of Las Vegas’ best sushi chefs, Rice & Co.’s Danny Chen, mastermind behind the elaborate rolls at Luxor’s authentic Asian restaurant specializing in Chinese and Japanese cuisine. When the group arrives, sushi stations will be set with the necessary tools and ingredients so each person can follow along as Chen shows step-by-step how to make some of his signature creations. Chen also will prepare the Fire Breathing Dragon Roll, voted the hottest sushi roll in Las Vegas on Food Network’s “Heat Seekers.” The group will enjoy a sampling from the restaurant’s menu. Maximum: 10.
The Vegas Steak-cation
Las Vegas is home to many of the nation’s best steakhouses, and you’ll sample three top-rated ones at The Venetian and The Palazzo. See distinctly different takes on the steakhouse experience created by celebrity chefs Mario Batali at Carnevino, Wolfgang Puck at CUT and Emeril Lagasse at Delmonico Steakhouse. Meet with the restaurant chefs to taste their beef, learn about the special whiskey menu at Delmonico’s and sample wine at the other two restaurants. The group also visits the Las Vegas Car Museum at The Palazzo. Maximum: 20.
Las Vegas Arts District Tour
Located just north of the Strip and south of the heart of downtown is “18B, The Las Vegas Arts District,” the city’s artistic heart with its own unique, quirky vibe. The 18b name arises from the original 18 designated blocks, now expanded. You will learn about the history and growth of the district and then embark on a guided walking tour. Some of the highlights: Street art, always-changing murals on buildings; the Arts Factory, in a 50-year-old commercial warehouse, the geographic and creative center for exhibits and events; Art Square, three remodeled 1950s buildings and an outdoor art garden; and Antique Alley, with more than 20 stores. The tour will split into smaller groups,
and you will have time to visit with artists and shop in galleries
and a variety of unique stores. Maximum: 40.
Play in a Mini Poker Tournament
Play poker at the casino that made poker famous, in the historic Binion’s Gambling Hall, a place revered by poker players and pros throughout the world for its unmatched legacy in the game. Start with lunch from Binion’s Café followed by an introduction and brief lesson from a Binion’s poker expert, then go all in for a fun, two-hour poker tournament. You won’t need cash to play, as there is no buy-in for this tournament. Instead, participants will compete for prizes provided by Binion’s. Maximum: 20.
Beer vs. Wine: What Pairs Best
The craft beer scene has been heating up in Las Vegas, challenging wine’s dominant hold on the food and beverage industry. The beverage professionals at Mandalay Bay have created an interactive experience that offers diners the opportunity to decide whether beer or wine reigns supreme. For this event, one of America’s most widely recognized chefs, Hubert Keller, will prepare delectable cuisine while Mandalay Bay’s Certified Cicerone Sarah Johnson and Director of Wine Harley Carbery lead a discussion on pairing wine and beer with food. But of course there’s a catch! Based on each explanation given, diners will vote on which beverage they felt paired better
with each course, beer or wine. Tasting notes will be provided
for each beverage and Johnson and Carbery will go to battle,
fighting for their favorite beverage to win during this five-course
dining experience. Maximum: 12.