Travel Weekly's Las Vegas E-letter: Oct. 16, 2007

VIRGIN AMERICA last week launched daily nonstop service between Las Vegas and the airline's San Francisco hub, which has connecting service to Washington (Dulles) and New York (Kennedy). To celebrate the new route from San Francisco, the first flight included Las Vegas showgirls, celebrities such as Carmen Electra and a wedding performed at 35,000 feet by Virgin Group Chairman Richard Branson. Upon arriving in Vegas, daredevil Branson repelled 407 feet down the Fantasy Tower at the Palms Casino Resort to promote the new service. The airline currently offers three daily nonstop flights between San Francisco and Las Vegas, and on Nov. 4 it plans to add two more daily roundtrips.

THE HARD ROCK HOTEL & CASINO has launched a new state-of-the-art Web site designed to give users a sense of the resort's rock and roll ambiance. Visitors who sign on to www.hardrockhotel.com view a video that portrays a typical Hard Rock experience, from the rooms to gaming, dining, spa, nightlife and live music. Site visitors also hear the music currently being played in the resort via a 24-hour online stream, and they have the option to subscribe to the HardRockHotel.com RSS feed, which gives them immediate notification of Hard Rock updates and events.

THE SHARK REEF AQUARIUM at Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino now offers a 30-minute, behind the scenes guided tour of the 90,000-square-foot facility. Guests 13 years or older can explore aspects of the aquarium that include sharks and their environments, water filtration, saltwater production, scuba diving, animal care and food preparation for the aquarium's more than 2,000 residents. Tours are available every 30 minutes from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Tickets are $8 with the purchase of admission. For more information, call (702) 632-4555 or visit www.mandalaybay.com.

HALLOWEEN has long been one of the biggest parties of the year in Las Vegas, and 2007 is no exception. Among the events:

" Circus Circus Hotel and Casino offers the award-winning Fright Dome through Oct. 31.

" Studio 54 at MGM Grand presents "Nightmare on 54th Street" from Oct. 26 through 31, offering $10,000 in prizes for the best costumes.

" The Alexis Park Hotel and Casino hosts the 12th annual Fetish and Fantasy Halloween Ball on Oct. 27.  

" Harrah's Las Vegas presents "Trick or Treat Flight Night" on Oct. 27. Airline tickets and $5,000 will be given away for the best costumes.  

" Club Rio at the Rio Hotel & Casino presents a Latin-themed Halloween, "Extravaganza 2007," on Oct. 30.  

" Illusionist Criss Angel hosts a Halloween party at Pure Nightclub in Caesars Palace on Oct. 30, featuring $20,000 in cash prizes for the best costumes.  

" The Carnaval Court at Harrah's Las Vegas boasts a big outdoor Halloween bash on Oct. 31.  

" The Imperial Palace hosts a "Scary-Okee" party on Oct. 31, with cash prizes awarded to the best male and female karaoke performers.  

" The Rio Hotel & Casino's Voodoo Lounge presents "Mingle & Mayhem" on Oct. 31, with $3,000 in cash prizes up for grabs.  

" Paris Hilton and friends will be on hand at the new LAX Nightclub at the Luxor on Halloween night, handing out more than $20,000 in prizes for the creepiest costumes.

Las Vegas Editor: Dean Blaine

Phone: (650) 348-1752

[email protected]

For promotional opportunities in the E-letters, contact [email protected].

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