Travel Weeklys Las Vegas E-letter: Oct. 5, 2004

EFFECTIVE OCT. 1, the Transportation and Security Administration now requires passengers to have a boarding pass and a valid government-issued photo ID -- such as a drivers license, military ID or passport -- to go through passenger security checkpoints at McCarran Airport. E-ticket receipts, itineraries (such as travel agent- or airline-issued itineraries) and vouchers will no longer allow passengers access through airport checkpoints. In addition, boarding passes will no longer be issued at the gates. Instead, they can be obtained through most airline Web sites, at ticket counters, through airport Speed-Check kiosks or at skycap curbside stations. 

CONSTRUCTION IS EXPECTED to begin next year on a $1 billion, 1.5 million-square-foot hotel-condominium project on 24 acres adjacent to the Las Vegas Hard Rock Hotel & Casino. Peter Morton, the propertys chairman and founder, recently acquired the parcel of land for $86 million. Plans call for the project to include four buildings that will house at least 1,500 hotel-condominium units, a collection of restaurants and nightclubs, several shops and boutiques and a health club and spa. Accommodations will range in size from studio apartments and one- and two-bedroom units to 6,000-square-foot penthouses. Poolside bungalows and villas also are being planned. The first phase of the development is expected to be completed roughly one year from the start of construction.

KRAVE, billed as the first alternative-lifestyle nightclub on the Strip and the largest omnisexual club in Las Vegas, opened this past weekend at the corner of Las Vegas Boulevard and Harmon Avenue, adjacent to the Aladdin. Launched by nightclub impresario Sia Amiri, Krave also features event producer Jeffrey Sanker, who will promote the venue to the gay and lesbian market. The clubs first series of events, called Everything You Desire, will be held every Saturday night. 

THE BLUE MAN GROUP, a popular production that has been a fixture on the Las Vegas entertainment scene since its debut at the Luxor Las Vegas in March 2000, will switch venues and open at the Venetian Resort-Hotel-Casino late next year. The group, best known for multimedia performances that feature three bald and blue characters, plans to retool the show a bit to accommodate its new space -- a 1,750-seat theater that is being custom-built in the Venetian. The Blue Man Group will continue its performances at the Luxor through Sept. 15.

JUST IN TIME for the holidays, heres the perfect gift for that someone who has everything: a lighted souvenir replica of the famed Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas sign that has served as the citys most visible and identifiable image since it was erected on Las Vegas Boulevard in 1959. Created by Bogar Enterprises, the miniature version of the sign, which measures a little more than a foot tall and about nine inches wide, comes with an electrical plug but soon will be available in a battery-operated version. Priced at $34.95, the Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas sign can be purchased online at www.theWelcometoLVSign.com or www.Key2Travel.com. It also can be found at retail outlets in the following venues: the Las Vegas Convention Center; MGM-Mirage properties; Hudson Group souvenir shops at McCarran International Airport; Mandalay Resort Group properties; Caesars Entertainment properties, including the Las Vegas cart at the Forum Shops at Caesars; Harrahs Hotel & Casino; Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino; Stations Casinos; Primm Resorts; Cashman Photo; Harley-Davidson retail store; Marshall Retail Group souvenir stores; the Welcome to Las Vegas Sign kiosk downtown; Cowboy Christmas at National Finals Rodeo and Coast Casino properties.

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