Travel Weeklys Las Vegas E-letter: Sept. 14, 2004

A NAME CHANGE is in the cards for the 2,500-room Aladdin Resort & Casino, which recently joined Starwoods portfolio of hotels. For the next 18 months, the hotel will continue to operate under its current name and will undergo a renovation of its guest rooms, 114,000-square-foot casino, restaurants and the 7,000-seat Theater of the Performing Arts. Once the renovation is finished, the resort will be known as the Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino, a Sheraton Hotel. The new Hollywood-themed property will feature memorabilia, valued at $20 million, that will be incorporated into the decor of specialty guest rooms and suites as well as interactive attractions throughout the resort. The hotel also offers 75,000 square feet of meetings facilities with 18 break-out rooms, two executive boardrooms and a separate conference floor. Starwood, through its Sheraton brand, will manage the hotel operations but will not be responsible for casino operations.

THE RENAISSANCE LAS VEGAS HOTEL will open in January, two months ahead of schedule. Located adjacent to the Las Vegas Convention Center, the property, billed as the largest nongaming hotel in Nevada, will feature 548 rooms, 30 suites and 32,000 square feet of meetings space. For more information, call (866) 352-3434 or visit www.renaissancelasvegas.com.

THE HOFBRAUHAUS LAS VEGAS begins celebrating Oktoberfest on Sept. 17, as Schuhplattler, a troupe of German folk dancers, will entertain guests nightly through Sept 24. From Oct. 6 through 16, Cornelia will yodel, sing and dance, and the brass band Schwabenmusikanten will play on Oct. 12. Throughout the festivities, sketch artists will be on hand to create keepsakes for visitors, and Friedel Michels will demonstrate the art of beer stein painting from Sept. 24 through Oct. 3. Other special events include the keg-tapping ceremony on Sept. 18, a best-looking legs lederhosen contest, a dirndl (skirt) contest, a sauerkraut-and-dumpling-eating contest, stein-lifting contests and yodeling competitions. The attractions Oktoberfest festivities continue through Oct. 31. Complimentary shuttle service is available for groups of four or more by calling (702) 853-BEER. For other event details, log on to www.hofbrauhauslasvegas.com.

VISITORS WHO WANT TO SEE THE WYNN COLLECTION -- 14 paintings from the collection of casino mogul Steve Wynn and his wife, Elaine -- will have to wait until it is permanently installed at the Wynn Las Vegas resort, which is slated to open next April. Or they can travel to the Nevada Museum of Art in Reno, where the exhibition will be on display from Oct. 2 through March 30. Highlights include Pablo Picassos Le Reve (The Dream), Vincent van Goghs Peasant Woman Against a Background of Wheat, Pierre-Auguste Renoirs Among the Roses and Paul Gauguins Bathers. The museum is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Sundays and until 8 p.m. on Thursdays. Admission is $10 for adults, $8 for students and senior citizens and free for museum members. For more information, call (775) 329-3333 or visit www.nevadaart.org.

VOSGES HAU-CHOCOLAT, a high-end confectionery store, and Ferraras Cafe will open at the expanded and renovated Forum Shops at Caesars in October.

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