Las Vegas has long been known as Sin City and although the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (LVCVA) does not endorse that title, it continues to use the "What happens here, stays here" slogan, now in its tenth year, and adult freedom is still a consistent thread in its advertising.
The LVCVA even held a "pardon presentation" recently at McCarran International Airport to bring the 'what happens here, stays here' campaign to life; pardons were presented for sins such as having too much fun, not having enough fun, eating too much, and missing flights.
But while the plentiful nightclubs, strip clubs and casinos continue to make Las Vegas an adults playground, the numbers show that most people visiting Vegas won't need any pardons.
Fewer people now visit Las Vegas specifically to gamble than they have in past years, 13% in 2008 compared to 8% in 2012, and only 1% of first-time visitors say the primary purpose of their trip is to gamble, while dining, shows and shopping play more into visitors' vacations.
"I would say that Las Vegas is not so much Sin City but more of the 'Spoiled' or 'Decadence City', with the award-winning chefs and dining experiences, over-the-top resorts and spas, state-of-the-art shows and revamped entertainment options, not to mention current and trendy headliners," said Jeff Krudop of Travel Leaders in Fort Wayne, Indiana.
Rose Lockhart, also of Travel Leaders in Fort Wayne, agreed.
"Las Vegas is no longer Sin City for my clients," she said. "With the multitude of shows, activities and venues that are offered both on the Strip and downtown, my clients see Las Vegas as a great destination for fun, adventure, relaxation and pampering. Also, with so much history and sightseeing in the area, Vegas is a centrally located hub for travelers to explore other regional interests such as the Grand Canyon or Hoover Dam."
Because it's possible to find nightlife of all kinds across the country, and gambling is as easy as hopping online, it's not so much what visitors can do in Las Vegas, but about being able to do so without judgment. There's still something particularly protective about losing all inhibition in Las Vegas compared to other vacation destinations.
"Vegas means different things to different people," said Wally Jones of Travel Leaders in Phoenix, Arizona. "There will be the 'what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas' shenanigans for those that are looking for it, sometimes those who may happily -- or reluctantly -- fall into it unexpectedly. 'Sin' is quite subjective, but I don't think Vegas will lose its reputation as a place where any consenting adult can go for just about any indulgence they desire anytime soon."