Unrivaled Cultural Celebrations among Highlights for Ushering in the Chinese New Year
Las Vegas will celebrate Chinese New Year, Jan. 31 – Feb. 16 with a dazzling collection of symbolic décor, traditional Chinese cuisine and activities to commemorate the Year of the Horse. This year’s Chinese zodiac sign is significant because it is believed to bring fortune and good luck. The Year of the Horse is also an excellent year for travel, making Las Vegas the ideal destination to celebrate.
The spirit of the horse is recognized to be the Chinese people’s ethos – making unremitting efforts to improve themselves. It is energetic, bright, warm-hearted, intelligent and able. Ancient people liked to designate an able person as ‘Qianli Ma’, a horse that covers a thousand li a day (one li equals 500 meters).
People born in the year of the horse have ingenious communicating techniques and in their community they always want to be in the limelight. They are clever, kind to others, and like to join in a venture career. Although they sometimes talk too much, they are cheerful, perceptive, talented, earthy but stubborn. They like entertainment and large crowds. They are popular among friends, active at work and refuse to be reconciled to failure, although their endeavor cannot last indefinitely.
They cannot bear too much constraint. However their interest may be only superficial and lacking real substance. They are usually impatient and hot blooded about everything other than their daily work. They are independent and rarely listen to advice. Failure may result in pessimism. They usually have strong endurance but with bad temper. Flamboyant by nature, they are wasteful since they are not good with matters of finance due to a lack of budgetary efficiency. Some of those who are born in the horse like to move in glamorous circles while pursuing high profile careers. They tend to interfere in many things and frequently fail to finish projects of their own.
Festive Décor & Entertainment
Starting Jan. 11, the Conservatory & Botanical Gardens at Bellagio will display a new exhibit with a fabricated three-tier mountain featuring eight massive stallions – as the number eight represents good luck. The East Garden will feature a prosperous money tree with oversized gold coins hanging from branches. Live performances of traditional folk and pop music with authentic Chinese instruments including the erhu (二胡), ruan (阮), and pipa (琵琶) will take place in the serene South Garden from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. daily. The conservatory design will be guided by Feng Shui with the exhibit on display till March 1.
Wynn Las Vegas unveiled three, 800-pound Tang Dynasty horse sculptures on Jan. 9. The 9-foot-tall, 10-foot-long horses were created by master sculptor Sillipachai “Mod” Toonrud of FORTE Specialty Contractors in Las Vegas, and will be painted red and gilded in gold leaf. The sculptures will be on display through Feb. 14.
“PANDA!” takes the stage at The Palazzo Las Vegas, Jan. 7 to Feb. 28 for a limited engagement. Audience members will go on an epic journey as the show follows the heroic quest of LongLong, a warm and caring panda, on an adventurous mission to rescue his beloved Peacock Princess who was kidnapped on their wedding day.
Singer Hacken Lee will perform live at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace, Feb. 7-8. The show starts at 8 p.m., and will feature hit songs from his last decade of music.
This year, The Smith Center for the Performing Arts offers two special shows that will highlight the spirit of Chinese New Year. On Feb. 16 at 7:30 p.m. “TAO: Phoenix Rising” takes the stage with a night of Taiko drumming and innovative choreography. Then Shen Yun performs from Feb. 21-23. This show brings to life 5,000 years of Chinese civilization through classical Chinese dance and music in an exhilarating performance you will never forget.
The Fremont Street Experience will host “Chinese New Year In the Desert” Feb. 7-9. Kicking off the weekend of celebration is the opening ceremony on Friday, Feb. 7 at 6:30 p.m., followed by a concert series with special guests Victoria Wei Zhong and Henry Chuc. Other notable events include the Lotus Flowering/Thai Folk Dance, Muay Thai Exhibition and a special concert series on Saturday, Feb. 8. The Chinese New Year parade takes place on Sunday, Feb. 9 at 11 a.m. and starts at 4th Street, from Gass Ave. to Ogden. The festivities continue on Fremont Street Experience with performances by the Tendo Baikoki Cultural Dance Group, Las Vegas Hawaiian Civic Club Choral Group and a dazzling concert featuring Gloria Papin. Fremont Street Experience will host nightly lion dances performed by Lohan School of Shaolin taking place on the 3rd Streed Stage.
Lion & Dragon Dances
Traditional Dragon and Lion Dances will take place throughout the destination to celebrate the Year of the Horse. Performances will include:
- Jan. 31 – 3 p.m. at The Venetian Las Vegas: A traditional Dragon dance and eye painting ceremony with firecrackers and festive decorations to celebrate the Chinese New Year
- Jan. 31 – 6 p.m. at MGM Grand: Lion-dancing pioneers Yau Kung Moon will perform a traditional Chinese lion dance that starts at the main lobby and carries through the casino
- Feb. 1 – 4 p.m. at Bellagio: A lion and dragon will prance their way through Bellagio’s Porte Cochère welcoming guest.
- Feb. 1 – 6 p.m. at Wynn Las Vegas: Guests can experience the traditional dragon dance, which will start at South Valet at Wynn. The parade will wind through the Wynn Casino before making its way to Encore. The procession will feature a 90-foot-long-dragon, eight lions, firecrackers and special acrobatic performance
- Feb. 1 – 5 p.m. at Flamingo Las Vegas: Traditional lion dance through the casino floor.
- Feb. 1 – 6 p.m. at The Quad Resort & Casino: Traditional lion dance through the casino floor.
- Feb. 1 – 7 p.m. at Harrah’s Las Vegas: Traditional lion dance through the casino floor.
- Feb. 3 – 6 p.m. at ARIA: Traditional lion dance that will start at the main porte cochère and head through the casino.
- Feb. 5 – 7:30 p.m. & 10 p.m. at Gold Coast: Traditional dragon dance through the casino floor. Guests will also enjoy trees filled with candy and tangerines.
- Feb. 8 – 12 p.m. at Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino: Traditional lion dance through the casino floor.
- Feb. 8 – 1 p.m. at Paris Las Vegas: Traditional lion dance through the casino floor.
- Feb. 8 – 2 p.m. at Bally’s Las Vegas: Traditional lion dance through the casino floor.
- Feb. 8 – 5 p.m. at Caesars Palace: Traditional lion dance through the casino floor.
- Feb. 12 – 7 p.m. at Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino: Traditional lion dance through the casino floor.
This year’s impressive array of exquisite décor and lively entertainment will be joined by a number of restaurants on and off Strip that are preparing special menus and dishes for the holiday celebration. Some of this year’s festive Asian menus include Dragon Noodle Co. & Sushi Bar at Monte Carlo, which will feature a lucky $29.00 dinner with three dishes. The meal includes gong hei fat choy 恭喜發財 (braised dried oyster and black moss with oyster sauce), ha ha smile 呵呵笑 (manila clam with black bean sauce), and Budda delight 羅漢齋 (Chinese Napa, bean thread, black fungus, black moss, snow peas and Chinese mushroom).
Rice & Company at Luxor Hotel and Casino will tempt your taste buds with a four-course meal that features signature selections, including the wicked roll, egg drop soup, kung pao chicken, beef and broccoli, and garlic shrimp with vegetables. The meal ends with the dessert duo of exotic fruits and berries with chocolate passion.
Guests looking for authentic Asian fare may visit Wynn Las Vegas’ Wing Lei, for a dim sum lunch buffet from Jan. 30 to Feb. 9. The newly remodeled restaurant will allow guests to indulge in dozens of small delicacies, daily from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Tea lovers will be excited to hear that Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas is celebrating Chinese New Year in their stunning Tea Lounge. Chinese New Year-inspired pastries, handmade fortune cookies and the traditional Chinese coin in an authentic red envelope will be the highlights of the traditional tea ceremony. Afternoon tea service will be served by staff trained in the art of the traditional Chinese Tea Ceremony and are delighted to share the history of Chinese New Year with guests. Specialty menus are also available at MOzen Bistro and Mandarin Bar.
Delectable Chinese New Year menus will also be available at FIN at The Mirage, The Grand Wok and Sushi Bar and Pearl at MGM Grand.
A special Lunar New Year menu is also being planned at Ming’s inside Harrah’s Las Vegas Hotel & Casino, Nobu at Nobu Hotel inside Caesars Palace along with Beijing Noodle No. 9 and Express Court at Caesars Palace.
Poppy Den Asian Bistro by Chef Angelo Sosa at Tivoli Village will offer a specialty five-course prix-fix meal on Jan. 31. Guests will enjoy a sugar snap pea and water chestnut salad, steamed fish made with black mushroom and ginger, soy braised pork belly with bok choy, peking duck served with scallion pancakes, pickles and hoisin.
Concerned about how to get around town? The Las Vegas Monorail will be offering a $24 3-day pass discount, allowing you to celebrate Chinese New Year and navigate the destination with ease. Just use the promo code: “CNY14” at their station kiosks or at their website at http://www.lvmonorail.com/.