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F1’s Bellagio Fountain Club returning; packages $13k per person

Updated March 25, 2024 - 10:53 am

The F1’s Bellagio Fountain Club, the race’s recurring residency production, is returning back to the Strip.

The VIP fortress will once more overtake the front of Lake Bellagio for the race’s return Nov. 21-23.

“Bellagio Fountain Club’s debut at last year’s Las Vegas Grand Prix event surpassed all expectations,” Andrew Lanzino, MGM Resorts International’s Vice President of Citywide Events Strategy said in a statement. “Following the incredible reception from our guests last year, the team is hard at work crafting plans for an even more exceptional experience when racing’s most exciting event returns to Las Vegas.”

Ticket packages went on sale Monday morning. These packages include three-day hospitality access with a two-night hotel stay, at $13,015 per person (room rates vary by property). Go to mgmresorts.com for info.

As in 2023, the club will offer up-close, top-down views of the track’s front straightaway and the Fountains of Bellagio show, the Winner’s Stage, private indoor and rooftop hospitality decks and unlimited food and beverage service during race weekend.

Star chefs as Mario Carbone, David Chang, Alain Ducasse, Masaharu Morimoto and Jean-Georges Vongerichten are confirmed for the culinary program. This is the “first set” of celeb chefs, according to MGM Resorts, with more to be added.

The 3,600-capacity venue was effectively disassembled and hauled into the Cosmopolitan’s former employee parking lot (known as the Tompkins Lot) behind the hotel.

And while the club’s design and structural integrity were applauded, the removal of mature trees planted between Lake Bellagio and the Strip sparked widespread complaints in the weeks leading to the race.

But within two weeks of the race’s completion, trees were returned to the sidewalk location. They give shade to SpongeBob, Spider-Man, Darth Vader and other costumed characters in their own Bellagio Fountain club.

Michaels’ move

On the topic of MGM Resorts International news breaks …

Jenn Michaels, a highly respected and well-liked PR official, has announced she is retiring from the company, effective mid-June.

Michaels checked in with the update over the weekend. Her decision closes out a 32-year run in the company. But Michaels says she remains open to future opportunities.

I’ve known Michaels for more than two decades, and her ability to shape the company’s message and frame stories has always been remarkable. I believe the first time we worked together was when Siegfried & Roy signed their “lifetime” contract with the Mirage in February 2001. Keeping those guys on point during the news conference was itself a production.

So it has been a minute. Whatever the future holds, we’re here to catch what Michaels is pitching.

The Mat Pack

Mat Franco, the Linq Hotel headlining magician who is still chugging along after opening in August 2015, appears on “The Kelly Clarkson Show” Wednesday. All we know is this act involves a wheel full of suggestions, and Franco holding one that reads, “Make Me Disappear.”

Franco is still a top draw at the Linq, which named the theater after him.

Las Vegas Idol

Look for Billy Idol to move his Vegas shows to Dolby Live at Park MGM, after performing most recently at the Chelsea at the Cosmopolitan. At least, I am looking for that.

Laugh it out

There is a strong possibility the Tropicana will close before Laugh Factory founder Jamie Masada sorts out the club’s future in Las Vegas.

The venue is entertaining multiple options, with Vegas GM and veteran comic Harry Basil scouting locations. But the club (meaning, Masada) doesn’t need to be in a rush to enter into an agreement until it is ready.

Laugh Factory boasts name recognition, a record of success in Las Vegas and resources as a nationwide chain. All valuable qualities when seeking a new home on the Strip.

Trop’s April 2 closing is just after the final live entertainment of any kind is presented at the property, from Friday through Sunday. Basil co-headlines along with Ron Pearson, Dom Irrera and Mike Saccone with guest host Gary Cannon in the venue’s swan song.

What Works In Vegas

On the topic of comedy, Nate Bargatze crushes it at Encore Theater. He’s been blowing up, even before his “Saturday Night Live” hosting appearance in October. Bargatze sold out two shows Wednesday, two on Friday and two on Saturday at the 1,480-seat theater. Then he hopped on a plane Sunday and performed two sold-out shows at Boston’s TD Garden, home of the Celtics and Bruins.

How does this happen? Bargatze has a novel approach, becoming so good at his craft people pay to see him perform.

Cool Hang Alert

Gabie Lopez presents “Material Girls!” at 6:30 p.m. (dinner), 8 p.m. (show) Wednesday at Italian American Club Showroom. The production is a tribute to such female icons from the 1980s, ’90s and 2000s as The Bangles, Donna Summer, Gloria Estefan, Whitney Houston, Christina Aguilera, Jennifer Lopez, Madonna and a host of others.

Lopez headlines with Jenn De La Tore and Bree Lenae; special guests are Lorena Peril, Anne Martinez and Vincent John (possibly as Cyndi Lauper?). A packed lineup and great concept; go to iacvegas.com for intel.

John Katsilometes’ column runs daily in the A section. His “PodKats!” podcast can be found at reviewjournal.com/podcasts. Contact him at jkatsilometes@reviewjournal.com. Follow @johnnykats on X, @JohnnyKats1 on Instagram.

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