The Vegas Golden Knights steered clear of artist Damien Hirst’s segmented shark at Unknown bar at the Palms on Thursday night. Just a coincidence. The team made itself at home elsewhere at the resort, dining at Scotch 80 Prime and celebrating later at Kaos Nightclub and Dayclub.
“We would like to have done this a couple of months from now, but everyone was in good spirits,” Palms General Manager Jon Gray said in a phone chat Friday. “It’s a great group of guys, regardless of how the season ended.”
Which was in a shattering 5-4 overtime loss to the San Jose Sharks in Game 7 of the NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs. At least the revamped Palms is a fine resort to take some of the sting out of dropping a 3-1 series lead, and a 3-0 third-period advantage in Game 7 after a brutal 5-minute major penalty.
The house played “Le Castle Vania — John Wick Mode,” the team’s exiting music at T-Mobile Arena. Spirits were high despite the team’s early exit. The party was also the latest step in the Palms’ effort to partner, formally and otherwise, with Las Vegas’ pro sports teams.
The Kaos space, indoors and outdoors, is ideal for watch parties for the Golden Knight and Raiders. The now-iconic, 275-foot-tall LED wall on the resort’s Ivory Tower is fit for the VGK and Raiders’ logos (on April 15, the screen royally trumpeted Frank Fertitta IV’s 24th birthday).
The familiar “V” was shown inside Kaos Nightclub on Thursday, and we can expect the Raiders’ pirate to grace the place, too.
“There is a lot of natural cross-over throughout the company,” Gray said. “Station Casinos is a great local company, the ownership group supports the Raiders already. (Team owner) Mark Davis has been around the property, and we’re seeing more and more guys coming into the hotel with Raiders pins on their suits.”
The Palms’ $690 million overhaul has turned the property into a party haven. As Gray says, “We have more assets, more venues open, more places to have fun.” Golden Knights, and their fans, can even share cocktails with a shark (lowercase).
On that topic …
The Palms is not the only Vegas resort looking to resurrect the excitement of the original Palms. As it whittles its management lineup for its cost-cutting 2020 initiative, MGM Resorts International is reportedly seeking an image refresh of MGM Grand. The Palms, in its early years as a hip new hotel, is held up as an example. Maybe stage some “Naked Magicians” performances at Wet Republic, if someone hasn’t thought of it already — should the guys be extended through the summer, of course.
Aerosmith’s bar scene
A boomlet of a controversy is brewing at the Aerosmith “Deuces Are Wild” production at Park Theater. According to a source familiar with the staging of the hot-selling residency, the band wants to add sexy, female bartenders to its onstage rock-club set.
The seats in those two sections, which flank the band, are a terrific VIP amenity (I say this having sat in that area on opening night). To maximize the visual appeal, the musicians want to position bartenders and bar backs who are especially attractive onstage.
Problem is, those are actual operating bars, not set pieces, in the same class as those on the concourses of Park Theater, which are staffed by union bartenders. To use actors, models or any non-union bartenders onstage runs counter to Park MGM and Park Theater’s collective-bargaining agreement with the Culinary Workers Union 226 and Bartenders Union Local 165.
So far, union reps are pushing back and demanding their own bartenders work those stations. But this is an issue that needs to be ironed out when “Deuces” returns in June.
Bono rocks it
Mary Wilson of The Supremes, Broadway star Brent Barrett, ex-“Jersey Boys” co-star Travis Cloer, legendary comic Pete Barbutti and “Fantasy” at Luxor vocalist Lorena Peril made for a wildly diverse and entertaining spin through “The Dennis Bono Show” on Thursday afternoon.
Bono’s 2 p.m. weekly simulcast, which is free to the public, typically fills South Point Showroom. Bono and sidekick and singer Corrie Sachs navigate the hourlong program, backed by a great band led by Debbie Reynolds’ longtime pianist, Joey Singer.
Making her debut on the show, Peril wowed the crowd, with a cover of Barbra Streisand’s “Don’t Rain on My Parade,” killing the song and ending on its famous long, final note.
Cloer, a regular Bono guest, sang a Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons medley while plugging his Friday night show at CasaBlanca Showroom in Mesquite. It’s Cloer’s first appearance in the 475-seat room, which is actually a gem. To find that old-Vegas vibe, hit Mesquite. Or, Bono’s show.
Dionne Warwick’s show was an announced sellout at Jubilee Theater at Bally’s on Thursday night, the strongest showing of her monthlong run at the hotel. She has gradually built momentum during the run, which ends Saturday night, and still has a lot of loyal fans — about 900 turned out Thursday and about 200 hung out after the show to have Warwick sign advance copies of her new CD, “She’s Back.”
For a month, she was, and Warwick remains interested in returning to the Strip. We’ll know more next week.
Members of James Taylor’s band were in the Thursday audience, a night after Warwick and her band saw Taylor at the Colosseum at Caesars Palace. Sax legend “Blue” Lou Marini, a member of Taylor’s ensemble, was in that group and he related playing on an AIDS benefit special with Warwick in the 1980s. Marini is immortalized in “The Blues Brothers” movie, muttering, “Those lights are off on purpose” during the band’s ill-fated set at Bob’s Country Bar. Marini was also dressed as King Tut during Steve Martin’s performance of the song of that name on “Saturday Night Live.”
Morissette’s Strip history
Alanis Morissette played the the Mirage before she ever broke big. Actually, she played the space behind the Mirage, which is now MGM Mirage Employment Center, when it was The Palladium nightclub.
Morissette sold out the 1,650-capacity club in September 1995. Thanks to native Las Vegan James Reza for noting that gig on Twitter, and also the show Morissette played a few months later at the Aladdin Theatre for the Performing Arts (now Zappos Theater at Planet Hollywood). She closes her two-show run at Pearl at the Palms at 8 p.m. Saturday.
John Katsilometes’ column runs daily in the A section. His PodKats! podcast can be found at reviewjournal.com/podcasts. Contact him at email@example.com. Follow @johnnykats on Twitter, @JohnnyKats1 on Instagram.