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Free mullets to a $5K dinner: Your guide to F1 events, even without a ticket

Updated November 10, 2023 - 3:14 pm

The Formula One circus is almost here, and the sheer volume of the accompanying sideshows is something to behold.

Visitors and locals alike can take part in everything from one-of-a-kind celebrity chef dinners to the chance to design and purchase your own supercar, and from pop-up shops to experiences that can best be described as “Huh?”

The best part? None of them requires a ticket to the Las Vegas Grand Prix.

Experiences

There’s no shortage of activities, even if you don’t know the difference between Formula One and Formula 409.

More than 250 automobiles, including hypercars from McLaren, Bugatti and Koenigsegg, will be displayed on the greens of the Wynn Golf Club on Nov. 11 as part of the 2023 Concours at Wynn Las Vegas. Admission starts at $100. As part of the Concours, the Tour d’Elegance will see some of the standout vehicles driven along Las Vegas Boulevard at 9:30 a.m. Nov. 12.

The Williams Racing Fanzone is taking over the Brooklyn Bridge at New York-New York for the week, highlighted by appearances by drivers Alex Albon (7:30 p.m. Nov. 13) and Logan Sargeant (1 p.m. Nov. 14). Fans can see the Williams FW45 show car, the FW41 and items from throughout Williams’ history, and then drive the Las Vegas circuit in the Williams Esports Rig and shop team-branded merchandise. The free experience will be open noon-10 p.m. Nov. 13-18.

Fans of driver Valtteri Bottas can get a free version of his mullet-y haircut from celebrity stylist Matthew Collins on Nov. 15 in the Alfa Romeo Experience in the Aria lobby.

You can take part in a more hygienic version of driver Daniel Ricciardo’s trademark celebration at the MGM Rewards Shoey Bar adjacent to Bellagio’s main valet. Fans can buy hand-crafted driving shoes and fill them with booze — inside a waterproof beverage liner, thankfully — for a toast and drink.

The anonymous New York performance artist duo known as The Bumbys is bringing its “Fair and Honest Appraisals of Your Appearance” to The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas. From Nov. 16-18, you can stand in front of them for a free personalized assessment, rendered on a typewriter, of how the world sees you.

Psycho Bunny in the Forum Shops at Caesars is hosting a meet-and-greet with presenter Will Buxton of Netflix’s “Formula 1: Drive to Survive.” The event includes snacks, drinks, a DJ and a chance to win a track day and a $250 gift card. It’s scheduled for 1-5 p.m. Nov. 18, with Buxton on hand from 2-3 p.m.

The T-Mobile store at 3791 Las Vegas Blvd. South will host a race simulator in which visitors can compete for tickets to the Las Vegas Gran Prix from 3-7 p.m. Nov. 13-15. Driver Logan Sargeant will be in the store for a meet-and-greet at 5 p.m. Nov. 14.

Artist Paul Oz will exhibit some of his Formula One-related paintings and sculptures through Nov. 19 at the Four Seasons. He’ll also paint works capturing the vibe of F1 in Las Vegas inside the hotel lobby during race weekend.

The Cosmopolitan commissioned six artists to use racing helmets as their canvases. The results will be displayed Nov. 16-18 on Level 2 near the Harmon Bridge entrance. The resort also promises “curated digital displays where racing meets Artificial Intelligence” throughout the property.

Chef José Andrés, the humanitarian who’s committed to saving the world through food, will record an episode of his “Longer Tables” podcast at 1 p.m. Nov. 17 in Jaleo at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas. Tickets are $250 and include a curated selection of small bites, beer and wine.

Away from the Strip, four racing simulators inside Asylum Bar + Arcade at Area15 allow drivers to feel as though they’re racing along the Las Vegas Grand Prix track. Tickets start at $13.50 per person.

Shopping

The Strip already is home to some of the most high-end shopping in the world. For F1, though, things are being kicked up a notch at exactly the places you’d expect that notch to be kicked.

The McLaren Experience Center at Wynn Las Vegas is ready to overwhelm visitors with a rotating display of the brand’s supercars and hypercars, including the one-of-a-kind McLaren Senna. If you’re in the market for a McLaren, you can design your own, handpicking each detail along the way. If your budget’s a little more down-to-earth, there’s plenty of McLaren merchandise in the store, which can be found near the Wynn Plaza shops.

The Alfa Romeo Experience will showcase some of the Italian manufacturer’s consumer vehicles, as well as its F1 Team Stake Show Car, in the Aria lobby from Nov. 14-18. Racing gear will be available for purchase, and the Lobby Bar will showcase historical imagery and memorabilia. Drivers Valtteri Bottas and Zhou Guanyu will help unveil the team’s vehicle livery there on Nov. 15.

The F1 Las Vegas Hub will sell exclusive Formula One merchandise and Las Vegas Grand Prix collaborations with brands including Malbon Golf and Undefeated from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Nov. 13-22 at The Venetian.

McLaren Racing, Mitchell & Ness and Culture Kings are teaming up for a pop-up experience at the latter’s flagship store in the Forum Shops at Caesars. McLaren Excape Simulators and heritage pieces from the brand’s archives will be there, DJs will perform each day, and exclusive merchandise will be for sale. It’s scheduled for Nov. 12-18.

Shoppers can explore the fashion side of F1 with the Ferrari Pop-Up Boutique near the main hotel elevators at Bellagio from Nov. 13-20, while Resorts World will have multiple Racing Miami pop-up shops during race week.

Wynn Las Vegas and RM Sotheby’s are behind a luxury auction headlined by Lewis Hamilton’s 2013 Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 W04 and Tom Brady’s jersey from his last (for now) NFL game. The exclusive event will be hosted by James Corden in the Awakening Theater on Nov. 17. It’s invitation only, though, so you’d better start working your contacts list.

Food & drink

It’s one thing to dine in a celebrity chef’s restaurant. It’s a much rarer thing to dine there with that celebrity chef.

Gordon Ramsay will curate a menu and tell stories from “his culinary journey” at Ramsay’s Kitchen at Harrah’s Las Vegas. The meal, at 5 p.m. Nov. 16, is $250 per person. Ramsay will return for a trackside dinner at Hell’s Kitchen at Caesars Palace. He’ll curate a four-course menu and talk about his love of Formula One just before the drivers begin practicing. The experience, at 7 p.m. Nov. 17, is $500 per person and includes a gift.

Guests can eat sushi made by Nobu Matsuhisa as part of a demonstration, as well as some traditional menu favorites, at 1 p.m. Nov. 17 at Nobu at Caesars Palace and 1 p.m. Nov. 18 at Nobu at Paris Las Vegas. It’s $500 per person.

Giada De Laurentiis’ Italian-inspired dishes will be served during the Morning After Trackside Brunch With Giada. Scheduled for 11 a.m. Nov. 19 at Giada at The Cromwell, it’s $250 per person.

Restaurateur Lisa Vanderpump will oversee the menu and appear at A Very Vanderpump Brunch at Vanderpump à Paris at Paris Las Vegas. It’s scheduled for 11 a.m. Nov. 17 and costs $250 per person.

Specialty meats prepared by Jean-Georges Vongerichten will be paired with a tasting of Yamazaki Japanese whisky from a private collection during a dinner at Jean Georges Steakhouse at Aria. It’s scheduled for 7 p.m. Nov. 17 and costs $5,000 per person.

A menu curated by Mario Carbone, including Wagyu tomahawk and the burrata and caviar service, will be paired with Louis XIII Cognac and cocktails by Rémy Martin. The dinner, scheduled for 7 p.m. Nov. 16 in Carbone at Aria, costs $1,500.

The following chefs, meanwhile, will be in their restaurants during the weekend: José Andrés at Jaleo (Nov. 19), Akira Back at Yellowtail (Nov. 16-18), Rainer Becker at Zuma (Nov. 18), Bromberg Brothers at Blue Ribbon (Nov. 16), Mario Carbone at Carbone (Nov. 16 and 18), David Chang at Momofuku (Nov. 17-19), Roy Choi at Best Friend (Nov. 16-18), Michael Mina at Michael Mina (Nov. 16) and Bardot (Nov. 18), Morimoto at Morimoto (Nov. 16-17), Wolfgang Puck at Spago (Nov. 18), Julian Serrano at Julian Serrano (Nov. 16), Lago (Nov. 17) and Picasso (Nov. 18), Christina Tosi at Milk Bar (Nov. 17), Voltaggio Brothers at Retro (Nov. 17-18) and Jean-Georges Vongrichte at Prime (Nov. 16) and Jean-Georges Steakhouse (Nov. 17).

Contact Christopher Lawrence at clawrence@reviewjournal.com or 702-380-4567. Follow @life_onthecouch on X.

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