Sure, you could bundle up and head down to the Strip before the streets close to wait for midnight on New Year’s Eve. Or, you could hunker down at one of your favorite Las Vegas properties and dally around for the big moment while enjoying these luxurious and entertaining parties and dinners.
The Country Club in Wynn Las Vegas
Chef Carlos Guía has lots of excitement cooked up. Join him at the Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star hotel’s restaurant at 9 p.m. New Year’s Eve for music and dancing, a champagne toast and a festive menu featuring items such as Russian osetra caviar with blue cornmeal blini; Berkshire pork strip loin with crispy prosciutto; and charbroiled filet mignon with grilled lobster tail, plus a selection of mini desserts and chocolates. And to start 2015 off on a good note, New Year’s Day jazz brunch is set to the swinging sounds of a live Dixieland band. Enjoy eggs Versailles, shrimp and grits, creole gumbo and French toast bread pudding alongside dozens of items at the appetizer, seafood and carving stations. Brunch begins at 10:30 a.m., so feel free to sleep in a little.
Sinatra in Encore at Wynn Las Vegas
Ring-a-ding-ding in the new year with a five-course dinner even the Chairman of the Board himself might have appreciated. Showstoppers from the menu include yellowfin tuna tartare; foie gras carpaccio with huckleberry vinaigrette; braised Mediterranean sea bass and osetra caviar beurre blanc; and prime New York roast beef with 36-hour braised Wagyu short rib. The sweet closing number (a Valrhona chocolate-glazed pistachio and panettone semifreddo topped with a blood orange gastrique) hits all the right notes, too. The prix-fixe dinner, which includes a Sinatra Smash cocktail (whiskey, blackcurrant liqueur, simple syrup, sweet and sour mix and blackberries), begins at 9 p.m.
The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas
Whether or not you think them a likely pair, Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga will be your hosts for an extraordinary affair at the Four-Star hotel’s Chelsea theater, singing songs from their September release, Cheek to Cheek, which debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200. Like the CD, the live performance will include jazz standards in a combination of vocal duets and solos, such as “But Beautiful” and “I Won’t Dance.” New Year’s Eve packages come with a two-night stay in a City Room and two general admission concert tickets or a two-night stay in a Terrace Studio, two premium concert tickets and VIP check-in.
The High Roller
If a view of the fireworks is paramount to making it a “Happy New Year,” then you have to make a beeline to the Linq promenade for a ride on the world’s largest observation wheel. VIP cabins are available for booking, as well as Sky Bar carts with private bartenders for a complete party experience. Plus, the 30-minute ride will give you plenty of time for a kiss before the clock strikes 12 and a selfie or two from 550 feet up.
Mandarin Oriental, Las Vegas
Couples can make a passionate escape with this Five-Star property’s Lovers Toast hotel package that includes champagne, a visit to the Kiki de Montparnasse lingerie boutique in The Shops at Crystals and entry for two into the New Year’s Eve Gala on the 23rd floor of the hotel. The event will feature live music by the Shaun DeGraff Band and floor-to-ceiling windows framing the fireworks across the city skyline. This package also provides unlimited access passes to the Tian Quan Thermal Experience at the Five-Star spa and daily breakfast at MOzen Bistro.
Celebrating its first countdown is Drai’s Nightclub. Situated 11 stories above the Strip on the rooftop of The Cromwell, the club with its 80-sided LED disco ball welcomes 2015 with help from Australian hip-hop dynamo Iggy Azalea. Keep the party going all night long and head downstairs to Drai’s After Hours. For those worried about the club’s usual long lines, don’t. The hotspot will open at 10 p.m. on New Year’s Eve.
And on New Year’s Day, expect a lively performance from superstar electronic DJ/producers Christian Srigley and Leighton James (a.k.a. Adventure Club). The following day, Canadian R&B sensation The Weeknd will take to the stage. Ensure you have the energy to power through all of these shows by fueling up with the three-course New Year’s Eve dinner at celebrity chef Giada De Laurentiis’ eponymous Italian restaurant inside the hotel.
The Venetian Resort Hotel Casino and The Palazzo Resort Hotel Casino
Red Bull keeps many a Vegas party going till the wee hours. But on New Year’s Eve, Red Bull is the party. Located off The Palazzo’s casino floor, the Red Bull Midnight Mix will feature passed hors d’oeuvres and a three-hour premium open bar. SKAM Artists DJs Gusto and Fatman Scoop will be on hand providing tunes and the all-important countdown. And while the music will blast well into the night, the aforementioned open bar turns into a cash bar at midnight, so plan accordingly.