Experiencing Paris in Las Vegas

I SAW it the moment the taxi drove through the famous Las Vegas Strip from the McCarran International Airport that early morning—the towering 541-foot replica of the Eiffel Tower. It was not actually in my list but I knew I was not going to leave Las Vegas without going up to the Eiffel Tower.

At 6 a.m., the whole Las Vegas seemed to be asleep except for a few cars and people on the road.P1310284

Fast forward, my chance to experience Paris came on my third day in Vegas.

The entrance to the tower was a wonder in itself, with gambling machines everywhere, shops and replicas of the Arc de Triomphe, the Paris Opera House, the Hôtel de Ville, and the Louvre almost made us forget why we were there.P1300833

Luckily, the line at the ticket counter was very short and soon my travel buddy and I were heading up the stairs toward the glass elevator that gave us an exhilarating ride 46 stories up to the top. The sun was still up at 7:30 p.m. but we wanted to be there when it sets for the night.

The elevator doors opened and we stepped out into the observation deck. My jaw just dropped in awe. The deck which was enclosed by bars and screen for safety presented us a breath-stopping 360 degree view of the whole Las Vegas Strip below and the whole city.

P1310293An icon of the city skyline, the Eiffel Tower is a half scale replica of the world-famous Paris, France landmark. I learned that the original plan of the designers was to make it exactly the same but with the airport so close by, they had to scale it down to half. P1310265

I almost forgot I was up there to take photos and videos and not just gape in wonder. There are small square openings in the deck enclosure that you can insert your lens to take photos and for the next half hour, I didn’t see my buddy as he was also busy shooting photos.P1310273

The sun started to disappear, leaving streaks and splashes of fiery reds, golds and vermillion magic in the skies. I saw planes landing and taking off from the airport a short distance away.

Hundreds of feet below, colorful lights began to flicker and the spectacular panorama of the city, the Nevada valley and the distant mountains once again set me in a trance.

Majority of the visitors stayed at the left side of the tower and I learned why. The fountain show at the Bellagio below is designed to romance your senses—a mesmerizing show of water, music and light beautifully choreographed to all-time classical and Broadway favorites.

From my perch at the most romantic spot in Las Vegas, it was all too magical and unmatched.P1310277

If you don’t have a camera, which I can consider a serious crime, stop by their photo shop for a souvenir pose because you just can’t go home without a memento of your Paris Las Vegas experience. Remember to bring lots of memory cards and extra fully charged batteries.

We were told that during the holidays, you can see Las Vegas in a new perspective from the Eiffel Tower’s observation deck, and it’s the best spot to watch New Year’s Eve fireworks for instance. Okay, added to my bucket list.

 

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