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Lit in Las Vegas: The Neon Museum & Boneyard

A few weeks back, I was in desperate need of a change of scenery and Natty Guy had one of his annual company Las Vegas trips coming up so I decided to hitch a ride.

Now, don’t hate, but I’m not typically a real Las Vegas kinda gal.  The artifice.  The forced fun.  The expense!  What ever happened to all those $2 steaks I heard about in the 80’s?  But….she grew on me a bit this trip.  And the Neon Museum was part of the reason why.

The Neon Museum | Neon Boneyard | Neon Graveyard | Things to Do in Las Vegas

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The Neon Museum

The Neon Museum:  This Las Vegas gem is somewhat newer…founded in 1996.  A fantastic space, they house a collection of restored neon pieces dating from the 1930’s to present day.  Eleven of the pieces at the Neon Museum have been fully restored and other pieces have been rehabilitated or preserved (both less costly options).   It is an INCREDIBLE trip back in time!

We took the guided tour, which was pretty informative.  Neon really hasn’t been used in Las Vegas since the advent of the LED light.  Only Old Town requires that actual neon still be used.  The tour runs for about 1 hour and is best in the evening when you can appreciate the signs lit.

The Neon Museum | Neon Boneyard | Neon Graveyard | Things to Do in Las Vegas
My favorite…the old Stardust sign, Liberace and Aladdin’s lamp in one shot!
The Neon Museum | Neon Boneyard | Neon Graveyard | Things to Do in Las Vegas

The Neon Museum | Neon Boneyard | Neon Graveyard | Things to Do in Las Vegas

The Neon Museum | Neon Boneyard | Neon Graveyard | Things to Do in Las Vegas

The Neon Museum | Neon Boneyard | Neon Graveyard | Things to Do in Las Vegas

The Neon Museum | Neon Boneyard | Neon Graveyard | Things to Do in Las Vegas

Brilliant: The Light Show

We opted for a ticket that also included the Neon Boneyard, an adjacent property that houses a show called “Brilliant“.  I’d feared this would be a bit hokey, a la various “Sound and Light” shows throughout the world but it was quite well executed and, if you are visiting at night, I think worth the small additional expense and extra half hour of time.

The Neon Museum | Neon Boneyard | Neon Graveyard | Things to Do in Las Vegas

Other Trip Standouts:

  • Hoover Dam: So…my primary reasoning for visiting this site was so that I could hear someone exclaim “I’ll be your damn tour guide“.  But the site itself actually holds up.  It is immense and the fact that they completed this monstrosity ahead of schedule is just incredible.  Gobs of Art Deco artwork and design were an added bonus.
  • Valley of Fire State Park: This park is a wonderful counterpoint to the artifice of Las Vegas.  Less than 2 hours away, this park features bright red Aztec sandstone rock formations, petrified trees and petroglyphs dating back over 2,000 years.
  • Wing Lei: This fantastic property was the first Chinese restaurant in the US to be awarded a Michelin star.  As you likely know by now, the Natty’s are foodies and an evening here was money well spent. We opted for the Imperial Peking Duck Tasting. The food NEVER STOPPED.  They even gave us a boxed cake to take home and enjoy later!

Until next time…keep cultivating that simple, stylish and satisfying life!

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