10 Awesome Las Vegas Music Residencies in 2013
In a town of over-the-top attractions, these are Las Vegas' must-see musical events on right now.
Harking back to the Rat Pack's glory days at the Sands Hotel and Casino, or Elvis Presley's more than 800 sold-out shows at the Las Vegas Hilton, Vegas's tradition of residencies and special engagements is innately tied to the town's musical history. The practice continues still, but with more diversity than ever before.
Boyz II Men
Where & When: Terry Fator Theatre at the Mirage, $40-$60, Through May 26, Aug. 9 - Dec. 29
What to Expect: The quartet's a trio now but you can still look forward to a strong run-through of the group's platinum hit singles such as "Motownphilly" and "On Bended Knee." There are some newer songs in there too, as well as the safe padding of Motown and Beatles covers, but mostly it's pure '90s nostalgic bliss.
Wow Factor: Spoiler alert: On "End of the Road" all three singers leave the stage to cruise through the aisles and on "I'll Make Love to You" they hand out roses to women crowding in the front.
Celine Dion, "Celine"
Where & When: The Colosseum at Caesars Palace, $55-$250, now to 2019
What to Expect: No Cirque du Soleil back-up dancers or over-elaborate show here, just an elegant Dion and a 31-piece orchestra running through expected hits and surprisingly diverse covers.
Wow Factor: She's impressive enough with just this to earn her comparisons to Frank Sinatra in talent and Elvis Presley in star power.
Elton John, "The Million Dollar Piano"
Where & When: The Colosseum at Caesars Palace, $55-$250, Apr 20 - May 11
What to Expect: Whereas John's previous residency—2008's "The Red Piano"—was overdone with a video component by David LaChapelle, this show is more natural and geared towards his amazing catalogue with two hours of mixed hits and deep cuts.
Wow Factor: John's piano is outfitted with 68 LED screens that compliment the tennis-court-sized screen behind the pop singer, lighting up with a myriad of patters, colors and clips.
Where & When: Hakkasan at the MGM Grand Hotel, $20-$30 (female), $30-$75 (male), April 25 onward.
What to Expect: The new five-level, $200-million Chinese restaurant and nightclub will host residencies through the summer by heavyweight DJs such as Deadmau5 (started April 18), Steve Aoki (starting April 25), Calvin Harris (starting April 27) and Tiesto (starting May 3).
Wow Factor: It's been reported Hakkasan spent an estimated $70 million to pay the salaries of its superstar DJ lineup for this first year. At that price, it had better be good.
Where & When: LIGHT at the Mandalay Bay Hotel, $20 (female), $40 (male), opening May 24.
What to Expect: Cirque du Soleil's new entertainment venue will pair the Montreal performance group's high-flying circus theatrics and production with residencies by some of EDM's biggest names inside, and outdoors at the Daylight Beach Club's Eclipse pool party. Among them: Axwell (starting May 22), Zedd (starting May 24), Baauer (starting May 26) and Skrillex (starting May 26).
Wow Factor: Each show will be specially crafted to fit the performer, meaning each night will feature different visuals and atmospheres.
Where & When: The Joint at Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, $50-$125, Sept. 18 - Oct. 6
What to Expect: It's a less-than-month-long residency, but following the band's stint of a similar length last year, the city is eager for more. It's surely been said before, but was there ever a band more fitting Vegas' hard partying ethos?
Wow Factor: Backup dancers and acrobats, pyrotechnics and Tommy Lee's 360-degree rollercoaster drum set.
Santana, "Greatest Hits Live: Yesterday, Today & Tomorrow"
Where & When: House of Blues at Mandalay Bay, $138-$375, April 18 onward.
What to Expect: A two-hour set of the guitar hero doing what he does best: Shredding through his catalogue.
Wow Factor: What sets this apart from the two years Santana spent at the Hard Rock Hotel some years back is the venue size. At roughly 2,000-person capacity, this is an intimate feel for a city where bigger is almost always better.
Rod Stewart, "The Hits"
Where & When: The Colosseum at Caesars Palace, $49-$250, July 20 - Aug. 4
What to Expect: An on-your-feet, sing-along experience, for starters, as Stewart lives up to the show's title with a stacked performance of his singles.
Wow Factor: Despite his small stature and age (he's 68 now), the guy makes good use of the 120-foot wide stage.
Shania Twain, "Still the One"
Where & When: The Colosseum at Caesar's Palace, $55-$250, now - Dec. 2014.
What to Expect: Twain's over-the-top comeback is committed to the thought that she's still got it—the voice, the sex appeal, everything that's made her the the world's best-selling female country artist of all time. Naturally the hits are aplenty and the production is typically Vegas.
Wow Factor: A lacy black bodysuit, horses and a motorcycle flying through the air.
Wynn's DJ Residencies
Where & When: Surrender, Encore Beach Club, XS and Tryst at the Wynn Las Vegas, $25-$30 (female). $35-$55 (male), April 22 onward.
What to Expect: This year the Wynn has upped the ante with 42 DJ residencies across its properties including Avicii (starting May 4), Afrojack (starting May 11), Diplo (starting May 18) and David Guetta (starting May 26), all running at least through the year.
Wow Factor: With an average of 10 DJs on four stages over a given weekend, the Wynn sounds more like a music festival than hotel.