Having mentioned how much I was looking forward to an adult break in an adult town, I now realise there's an awful lot of wholesome fun for kids in Las Vegas.
Clean fun in Sin City
I sailed through security, having nothing to put through the scanner but my handbag. I strolled to the lounge, not having any small hands to grasp hold of and drag along. I was delighted to find that even Virgin's new V-Room pay-for lounge, designed for families, nevertheless had an area with a polite notice: "Kids Turn Back". I sat there. I'm alone. I've arrived in Las Vegas without any family at all. In my last column, I mentioned how much I was looking forward to having a very grown-up break in a very adult town. But now I'm here, I can't help notice there's an awful lot of clean and wholesome fun for kids in Sin City.
The hotels on the Strip provide a free family show, with the exploding volcano outside The Mirage, the gondolas at The Venetian and the juggling shows at Circus Circus, the fountains at Bellagio. I walked along muttering to myself like a mad woman (as I had no one else to mutter to), "This is great! The kids would love it!" Seven-year-old River would have been so tickled to discover all the ever-so green lawns fronting the casinos are made of plastic grass. His twin sister Savanna's favourite place would have been the Liberace Museum, with the maestro's rhinestone roadster and rhinestone Baldwin grand piano to match his rhinestone costumes. It would probably have been my favourite too, if I'd had Savanna there to chat about it as we admired the fleet of jewel-encrusted Rolls Royces and explosion of feathers.
I bought Savanna a book of cut-out dress-up Liberace dolls in the gift store. I ended up spending far more on her than I would have done if she'd been there, pestering me. However, having my teenager Storme in Vegas with me would involve more expense, as she'd have loved to hang out in the cafes, tasting all the odd mixed drinks and celebrity spotting. As I sipped my Arnold Palmer (iced tea mixed with lemonade) at a table for one at Café Society in the Encore hotel, I noticed Sharon and Ozzy Osbourne sitting close by. I wished, more than anything, that Storme had been having lunch with me so I could have kicked her under the table and whispered, "Look at that!" Instead, I just tucked into my tuna burger and made a mental note to tell her as soon as I got home.
Las Vegas is a fine family destination. Next time, I'll bring the kids. Virgin Holidays (www.virginholidays.co.uk) offers family packages to Las Vegas.