The most interesting and diversified specialty shopping in Las Vegas is centered on the Strip at the Fashion Show Mall, The Forum and Appian Way Shops at Caesars Palace, and the Grand Canal Shoppes at The Venetian. These three venues, within walking distance of each other, collectively offer the most unusual, and arguably the most concentrated, aggregation of upscale retailers in the United States.
It should be noted that The Forum Shops and the Grand Canal Shoppes are not your average shopping centers. In fact, both are attractions in their own right and should be on your must-see list even if you don’t like to shop. Both feature designer shops, exclusive boutiques, and specialty retailers. Fashion Show Mall, by comparison, is plain white bread, with no discernible theme but a great lineup of big-name department stores.
Las Vegas Speciality Shopping
At the intersection of Las Vegas Boulevard and Spring Mountain Road, the Fashion Show Mall is anchored by Saks Fifth Avenue, Neiman Marcus, Macy’s, Nordstrom, Forever 21, and Dillard’s, and contains more than 100 specialty shops, including three art galleries. There is no theme here—no Roman columns or canals with gondolas. At the Fashion Show Mall, shopping is king. And although there is no shortage of boutiques or designer shops, the presence of the big department stores defines the experience for most customers. The selection is immense, and most of the retailers are familiar and well known. To underscore its name, the mall stages free fashion shows most weekend afternoons.
The Forum Shops is a très chic (et très cher) shopping complex situated between Caesars Palace and the Mirage. Connected to the Forum Casino in Caesars Palace, The Forum Shops offers a Roman market–themed shopping environment. Executed on a scale that is extraordinary even for Caesars, The Forum Shops replicates the grandeur of Rome at the height of its glory. More than 160 shops and restaurants line an ancient Roman street punctuated by plazas and fountains. Dozens of retailers and eateries populate the three-story, 175,000-square-foot Appian Way expansion. Though indoors, clouds, sky, and celestial bodies are projected on the vaulted ceilings to simulate the actual time of day outside. Statuary in The Forum is magnificent; some is even animatronic. Shops include the Max Brenner chocolate shop; clothing retailer H&M; UGG, featuring leathers, suedes, and sheepskin; True Religion for denim; and makeup retailer Inglot.
The Grand Canal Shoppes are similar to The Forum Shops in terms of the realistic theming, only this time the setting is the modern-day canals of Venice. More than 60 shops, boutiques, restaurants, and cafés are arrayed along a quarter-mile-long Venetian street flanking a canal. A 70-foot ceiling (more than six stories high) with simulated sky enhances the openness and provides perspective. Meanwhile, gondolas navigating the canal add a heightened sense of commerce and activity. The centerpiece of the Grand Canal Shoppes is a replica of St. Mark’s Square, without the pigeons.
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