[PHOTO_106220]Las Vegas casinos went through a phase when the style was slanted toward big, spectacular buildings with elaborate themes, and the Venetian embodies that design ideal. The combined Venetian/Palazzo complex is one of the largest hotel and convention complexes in the world. But when you're strolling around the property, it doesn't feel huge. This recreation of Old World Venice feels like you've stepped into a movie set.
If you don't gamble, that's no problem here. You can explore the Grand Canal Shoppes, where the wandering performers and recreation of St. Mark's Square will give you plenty of entertainment in between browsing through the shops. High-end retailers have a strong presence here, but kiosks with fun knick-knacks and odd, arty shops are also scattered throughout. The famed gondolas are here, and you can take a ride on one and be serenaded.
You could spend big bucks on a meal at any of the fine Venetian restaurants, but you may have more fun with a canal-side table at Taqueria Canonita, where the people watching is terrific and the Margaritas are inviting, or Wolfgang Puck's Postrio, in the mini St. Mark's Square. Here you can be outside while you're inside, which is a fun experience.
[PHOTO_106221] As you stroll through the Venetian, don't forget to look up. In the Grand Canal Shoppes, you'll see the faux sky changing throughout the day, and in the rest of the property, you'll see amazing recreations of Old World art. When you see little clusters of people taking pictures of the ceiling, stop and take a look.