I defy anyone who visits Las Vegas to not go shopping. There are shops and opportunities to buy everywhere and as I LOVE shopping this was one thing that was almost a daily pastime when I wasn’t working.
One interesting thing about this city though is that ordinary shops are hard to spot or to come by. By this I mean supermarkets, or even corner shops as they don’t seem to really exist here. One of my friends asked me to bring her back a postcard and I didn’t see one postcard during my stay.
Within the hotel complexes, the shopping is almost exclusively luxury with some brands choosing to let you enter – or not. Brands included Cartier, Rolex, Sarah Jessica Parker, Fendi, Arman, Louis Vuitton and so on. There’s no Primark anywhere here. There are cheaper ‘pop up’ stands down the middle of the malls.
Customer service is generally good with people being really chatty however not always. More than once we were given sour grape looks because we didn’t want to tip in a retail store – sorry, I don’t get it. The highlight was going past a booth with Iphone cases, a chap tried to push a leaflet into our hand and we said ‘no’. A while later we came back that way and he tried again. I did take the leaflet and he offered a free screen cover and, as I was walking away, I said ‘no thanks’. Within seconds something hit my back, he’d literally thrown it at me. I’ve never had that experience before!
I did go into one store which had glorious trainers and had a mooch around. One pair of trainers were sparkling diamante affairs all in yellow and purple and I loved them. However when I was told they cost $5000 I liked them a little less. We did chat to the members of staff and it was totally clear to me that none of them could have afforded even one pair of shoes from that store unless a so-called ‘high roller’ gifted it to them.
And that brings me on to another phrase I’d not heard before. A high roller is someone who comes to gamble with a ton of money – and I’m talking millions. There are various places along the strip with separate rooms for these people to gamble and having grerat wealth is the pass key to entry. It made me think about money mindset.
Over the course of a week, having encountered a few of these people who were either weird looking due to extreme treatments on their faces (of all genders) or wearing super expensive clothes but not looking as if they’d slept in days – I found it all so sickening. Even if I had that kind of money, frankly I’d rather give a million to charity than gamble it away. That kind of vibe, when I did see it, made me want to vomit. What good does such a thing offer to humanity? I’d rather gamble cash on helping someone than the hope of making even more cash.
However it’s clear that the vast amount of wealth that’s generated here comes in fact from the millions of more ordinary people who visit and they come with a ‘spend’ mindset as is the case in Disney. It’s not the odd few who have millions to squander for a moment’s pleasure.
Not all of the shops though are high end. With a little exploring you can find other options. Hidden along the strip are shops like CVS and Walgreens which are closer to supermarkets back in the UK so you can stock up on some goodies there. There are also the outlet villages which are very similar to our own designer outlet village in Swindon and that’s where we did most of our shopping.
On the Strip itself, I’d recommend the Miracle Mile shops which are more interesting, with good eateries and nowhere near the price tags of the other malls. Hence I did buy some sparkly bling but none if it was anywhere near a four figure price tag.
The main thing to remember though is that tax is added on at the till for everything. So there’s no way that any price tag is the actual price. Also many of the tills offer you the option to tip retail staff. The only shop where I did this was the outstanding Netflix shop for Stranger Things.
This genius shop takes you into that iconic American tv series with each shopping area designed like a scene from the series with loads of photo opportunities. If this is an iconic series for you, this shop will reel you in and you’ll only vaguely consider the price tag of the merch in side.
If you like Stranger Things I’d defy anyone leaving there without having spent at least $100. You can find it here: https://strangerthings-store.com