Newsletter: Vegas Escapes: Donny and Marie’s long goodbye. Hello to two new shows

She’s a little bit country and he’s a little bit rock ’n’ roll, and they’re both a whole lot of Vegas.

There’s news this week about one of the most famous brother-sister acts not only in Vegas but also in American pop history (no disrespect to, say, Karen and Richard Carpenter, or the Band Perry, or BeBe and CeCe Winans). But Donny and Marie Osmond, wholesome, clean cut and, frankly, great entertainers, will be leaving Las Vegas (or at least the stage).

This comes on the heels of Celine Dion’s announcement that she’ll be retiring from the Colosseum.

Who will fill this void?

My name is Catharine Hamm, and I won’t be filling that gap. But I do hope, with the help of this newsletter, to fill your world with Vegas info. So let me ask you this: If Vegas abhors a void, what performer would you like to see take up residence in our favorite desert city? Send thoughts to

While you’re contemplating that, we have some other things to chew on. In a city that loves a great celebration, we hear the sound of one hand clapping in honor of a long-time Vegas resident, but you can revel in a newly launched show that celebrates the ’90s. We have the opening of a new hotel, the colorful start of a season, and a new show about mobsters hosted by a mobster.


If you’re ready to bump up your Instagram feed, starring Las Vegas, we give you a selection of movies in which the city has been a star. That will boost your following.

As always, we hope you’ll keep following this newsletter to keep current with a city where the lights are always on.

Donny and Marie moving on

They weren’t quite as young as they appear in the photo below when they began playing at the Flamingo in Las Vegas. It was 2008, and the duo was supposed to be there for six weeks. But all good things do come to an end. Read about the coming departure of the sibling superstars.

Where’s the party? What? No party?

Circus Circus is turning 50, which is a milestone in a city where knocking down “old” hotel casinos is the norm. The fact that the Strip spot is still standing as it has been since Oct. 18, 1968, would be cause for celebration. The show will go on, but don’t expect cake to give three cheers for its movie-star midway or Tanya the elephant. Here’s the scoop on the celebratory silence.

It’s yesterday once more

A DJ, dancers and video will transport you to the ’90s at a new show called, fittingly, “I Love the ’90s—the Vegas Show” now playing at the Paris resort. Through Saturday, you’ll get to rock down memory lane with such acts as Salt-N-Pepa and All-4-One. Find out who else might bring your past alive.

The new kid in town

NoMad hotel has opened on the Strip on the top four floors of the Park MGM, the onetime Monte Carlo. Its 293 rooms and suites have luxury touches, but it’s not quite done yet. Still to come: its restaurants and pool. Meanwhile, read about favorable opening rates.

Autumn in Las Vegas

OK, “Autumn in Las Vegas” doesn’t have quite the same ring as Billie Holiday’s “Autumn in New York,” but like that old song, Vegas’ version of fall can seem so inviting (and “glittering clouds and shimmering clouds in canyons of steel” could have been written about Vegas). In any case, to mark the changing of the season, Bellagio Conservatory has put on its fall colors. Best of all, it’s free and open to the public.

Merry with the mob

He’s a former gangster who has now begun a Christian ministry. And now, he’s also begun a show in Las Vegas. Michael Franzese is the force behind “A Mob Story,” which opened in the Plaza hotel and casino. The history alone is astonishing.

Las Vegas is a movie — and Instagram — star

What’s your favorite movie in which Vegas plays a vixen, a villain or something in between? We have chosen a lucky seven and will direct you to the picture spots that can help you be a star on Instagram.

End paper

Have comments, questions, concerns or a favorite Donny and Marie or ’90s memory? You can email us at If you’d like to subscribe to this, our weekly Escapes newsletter or any other L.A. Times mini-tome, all delivered free to your mailbox, check out

Until next month, we wish you all the fun you can handle and all the cash you need to have it.