I use to travel to Vegas quite a bit. But this time I did Vegas a little differently. I GOT MARRIED!!!!
“Would you like Elvis to marry you? He’s really good!”
Both Miles and I had been married before, and after having done the formal large weddings, we made the cautious decision to do this…for us!
I called upon my best friend and his wife to help! We booked flights, got the hotels ready, arranged childcare (thanks to my always dependable mom) – we were set!
Like a pro, the first thing I did when we arrived was hit the casino floor. Within half hour, Miles was up $500, I was up $400 and just like that, our trip was paid for! But alas, one must be cautious and know your limits. So we went for dinner at Gordon Ramsay’s Hell’s Kitchen. And it didn’t disappoint!
Other than getting to Vegas, having a nice (and clean) place to lay our heads, I hadn’t done much planning. The only thing I needed to make sure was concrete, was the Chapel. Having never been to a Vegas-style wedding, so naturally I was surprised (and relieved) by the 15 minute time slots for the actual ceremony. Now this is my kind of wedding – quick and easy!
I made sure that Miles and I made our way down to the Clark County Marriage License Bureau earlier in the day to get our license in which we could present later that night.
Let me paint this not-so-cinematic moment:
That evening, we headed over to Graceland Wedding Chapel (via Uber – classy, yet timely and inexpensive!). We walk through the front door, and it almost feels like you’re barging into someone’s quaint little home. Two gracious hosts great us and ask for the name in which we reserved. There’s a small little bench across from them, and to the right of that, a standing fridge of bouquets, flowers and boutonnieres. As we check in, sign some documents, we pay the remaining amount owing, while they ask us “WOULD YOU LIKE ELVIS TO MARRY YOU? HE’S REALLY GOOD!”. And just like that, I’m reminded I’m in Vegas, and this is normal.
We kindly declined, though I struggled to hold back my chuckles. Pictures weren’t allowed in the Chapel area as they’d like for you to purchase the pictures taken by their on-site photographer. And you bet your ass I purchased them; this was an experience all around and a story we could tell our children for generations to come!
While we were inside meeting the officiant, my best friend Darren was asked if he’d like to walk me down the aisle. There are few moments I’ve ever had the pleasure of watching Darren be caught off-guard – and this was one of them. To know him, you’d say he was the most sensitive soul to walk the earth, so his reaction to being asked to walk with me, was a reaction I’ll never forget. We laughed and giggled as we walked down the aisle.
As Miles and I said our vows, I watch my future husband hold back tears. We had been through hell and back the last year, so this felt like a release of ego’s, and a ‘coming together’ in partnership.
We finished the ceremony off with I Do’s and a kiss. Then we hailed another Uber (so reliable), and made our way back to the hotel to get changed and head out for dinner. I chose Jaleo – a Jose Andres restaurant at the Cosmopolitan. It’s my favorite place to dine when I’m in Vegas; the atmosphere is buzzing and the tapas-based restaurant never loses sight of the very menu items that keep people coming back for more.
The last time I was at Jaleo, they had an unexpected opening at e by Jose Andres (an 8 person private chef’s table dining experience that requires reservations months in advance), and while I had tried every time to get it, I couldn’t capitalize on the opportunity because the reservation was the same time I had to head back to the airport to go home. The kicker was, one of the guest attending the Chef’s table that night was Anthony Bourdain. I’ll let that sink in for a moment, because every. single. time. I think about it, my foodie self cries!
After dinner, we hit the casino again, where we won more money and decided to call it a night. Yes, there would be a time where my younger self would’ve ripped it up the entire night and not have slept for days. My current self, is thinking that a) I’m without children, b) there will be no interruptions when I sleep, c) I can sleep in, d) all I can think about is sleep, e) man, food was so good, I ate my weight – can I sleep now? So yeah…the struggle was real. We were thrilled to finally be married, but we were so tired!
It was slow roll getting up. The thought of heading back home to regular responsibilities was…tough to swallow, I was in relax mode now! We did some shopping, walked around and enjoyed the sights that are Vegas. One thing to look forward to that evening was the BOYZ II MEN concert we had tickets to! Now, if you had a heartbeat in the 90’s, it didn’t matter what your taste in music, everyone knew the words to at least one song to BOYZ II MEN! The was a great way to end a fantastic trip.
Nearing the end of the concert, the BOYZ sang their infamous ‘I’ll Make Love To You’ song while handing out roses. Like a good participant, I ran my butt down to the stage (almost took out a few ladies who were in my way), and begged like a crazy person for a rose. I have to say, it definitely pays to be a crazed fan jumping, screaming, singing, occasional clawing, to get what you want!
We ended our Vegas trip with memories and laughs that made this experience one for the books. All thanks to amazing friends, my husband, and family.
Thank you Vegas – until next time!