Disney Tickets – My first video editing foray

Here’s my first entry into the video editing arena. I did it in After Effects and Premiere. Very rough, but my next thing is going to be a try at Kinetic Typography, so look out for that one, coming soon to a blog near you.

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Someone, anyone…please explain this sign.

I am thoroughly befuddled and rather disturbed by this sign in a public park.

confusing sign

The 10 Most Expensive Cell Phones in the World

With all the hoopla surrounding the Iphone (and its fluctuating pricetag) one might might be lulled into thinking that the Iphone is the be-all and end-all in the world cell phones. The truth be told though, the Iphone is more like the Corvette of the cellphone industry, relatively expensive to the average consumer, but in the bigger picture, it’s a cheap horsepower contender and drop in the bucket when compared to these high rolling entrants into the world of cellphones. And yes, the top cellphone contender is more expensive than the Mercedes Maybach, the Ferrari Enzo and the Bugatti Veyron!

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10. Prada phone by LG

Price: $780

Prada phone by LG
The Prada phone by LG just narrowly edged my personal favorite, the Gold Striker Gold 24-carat Iphone to make the list. At just 1.2 cm thick, the Prada phone, like the Iphone, has no buttons and is operated solely by way of the touch screen.

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9. Porsche Cellphone by Sagem

Price: $1,600

Porsche Cellphone by Sagem

Designed by Porsche, but engineered and manufactured by France-based Sagem, the Porsche handset is currently available in Britain, Dubai and other oversees markets. The phone is expected to make its U.S. debut in 2008 possible through Porsche Dealerships.

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8. Mobiado Professional EM

Price: $2,200

Mobiado Professional EM
Made from ebony wood, hard-anodized aluminum and titanium, Nokia driven Mobiado Professional EM handsets are individually unique due to the variations in wood patterning per instrument. It features a 1.3 MP camera, music playback and an FM radio.

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7. Gresso Black Aura Collection

Price: Up to $13,000

Gresso Black Aura Collection

Gresso boastfully claims that its Black Aura cellphones are 200 years old – due to the age of the African Blackwood on each phone’s case. Black Aura series ranges from $6,500 to $13,000 with the most expensive featuring an 18-carat gold front panel.

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6. Diamond Iphone

Price: $41,000

Diamond Iphone
The diamond iPhone boasts an impressive 420 diamonds at a total weight of 5.65 carats set in 18K white or yellow gold. It can also be ordered in white, black or pink sapphires. The phone, by UK blingmeister general Amosu, at a blustering $41,000 is sure to not make any “Will it blend” videos anytime soon.

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5.Vertu Signature

Price: Up to $81,000

Vertu Signature
Vertu, a subsidiary of Nokia, claims that it took expert craftsmen some three years of training to learn to make their phones. This classic, the Vertu Signature, contains 943 diamonds on its bezel and 48 more on its keypad, each set in place by hand in Switzerland.

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4. VIPN Black Diamond Smartphone

Price: $300,000

VIPN Black Diamond Smartphone
The creation of Swiss manufacturer VIPN, the titanium construction known as the “Black Diamond” is a one of a kind actually a 1 of 5 to be exact, and for generously shelling out 300,000 big ones, you get a Quadband phone with WiFi and Bluetooth, a 2 inch 256K TFT screen, 4MP camera, VOIP and 2 huge diamonds.

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3. Bucheron for Vertu Cobra

Price: $310,000

Bucheron for Vertu Cobra
Parisian jeweler House of Bucheron linked up with Nokia subsidiary Vertu on this limited-edition series of eight cobra phones, which include a two-carat pear-cut diamond, a one-carat round diamond, two emerald eyes and 439 rubies totaling 21 carats. Vertu phones also link up to a special concierge service with information about travel, entertainment, restaurants and events. Other Vertu phones sell between $4,350 and $81,000.

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2. The Diamond Crypto Smartphone

Price: $1.3 Million

The Diamond Crypto Smartphone
Designed by diamond encruster extraordinaire Peter Aloisson The Diamond Crypto Smartphone is sometimes quoted as the World’s most expensive cell phone (depending on exchange rates). Russian firm JSC Ancort has developed a Windows CE-based smartphone ready for Aloisson’s bejeweling that employs “powerful encryption technology” to “provide secure protection of information against kidnapping, technological blackmail, financial racketeers and corrupted state officials” — sounds like marketing speak for a password-protected wallet app. Of course, with its $1.3 million price tag and 50 diamonds (10 of which are blue) you might start to have more trouble with mugging than with technological blackmail.

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1. The GoldVish Le Million

Price: $1.45 Million

The GoldVish Le Million
Guinness World Records certifies this GoldVish phone as the most expensive in the world–1 million euros, or about $1.45 million. The odd-shaped device is made out of 18-carat white gold and features 1,800 diamonds totaling 120 carats. A Russian businessman bought Le Million for his wife last September at a luxury goods fair in Cannes, France. Don’t have a spare million for this made-by-request gadget? Geneva-based GoldVish has plenty of expensive phones in its lineup, including models with gold plating and diamond-studded cases.

1 Million Dollar Homes from Across the World

With all the buzz about the real estate market in the U.S. and how it’s affecting real estate prices across, I decided to look into what US $1 Million will get you around the world and here’s a sampling of what I found:

Atlanta, GA, USA

Price: $1.05 million
Beds/Bath: 6 beds/6 bath
Amenities: A million dollars will get you far in Atlanta. This two-story brick manse has six bedrooms, six bathrooms, three fireplaces and a gourmet kitchen with stainless steel appliances. The interior boasts 10-foot ceilings, and the master bathroom includes both a garden tub and whirlpool. Outside, the property rests on a third of an acre and has a three-car garage and a backyard deck.

Buenos Aires, Argentina

Price: $1.1 million
Beds/Bath: 4 bed

Amenities: This 7,500-square-foot home on just over one-half acre features four bedrooms, including a master suite with a dressing room and a bathroom with a whirlpool tub. The garden boasts a large veranda, in-ground pool and covered barbeque area.

For more information, please contact Reynolds Propiedades Argentina Real Estate.

Chicago, IL, USA

Price: $1.1 million
Beds/Bath: 4 bed

Amenities: Located in the historic Lakewood/Balmoral neighborhood of Chicago, this recently renovated townhome includes four bedrooms and three bathrooms. The large downstairs family room opens to a cedar deck and backyard with a gas barbeque hookup and a two-car garage. The kitchen has professional appliances and the entire first floor has been outfitted with radiant heat to offset those cold Windy City winters.

San Jose de Pinilla, Costa Rica

Price: $1 million
Beds/Bath: 3 bed/3bath

Amenities: This Spanish Colonial-inspired home sits on a half-acre within the Reserva de Golf beach community in the Guanacaste region of the country. It has three bedrooms, three bathrooms, a solarium and spacious kitchen as well as maid’s and guest rooms and an outdoor pool.

Johannesburg, South Africa

Price: $1 million
Beds/Bath: 4 bed/3.5bath

Amenities: This contemporary masterpiece boasts four bedrooms and three-and-a-half bathrooms, as well as a massive chef’s kitchen and expansive, covered patio for outdoor entertaining. Health nuts will find much to keep them occupied in the gym room while the busy executive can hunker down in the home office.

London, UK

Price: $1 million
Beds/Bath: 2 bed/1bath

Amenities: The dollar may be weak compared with the pound, but with a million of them, you can buy a two-bedroom, one-bathroom, second-floor apartment in this stately Victorian building in Belsize Village, a neighborhood filled with restaurants and shops just northwest of downtown London.

Los Angeles, CA, USA

Price: $1.07 million
Beds/Bath: 5 bed/3.5bath

Amenities: Built in 1891, this Queen Anne Victorian is a California historical cultural landmark dubbed the Ernest Wood House. Three stories, with wood-carved stairway railings, the 2,880-square-foot home has five bedrooms, three-and-a-half baths, hardwood floors, a formal dining room and five fireplaces. Outside, a covered wrap-around porch looks out on the landscaped yards and gardens of this 13,000-square-foot lot, which includes a backyard gazebo.

New York, NY, USA

Price: $1.05 million
Beds/Bath: 3 bed/3bath

Amenities: Though only 794 square feet, this midtown apartment has sweeping views of downtown Manhattan, the Hudson River and the Statue of Liberty through its floor-to-ceiling windows. The one-bedroom, one-bathroom space is in the Orion building, which has a health club, 60-foot lap pool, Jacuzzis, saunas, a screening room, onsite concierge service and free breakfast for residents.
Paris, France

Price: $1 million
Beds/Bath: 3 bed/2bath

Amenities: Located in the 20th arrondissement of Nation, this three-level townhouse on a quiet lane features three bedrooms, two bathrooms, living and dining rooms and a study, which faces a 260-square-foot private garden. There is also a wine cellar for oenophiles to store their Loire Valley bottles.

Rome, Italy

Price: $1 million
Beds/Bath: 2 bed/2bath

Amenities: Boasting beamed wooden ceilings, a living room, two bedrooms and two bathrooms, this restored apartment is on the third floor of the medieval building, pictured, in Via San Cosimato, which is close to the Piazza San Maria in Trastevere.
Sydney, Australia

Price: $1.15 million
Beds/Bath: 3 bed/2bath

Amenities: Designed to take advantage of its position on Sydney Harbor, this three-bedroom, two-bathroom apartment has expansive views from its north-facing balcony. Set in the Jacksons Landing waterfront, the apartment has a gourmet kitchen with marble floors and stainless steel appliances, two parking spaces, walk-in closets in all bedrooms and access to tennis courts, a pool, a gym and nearby harborside parks.
Tel Aviv, Israel

Price: $1.2 million
Beds/Bath: 5 bed/5bath

Amenities: Not only does this immaculately kept penthouse offer stunning sea views and a spacious outdoor deck, but living areas are suitable for entertaining and five bedrooms.

Tokyo, Japan

Price: $1.1 million
Beds/Bath: 4 bed/3bath

Amenities: This 1,700-square-foot, four-bedroom home is located in the Megoro-Ku section of the city, which offers fine dining and shopping, as well as quiet residential areas. It has parking for two cars and a traditional Tatami, or meditation, room.

Toronto, Canada

Price: $1.2 million
Beds/Bath: 2 bed/3bath

Amenities: A two-bedroom, three-bathroom condo is one of 45 custom-designed apartment in this elegant building that offers residents an indoor pool and fitness center, formal gardens, a billiards room and a library that can be used for entertaining.

Disney Christmas – Get the maximum mouse by planning ahead.

Advanced Planning the Key to Holiday Success at Walt Disney World

The holidays are approaching rapidly and with so many events at Walt Disney World® this season, planning ahead will prevent you from missing a major part of Disney’s holiday celebration. Disney World will be featuring a variety of new and exciting events that promise this year’s holiday season to be better than ever. It is important for visitors to understand that in order to take full advantage of the holiday vacations, advanced planning is critical in order to save time and money while maximizing the holiday experience. The key to enjoying all the special events at Disney World this season is to be well-informed about the major events and planning ahead so that once in the park, you do not lose any time and go straight to what you want to experience. This year Disney World will be featuring seven outstanding and major holiday-themed events. From Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party to The Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights the variety is unlimited and entertainment will be available for the whole family. This article contains a guide and descriptions of key events that will take place at Disney World and will help you plan in advanced your holiday vacation.

Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party – Nov. 12 – Dec. 21, 2007
Celebrate the spirit of the holidays at “Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party!” This wonderful holiday event takes place in Disney’s Magic Kingdom theme park on select nights from November 12 to December 21, 2007. The fantastic Mickey’s Merry Christmas Party parade features Mickey and Minnie Mouse with their friends having fun with park visitors as they walk through Main Street. Special performances, spectacular holiday wishes fireworks and even falling snow are part of this incredible parade. To stay awake for the grand finale, where Santa makes his debut, complimentary hot cocoa and cookies are offered. The cheerful “Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party” is a great option to explore during your holiday vacation in Orlando.

Holidays Around The World – Nov. 23 – Dec. 30, 2007
What better way to celebrate all around the globe the joyous holiday season than at Epcot’s “Holidays Around the World” event? Among the shows featured is a nightly Candlelight Processional, where an invited celebrity narrates the Christmas story accompanied by a fine 50-piece orchestra and a fantastic choir. Another excellent show is the “ IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth,” whichshowcases over 1,000 fireworks, an amazing floating Earth Globe that has state-of-the-art LED screens and lots of great music. Holiday stories from all over the world are told by special invitees, including France’s Père Noël, Italy’s LaBefana and America’s Santa Claus. Other events that cannot be missed at Holidays Around the World are The Mickey Tree Lighting Treat and Lights of Winter.

The Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights – Nov. 12, 2007 – Jan. 6, 2008
If you are looking for a different experience where the holiday spirit shines all over the place, The Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights is the perfect event . Millions of blinking, twinkling and colorful lights decorate New York Street at Disney-MGM Studios while dancing in a choreographed motion to splendid holiday music. Beautiful Christmas trees , heavenly angels, sparkling snowflakes and various three-dimensional and motion-based displays adorn the streets making visitors feel and enjoy the spirit of the holiday season at Disney World.

Mickey’s Jingle Jungle Parade – Nov. 12, 2007 – Jan. 6 2008
Mickey’s Jingle Jungle is a colorful and lively parade that takes place in Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Mickey Mouse, Donald, Minnie Mouse, Goofy and other friends go for a great jungle adventure while fun performances take place and magnificent holiday music plays. The cheerful and exotic Mickey’s Jingle Jungle paradeis known for its outstanding abstract animal images, amazing designs made with natural materials and fabrics, and unique holiday decorations.

Festival of the Seasons – Nov. 23 – December 24, 2007
Festival of the Seasons at Downtown Disney provides a spectacular holiday shopping experience. All the Disney stores are decorated for the holidays and feature a great variety of holiday merchandise. Live entertainment, wonderful light consistent displays, Santa’s presence, magnicifinet music and friendly performers make the holiday shopping experience enjoyable and fun. Some of the stores at Downtown Disney are: Once Upon a Toy, Virgin™ Megastore, LEGO® Imagination Center and Disney’s Days of Christmas.

Harlem Gospel Choir at Disney-MGM Studios – Nov. 30 – Dec. 25, 2007
The world-famous Harlem Gospel Choir takes the stage at Disney-MGM Studios during the months of November and December. The energetic and magnificent choir will fill your holidays with glorious music, contagious faith and lots of happiness. The amazing Harlem Gospel Choir was founded in 1986 and has shared the staged with artists of the caliber of Diana Ross, Jimmy Cliff and Bono. Besides rejuvenating people’s spirits through its wonderful music, the choir is committed to raising funds for children’s charities and was recognized for its outstanding work by Pope John Paul II.

New Year’s Eve At Walt Disney World Resort – Dec. 31, 2007
Disney World has a variety of options to countdown The New Year. Disney-MGM Studios, Magic Kingdom, Epcot and Pleasure Island at Downtown Disney will be celebrating the arrival of the 2008 with music, festivities and entertainment.

When it comes to celebrating the holidays at Walt Disney World with your family, many choices are available. As a result, an organized plan of holiday activities is a great idea to save time and enjoy to the fullest the holiday season at Walt Disney World.

“Having a good idea of the events that your family wants to enjoy and advanced planning is the recipe for a wonderful holiday vacation,” said Kyle Collins, Director of Interactive Marketing at HotelsCorp.com. “I would recommend searching the Internet and booking your activities as far in advance as possible, this will alleviate some of the last minute holiday stress that happens to everyone.”

Memoirs from SES San Jose 2007: Swag review – The Good, The Bad and What The?!!

SES San Jose 2007
So SES San Jose 2007 is over and done with and it was in one word…Awesome! It was my second SES but my first in San Jose. The experience at San Jose’s Search Engine Strategies is an incredible one. The intangible yet palpable cloud of knowledge and industry insight was extraordinary. Whether it came from industry leaders or my SEM peers, information and answers were always on tap. Just knowing that I was getting the best, most efficient strategies in the industry direct from the horse’s mouth as well as the most intelligible guesses as to the future of search engine marketing made the pricey conference fee well worth it. Or, maybe I was just star-struck, at least as star-stuck as one can get in the search industry. I mean, I met Marissa Mayer from Google, I made Matt Cutts chuckle and I got to a chance to one-on-one about link baiting with Rand Fishkin from SEOMoz…all totally awesome!

But enough about the people, great sessions and info at SES San Jose, my more detailed summaries will come in later blogs. Right now I am talking about those unsung heroes of conferences like SES, the foot soldiers of brand equity: Chochkies…a.k.a. leave behinds a.k.a. promotional products, premiums etc. etc. Though we oft take these small stars of the business world for granted, sometimes these knickknacks drive entire industries…for example the pharmaceutical industry spends several millions per year to produce effective leave behinds that keep their drugs top of mind for doctors, especially prior to the availability to them of the mainstream media. So in honor of the creative minds who used their brain juice to work extra hard for brands… here is my review of the chochkies from the exhibitors at SES San Jose 2007.

T-Shirt review.
There was an abundance of T-shirts. T-shirts are always a great. Everyone uses them and of course they’re awesome for branding – think Nike, Versace, Fubu etc. My favorite was, of course, the Google Dance shirt. The creative (artwork) was good…it was in association with an event (great branding and relevance)…and frankly it was cool looking, and will be doubly so once I get back to MCO. Other T-shirts worth mentioning came from LinkWorth – one of the only booths that you HAD to give them your contact info (via badge scan) to get one – hey, if your paying good money for your promotional items…turn them into lead generators. GenieKnowsGames.com also gave away T-shirts at their mondo display complete with freeplay video games. My T-shirt lust also led me to discover Moniker.com, a forward thinking Domain Asset Management company…I like forward thinking companies – heck! I like the words “forward thinking”.

tshirts from SES San Jose 2007

What the ??!!
The What the Heck award goes to Findology‘s little Findology watch-a-ma-call-it (molecule). I have no idea what it does…but it’s cool looking when arranged in a line on their exhibit table. The downside of this marketing piece is that you don’t do anything with it so after a few days of looking at it, mine will probably eventually find the trash. I guess Findology is a science best understood by those who practice it (ha I kill me!)

findology.jpg

Water bottles.

Ah water bottles, colorful, plentiful and mostly boring. But we can always use more. Water bottles offer lots of real estate for brand and tend to be something that people keep around and reuse, so though not the sexiest of chochkies…they can provide good bang for buck. I did get one cool one though on a private tour of Google (but that’s another blog entry :).

water11.jpgwater3.jpgwater2.jpg

That’s cool.
I haven’t had so much fun with two magnets since elementary school. ABC search‘s noisy, disruptive spinning magnet things were fantastic…I even almost got put out of a session before it started just because they could possibly be potentially disruptive..lol! Oh yeah! Also, I loved Hakia‘s totally novel “Search Music”. It was music composed and performed by members of staff at the search engine. They all seemed very proud of this piece at the booth…and rightfully so…I could easily see this charting well on Billboard’s ethno-techie-world-ambience genre!

abcsearch2.jpg hakia.jpg

Best of Show.
A lesson in relevance, and relevance really is what search is all about. Superpages.com a business directory and local search engine owned by Idearc Media Corp. out of Dallas, Texas. So for Search Engine Strategies San Jose 2007, they gave away a very comprehensive Survival Kit and guide to the city of San Jose. Kudos to the Superpages.com marketing team and forward-thinking executives who approved what I’m sure was a fairly costly and well branded leave behind piece. It included an offline paper version of their mapping technology (it’s great…you have to see it), hand sanitizers, key rings, a flashlight and other small useful items plus a (complete) 2007 Zagat survey. For their great effort and execution, they get from me a keyword rich backlink: yellow pages maps directions.

superpages1.jpgmap.jpgzagat.jpg

Others worth mentioning…

The light up bouncyball from ClickPath. My 2-year-old daughter has already gleaned hours of fun from this gadget.

clickpath.jpg

MP3 Player speakers from Island Data. I just wish there was more about their brand included on this piece – like a tag line &/or website.
islanddata.jpg

A USB jump drive I got from Google (on my tour of the campus).
jump.jpg

The moral of today’s story?
1. The best leave behinds are those that are most relevant to the event and to your audience!
2. Not all link baiting needs be online…as a matter of fact, if you want a link back to your website, send me your best chochky, T-shirt or whatever and I will review it and give you a backlink to your site.
mailto: Ryan Weidman, 7450 Sandlake Commons Blvd., Orlando, FL 32819.

Top 10 Most Bizarre Las Vegas Attractions

A wealth of unique curiosities can be discovered throughout Sin City for those travelers who like to stray off the beaten path. Below are 10 of the most offbeat attractions in Las Vegas…at least in my opinion.

ATOMIC TESTING MUSEUM
755 East Flamingo Road
The 8,000-square-foot Atomic Testing Museum traces the role the state played in the development of the United States’ atomic energy program at the Nevada Test Site. View a wealth of artifacts in the exhibition hall, check out the “Ground Zero Theater” and view vintage atomic testing film clips.

BUGSY SIEGEL MEMORIAL
Flamingo Las Vegas, 3555 Las Vegas Boulevard South
A bronze plaque memorial to legendary gangster Benjamin “Bugsy” Siegel can be found in the garden at the Flamingo Las Vegas. Siegel, who founded the original Flamingo Hotel in 1946, was “whacked” in his Beverly Hills mansion in 1947.

CRAZY GIRLS SCULPTURE

Riviera Hotel & Casino, 2901 Las Vegas Boulevard South
The award-winning, “cast-from-life” bronze Crazy Girls sculpture at the entrance to the Riviera Hotel & Casino showcases the best “assets” of the talented performers who make up “Las Vegas’ Sexiest Topless Revue.” The Crazy Girls sculpture has evolved over the years into one of the most popular photo ops in Las Vegas.

KING TUT’S TOMB
Luxor Las Vegas, 3900 South Las Vegas Boulevard

Within the luxurious Luxor Las Vegas lies an exact replica of King Tutankhamun’s tomb, which was discovered by British archaeologist Howard Carter in 1922. Numerous Egyptian artifacts also can be viewed during the 15-minute self-guided walking tour.

LIBERACE MUSEUM
1775 East Tropicana Avenue

Founded in 1979, the Liberace Museum celebrates the life and music of the late, flamboyant entertainer (full name: Wladziu Valentino Liberace), who was known as “Mr. Showmanship.” View Liberace’s pianos, jewelry, costumes, custom car collection (including a hand-painted, red, white and blue Rolls-Royce convertible!), awards, antiques and more.

NEON MUSEUM
425 Fremont Street
Many of the legendary neon signs that once lined the Las Vegas Strip are on display at this fascinating outdoor museum, which lies adjacent to the Fremont Street Experience in downtown Las Vegas.

PINBALL HALL OF FAME
3330 East Tropicana Avenue
Operated by members of the Las Vegas Pinball Collectors Club, the Pinball Hall of Fame houses one of the world’s largest pinball collections. All pinball machines, which range from the 1960s to the present, are available to play (bring your quarters).

STAR TREK: THE EXPERIENCE
Las Vegas Hilton, 3000 Paradise Road
Trekkies, Klingon impersonators and thrill seekers alike will want to check out the interactive Star Trek: The Experience, which includes two lively attractions, BORG Invasion 4D and Klingon Encounter, as well as the History of the Future Museum, Quark’s Bar & Restaurant and a specialty store full of tons of collectibles and memorabilia.

WORLD’S LARGEST GAMBLING SUPERSTORE
800 South Main Street

Take home a unique souvenir of your trip to Las Vegas with a visit to the 8,000-square-foot Gamblers General Store, which features personalized poker chips, roulette wheels, blackjack tables, pai gow sets, dice, playing cards, used slot machines and much more.

 

WORLD’S LARGEST GIFT SHOP
2440 Las Vegas Boulevard South
Just about every type of souvenir can be found at Bonanza Gifts, which bills itself as the “World’s Largest Gift Shop” (since Guinness World Records does not have such a category, we’ll just have to take their word for it!). Whether you’re looking for tacky T-shirts, Rat Pack postcards, Minnetonka moccasins, dice bracelets or classic dealer’s visors, you’ll find it here. Celebrities who have shopped at Bonanza Gifts include Nicholas Cage, Angelina Jolie, Michael Jackson and Carrot Top.