A vast 30-storey pyramid (the world's forth largest pyramid) encloses the world's larges atrium, measuring 820'000m3 (29 million cu ft). From its summit, the world's brightest beam of light reaches 16 km (10 miles) into space. Attractions include the Ra nightclub; Lasting Impressions - a show starring Bill Acosta; a replica of Tutankhamen's tomb, discovered by Howard Carter in 1922; Luxor Live, a simulated talk show with hologram characters; and an IMAX Cinema.
The gaming area fills 11'000m2 (120'000 sq ft) and features a race and a sports book. Minimum table stakes start at $5, increasing to $10 on busy nights. Novice players can practice in poker lessons and try their luck in beginner's games with $1-$2 minimum stakes.
Dubbed the 'City of Entertainment', the MGM Grand promises 'more facilities and recreational venues than any other resort'. The Grand Garden Arena features world-class concerts and special events; EFX Theatre is home to a $45 million musical starring Tommy Tune; Hollywood Theatre features top entertainers and New York's famous studio 54 nightclub is recreated. The MGM Lion Habitat showcases five lions - descendants of the company's famous mascot.
The Entertainment Dome houses the 16'000m2 (170'000 sq ft) gaming area, where 165 tables offer craps, roulette, baccarat, mini-baccarat, Caribbean stud poker, pai gow poker, big six wheel, Spanish 21 and keno. Stakes start at $5 and increase at busy times. There are 3700 Slots with stakes from a nickel (5c) to $500. Tables in the race and sports book have their own TV sets and laptop points. The casino also has a sumptuous European-style area of high rollers.
At dusk, the volcano outside The Mirage springs into life. Every 15 minutes it erupts, spewing flames and smoke 30m (100 ft) into the air and lava down its side.
The illusion continues inside Kokomo's Restaurant where diners are surrounded by a tropical rainforest housed beneath a huge dome. Bathed in a fine mist of water, over 100 species of plant including orchids, bromeliads and bird of paradise trees inhabit the unique indoor environment. dolphin pools, an aquarium with live sharks and a lagoon-style pool add to the paradise theme. The long-running show by world-famous illusionists Siegfried & Roy features the Royal White Tigers and the White Lions of Timbavati.
The casino has 117 table games and 2200 slot and video poker machines. Minimum stakes are 5c on the slots and $5 on the tables, rising to $25 at peak times.
Steve Wynn, the former head of Mirage Resorts, has helped transform Las Vegas into a sophisticated location. When The Mirage opened in 1989 it set new standards in the city, which Wynn surpassed when he opened Bellagio in 1998, realizing his dream to create the 'most romantic and exciting hotel in the world'.
New York New York
This casino took its theme from 'the city that never sleeps', recreating the Manhattan skyline at one-third scale. Times Square, the Empire State building, Chrysler building and the public library provide a backdrop for a 45m (150 ft) replica of the Statue of Liberty with a tugboat at its base. The Brooklyn Bridge links The Strip with Greenwich Village.
Cobbled streets are lined with tenement buildings, complete with graffiti. The Manhattan Express Roller Coaster, which reaches speed of 107 kph (67 mph), runs across the skyline and into the casino, introducing a flavour of New York's Coney Island beach resort.
The interior of the 7'800m2 (84'000 sq ft) casino echoes New York's Central Park, with trees, streams and bridges surrounding 74 gaming tables, 2000 slots and a sports book. Games include roulette, blackjack, craps, mini-baccarat, progressive pai gow poker, Caribbean stud poker, let it ride, big six wheel, casino war and keno. Minimum stakes range from $5-$10.
Paris Las Vegas
Opened in 1999, the $760 million resort, owned by Park Place Entertainment, recreates the atmosphere of Paris with replicas of Parisian landmarks including the Arc de Triomphe, Louvre and Paris Opera House. The half-scale Eiffel Tower has glass lifts to the summit, from where there is a panoramic view of Las Vegas.
The 7'900m2 (83'000 sq ft) casino, with 100 tables and 2200 slots, is a Parisian street scene, with cobble-stone paths, wrought-iron streetlamps and the ceiling painted to give the effect of the Paris sky at twilight. Games include blackjack, craps, Caribbean stud poker and pai gow. Stakes start at $5, rising to $10 at peak times. The race and sports book provides live coverage of major events from around the world.
The decor in the 2916-room hotel is in the style of the historic Hotel de Ville in Paris. The roof has a 1ha (2 acre) swimming area set in a formal French garden. passages in the convention area are inspired by the Hall of Mirrors at the Palace of Versailles.
Paris Las Vegas is linked to Ballys via Le Boulevard, a shopping mall with French-themed restaurants, and exclusive boutiques featuring some of Europe's top fashion names. Other facilities include a theatre, European-style spa and two wedding chapels.
Treasure Island, owned by Mirage Resorts, has a pirate theme. A free show takes place each evening outside the casino in Buccaneer Bay, where swashbuckling pirates from Hispaniola do battle with British naval officers from HMS Britannia. The exchange of canon and musket fire culminates in the sinking if the British vessel. Large crowds gather to watch, so it is best to arrive early to get a good vantage point. Other amenities are the Mutiny Bay Entertainment Centre; Pirate's Walk Shopping Promenade; a tropical pool area, spa and beauty salon; and a children's zoo. The Treasure Island casino is open 24 hours a day.
Located at the heart of The Strip, The Venetian, which opened in 1999 at a cost of $2 billion, is built on the site of the legendary Sands Hotel. It is modelled on famous landmarks of Venice, including the Campanile tower, Doge's Palace and the Rialto Bridge. Gondolas on the Grand Canal and masked carnival performers in St Mark's Square add to the effect. The all-suite hotel has a 2 ha (5 acre) pool deck surrounded by gardens. Attractions include Madame Tussaud's Celebrity Encounter featuring famous Las Vegas icons such as Elvis Presley, Tom Jones and Frank Sinatra.
The rococo-style casino has 122 gaming tables, offering blackjack, craps, roulette, pai gow, Caribbean stud poker and let it ride. The minimum stake is $5, increasing at peak times. There is a race and sports book and keno lounge. There are 2500 slot machines with stakes ranging from a nickel (5c) to $500.