The promotional literature provided in the villas at the Mansion at MGM Grand mentions the property’s “legendary wishing well.” The text fails to explain what makes the water feature so renowned—or how anything at an eight-year-old hotel can be “legendary”—but a glance inside the well offers fuel for speculation. Located in a quadranglelike space not far from the pool, the well is filled with water and artfully arranged rocks—and nothing else. Its bottom is free of coins or poker chips, suggesting that guests of this Las Vegas retreat need not wish for anything.
The Mansion’s 170-strong staff, which includes more than 30 multilingual butlers for the hotel’s 29 villas, maintains that state of affairs. The villas themselves all feature carved cherrywood entrance doors and seeded glass bathroom doors, but otherwise are distinct in design: A bathroom in Villa 32 has a tub that faces a fireplace; the entrance to Villa 7 is flanked with small gardens containing fishtail palm trees, ivy, and bromeliads; Villa 18 has a massive terrace that faces the courtyard; and the office in Villa 32 has five bookcases lined with curtains instead of books. Of the latter, Mansion vice president Ly Ping Wu explains that the shelves are left empty because the Mandarin Chinese word for book sounds like the language’s word for lose. (Apparently, Mandarin-speaking high rollers are comfortable with seeing a few books on a table, but not collections displayed in a case.)
Each of the Mansion’s villas is furnished with antiques, which, when combined with the hotel’s Renaissance-style exteriors, lend the property a timeless appearance. And unlike some Las Vegas pleasure palaces, the Mansion has aged well. The 2005 addition of a Joël Robuchon restaurant, which serves the French chef’s impeccable creations in a setting that recalls 1930s Paris, further enhanced the hotel’s status as the ultimate address on the Strip.
The Mansion at MGM Grand, 877.225.2121
Tucked discreetly into the MGM Grand Hotel complex and accessible by a side street, instead of from the Las Vegas Strip.
The 29 villas range in size from 2,400 square feet to 12,000 square feet. All are decorated with antiques and selections from the hotel’s 1,500-piece art collection.
A domed, climate-controlled courtyard, a screening room, an outdoor pool with adjacent koi pond, two spa treatment rooms, a boardroom, a salon, a game room, and a private casino.
The 16-course tasting menu at the Mansion’s Joël Robuchon restaurant is exhilarating, but room service should not be overlooked. Guests who desire a decadent morning repast can order eggs Benedict topped with golden osetra caviar from the Western side of the two-page breakfast menu or foie gras and lobster dumplings from the Asian side.
Play a round at Shadow Creek, the once-private Las Vegas–area golf course that Tom Fazio designed for Steve Wynn.
From $5,000 to $15,000.