Tag Archives: Las Vegas

Damien Hirst Designed A Vegas Suite And You Must See It

Damien Hirst Vegas Suite
Source: www.departure.com

Are you looking for a one-of-a-kind experience? How about a stay in a Damien Hirst-designed suite at the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas? Imagine winning the gigantic online roulette jackpot, so you can indulge yourself in the outdoor jacuzzi of the $100,000-per-night Empathy Suite. Created in collaboration with the architecture firms Bentel & Bentel and Klai Juba Walk, the suite opened just last month.

Who is Damien Hirst?

Damien Hirst is a British artist born in 1965 who grew up in Leeds and studied at the Leeds College of Art. He first emerged onto the international art scene in the late 1980s. His style is pop culture-related and over-the-top, challenging contemporary belief systems. He won a Turner Prize in 1995, the UK’s most publicized art award since 1984.

One of his most well-known and iconic pieces is The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living, created in 1991. He commissioned an Australian fisherman to catch a tiger shark which he then submerged in formaldehyde. The initial shark was poorly preserved and has since been replaced. He went on to create an entire Natural History series with more preserved and taxidermized animals, highlighting death as a central motif of his work.

Another theme Hirst has worked a lot with is the medical field, particularly the cultural role of prescription drugs. He has created medicine cabinets filled with medication packaging, pill cabinets with thousands of hand-painted resin and plaster pills, and paintings representing medications. He wishes to highlight the power people place in pharmaceuticals.

He is also known for his many butterfly-themed pieces, some of which used real butterflies – or just their wings. For Hirst, the butterfly is a universal trigger of happiness and a reflection of the circle of life.

What are the features of the suite?

The suite is two levels and 9000 square feet (836 square meters) – more a villa than a hotel suite! There are two bedrooms, two media lounges, a theatre, a gym, and massage rooms. You can also enjoy an outdoor Jacuzzi infinity-style pool overlooking the Las Vegas Strip. The suite even has its own bar that can seat 13 people.

At $100,000 a night and with a two-night minimum stay, the Empathy Suite is currently the most expensive hotel suite in the world. The record was previously held by the $80,000-a-night Royal Penthouse Suite at Geneva’s Hotel President Wilson. The million-dollar casino players at the Palms Resort also are given free access to the suite.

Included in the nightly price are a 24-hour private butler service, extraordinary welcome amenities, a private chauffeur, VIP access to all of the hotel’s amenities, a private tour of the suite, and $10,000 in hotel credit.

What are Hirst’s artistic touches?

Some of Hirst’s most well-known works have been integrated into the suit, including Winner/Loser featuring two bull sharks suspended in formaldehyde. Along with butterfly designs found in the jacuzzi and on the flooring throughout the suite, a collection of real butterflies on canvas that he made and named Casino Royale is in its rightful location at the Palms. Continuing with the gaming theme, you’ll also find The Winner Takes It All, 18 feet of cubic zirconia on shelves.

The aforementioned curved bar is also a piece of artwork in itself as it is filled with medical waste. This contrasts with well-ordered medicine cabinets placed around the villa. Above the bar is Here for a Good Time, Not a Long Time – two vitrines, one containing a marlin skeleton and the second a taxidermy marlin.

Continuing the medical theme are oversized pills embroidered on chairs and cushions and stuck to the windows as well as a “Pill” wall covering. There is even a 12-feet-wide by 6-feet-high glass and stainless-steel display full of thousands of plaster pills (Money).

Staying in this Vegas casino suite is almost like sleeping in your own personal modern art museum.

Showgirls: A Brief Synopsis

Elizabeth Berkley who played Nomi
Source: Flavorwire

While I was too young to watch Showgirls when it was initially released, the recent hype about the film was enough to persuade me to go out and get it on DVD. The 1995 French-American film follows Nomi, a drifter in search of a life of fame. The storyline tracks the main character as she moves to Las Vegas and becomes a stripper, in an attempt to reach the ultimate end goal of becoming a showgirl. Nomi quickly realises that success comes with a price, as her morals are put to the test.

Upon its release, the film received poor reviews and didn’t fair well financially, with Elizabeth Berkley who played Nomi, stating that it took her years to escape the black cloud that hung over her career after the release of Showgirls. Many people didn’t understand why a film that was directed by the same guy responsible for classics like Robocop and Elle (which received a Golden Globe award as well) managed to do so poorly. On the surface, Showgirls held a lot of promise, and many experts believed that it should have done well – so, where exactly did it all go wrong for this promising film? We discuss below.

Where Did it All Go Wrong?

Upon its initial release, Showgirls failed to reach commercial success status. Joe Eszterhas, who wrote the film, said that the mistakes made at that time resulted in one of the biggest failures of his career. The film was internationally ridiculed by film critics, with the popular review site Rotten Tomatoes giving it a rating of 22%. Be that as it may, there is not one single factor that can be attributed to the film’s failure. While some critics tend to blame the dreary storyline behind the demise of the film, others feel that bad acting, poor marketing and too many distasteful, half-naked women all contributed to the poor reception which it received. To this day, this motion picture is still considered one of the worst films ever made.

How Perception of the Film Evolved Over Time

When the film was initially released in 1995, the world was a very different place. This makes me wonder, was public perception of the film tainted by the definition of what was considered to be “quality entertainment” at the time – or was the film just generally bad? Over the years, showgirl-themed parties have become extremely popular and, as a result, many twenty-something year olds have taken a particular liking to the 1995 flick. In the USA, Showgirls has become a common pick for midnight movie viewings, and is shown alongside films like The Adventures of Priscilla and The Rocky Horror Picture Show. Although the cinematic release of the film didn’t do too well, over the years, the film has managed to generate more than $100 million for video rentals alone. It has also become one of MGM’s top 20 bestsellers. Now that is definitely a pleasant twist in a tale.

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Showgirls Cult Status

Despite appearing on virtually all lists ranking the worst movies of all time, Showgirls has managed to achieve cult status. The film rose to prominence amongst young adults, with parties and festivals being initiated in the name of the timeless title. Many individuals still deem it to be one of the most successful film flops ever.

Final Thoughts

Whether your opinion is centred on the good or the bad, there is ultimately no denying that Showgirls is a classic. While the film may not have initially had the desired outcome to those involved, it did eventually give them some exposure, and like they say, no publicity is bad publicity. We’re pretty sure that this title will remain a favourite for many years to come, and will result in party tricks and memories made solely in the name of Showgirls. If you haven’t watched it yet, then be sure to grab a bowl of warm popcorn, press the play button and experience for yourself what all the fuss is about.