Visiting the Bellagio Conservatory is one of the most memorable things to do in Vegas. This is pretty much what you'd expect in the fanciest hotel on the Las Vegas Strip. Five acres of seasonal plants intricately arranged for visitors and displayed below a giant glass dome 55 feet in the air. The glass flowers in the main lobby quickly fade into their real counterparts as you move from the reception desk towards the Bellagio Conservatory and Botanical Gardens. The Bellagio garden features an ever-changing display of colorful and exotic plants (more than 1,200 varieties) that change to match the season, even if the weather outside them does not. The most well-liked of the exhibits in the Bellagio Garden is the Christmas display every winter. The entire conservatory is dressed up in full Christmas cheer, with hundreds of plants, decorations and elaborate sculptures to match.
In fact, the displays are changed so much year round that only three of the trees inside the Bellagio Conservatory are actually permanent fixtures - one of which is a banyan tree estimated to be over one hundred years old. But everything else is replaced throughout the year, and each exhibit is built from the ground up by a wide array of talented horticulturists. The elegant gardens the Bellagio Las Vegas has mirrors the whimsy and impermanence of the city itself, a regal collection of plants from all across North America congregating for short periods of time in the center of town. Every two weeks the flowers are replaced by the staff of 129 that oversees the Bellagio Garden, so that you won't find a wilted leaf or withered flower in the bunch. Not that a single one could possibly spoil the vast sea of colors splayed out before you, no matter what the season.
The stunning Bellagio Botanical Gardens are also, like the wildlife habitat in the Flamingo and lion watching at the MGM Grand, completely free. The best time to see the Bellagio Conservatory is, naturally, during the day, when the sun shining down through the glass makes colors burst from every angle. And the exhibits are replaced so often, it is one of the many attractions in Las Vegas that demands a return visit each time you are in the city - it is guaranteed to have changed so much that it hardly resembles your previous encounter. The walkways offer a variety of areas to get up close to all sort so different flowers, and the numerous water fountains and statues are a welcome respite from the hectic energy of the rest of the Las Vegas Bellagio.
Top image: jdnx (flickr)