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Eating Around Vegas in a Wheelchair

I plan on flying into Vegas on a Sunday afternoon to meet friends staying at Caesar's and will fly home Thursday morning. Due to the timing I plan on eating at Koi on Tuesday, either Picasso on Monday or Guy Savoy on Wednesday and maybe Lotus of Siam on the day I don't have my two star Michelin meal.

As a guy in a wheelchair are there any accessible eating establishments I should check out? I'd also like to hear recommendations on other things to get into besides gambling 24/7. Thanks for your input.

Larry

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  1. My roommate is in a wheelchair and never has had a problem accessing any restaurant on or off the Strip.

    1. Lotus is one of my favorite places in Vegas, but it isn't real accessible. That being said, I love it! Picasso is solid, but if I were picking one place to eat in Vegas it would be between Guy Savoy and Restaurant Charlie. If you like wine, The Cellar at Rio is very cool. Just a note, the Sushi Bar at Koi is NOT Wheelchair Accessible (unless you can transfer, of course.). I love eating in the lounge, however.

      1. Saw your request on another LV thread. I do not know from personal experience, but have to say that I have observed many, many wheelchair-bound individuals in most places in LV. On our last visit, I believe that there was a convention, or at least a gathering, as about 10% of all the folk that I saw were in some sort of wheelchair.

        Again, through casual observation only, it did not appear that any were having any difficulty traversing the Strip - no more than I was, without a wheelchair.

        I cannot address restaurant acces, but it *seemed* that most were totally accessible. Things might be different, when that is the only way to get in and be seated.

        We travel with my M-I-L, who is totally bound to her wheelchair, so I do see locations in a different light nowadays.

        I think one would be fine in LV. I do not have any specific recommendations, but will have to say that almost every restaurant we have dined at, with M-I-L, has been great at explaining their access, though none in LV. I'd first look to the cuisine that you want, and then make a call. I would be surprised if the staff did not give you a joyous welcome, and point you to any ramps, or elevators.

        One recent restaurant in New Orleans had no ramp, but they had two strong young guys waiting curb-side and they snatched up M-I-L and had her seated comfortably, before we could get the door closed on the auto! They took her back to the car, and even packed her travel chair, while we were just exiting. OK, they did not have a ramp, but they had a plan and it worked beautifully.

        Good luck,

        Hunt

        1. I've had quite a bit of experience helping people with wheelchairs in LV, and as others have indicated, most of the places on the Strip are not only set up to accommodate wheelchairs, but have much experience doing so. I've only accompanied one person with a wheelchair to Lotus. As foodgimp indicates, it isn't particularly well set up for wheelchairs, but it isn't a problem, either, especially once you get past the narrow entranceway. Most of the tables in the middle of the room can easily handle wheelchairs. You might want to make a reservation and tell them about your situation - everyone at Lotus will try to make you comfortable.

          1. This is one of those questions (Guy Savoy or Picasso) that I love to answer, but there are variables, what ifs. In terms of food there really isn't much of a comparison. Picasso's food is very good and never really disappoints. Guy Savoy's is divine, the kind that makes your eye balls roll to the back of your head divine. As for ambiance, Picasso's is stunning. And how could it not be with real Picasso's adorning the walls and the Bellagio fountains outside. Guy Savoy's is much less showy (a bit minimalist IMO but that is what they wanted as not to take away from the food.) but extravagant and comfy.

            As far as deciding between the two? 1st off lets say you were only going to Vegas for the 1st time and didn't plan on returning. I would give the nod to Picasso for over all experience. But the cost difference (assuming you do grand tastings) is about a 3:1 ratio. The best way for me to compare is to go back several years when I attended the opening of GS with a friend of mine who was also the sous chef at GS many years ago and is currently owner/chef of Restaurant Jean Louis in Greenwich Ct. We had back to back dinners at GS and Picasso. And I asked Jean Louis the following morning which restaurant he preferred. And his feeling was pretty universal w/all attending: If $ is a big deal and you could only choose one, Picasso would be the choice. HOWEVER there was no question, NONE, that in terms of food quality Guy Savoy was far superior. So I guess it boils down to exactly what you are looking for.

            And one final thought. I have been in many kitchens in my 44 years on this planet. Guy Savoy's kitchen ranks #1. It is truly a showcase kitchen and the staff's pedigree is simply overwhelming. They have a chef's table that if I could afford I would book in a heart beat. Picasso...stay in the dining room!

            5 Replies
            1. re: LVI

              Thanks for the input everyone. This will be my first trip to Vegas but hopefully not my last. I love food and have never experienced haute cuisine like you see on television. At first I had my mind set on the TGV at GS but then I heard about Picasso and thought I could get more bang for my buck there since I could get the tasting menu and wine pairings for roughly the same as the TGV without. I figured I could always check out the Bubble Bar for a little taste of GS. However, I would have no problem shelling out more at GS for a wonderful experience.

              The only thing drawing me a little away from GS is that I may be touring the Nevada Nuclear Test Facility from 7:30 am to 4 pm. I don't want to be exhausted after a long outing and be unable to enjoy the food. As much as I look forward to it though, I should have no problem psyching myself up.

              One last thing for now, I enjoy eating but can't eat as much as I could when I was younger. I'm not certain how big each course is at Picasso, GS and Charlie's but I don't think I could handle more than 4 or 5. Any info you have on portion size would be a great help too. Thanks again.

              Larry

              1. re: ucflyboy

                As far as portion size of TOTAL meal, Bar Charlie would be the least, followed by Picasso then Guy Savoy. The only time I have ever walked out of Picasso feeling really stuffed is when I ordered 2 extra items. The great thing about Picasso is that they will cater to your time constraints FAR better than BC or GS. I have had full on dinner at Picasso in under 2 hours while GS and BC are typically 4+ hours (I am sure it can be done in under 4 but the times I have dinned at both I have always been 4+hours.).

                1. re: ucflyboy

                  Larry,

                  My experience at places like RC or GS is that they are very accommodating, both in terms of my accessibility concerns and my culinary ones as well. If you get there and feel like you need to reduce you courses, just let them know. I did the discovery menu at L'atelier with full expectation of doing the wine pairing also. When I arrived I realized that I needed to reduce the number of wines to about three, because I had several drinks earlier. The Sommelier had no problem and even reduced my bill accordingly. I guess all I am saying is, don't worry, Have fun and let us know how things go!

                  1. re: ucflyboy

                    Based on your update, it sounds like a really good strategy to make your "main" meal at Picasso and then try the Bubble Bar. You can order a la carte there and calibrate exactly how much you want to eat.

                    1. re: Dave Feldman

                      I keep forgetting abou the Bubble bar option! Great idea Mr. Feldman.

                2. I am in a wheelchair myself and visit Vegas regularly. It is by far one of the most accessible places to go. You will not have any issues on the strip I know for a fact. Go where ever you please. Clubs are tough to get around in a chair no matter where you are, but from my experience the bouncers always help me out when needing to get around.

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: SDGourmand

                    Great! Thanks for the input everyone. My trip isn't until July and I can't wait. I'll post an update upon my return.

                    1. re: ucflyboy

                      Please give a followup report. Much of what I added was just observation and conjecture. Though we often travel with M-I-L in her wheelchari, we've never been to Las Vegas with her. I usually make a comment on reviews, where she has been in attendence, so others might benefit from the knowledge. Should we take her to Las Vegas, your research will definitely prove very useful.

                      Enjoy,

                      Hunt

                      1. re: Bill Hunt

                        You should definitely take her. As I stated I'm in a wheelchair myself and I'm in Vegas at least once a month and never ran into any issues. The ADA was tough on the casinos a few years back and they really have taken it seriously and made everything accessible.

                        1. re: SDGourmand

                          As another Wheelchair user who frequents Vegas, I agree. Vegas, especially the strip, is very wheelchair friendly. Itravel by myself most of the time and have never had a problem(other than a lack of low gaming tables) with accessibility!