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Reviewing Vegas Chapels: The Luxor Hotel and Casino

Last time, I reviewed a great chapel on the Las Vegas Strip: The Chapel at Mandalay Bay. Not all of Vegas's wedding establishments are as elegant as Mandalay Bay, however, so if you are thinking about traveling out to sin city for your nuptials, a little research is pertinent. Don't stick with the first place you see - the perfect Vegas chapel, like a good Christmas tree, is hardly ever in the first lot.   The Chapel at the Luxor, for example, would not be my first choice for tying the knot in Las Vegas. Here's why:   Unlike the quiet location of the Mandalay Bay chapel, the Luxor's chapel is located right next to the food court. The chapel is over the main hotel lobby and directly behind the seasonal hotel attractions. Though the main rooms of the chapel seemed more or less soundproof, don't expect your entrance to be subtle or private.   I was invited to look around, but no one seemed particularly eager to help. I was told that there were three chapels, but I'm still not sure where the third was. (If you're doing your own research in Vegas, pay attention to how you're treated by the staff. If they don't seem to care that you're there while you're looking around, think about the kind of service you'll receive on your wedding day.)   The decor was also not really what I expected. The main lobby was a little cramped, mainly because of the floral cooler (Unlike Mandalay Bay, which hid their hardware in some other part of the chapel). I felt like I was in an old, important house - the kind with overstuffed chairs and couches that look like they should be comfortable, but aren't. Everything looked more French than Egyptian, and what could have been classic and elegant ended up looking and feeling more old-fashioned.   The detailing in the ceiling was pretty, but it disappeared once I entered one of the first chapels. The chapel was nice, but I wasn't really blown away. The carpet looked very much like the kind you put in a hotel room because it's easy to vacuum, and the chairs were about as comfortable as benches. I'm sure the chapel looks nice in final wedding pictures, but it felt stuffy and cold while I was there. The two cut-out cubby holes at the front of the room had big cameras in them, and it wasn't as subtle as it could have been (though the bunches of dusty silk flowers did try to, unsuccessfully, hide them. I hope they're tucked away better when there's a ceremony on).   Their packages were about the same in price as the ones at Mandalay Bay, but I never really understood what they included. If you're doing research for your own wedding, make sure you know what the price pays for. If all you're getting is an minster and a DVD, consider taking your business somewhere else. There are plenty of options in Vegas for your big day - don't settle without doing your research!
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Reviewing Vegas Chapels: The Chapel at Mandalay Bay

Getting married in Vegas isn’t what is used to be. Gone are the days of driving down to the slimy end of the strip for a quick “hey-there-what’s-new-you’re-married” with an overweight and geriatric Elvis. The swanky hotels are stepping it up with entire bridal teams and plush in-house chapels, ready to make everything perfect for your big day. “Caesars Palace” offers a beautiful garden ceremony steps away from their grand pool; “Mandalay Bay” has a wedding package that has you reciting your vows under a pod of sharks (standing room only, I’m afraid); and “Treasure Island” lets you kiss the bride on the same pirate ship that’s home to a horde of scantily-clad singing pirate ladies. So, in short, your choices are a more varied than you might think. I recently took a short trip over to sin city and collected some shaky, blurry pictorials and reviews for your knowledge and benefit. Here’s my review of one of the most highly-rated chapels on the strip: The Wedding Chapel at Mandalay Bay: The Mandalay Bay Chapel makes a good first impression right of the bat, as it isn’t located right in the heart of the busy hotel. It’s tucked away from the casino and shopping district. The lobby was welcoming and much bigger than I expected, and the entire building was also sound-proof. The noise from the nearby convention center was completely damped once the doors shut behind us. There were three chapels to choose from (in the main building – for other options, check out Mandalay Bay’s wedding website), though two of them were nearly identical. The only difference with the third was its slightly larger seating capacity. The chapel seemed to have a preference for calla lilies, but they fit in wonderfully with the soft décor. Whether they were swirled into glass bowls or springing from small planters, it was hard to miss them. My only complaint with the décor is the beading on the wall lamps. Beads dripped from every surface, and I was not feeling it. Though the translucent beads looked nice and simple when draped against the wall, I was not so happy when I noticed them falling from the lamps. It was a little tacky, but the room itself made up for it. There was plenty of seating, the décor was simple and pretty, and the baby grand in the back added a little something extra. What really makes the Mandalay Bay Chapel my favorite on the strip, however, has to be their bridal packages. Not only do they offer the basics (photographer, bridal dressing room, simple bouquet), their deals also offer a variety of options that include free spa visits, romantic dinners, honeymoon suites, champagne, mimosas and breakfasts in bed, and even limo rides to retrieve the marriage license. Their prices range from $750 to a little over $18,000 (for the whole shebang, including reception, bar, cake, and wedding planner). Oh, and if you really want to meet Elvis, they’ve got you covered with the “Viva Las Vegas” package.
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