Updated: Mar 14
VENUE AND HOTEL
Mandalay Bay Hotel and Convention Center 3950 Las Vegas Blvd S Las Vegas, NV 89199 Check In Time - 3:00PM Check Out Time - 11:00AM If you would like more information on EVO, please visit the official link: https://www.evo.gg/events
Harry Reid International Airport (LAS) - 3.1mi (10 minute drive to venue)
Las Vegas is one of those cities where taxis/ubers are incredibly convenient due to parking fees. Ubers are highly recommended, but local taxis work as well.
Word of advice - IF YOUR DRIVER ASKS YOU IF YOU WANT TO TAKE THE HIGHWAY/SCENIC ROUTE vs LOCAL, TAKE THE LOCAL ROUTE! It's a "scam" that's been very common in Vegas. Not sure if they do it anymore, but just in case - in the past, drivers would ask passengers if they prefer to take the highway while implying that highway is faster/more convenient. This is NOT the case. The local route is usually faster. Share this info to help your friends out!
If you are driving, parking is available: Self Parking - $18/day Valet - $35/day
Walking - Note that walking a block in Vegas will take MUCH longer than walking a block in other cities. Vegas blocks are huge. It usually is more convenient hopping into an Uber to get to other hotels/areas.
HOW TO GET TO THE VENUE
The Convention Center where the activities will be happening is connected directly to the Mandalay Bay. It is a bit of a walk though (at least 10-15 minutes). Please keep that in mind when trying to make it to your pool! Here is a map on how to get to the convention center from the Mandalay Bay, Luxor, and Delano.
WELCOME TO VEGAS, BABY! There are SO many places to eat at, especially late night eats. Majority of this article is going to about food courts, late night eats, and best of all, a buffet tier list!
MAIN FOOD COURT BETWEEN HOTEL AND CONVENTION CENTER (MOST CONVENIENT)
DIRECTIONS: FROM THE FRONT DESK Walk past guest elevators to the casino floor and follow the pathway along the left hand side. Go straight and veer to the left until you reach the Mandalay Bay Convention area. Walk past Border Grill and the wedding chapel, the Food Court is located on your right.
SHOPPES AT MANDALAY BAY (BETWEEN MANDALAY BAY AND LUXOR)
Cosmopolitan Food Hall aka Block16
Although this food court is not in the Luxor/Mandalay Bay, I think their selection is excellent so it should be worth mentioning. https://www.cosmopolitanlasvegas.com/block16
WELCOME TO THE NEIGHBORHOOD Block 16 Urban Food Hall is a culinary destination like no other on The Las Vegas Strip. Showcasing a curated selection of purveyors, we’ve scoured the country's most traversed city streets to bring the most crave-able, easy-to-love food & drink to The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas. Bold flavors, world-renowned chefs and a lively atmosphere draw you in and compel you to stay. From breakfast to late night, at Block 16 you can indulge in spontaneity, absorb the atmosphere—and maybe even surprise yourself.
BĀNG BAR BY MOMOFUKU Bāng Bar by Momofuku is a quick spot to grab freshly griddled flatbread sandwiches and rice bowls. Chef David Chang and the team put an Asian-accented spin on spit-roasted meats and sides.
DISTRICT: DONUTS. SLIDERS. BREW.
New Orleans’ cult favorite, District: Donuts. Sliders. Brew. makes its West Coast debut at Block 16, serving handcrafted craveable classics, prepared fresh-to-order. Recognized as a leading craft donut purveyor, District’s rich, homemade confections include more than 100 consistently rotating flavors including Chocolate Blackout and Bananas Foster. The eatery’s boundless donut collection complements wider menus highlighting both lunch and dinner. Breakfast favorites include made-from-scratch biscuit sandwiches and the signature crowd favorite, kolache—a tender, sweet pastry dough filled with a selection of sweet and savory ingredients. Lunch and dinner menu items include waffle cheese fries, pork belly sliders and savory donut sandwiches. Widely known for its specialty coffee and espresso program, District brings a full array of craft espresso beverages as well as nitro cold brew, Vietnamese iced coffee and house-made chocolate milk, expertly poured on draft.
GHOST DONKEY Hidden within Block 16, New York City tequila and mezcal lounge Ghost Donkey’s menu pulls inspiration from the alluring ingredients and flavors of Mexico to authenticate a true fiesta experience. Featuring an extensive selection of mezcal, Ghost Donkey serves expertly selected tasting flights alongside specially crafted cocktails made with traditional Mexican spirits and artisanal brands, complementing the resort’s world-renowned cocktail program. One of the highlights of the menu, Truffle Nachos, adds a new legend to the lexicon of lounge snacks.
HATTIE B’S HOT CHICKEN Famed for its emphasis on quality, flavor and true Southern hospitality, Nashville’s family-owned and operated Hattie B’s Hot Chicken showcases its first West Coast location at Block 16, serving Nashville hot chicken, Southern sides and local brews in a casual, counter-service eatery. The menu standout, perfectly-fried chicken bathed in hot melted spices, is served in a variety of heat levels from Southern (no heat), Mild, Medium, Hot, Damn Hot to the daredevil’s dream, Shut the Cluck Up. Hattie B’s also features complementary comfort dishes including pimento mac and cheese, Southern greens and local Nashville favorite, banana pudding.
LARDO Portland Chef Rick Gencarelli brings Lardo’s ruthlessly bold and flavorful approach to The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas as an over-the-top sandwich eatery featuring big flavors and even bigger sandwiches. Primarily a pork sandwich shop that uses genuine ingredients made into carefully crafted standouts, Lardo’s menu features favorites such as the Griddled Mortadella, Korean Pork Shoulder sandwich, and Lardo’s signature dirty fries, coupled with a selection of Chef Gencarelli’s favorite beers on tap, sourced directly from Portland.
LATE NIGHT FOOD
Closest 24 hour spot within the Luxor. Sandwiches, salads, burgers and hot dogs. Pretty straight forward!
Open 24 Hours. 3900 Las Vegas Blvd S Las Vegas, NV 89119
Earl of Sandwich Another 24 hour sandwich spot, but definitely one of the best around. I always get "The Original 1762" sandwich, but you can't go wrong with any of the choices! Open 24 Hours. 3667 Las Vegas Blvd S Las Vegas, NV 89109 More Info Here
Secret Pizza NY style pizza. Definitely a great spot for late night pizza. Located inside the Cosmopolitan Casino/Hotel! Open until 4:00AM 3708 Las Vegas Blvd S Level 3 The Boulevard Tower Las Vegas, NV 89109 More Info Here
Tacos El Gordo Tijuana style tacos. A chain, but probably the most famous chain for these tacos. The line situation is a little complicated, but you'll be able to figure it out if you see what everyone else is doing! AL PASTOR TACOS ARE A MUST! Open until 4:00AM on Friday and Saturday Open until 2:00AM on Sunday 3041 S Las Vegas Blvd Las Vegas, NV 89109 *The Tacos El Gordo location is usually packed. For shorter lines, there are TWO other locations in Las Vegas off the strip. Same operation hours. Check those out! More Info Here
Ellis Island Want late night, cheap food? Ellis Island has always been a classic. Specifically, the Village Pub is where you would go. It is a classic steak and fries restaurant, but since it's off the strip, they're able to offer very reasonable prices ($17 for their steak and shrimp dish). Open 24 Hours. 4178 Koval Ln Las Vegas, NV 89109 More Info Here
Pho Kim Long Craving Asian food and its late? Pho Kim Long carries Pho (obviously), but several other Vietnamese and Chinese dishes. Open until 2:30AM. 4029 Spring Mountain Rd Las Vegas, NV 89102 More Info Here
What we've all been waiting for! There's only a few important buffets. I am listing them from top to bottom, with the top being S tier.
Located in Caesar's Palace. It is absolutely my favorite as the quality + variety of cuisines is incredible. From Roman-style pizza to roaming dim sum carts, find a world of flavor at our nine kitchen stations. Indulge in originals like chipotle bourbon BBQ oysters and duck carnitas quesadillas. Sample delightful vegan options and explore a new selection of Laotian, Filipino, Indonesian, Thai and Vietnamese dishes. And save room for dessert like earl grey mousse, salted caramel popcorn and gelato.
Located at Caesar's Palace. Closes at 10PM.
You MUST book a reservation in order to eat here. You can make a reservation in person (the wait will be hours, so come really early if you want to eat here), or you can book through open table on their website.
The Wynn Buffet ($65/Per Person) "This bright, airy buffet at Wynn Las Vegas takes your average ho-hum buffet experience and really cranks it up, combining the variety of a traditional buffet with the atmosphere of a fine dining restaurant—not to mention the sky-high colorful topiaries that surround you. While there are 120 dishes to choose from, some of our favorites are Frank Sinatra’s family recipe of spaghetti and meatballs, Guinness-braised short ribs, made-to-order fresh sushi, and street tacos prepared in front of you on a giant rotating griddle. What really tops everything off is their chocolate fountain, where you can cover everything from fruit to marshmallows to cookies in sweet, melty chocolate goodness." Closes at 9PM. 3131 Las Vegas Blvd S Las Vegas, NV 89109 More Info Here
The Buffet at Bellagio ($65/Person) "With décor reminiscent of a village town, Bellagio Buffet gives off a warm, welcoming feeling from the moment you sit down, but that’s not even the best part. It features a lot of foods you won’t find at other Las Vegas buffets, like ahi poke, salmon roulade, rotisserie chicken, and honey and pineapple-glazed ham. Seasonal fruits and parfaits await at the dessert buffet, like the white chocolate Nutella parfait, which comes in the cutest little waffle cone." Open Until 9PM. 3600 S Las Vegas Blvd Las Vegas, NV 89109 More Info Here
RANDOM EATS, EITHER ON THE STRIP OR OFF.
Popeyes - If you're craving that Louisiana Fried Chicken like I always do, Excalibur has one in it's food court that's open until 11:30PM on weekdays. That is all.
Rainbow Blvd (aka Fried Chicken Road) - I created that name for Rainbow Blvd., so it's the UNOFFICIAL fried chicken road. Any fried chicken chain you can think of is on Rainbow Blvd. American fried chicken, Korean, and even Filipino. They're all within a 3 mile radius down Rainbow Blvd. I'm sure there are other restaurants on this road, but they're not as important.
Momofuku - Not cheap at all, but Momofuku is a David Chang restaurant. He takes his own twist with Asian food. Very delicious and huge portions. Not one of those restaurants that charge you $300 for 5 peas. Located inside the Cosmopolitan Casino and Hotel. More Info Here
Cleaver - an excellent steakhouse. Not too expensive. It's a smaller steakhouse, so not the best for big parties. It's sister restaurant, Herb & Rye, might be to one to go to for bigger parties. It's the best steak tartare I've had in my life. 3900 Paradise Rd suite d-1, Las Vegas, NV 89169 More Info Here
Shang Artisan Noodle - If you've never had Taiwanese beef noodle soup, this is the restaurant you want to go to. It's small and popular, so there usually is a wait. 4983 W Flamingo Rd Ste B Las Vegas, NV 89103 More Info Here
Chubby Cattle - Craving some hot pot or heard of it and want to try it? Chubby Cattle has a cool theme to it, but the meat quality is also excellent. Highly recommend the spicy soup base and the tomato soup base. 3400 S Jones Blvd Ste 15 Las Vegas, NV 89146 More Info Here
Izakaya Go - Japanese joint, tapa style. It's very easy to spend a lot of money here, but I haven't had a single dish that wasn't worth it. Not that its expensive, but there's so many choices! 3775 Spring Mountain Rd Ste 301 Las Vegas, NV 89102 More Info Here