It's no gamble with tips from these four pros
If you want to get the true insider’s view of Vegas, don’t ask the doormen or gamblers — ask the Realtors who help populate the area. We asked four to share their inside tips for essential Las Vegas from both personal and professional standpoints. Want to know the best schools and where the locals eat? Read on…Mollie Schneider Halvorsen, Prudential Americana Group Best neighborhoods: Green Valley is 10 minutes away from the Strip and airport, has parks, great schools and great amenities. A lot of the restaurateurs from the Strip are coming to open cafes and little restaurants. Best schools (private and public): Gorman High School is private and has an extraordinary new campus, great sports programs and great education. John C. Vanderburg Elementary School is public. The teachers are wonderful, and it has a privately funded rain forest attached to it. Best shopping off the Strip: The District in Green Valley has great outdoor shopping. It’s a neat place where you always see everyone you know. Most in-demand craftspeople: Tate and Snyder Architects. They do a lot of green building. Where you like to eat: Spedinis. It’s a family-owned and -run Italian place whose chef, Gustav Mauler, was brought over from Austria by Steve Wynn. They have the best lasagna in town. What do you do for fun? There’s a neat place for families called Leid Discovery Children’s Museum, and it has interactive exhibits that will entertain both kids and adults. What makes Vegas livable: It’s a big city with a small-town atmosphere. And you really do get to see everything. Paul Murad, President Metroplex Group Best neighborhoods: Downtown. It’s being redeveloped. It’s central — all the other cities are around it — but the middle is the home to all the original casinos. Best schools (private and public): Meadows School is a great school — always has been. Bishop Gorman is also a great school. Best shopping off the Strip: Downtown’s Premium Outlet Malls off Charleston Boulevard and the 15, which now sell more per square foot than any other mall throughout the country. Where you like to eat: Any of the restaurants in the Wynn, or a little spot off the Strip called Thai Pepper. It’s in a small shopping center on Sahara and Paradise and doesn’t look that great, but it’s the most authentic Thai food in town. What do you do for fun? I go to openings — there’s always new hotels, casinos, everything opening up. It’s always a lot of fun, and you get to see locals, do some business, etc. What makes Vegas livable: I never have to deal with traffic where I live, and parking is easy. In Vegas, you can park anywhere for free and do valet for just a few dollars. Fafie Moore, President and co-owner Realty Executives of Nevada Best neighborhoods: Blue Diamond is great if you’re a person who wants to have land and freedom. Best schools (private and public): Lamping Elementary School is one of the most popular and has a lot of parental involvement. Alexander Dawson is great for not-faith-based schools. After their students graduate, they’re accepted into great colleges. Most in-demand craftspeople: Ron Nicola of Nicola Interiors. He does a lot of high-end homes, and he’s a great resource. Where you like to eat: Flemmings on Charleston and Rampart. You always meet lots of great people, they have a great bar, it’s a fun place to go, the food is always good, and you have a good time. What do you do for fun? I love shows. If you were only going to see one, “O” is fabulous. What makes Vegas livable: There’s always something to do, and there’s always something new so you don’t get bored. Robyn Yates, vice president of Windermere Services Nevada and broker-owner of Windermere Prestige Properties Best neighborhoods: Summerlin is great. It’s on the west side of town, and they created all these parks and walkways. The planning of it makes it more enjoyable. Best schools (private and public): For private, Meadows is on the east side of town, and Alexander Dawson is on the west side. They both have high ratings and waiting lists. For public schools, Palos Verdes High School is No. 1, and Green Valley High School has been No. 1 for sports. Where you like to eat: Panevinos. It’s a high-end steakhouse that caters to locals. It’s very fresh, the steaks are cooked to order, they have an extensive wine list and a great view of the Strip. What do you do for fun? I play golf, and I like to go to Brian Head, Utah, to ski. It’s just three hours from Vegas, door to door. What makes Vegas livable: There are great business opportunities — it’s a great place to start a business.