The current Cromwell Casino has a long and interesting Las Vegas history. Bugsy Siegel opened The Flamingo Hotel & Casino at a total cost of $6 million on December 26, 1946 right next door. Billed as “The West's Greatest Resort Hotel,” the 105-room property and first luxury hotel on the Strip. He refused to buy the thin slice of land separating the Flamingo from the famous intersection of Flamingo and the strip. The Flamingo became the Flamingo Hilton in 1971 and the Flamingo Las Vegas in 1999. The thin slice of land was the site of Empey's Desert Villa from 1952. Over time, this property, along with others owned by Gaughan would become “The Barbary Coast”. In July 2005, the Barbary Coast was bought by Boyd Gaming and sold to Harrah's Entertainment in 2007, rebranded as Bill's Gamblin Hall and Saloon. Plans announced in late 2013 indicated that Giada De Laurentiis would open her first restaurant in the new hotel and that Caesars would run the hotel. The 260-seat restaurant, Giada, from De Laurentiis, her first such venture has taken over the second-floor space that once housed a hotel parking garage. Giada is open daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner and offer views of the Strip, the Bellagio fountains, Caesars Palace and Bally’s Grand Bazaar Shops. Along with the venerable after hours club Drai's, Giada forms the the nucleus of offerings at the Cromwell. It doesn't hurt that the second floor Giada has killer views of the Bellagio fountains with floor to ceiling windows.
Down under, in Australia and New Zealand, Sean Connolly is an acclaimed celebrity chef who heads up an empire of restaurants, home cooking products, cookbooks and television shows. Setting up The Grill was the subject of a reality show, “Under the Grill”, where viewers saw the challenges involved with establishing a restaurant, complete with chef Sean Connolly – who comes with a respected reputation from Sydney, feeling the intense pressure of having only 100 days before the doors opened to the public (and four million dollars). His philosophy of food is pretty simple; “Everything tastes better on the bone and in the shell. Since man created fire, we have been eating cooked meat on the bone (or in the shell) where the meat remains as close to its original state as possible, Sean chooses to cook over coals or on the grill – simple, but this lets the food taste the way it should. He likes locally sourced, sustainable produce and protein and proudly lists his suppliers on the menu.