My favorite thing about The LINQ? It’s one of the rare places in Vegas you can spend all day and all night and not have to leave. The fact that it’s an open-air district with beautiful lights and bubbling fountains crowned by the High Roller, the world’s tallest observation wheel, doesn’t hurt either.
Recently I was in the mood to shop—for everything. Shoes, handbags, presents, home décor, you name it. So I hit The LINQ in the morning, grabbed a huge pressed juice from Squeeze and headed on my spending spree. In between stores, I refueled with boba tea from FAME and a to-go slice of cheese pizza from Flour & Barley (and okay, there may have been a Sprinkles Cupcakes ice cream cupcake sandwich in there, too.) Needless to say, this was my kind of day. Since The LINQ introduced these first-to-market stores and original concepts, I found everything I was looking for—and things that I wasn’t even looking for that I had to have.
Though the day was winding down, I felt wired. I loved the fact that I still had endless possibilities of things to do. I could get a blow out, grab a beer and game at O’Sheas, get a spray tan or go to a rock concert—all in the space of just a few feet, in the middle of the world-famous Strip.
Before you decide on your own Strip-central itinerary, here’s a closer look at the LINQ shops and what they have in store.
Trendsetters and jetsetters love Kitson
One of LA’s hottest imports since Sprinkles Cupcakes, there’s little chance you’ll walk out empty handed at Kitson. The splashy boutique has an eclectic mix of men’s and women’s clothing and accessories, interspersed with home décor items, apothecary, books, gifts, novelties and even a section for kids.
The best part? The mix of high and low price points. You can grab a pair of Havaianas flip flops, a Rebecca Minkoff bag, a Kate Middleton-inspired Smythe Kate blazer and kitschy coasters that say “I found the vodka, it was hiding in the orange juice.” On a recent trip, I picked out some of my favorite Voluspa candles, a Pink Floyd T-shirt by Chaser LA, some necklaces from Rachel Zoe’s jewelry line, and several birthday presents for friends.
Wear your sunglasses at night at Chilli Beans
Into sunglasses and watches? Hit up the Chilli Beans brand specialty boutique focusing on these two crucial accessories that can definitely make or break an outfit. Sunglasses and watches range from colorful, quirky stand-out styles and unconventional designs to classic black shades. I also love the fact that outside of California locations, this boutique is the brand’s only other US outpost, and each store only gets about three of each piece of merchandise. Once it’s gone, it’s never made again, so you know no one else will be rocking the same shades when you hit up Drai’s Nightclub at the nearby Cromwell.
Get bejeweled at Ruby Blue
Jewelry hounds can spend hours in the sparkly, shiny boutique known as Ruby Blue. Tables and tables of armoire-style presentation are covered in necklaces, rings, earrings and hair accessories of all kinds. There’s even a boudoir section with lacy lingerie available in a rainbow of colors. The merchandise is as girly as the store’s design, which features crystal chandeliers, ruby red panels and royal blue accent walls tufted with rhinestone buttons. I personally love picking up some of the classic costume jewelry (like gold necklaces to layer for fall) but it’s also a great stop to spice up an otherwise boring black dress before hitting the town.
Koto’s eclectic kitsch
Unique boutique Koto is much more than gag gifts. Though some of its hilarious retail items will make you giggle, such as the bottle opener refrigerator magnet, there’s some regular stuff, too. Past its plethora of electronic devices such as USB cords, cell phone chargers and iPad and cell phone cases, there are so many different, colorful sections that it’s hard to know where to look.
Sunglasses and jewelry are near the cute notebooks, while whimsical home décor items and games such as Drinking Dice are sprinkled everywhere. A large portion of Koto’s merchandise is for the kitchen, whether it be mugs and magnets with cheeky phrases, flasks, shot glasses and cool gadgets with a whimsical spin. The “ring for sex” bells are one of its best-selling items, but my favorites are the ice cube trays shaped like mustaches and shot glasses.
Get your kicks at 12A.M. RUN
If uber limited-edition sneakers and the hottest street wear and hip hop brands are your thing, 12A.M. RUN is the hot spot to shop. Nike Air Force Ones, Air Jordans, Adidas, Puma and labels such as Pharrell Williams’ Billionaire Boys Club, Stance and Herschel Supply Co. keep street wear fiends and shoe collectors coming back for more. (Not to mention there’s often a DJ that spins while you browse the backpacks, snapbacks and 12A.M. Run’s limited-edition collaborations with other labels.) And be prepared for some chance star sightings—the boutique is co-owned by rapper Nas, who often visits, plus boxer Floyd Mayweather is a frequent shopper.
“Shoe-stopping” selections at Bella Scarpa
While Ruby Blue may have you covered on jewelry, its sister boutique Bella Scarpa is all about women’s other favorite: shoes. From rhinestone flip flops for the pool to giant strappy stilettos, it’s easy to spice up your Vegas look for a day or night on the town. Among browsing Tom’s, FitFlop and Betsey Johnson items, I personally love Bella’s silver crystal high heels. If it’s not shoes you’re looking for, Bella Scarpa carries plenty of other accessories and handbags (think Guess and My Flat In London) and even a few dresses for going out.
Hats off at Goorin Bros.
Want to look as sharp as the leading men in shows like “Breaking Bad”? Specialty hat boutique Goorin Bros. has a mix of styles (think caps, beanies, bowlers and ball caps), fits and colors whether you’re a proud hipster or like the old school cool of “Mad Men.” While there, I just had to pick up a beach-y straw fedora for my upcoming beach vacation.