We visited Madame Tussauds in Las Vegas in December 2009. I have never visited the one in London,but was told that the one in Vegas wasn't a patch. I still ventured because I wanted to do as much as possible whilst I was there.
Madame Tussauds in the Vanecian Hotel. The Vanecian hotel is situated on 'the strip' (the main street of hotels in vegas)and is very convenient for those staying in any of those hotels. I would say it is in walking distance to every hotel on the strip, but if you prefer not to walk, there is a monorail running near by.
You will find the hotel enterance, just off the main road and also the enterance to Madame Tussauds. it is really easy to find at it is advertised along the strip.
We paid $15 each (for adults), at the door for our tickets. They did offer family tickets for a cheaper price. We did later discover that you could get them much cheaper in 'tickets4tonight'. "Tickets4Tonight' are little booths that are situated along the highway selling cheaper tickets for shows etc, but be prepared to queue. Saying that, the staff at these booths are very efficient and helpful.
We enjoyed, there was quite a display of wax work there. I sat with Julia Roberts and laid on the bed with Hugh Hefner, waved the American flag with Jessica Simpson and posed with Britney! My husband loves to show off the photos of him with Halle berry, Cameron Diaz, US President, tiger Woods, Nicholas Cage, Michael Jordan, just to name some. My favourie was the Welsh star Tom Jones!! Oh yeah, i was also judged by Simon Cowell. Obviously, some waxworks were better than others, but I would expect to find that at any Madame Tussauds.
It was relatively quiet when we visited so there were only a couple of people in front of us waiting to take their photos, which was nice. There wasn't a time limit on your visit and it was an enjoyable couple of hours.
Looking back on the holiday, I'm really glad that we visited and it it one of the things that we still talk about. My husband also, although he wasn't keen to see the waxworks in the first place!
My girlfriend and I were in Vegas in September 2009 and having visited the waxwork museum before, she was insistent that I should check it out this time. To be honest, it really did not appeal to me as I haven't even bothered with the one on my doorstep in London. Still her persistence prevailed in the end and off we went.
Madame Tussauds in Vegas is located outside the Venetian hotel, so as we were only over the road at the Mirage it was a short walk in the heat. You approach the museum by the cool moving walkway which goes up and down in a way I have not seen elsewhere - typical Vegas. The standard entry to the museum is $22.95 but if you do a bit of hunting, a $5 per person discount voucher is not hard to find. We actually picked up a Vegas booklet in the shuttle from the airport which had discounts for various attractions around the city.
Upon entry we were greeted with true Hollywood A-List. Cameron Diaz, Harrison Ford, Sean Connery, Julia Roberts, Johnny Depp, Brangelina were all present and correct. Mathew McConaughey and his twinkling eye was fairly amusing, as was the rather poor model of Ben affleck which bore little to no resemblance to the man himself.
The Jennifer Lopez waxwork had a cool feature when you grab on to her most famous asset (her backside), her cheeks blush. Britney was looking stunning, although I was surprised at how short she was! I be able to verify this later in the week as we were seeing her in concert at the Mandalay Bay.
My girlfriend and I decided to get a little interactive for photo opportunities and so I took a seat next to porn queen Jenna Jameson while the missus opted for a seat next to Hugh Hefner on his silk sheets.
Moving further round and it was time for the missus' big day as she became Mrs Clooney. Donning a wedding gown (Velcro job at the back), a veil and clutching a pair of flowers, she looked happy as a pig in the brown stuff - George smiled obligingly.
Next it was my turn to play around with Tiger Woods - see what I did there?! I decided not to sell my story though as he is in enough trouble. I then picked up a basketball and out-jumped Shaq for a slam dunk. While I was busy biting the ear off Evander Holyfiend and fluffing Don King's afro, the other half had parked herself on Evil Kinevel's motorcycle. Having revved that to the max she was off for a spot of pole dancing with Britney Spears - surprise surprise.
This was all a bit much for me so I took a seat next to the Doggfather himself, Snoop. Before plucking up the courage to audition for Simon Cowell...turns out I'm not the next Joe Mcelderry.
Moving on, I decided to hang out with the Rat Pack before tinkling the ivories with Louis Armstrong. The good lady parked herself next to Mr Pressley and gazed longingly into his eyes.
It was one small step for me...to get in between Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong for a great photo opportunity and then I was behind the camera to capture the girlfriend's attempt to be JFK's latest mistress.
Having been really sceptical about Madame Tussauds, I actually had a really good time in there and would definitely recommend it to anyone who is in Vegas and has an hour or 2 to spare. I had always thought of wandering round looking at waxworks to be a little dull, but it is actually a fully interactive experience with lots of fun stuff to do.
There is loads to do, some great photos to be had and if you get yourself a discount voucher then you can save some money as well.
The Vegas museum is very well laid out and you move from Hollywood to music to sports to Vegas legends etc. It is therefore easy to spend longer in any area where you have more interest and bypass ones that you are not so keen on.
Overall this is great, clean family-friendly fun in Sin City.
We didn't bother with the gift shop on the way out as the stuff looked tacky and overpriced. It's exactly the kind of stuff which is useless and unwanted by the time it comes out of the suitcase at home. Stick to taking pictures as they are far more personalised and much better keepsakes.
Obviously we didn't take pictures of all the figures, nor have I mentioned them all, so you will need to head to the website below for a full rundown of who to see
Sports room with Tiger and Shaq
Ben Affleck, the pretty tacky gift store, having to pay for a picture with Obama
Me & my partner went to Vegas in September 2009 and had the best time of my life.
Ridiculously hot weather, always something to do and loads of great experiences to be had.
Whilst we were over there we enjoyed being out all the time and what better place to waste all your money then Las Vegas?
Although we booked a few shows for the evenings (Love, Mystere, Blue Man Group, David Copperfield etc), we wanted to do more during the days too. The best place we found to buy tickets was Tix4Tonight, there are quite a few of these dotted up and down the strip. They offer a selection of tickets, to shows and attractions at a discounted rate, mainly because you buy on the day. We had noticed that Madame Tussauds tickets were on there and the price was only around $14 each. Bargain we thought, so proceeded to the checkout.
We bought our tickets from the Tix4Tonight in Bills Gambling Hall and Madame Tussauds is in The Venetian, although they are on the same side of the road, its still quite a walk, so we decided to get going.
As we arrived at Madame Tussauds/The Venetian, we got on the travelator and enjoyed the view of The Venetians gondolier's rides. We were really looking forward to it as we hadn't been to the MT in London since we were little.
There wasn't much of a queue, just a couple of people in front. We showed the lady behind the counter our tickets, bought a bottle of water each and were allowed in.
The models we came across first were Harrison Ford as Indiana Jones (first photo op for me!), Jerry Springer, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Oprah etc.
One tip I would give you is, if you intend on taking pictures with the wax models, don't buy bottles of drink or take handbags with you. We must have been so annoying for people behind us! Kept having to find a space to put them, one posing and one taking the photo. Not practical!
As I mentioned before, I have been to the London Madame Tussauds, bare in mind it was years and years ago, but I don't remember it being anything near as good as this one! Not only were the wax models identical, but there was a lot of interacting you could do, for example, sit on the famous rotating bed, in bunny ears with Hugh Hefner, sit and have a chat with Ben Affleck, tap J. Lo's bum and watch her checks blush (the ones on her face!). I sat and posed with Cameron Diaz and my partner jumped at the chance to put his arm round Britney.
There were many different sections, all with different themes, we had the sports section, my other half fulfilled a fantasy of playing golf with Tiger Woods (the audience applaud if you get a hole in one) and I squared up to Mike Tyson.
I sat on Evil Knievels motorbike and revved the engine and waved the flag for some NASCAR champions.
The most effort, with out a doubt, went into the George Clooney wedding chapel. Yes, that's right, I married George Clooney! The room is white and decked out with flowers and a priest. George is waiting there at the alter for you, all you have to do is don the wedding dress (which you put over you like an apron, so it fits all sizes) and he'll tell you it's the happiest day of his life - but don't get excited, he says that to all the girls!
One room that was a lot of fun was the musical legends section, you can sing karaoke for Simon Cowell and he will judge you - but be careful, his words can hurt lol.
I played the piano with Stevie Wonder and repped it with Snoop Dogg and Tupac.
The disappointments were Bon Jovi & Beyonce; I had to read the name plaques to see who they were! The Michael Jackson one wasn't all that either, which was a shame, because I was looking forward to that one.
By now we had had such a great time, had taken hundreds of pictures and most of them were pretty funny too as you have a great opportunity to pose how ever you want. We came out of this room and entered a room where you could get a clay model made of your head or more normally your hand prints, but we didn't have much dollar on us, so unfortunately had to give it a miss. We didn't think there was anything left to see, so made our way to what we thought was the exit...but there was more!
The last room was what could only be described as Vegas Icons! I popped a nice hat on and got on stage with the Rat Pack.
Elton John, Bette Midler, Marilyn Monroe, Tom Jones and many more were there. They had Chris Angel and David Copperfield adding to the magic of the atmosphere. The Blue Man Group were up on stage and looked eerily real!
Elvis sang to me and held my hand and I had my photo taken (available to buy in the gift shop after) but we took a better one on our digital camera, so saved some money there. There was a section of presidents and royals too. Obama and Princess Diana were there and we made our way round them all and exited through the gift shop.
The gift shop was not cheap, but you wouldn't expect it to be. We found a couple of jokey reasonably priced items and paid up (remember the prices don't include VAT in America - we can never get used to that!).
So for $14 (we would've paid full price, we enjoyed it that much) you can't go wrong. We spent a huge amount of time in there and didn't once feel bored by it. Even though we are big gamblers and enjoyed a few cocktails on our holiday, Madame Tussauds was a lovely change of pace and definitely a highlight of our holiday!
I don't normally write about places I've visited, but I can't think of anything else to write about at the minute, so thought I'd tell you about a recent visit I made to Madame Tussauds in Amsterdam.
I went to Amsterdam with my boyfriend about six weeks ago for a weekend before my 'proper' holiday. I also went last year with my sister and remembered seeing a Madame Tussauds on the Damrak, the main street in Amsterdam. Since neither me or my boyfriend had been to a Madame Tussauds before, we decided we would pay it a visit.
I booked the tickets in advance online beforehand at http://www.madametussauds.com/Amsterdam/
When you order the tickets online, you have to print them out, and it does say on the ticket not to fold them or they become invalid - all very well but they're A4 sheets, so you will find yourself carrying an A4 folder about with you!
If you're able to buy in advance it also means you can go to the front of the queue, which is a bonus as every time I've been passed there the queue has (like the one in London) been snaking round the outside of the building. Being on the Damrak (or just known as Dam) which is the main shopping street in Amsterdam it is very easy to find. We didn't realise our tickets entitled us to queue jump, so we joined the queue, but an extremely cheerful woman (you know those people who are so cheerful it makes you sick?!) walked down the queue and saw the pre-paid tickets in our hands and pulled us (quite literally) over the barriers and we were allowed to go straight in.
Cheerful woman actually told us that the reason the queue was so long was that their payment system is always slow, which is why they like people to buy in advance. This may or may not be total rubbish, but just in case, I personally would recommend getting your tickets online if you can.
As you enter the building, the first thing you come to is a wax work of Barack Obama standing in front of a backdrop of the white house. Cheerful woman ordered us to stand next to him to have our photos taken. Note the word, ordered. I have a bit of a camera phobia and I was a bit taken aback by this and made my boyfriend have the photo by himself. I don't think he was too happy about this either but probably for different reasons. The reason they insist on taking your photo, is that by the time you get down to the gift shop they will have printed it out, and will try to sell it to you for some over inflated price. Needless to say we didn't buy ours.
We were then left standing in front of some lift doors with no instruction of what to do. It soon became apparent that we just had to wait there for the number above the lift door to count down. The lift eventually shows up after a good few minutes and then takes you (and the group of other people who will have assembled in front of the lift doors by this time) up to the first floor, where the whole waxwork experience begins.
You are taken to a dark room and some huge scary wax model of an (apparently) famous Dutch guy from the 17th century (or was it the 18th? I really should have paid more attention) springs from the floor. A big booming voice then proceeds to give a talk on the history of Amsterdam in three different languages (Dutch, English and German if I remember correctly). To be honest I found this all a little bit boring. They do try to make it more interesting by having things come up on video screens and a little city model thing, but history is all a little bit tedious to me, and I'd heard pretty much all the same stuff on a city boat tour I went on last year. Therefore for me personally I didn't particularly enjoy this part of things. I'm a shallow airhead, I wanted to see the celebrities!
You then walk through a dark, slightly scary little mock-up of a town, full of waxwork figures. I already knew from reading the website that some of the figures were actually real people rather than waxworks, and I was on my guard, as I knew there was a good chance they'd be leaping out on me. I was right, and quite frankly not only was this scary but I felt quite pointless. There was a Scottish woman behind me who couldn't stop screaming! My boyfriend said he actually enjoyed this part of things, but me? Well no, I was not impressed.
So finally we get onto what I had come to see - the celebrities. I was a little concerned before purchasing the tickets that they would all be Dutch celebrities that I had never heard of. Although there are some Dutch stars, the majority are Hollywood movie stars, or others that you will recognise.
There is a good mix of figures - you have your royals and political figures, such as Princess Di and George W Bush - someone really needs to melt him down (and they may as well melt do his waxwork while they're at it!). Then there are pop stars such as Beyonce and Kylie, and all your Hollywood celebs like Brad and Angelina - oh and Oprah! I liked the Oprah waxwork, I thought it was one of the best ones there. You also have sporting people like David Beckham and that Ronaldo guy or whatever his name is - the one with the teeth. Right at the end you get people like Einstein and even Mona Lisa.
The figures are all quite realistic and you're free to go up and touch them. Some of them are even posed in a way so that you can sit next to them to be photographed. For example, David Beckham is doing sit-ups on a workout bench and there's an empty bench next to him so that you can look like you're working out together. George Clooney is at a desk with a spare seat next to him, and Robbie Williams is lying on a bed, so you can hop in and officially start your sentences 'When I was in bed with Robbie the other day...'!
Like I mentioned earlier, there is a gift shop at the end where you can buy your photo, and it sells the usual crap emblazoned with the Madame Tussauds logo, such as mugs, pencils, keyrings, trinkets - oh and some smutty stuff too. Well, it is Amsterdam after all!
The whole experience lasted about 1 hour, but obviously you can stay longer if you really want to.
Opening times are 10am to 5.30pm except school holidays when it's open until 8.30pm. I'd assume this means Dutch school holidays, rather than English ones.
Prices are as follows:
Adults : 21 euros
Children: 16 euros
If you book in advance online and are able to specify the exact date you want to visit you will get a discount of 2 euros, and if you are able to go after 3pm you will get a discount of 3.50 euros. Do bear in mind though, that you're bank will probably charge you for paying in Euros and this is around £1.50, so it kind of negates the saving!
If you want to buy a ticket that also entitles you to visit the Amsterdam dungeons, it will be 37.50 euros for an adult, 30 euros for a child.
Overall, I am glad that I visited, as I've always wanted to go to Madame Tussauds, but I will not be going back. The prices were reasonable, but for me, I just found the whole thing quite boring. My boyfriend said he really enjoyed it, but I think he might have just been saying that so as not to disappoint me.
Once you're actually in there, and you've looked at each celeb, that's pretty much all you can do, other than have your photo taken with them. As I wasn't particularly enthralled by the history bit either, I ended up feeling that the whole thing was a little bit pointless. In a way it wasn't much different to looking at a celebrity in a magazine. On the plus side, it is one of the more family friendly attractions in Amsterdam, if you know what I mean! If you happen to be in Amsterdam on a rainy day, with nothing better to do, it might be worth seeing, but overall I don't think I'd recommend it.
For more info: http://www.madametussauds.com/Amsterdam/
I have never been to Madame Tussauds in London so on my recent trip to New York me and my boyfriend decided the visit the one there as its located at West 42nd Street, between 7th and 8th Avenues, Times Square and we walked past it every day of our trip.
We went to the attraction on a Monday and we only had to queue for about 5 minutes to get our tickets, they also have are fast track queues for people who have booked online or had the New York City Pass.
Our tickets cost $35 and we had the all access pass which included the following:
General admission to Madame Tussauds NY
Cinema 4D movie featuring Sponge Bob Squarepants
Madame Tussauds Story
Behind the Scenes
On reflection we should have brought the cheaper tickets at $25 as we only saw the waxworks themselves.
Once we had our tickets we walked upstairs where we had a picture taken with the Hulk with my boyfriend being captured and me trying to rescue him which was quite funny, we then went in the glass lift up 5 floors where the attractions begin.
The first room we entered was red carpet style with celebrities including Brad and Angelina, J-Lo, Samuel L Jackson, John Travolta and Sharon and Ozzy Osbourne to name just a few, the room had sound effects of flashing cameras and most people were dying to have there pictures taken with a lot of the waxworks in here.
As we walked through the attraction we passed through a BLING style section just after the Hollywood/Red Carpet room and onto a room filled with the past presidents of America and other important historical figures including Barack Obama who we had our picture taken with bu the official photographer using our own camera, he was obviously interested in making them some money....or perhaps not.
Through the other areas of the attraction I felt that all the waxworks were just chucked together, Steven Speilberg was right next to the Spice Girls and they were missing Geri Halliwell anyway, they had a Simon Cowell who looked nothing like him and unfortunately I wasn't aware of most of the sports stars on display, now I know this is because I am not American but one room towards the end had waxworks of sports players with no labels!
We did the SCREAM experience which was supposed to be scary but was just walking through a room with some guy running around it, it made me jump once but I was expecting a lot more from what the lady said about it who was trying to get us to go in.
We didn't see the 4D Spongebob Square Pants film, if you have kids great but not my thing and I didn't want to wait 30 minutes to see it and we missed the history of Madame Tussauds as it wasn't labelled clearly.
It took approximately 45 minutes for us to get around, not worth $35 in my opinion, the Empire State building is only $20!
In the gift shop there was a computers survey where you could enter your thoughts. I did put that I wasn't very satisfied with my visit.
I can't really recommend going here, I am not sure if I would go to the London one now either but at least I would know more people in that one.
One for a day when your very bored and trust me thats hard to be in NYC!
***This review will also be posted on Ciao under the same user name***
I had never been to Madame Tussaud's in London, so on our trip to Amsterdam, I was determined that I was going to visit the master waxworks. It was a brilliant foray into history and popular culture. We traipsed through a historical canalside scene, with small boats bobbing on the water. There we met people from the "golden age"of Amsterdam - the crippled beggar, Jewish scientist, the prostitute and the sailor to whom she is plying her wares. There is a moving panorama of Amsterdam, showing the city and the low-lying polders beyond, constantly turning and giving you a full view of Amsterdam, in miniature. And you can walk through the studio of Johannes Vermeer - the famous Dutch painter. Or see the inside of a local tavern, complete with drunks and jolly peasants. To the present day, and Holland's first astronaut, Wubbo Ockels as he was on his Challenger mission in 1985. From there, to the great (and just well-loved) people of our century - Nelson Mandela, Freddie Mercury of Queen, Mel Gibson, Benny Hill, to mention just a few.
It was well worth the visit. Almost centrally located at Dam20, it is easily found and accessible on foot or by tram from all parts of the city. The local telephone number is 020-622-99-49. There are discounts for groups, and the souvenir book is worth it's keepsake value. This is a place for adults and children. I recommend it as a place to go in Amsterdam.
I recently visited Las Vegas for the third time and luckily, as I had more time to spend there than I had before, I decided I was indeed going to try to go to Madame Tussauds, located in the Venetian Hotel.
So, I made up my mind, I was going to go down to Madame Tussauds, on my way, I found a half price ticket booth, Tix4Tonight, which was offering entrance tickets for Madame Tussauds for $14, I can't remember exactly what the 'on the door' ticket price was, but I believe it was about $22, so I made a small saving there.
Madame Tussauds, Las Vegas, is fairly easy to find, if you are in Vegas, The Venetian is located toward the middle of 'The Strip' and you can get there from either end of the strip by the Monorail which stops at the hotel next door, Harrahs, or on the bus, if you don't feel like walking. It is located up a moving walkway, about half way between the hotel and pavement.
Every year I have been into the Venetian and not gone into Madame Tussauds, there has been a 'celebrity' waxwork out on a platform, just outside the entrance to Madame Tussauds, last year it was Nicholas Cage, the year before Shaq O'Neil, this year it was Whoppi Goldberg. This serves as trying to get you inside to Madame Tussauds and for visitors to have pictures with if they don't want to go in.
So, I arrived, there was no queue and handing my ticket voucher to the lady and the desk, I was chucked my ticket and told to 'have a nice day', in a tone that said 'I really don't care if you have a nice day or not!!'.
The new attraction this year in Cameron Diaz and 'she' was being fawned over by huge number of men and boys, so I swiftly passed that one!
There is an escalator which you have to go up to get to the main attraction, I didn't see a lift, but possibly there is one if you ask, so, I made it into the main attraction!
I was immediately struck by the waxworks, not literally but in a kind of bemused way, they were smaller than I imagined and very very shiny.
Rather than list each individual waxwork I saw and my thoughts, I'll tell you about the ones that stood out and the special experiences you can indulge in on your way round!
Arnie & Sylvester Stallone- Well, what can I say...I had to try very hard not to laugh but they did just look like very strange, I was very disturbed by Stallone's eyes, they just didn't appear to be made to be realistic.
Hugh Heffner & Playmate- I didn't get too close to this one, but a lot of gentlemen did, draping themselves over the Playmate. Hef is on a round bed and apparently if you squeeze Hef (as I am sure most of the female population would love to) you'll find he's soft, this is because he is made of silicone and not wax.
Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson- WWE favourite, The Rock is here and he was my favourite, whilst not a great copy of the man himself, this is pretty good, I loved his belt!
Patrick Stewart- Hmmmm, yes it did look like him, yes it did but to be honest, it looked much older than Patrick Stewart does and a little bit too thin, unrealistically thin.
Sean Connery- I had to do a double take, I wasn't exactly sure who this man in a tartan jacket was poor quality and really looked as if no effort had been made to make a good copy!
George Clooney- Ladies, get in line here, put on the provided wedding gown and marry Mr Clooney, yes here, you can marry and fairly good copy of George, that's if you ever get a chance to put the dress on. When I passed George, 6 women were arguing about who should wear the dress next and telling other to 'get out it's my wedding!', really, they shouldn't tempt females with Mr Clooney, it's clear he's the eternal bachelor!
Brad & Angie- Well, Angelina is an absolute spitting image of what you see in the press, my companion had to ask who the man next to her was, unfortunately, the Brad waxwork was quite poor and overly orange and seemed very podgy in the face as well.
American Idol- Simon Cowell- this is an interactive waxwork show, with an awful waxwork of Simon Cowell, you can sing, into a microphone and 'Simon' will make some derogatory remark about your singing. Quite frankly don't bother with this, it's awful.
Elvis- Elvis has 2 incarnations here, one opposite Simon Cowell, which is actually really good and really looks like Elvis. The second is an interactive photo/ money making exercise. You can go and sit and hold hands with Elvis on a stage. I did this but the waxwork is awful, it's fat, orange and quite frankly, vulgar, make a hasty exit if you are caught here!
Tom Jones- Now, you can take the girl out of Wales....I saw Tom Jones live, close up in 2006 in the MGM Grand, Las Vegas, so I have a pretty good idea of what he looks like. I never expected him to look so evil and deranged! The eyes were scary, horrendous and this made the waxwork, simply awful.
George Bush- Again, not the best waxwork but it looked like
Mr GW, he got a lot of abuse as I walked around!
Diana, Princess of Wales- I wasn't quite sure where Diana fitted in in this room, with George Bush, Neil Armstrong & Bill Clinton but again, another not-so-hot wax work, people had laid flowers at her feet, which I felt was going over the top.
Further attractions are apparently opening soon within Madame Tussauds Las Vegas, I was really disappointed that I managed to get around within 30 minutes, a lot of waxworks were of really poor quality and they were starting to look a bit worn and tatty in places.
What I did find interesting though, was how the London Madame Tussauds made Beyonce, a room with a video and several casts of Beyonces face were on the wall, whilst a video played about the process of making the wax work. I would have liked to have seen a bit more about how they made the waxworks as well as the waxworks themselves, instead it was just a case of cram as many waxworks in as possible and no interest to the making of or why they were chosen.
To me, it seemed there was something going on, in the way of refurbishment, though this wasn't fully explained, aside from 'New Attraction Here Soon' signs.
Overall, to be honest, don't bother if you are in Vegas, it's too short, poor quality and really laughable in places. If you do decide to go, get tickets from one of the many half price or discounted ticket stores up and down the strip, or save your money to go to the one in London instead.
Full List of Waxworks (Not all waxworks are on show all the time)
Sarah Michelle Gellar
Jon Bon Jovi
Sammy Davis Jr
Blue Man Group
Seigfreid & Roy
President George W. Bush
President Abraham Lincoln
President George Washington
President John F. Kennedy
First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis
So, a good way to pass half and hour, if you like a laugh, but overpriced if you don't get discounted tickets
During our second visit to Las Vegas over Easter we finally found time to visit Madame Tussauds museum. Wed been to the one in London and didnt really fancy the idea but as holders of annual passes for the Tussauds Group we not only have access to all Tussauds properties in the UK but also free entry to Tussauds properties around the world. One of those properties is Madame Tussauds in Las Vegas.
The museum is situated just outside the Venetian hotel and forms part of the Venetian Resort complex. On you way in on top of the Rialto Bridge you will be greeted by one or two of the famous people in the USA. When we visited in January and again over Easter you could pose with Michael Jordan and Whoopie Goldberg just outside and Princess Diana just inside the entrance while Placido Domingo was found inside the Venetian hotel complex, somewhere in the Grande Canal Shoppe area (guarded by a Tussauds employee giving out money off coupons).
Prices for entry into Madame Tussauds Las Vegas are $22.95 per person ($14.95 OAP/Student with ID or Children 6-12 years). Adult admission works out at just under £13.00 at todays exchange rate, already a bargain compared to the London branch where you can easily spend £20.00 or more per adult. The museum is open all year round, normally from 10am to 10pm.
You can see, Las Vegas its not quite so bad and theres always the money off coupons you find in the free magazines giving you at least another $5.00 off per person. Or, if you do your maths and feel that the half price ticket booth will give you better value, try Tix 4 Tonight, dotted around Las Vegas and always good for a bargain show ticket as well as money off for museums and exhibitions. Just remember that Tix 4 Tonight are charging $4.50 booking fee and it might not work out cheaper in the end.
When arriving at Madame Tussauds with an annual pass you still have to report to the ticket office. Unlike the UK where you proceed to the entrance and your pass gets swiped, here you need to present your pass at the ticket office and a complimentary ticket is issued. Both guys at the ticket office knew our Tussauds annual pass allowed us free entry but neither knew how to run it through the tills so in the end they just jotted the pass numbers onto the receipt before they placed it into the till.
WHATS TO SEE? or Whos there?
First of all I have to warn all UK visitors, you are entering a US museum so a lot of the people in there may not be at all familiar to you as they are quintessentially American, and here in Las Vegas, local Vegas celebrities. You will find the same is true in the UK where a lot of tourists might not know who Davina McCall or Chris Tarrant are.
Walking up the staircase you will be greeted by Lucille Ball. I am of an age where I know who Lucille Ball is but I cant say I have ever found her particularly funny. Some of my friends think she is the best comedienne ever but tastes are certainly different and thank goodness for that.
Sometime at the top of the stairs you are asked for your ticket, until that moment you had a chance to wander around without being bothered by anyone but if you want to continue further you need to show your ticket actually, you have to surrender it to the person asking for it.
All Madame Tussauds museums are set out in a similar way. Here in Vegas you walk through different themed rooms. The beauty is that some celebrities are created to be interacted with and always good for a photo opportunity. The Las Vegas property has six themed areas from Big Night, Sports, Rock N Pop, Monsters Alive, Las Vegas Legends to Spirit of America.
All Madame Tussauds wax museums are relying on current celebrities and the exhibits will be changing over the month. I am sure there are some areas where they are not making many changes because there are no new people coming in but when it comes to Hollywood celebs and movie stars as well as musicians, whos popular one day may be on the scrap heap the next.
Currently you will find celebrities like George Clooney, Patrick Stewart, Madonna, Bono, Elton John or Ben Affleck all over the place as well as sports stars such as Tiger Woods or local guy Andre Agassi. Im not so informed about speedway, baseball or basketball so wouldnt have recognised anyone.
The Monsters Alive is a bit like the Chambers of Horror with exhibits from Hollywood horror and monster movies: Dracula, Frankensteins Monster and more. To make it scarier they have employees (actors) dressed up in the dark room, jumping out at you, making noises to scare you. Its a mix of Hollywood Horror with a bit of the London version of Chamber Live thrown in.
If you dont want to go through you can just bypass it and walk straight into the Las Vegas Legends room. Strangely enough, most of the legends here are not amongst the living anymore. Here you have the Rat Pack (Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr, Dean Martin et all) and Liberace standing next to current Vegas headliner like Wayne Newton or Lance Burton. If the last two dont mean anything to you then Im not surprised, they are quintessentially Vegas.
If you thought you might have missed something in the earlier parts of the museum there is nobody to stop you from retracing your steps and walking all the way to the beginning again why you would want to is another question. Its nice to know you could go back, unlike the London museum where you are allowed just one way only and theres no return to earlier rooms. The only place, it seems, where you cant track back from is once they allow you through the cordon between Vegas Legends and Spirit of America. But Im sure if you told the guy you lost your party and need to go back, Im sure he will let you go back.
Spirit of America, apparently, is everything that made and makes America great. I can understand exhibits like Abraham Lincoln, Neil Armstrong, Martin Luther King or even President Bush (he looks even worse here than in the London version) but Im at a loss to figure out why they have another Princess Diana in this room.
The last room, like everywhere, is the souvenir shop. I couldnt see anything I really fancied and we left without parting with any money.
I have never been the kind of person who walks through Madame Tussauds trying to get a photo taken with me and the celebrities there. For a start, they dont always look that real close up then again, some people might argue that celebrities are fake anyway.
Madame Tussauds Las Vegas prides itself on being totally interactive, meaning you can almost do anything you like with the exhibits in there, touch, grope take photos, etc. While I think its nice to go up to the person to see how well they are made, I think its rather icky when it comes to the particular areas set aside where you are invited to put on a prop and take a photo with the celebrity.
There were a few times when I shuddered and almost felt sick watching people do just that. Take the Marry George Clooney exhibit. Women (maybe even a few men?) are invited to slip a wedding dress over their clothes, put on a veil and pose next to George pretending they are getting married.
How many people before touched the dress with dirty hands and pulled it over sweaty, dirty clothes? Or put on a cowboy hat to pose next to your favourite Country & Western singer how much greasy hair had stuck in those hats before? Share a bed with Hugh Hefner and pretend youre a playboy bunny, but how many of the great unwashed touched and put on the bunny ears and collars before its your turn?
After all, you are walking in from the street, not put on fresh clothes after a shower. Nowhere does it say how many times these items get washed or disinfected. Im not germophobic or anything but EUGH, the thought of thousands of people touching the props could turn me into one.
The effort thats going into making these life-like models must be applauded. After all, it takes a lot of skill to get wax figures look like the real thing. I still feel that most of the exhibits look too waxy and not really that good but they have really made good progress with people of black skin, they look much better than the pale, milky white, almost see-through skin of a white person standing next to them. Id be more likely to do a double-take if someone showed me a photo of a Samuel Jackson or Morgan Freeman than a Sarah Michelle Geller or Jennifer Lopez.
I must say that I enjoyed the museum a lot more than the one in London. I think it has a lot to do with the fact that there werent that many people there and at no time did it feel overcrowded. I have been in the London one a few times and always felt I couldnt get a foot on the ground because it was just too busy.
I dont know how busy or popular the museum is but at no time did I feel uncomfortable and I had enough room to wander around the exhibits, frame shots with my camera making sure nobody was in the way or walking through the picture.
If youre not the kind of person who would normally visit an exhibit like this I doubt you will find it interesting. But if you have been to the London one and want to compare or have an interest in celebrities then you might enjoy it.
It was certainly worth for me as I didnt need to pay to get in. Having bought an annual pass for the UK theme parks certainly works out well internationally. But even if you have to pay, its not quite as expensive as the London museum, there are always money off coupons somewhere for a reduction in price. It will certainly give you a break from the hectic running around the streets and other casinos and allow you to take it easy for a couple of hours unless you race through and youre done in 30 minutes. Just remember that Las Vegas can get very hot during the summer and Im sure Madame Tussauds will be one of the places where you will be guaranteed arctic temperatures. I doubt they will let their wax exhibits melt.
Despite on my last visit staying in a hotel almost 5 minutes away and passing this each day, I forgot that there was a madame tussauds in New York and it was only on the day before I was due to travel that I decided to have a look on sights to see whilst I was there and when I came across a sightseeing tour that included entry to Madame Tussauds I knew going would be a must.
In 1761 Marie Grosholz was born who was later known as Madame Tussaud.
In 1770 Marie's Mothers Employer Dr Phillippe Curtius opened an exhibition of life size wax figures in Paris where Marie learns the art of wax modelling.
In 1777 Marie makes her first model of Francois-Marie Arouet Voltaire then in 1780 she went on to become art tutor to King Louis XVI's sister.
In 1794 Marie inherits Curtius Exhibits and a year later marries Francois Tussaud, she then moved to the UK where she lived until 1850.
Madame Tussauds New York opened in 2000 and has later expanded in 2004 which now includes many of the features that have been present in the London Madame Tussaud's.
Located on 234West 42nd Street this is just off times Square and the best way to find it is to head to Times Square and when you spot the Champs Store which is very lit up on the left hand side, if you look down the street you will see a vertical sign spelling out Madame Tussauds.
As I said tickets were included in the price of our NY Sights tour so we did not have to pay for them but as I had looked at visiting previously I was aware of the costs that we would have to pay if we had gone independently.
Adults (13-59) $29.00
Children (4-12) $23.00
Seniors (60+) $26.00
Children under 4 Free
Madame Tussauds is open 365 days a year which I found unusual as not many places are open for christmas day but inevitably Madame Tussauds New York is.
The opening hours were 10am until 10pm but these are classed as holidays so I would recommend contacting before planning your visit as opening times can vary depending on the date.
As you climb the first flight of stairs you are greeted by a member of staff who gets you to pose with a feature, during our visit there was the Incredible Hulk that was a good size and I managed to fit in snugly under his left arm!
Next you continue up another flight of stairs and you are greeted by your next figure which just happened to be Hugh Jackman as Van Helsing, now I didnt have a clue who this was but my friend Lindsay started to get excited and was snapping away.
Next you come to a lift which takes you up to the 5th floor and is where the Madame Tussauds Experience well and truly begins.....
First you arrive off the lift and enter Ru-Pauls Celebrity Bash (The Opening Night) and this floor is full of celebrities:-
John Paul Gaultier
This was a great floor to start the tour and I had my picture taken with Hugh Grant, not as tall as you would think, and sat down next to Ozzy Osbourne, it appears that Sharon had gone off for a makeover must be due to her new hairstyle, and I sat at the table with George Clooney gazing into my eyes and stood next to Brad Pitt and took a photograph of my mum with Julia Roberts leaning over her chair, it was great and probably the closest you could get to seeing the stars in reality as they are all to scale.
As you exit onto the next room you can hear the sounds of Usher which is where you can mix his tracks and have a bit of a bop if you are feeling brave enough, he is in the room alone with Beyonce who is dressed in the famous outfit she wore in the hit video "Crazy In Love".
The next room that you reach is in fact the Chamber of Horrors and its theme is currently based on the movie "House Of Wax", I had seen this film so was scared rotten as we entered and saw the two original highchairs from the movie and as we turned the corner we were warned by a member of staff that actors would appear as we walked around and that they would not touch or harm us in anyway, you were then greeted through a glass display with the sight of a figure strapped into a chair being covered in wax and all but familiar sight from the movie, I had been in a similar experience in the London Madame Tussauds so knew what to expect so i got to go in the front with everyone else in the back I didnt want to tell them that the actors would actually follow us as we walked through the chambers, it was actually quite scary to walk through this experience but nobody jumps out in front of you just to the sides and the rear so you can keep your head down and run if you really get scared but I recommend if you are planning a visit to this Madame Tussauds watch the movie first so you understand the set in the Chamber of Horrors.
Once you exit you see the star of the "House Of Wax" Paris Hilton you can pose with her and I managed to get a cheeky photograph and pass it off to a friend that we met her as she was currently completing a book signing at the Virgin Megastore in Times Square, and they did believe us!!
Next you come to Jennifer Aniston who has a backdrop of paparazzi and the sound effects of people clicking cameras and the flash of the camera light.
Around the corner from Jen is the scene from Desperate Housewives that just displays Teri Hatcher but give you the opportunity to quiz yourself if you are naughty or neighbourly I definately came out naughty!
Lance Armstrong is also on display on his bike and in the background are vidoes of him winning races and a brief history displayed on the walls educating visitors with Lance's past, another snap shot moment as I take a pause to photograph my mum getting onto the bike next to Lance which was a good size compared to my mum who is only 5ft 1!! All the same a good shot and an even better wax work.
There is next a history of America with famous faces representing the decades of American history and it is here that you come face to face with Madame Tussaud, Tom Thumb, President Kennedy and his wife Jackie, there are also another number of famous faces that I just can't remember but there was one sight that made me feel cold and that was a sight of the fire fighters from 9/11 raising a flag pole and that was a prominent piece of New York and indeed America's history.
As you move onto the next stage you tend to see the musical era, sports era and older movie stars:-
Jon Bon Jovi
Nsync to name just a few this particular area seemed to go on forever and had so many more historical figures from the past 3 decades or so.
As you get to the end of this long and winding room you come to the American Idol stage which has one wax work of Simon Cowell and you have the opportunity to have some lunch and sing on the American Idol stage where at the end you are judged by Simon Cowell, great if you like karaoke, awful if you do not like being picked on to sing, which fortunately we were not as we wizzed straight through.
This edges towards the end of the tour where you end up at the gift shop with gifts from Film memorabilia to having a personal wax copy of your hand, this put me off big time but there were plenty of other goodies to snap up from the Souvenir shop before taking the lift down to the bottom floor which is the exit.
The lift is glass and as you go up you get a view of times square coming back down however this is an internal lift and you do not get to see the same sights so have a good luck as you go up to the 5th floor.
The exit has walls dedicated to hand prints of the famous celebrities that have modelled for Madame Tussauds and of course a personal message along with their autograph.
Overall this experience was great and did feature a lot of different characters to those based in the London Madame Tussauds, the whole experience can be done in 2 hours this gives you time to take snapshots and makes sure that you meet every celebrity personally and once you get home you can have a lot of fun with the pictures!!!
I visited the Madame Tussards in Blackpool recently. It cost almost £25 for myself and three children to get inside.
The museum is easily found due to being on the main street in Blackpool.
There were three floors altogether. The dungeon, the ground floor and the first floor. There were lots of steps to climb and when I went they were not many people about so it was a bit creepy.
We visited the ground floor first and saw the pope, queen etc and we thought the wax figures were very realistic and had been well made. Many were not a total likeness but I suppose we have to understand how many hours go into making these models. One of the best ones we saw was Pierce Brosnan as James Bond and Jaws from the Bond movies. We had to get as close as possible to the figures to take a few pictures because you weren't allowed to have your photos taken with the figures due to not being allowed onto the stands were the figures stand. We did cheat however because when nobody was looking my son crept onto the James Bond one and did get close so when the picture came out it was fantastic. Luckily we weren't caught.
This is the only disadvantage from paying the amount of money to get in. This is worse when you take children and they have their favourite stars etc. They don't understand why they can't stand near them to have a photo taken. I don't know why they can let their own photographer take a picture and they would also earn more money and make a lot more children happy.
The scariest part was the dungeon and I had to carry my daughter who closed her eyes the whole way round. It was a bit scary though because it was dark and gloomy and it took you ages to be able to see where you were going. Usual faces like the ripper were there and many many star from horror movies. It was helpful because each model had a written plaque next to them telling you about them etc. We only stayed long enough to look round quickly and then returned upstairs.
A good part of the fee is that you can stay as long as you like and go round as many times as you want.
We are not the kind of people who really enjoy tourist attractions, but finding ourselves in New York in January, at temperatures which made your blood freeze in your veins, forced us to abandon our marathon walks down the avenues and to find some indoors entertainment. We had walked down 42nd Street and passed Madama Tussauds several times and were indeed very impressed by Samuel L. Jackson standing outside the door, looking so real that one would want to go over there and ask for an autograph. It was enticing enough for us to one day decide to enter the glass doors shortly after they opened.
Once inside, we looked around for prices. At first we could not see any. There was only one woman in front of us. I overheard her asking for three tickets and I then thought I overhead the cashier asking for something in excess of $90. I panicked slightly and surveyed my surroundings again. It was then that I spotted a TV screen on the right-hand side, advertising adult entrance fees at $27.99 plus New York sales tax. I signalled to my partner to have a look and we made a bee-line for the door.
Suddenly, a young New Yorker shot out of a corner and stopped us. Hey, folks! Where are you going? My partner was silent, as ever. I did not know what to say at first, but then I croaked, This is even more expensive than in London! That is when the man offered us a special deal. The two of us for $30.40 about half the price. I still was a little sceptical, but at 50% off we decided that we could not decline the offer.
We went up to the till, where the cashier at first wanted to charge us the full price until I pointed at the New Yorker cowering in the corner and told her that we had been offerered the deal. She reduced the price, I handed over my money and off we went.
You have two choices you can either head straight for the elevators or you can walk up the stairs. We decided to walk upstairs. That is a bit of a mistake if you are photo-shy! The next moment you are faced with a gigantic green Hulk and a cheerful young lady who directs you to stand in front of the monster to have your picture taken. Two cheesy poses later, she sends you off with ticket stubs to collect your photos later.
After posing with the Hulk, you have to take the elevator upstairs. There is an elevator operator who will instruct you that you are being taken to the top floor and that you are not to re-enter the elevator, or else you may miss parts of the museum.
The elevator doors open and you are actually faced with a gigantic ballroom full of celebreties, all dressed up fancy, like you would expect at a Hollywood party. Most of the celebrities in this room are film stars and muscians, although I do seem to recall a couple of politicians. It is slightly claustrophobic, to say the least, because a lot of these wax figures look very real and you often actually feel like you are being watched by them as you walk by. But once you get used to the impressive overfilled room and take a look at the celebrities one by one, you see that not every figure has the same level of detail and quality. I found that Whoopi Goldberg and Selma Hayek looked scarily real. On the other hand, Brad Pitt and Madonna looked rather fake and disappointing. Other celebrities that I remember seeing in this room included a rather fake-looking Michelle Pfeiffer and an odd-looking Jody Foster, but a rather impressive Clint Eastwood. I would estimate that there are over 100 figures in this room. I was actually rather disappointed at this stage that I had not brought my camera especially when I saw that the stand selling disposable cameras was closed.
Moving onwards, you come into a little room that has little to do with wax figures and is all about the weather. This is your chance to play weatherman: You can stand in front of a weather map and see yourself on a camera, pointing to the different parts of the United States and making up sunshine and rain as you go along. Adjacent to this room you have a chance to sit in a chair with the Biography channel tapestry background behind you. You can pretend to the world that you are a world-famous celebrity yourself and tell your life history (if your loved one will let you!)
In another adjacent room you can meet the Osbournes. Sharon and Ozzy are sitting on a couch looking rather life-like. They really succeeded in capturing the elegance of Sharon, but for some reason the artists decided to be overly flattering to Ozzy and make him appear a few decades younger and less wrinkly than in reality.
Next to the couch is a room that is covered with a curtain and which you would not dare to venture into if you were epileptic, as it has strobe lighting. This is aparently the Van Helsing Torture Chamber, quite a new attraction at Madame Tussauds New York which we neglected to enter into. From the website it does sound rather entertaining, promising a multi-sensory environment with gothic architecture, blasts of bone-chilling wind, and blood curdling screams, all of which are heightened by a cast of live actors lurking behind every corner waiting to scare unsuspecting visitors.
Adjacent to the biography channel room is a huge white room. They were filming a commercial in there when we visited, so we could not look at the figures in any great detail. There were some political figures, such as Yassar Arafat, but for the most part the room contained historical figures, long dead, and certainly not modelled in the presence of the actual human being. There are some old presidents in here, for example, some writers and freedom fighters as well as jazz muscians. There was not, however, a single figure that would have stuck out as impressive.
You then have to venture down a flight of stairs. While walking down these stairs you can already here it from a distance: The all-familiar American Idol theme tune. You know what to expect. Around the corner is Simon Cowell, again, looking about 10 years younger than he really is. In front of him is a stage with the American Idol logo in the background. But is there anything else to it? Frankly, we did not know, as there was no staff around to tell us. On examination of the area we believe that you can actually get up on the stage and sing a little karaoke in front of waxy Simon Cowell your chance to sing loud and false without him being able to make you feel bad!
Venturing onwards, you come across a little food court. Again, this was not staffed when we were there, but if you are tired, it presents the ideal opportunity to have lunch or a beverage and if it is as empty as it was that day, you may actually have the opportunity to sit with Robin Williams or with Barbara Streisand. Quite impressive, both of them sitting there on their own.
After the cafeteria follows another larger collection of figures. There are a lot of muscians on the remainder of the tour including the Spice Girls, the Beatles and NSync. About half of the Spice Girls were impressive, the other half was not so realistic. The Beatles display looked very neat with the four band members lounging about on a couch, but they did not look too real either.
Besides musicians, the room also contained a number of sports personalities. I am not very big on names outside tennis but there was definitely a Martina Navratilova and a Billy Jean King there and I think a John McEnroe. I also think I saw Michael Jordan and a Babe Ruth baseball player figure. All in all, there were not enough celebrities in these four corners to keep me interested long enough.
And then suddenly that appears to be it! You end up in the gift shop you see the stand where you can collect your pictures with Hulk but you can also venture to your right, where you have two final attractions.
For one, they had a Jessica Simpson display. We have been told that they usually conduct a Jessica Simpson quiz show when more people are around but with a whole 4 guests, there was really no point. I have not seen this advertised on the website, however, so it might have been a temporary attraction.
Secondly, you can watch a movie! Oh, a bit of excitement, we thought. You go inside this planetarium-shaped room and sit on a wooden bench, which is rather uncomfortable. You look upwards and see the screen it is a horsecarriage driver. Once the doors shut, the horse-carriage driver takes you on this odd virtual tour of New York City, partially in he 50s, partially today. It is actually rather boring, apart from the final part of the movie, where the horsecarriage starts flying and you find yourself travelling over the skyline of Manhattan which oddly enough still contains the Twin Towers.
After the movie is over that is the end of the tour and the museum. You can shop in the gift shop, which does not contain much more than the usual New York tourist stuff that you can get elsewhere, though it does have a few Madame Tussauds-specific items.
When we arrived at the end of the tour, we were really disappointed. In less than an hour we had seen the entire contents of the museum. We shook our heads at the fact that this would normally have cost us over $30 per person, because we did not even feel that it was worth half the price. In all honesty, $10 per person would have been the absolute maximum I would have been prepared to pay if I had known what to expect. I really think that the full ticket price is outrageous. If I were you, I would try and see if you can get a special deal. If you do end up paying the full price and finding it as disappointing as we did, I would simply go back and ask, Excuse me, Madame. Is that really it?
Madame Tussauds is open 365 days a year. Monday through Sunday - from 10.00am. The last ticket is sold at 8.00pm. You can hire out parts of the museum for private functions ranging from 20 people to 1,000 people. Further information can be found at www.nycwax.com
234 West 42nd Street (between 7th and 8th Avenues) in the heart of Times Square.
- Adults (13 - 59): $30.40
- Children (4 - 12): $23.89
- Seniors discount (60+): $27.15
- Children under 4: Free