While almost any time of the year is a great time for a weekend trip to Las Vegas, these trips seem to multiply in the warmer months because guess what; summer season is also wedding season. There are plenty of other good reasons to jet off to Vegas for a weekend of fun and relaxation, but bachelor and bachelorette parties seem to be the most-used excuses. Unless you are the non-partying type, a weekend in Vegas usually means days of lounging by the pool in sweltering heat and evenings of drunken debauchery. In between there will likely be opportunities for shopping, seeing the sights if it’s your first time in Vegas, and expensive cuisine. We’ve got you covered with all the essentials you’ll need for a quick few days in Sin City, no matter your reason.
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If you’ve never been to Vegas you will learn one thing very quickly: The weather (unless you go in winter) usually feels somewhat akin to a hot, dry oven, so you’ll have to dress accordingly. Instead of walking around in a wifebeater or an American Apparel V-neck, stay classy with a casual button down made from a breathable, lightweight fabric. We like this Polo Ralph Lauren Shirt ($125) because it’s made from a silk and linen blend that will keep you cool and comfortable even in the heat. Roll up the sleeves and you’ll be good to go for wandering the streets or an outdoor meal.
Most people go to Vegas with the intention of drinking more alcohol than they ever would at home. If you want to add a little Don Draper style to your trip by casually sipping scotch from a flask, do it from something like this Jack Spade Leather Flask ($125), which will keep you looking like a sophisticate instead of a sleazy alcoholic.
No one wants to come back from vacation looking like a lobster. Sunscreen is a given, but a stylish hat will also help keep your face and eyes shielded from the blinding sun. A hat serves double-duty in Vegas because the city is all about flair and going over the top. Even if you’d never wear a fedora in your everyday life, throw one on and have a little fun with it. This Free Authority Straw Hat ($30) gives a casual summer vibe but is classic enough to not make you look like just any annoying tourist.
There’s really not much point in staying in Sin City for longer than a few days, so all you’ll need to bring is a sharp duffel bag with all the necessities. Look the part of a VIP with the luxurious look of something like this Jack Spade “Dart” Duffel ($395) in soft-grain black leather. The bag has two side slip pockets (perfect for your phone or boarding pass), interior organizing pockets, and an optional shoulder strap.
Whether you use these for the plane ride or to drown out your drunk and obnoxious buddies to get some shut-eye, a pair of noise-canceling headphones will definitely come in handy. These Sony MDR-NC60 Over Ear Noise Canceling Headphones ($110) will keep your ears comfortable in almost any situation. The effective noise-canceling will even shut out the terrible, and loud, airplane white noise, which can be a killer if you’re hungover. Not to mention the crying babies. Neodymium magnets and 40mm dome drivers give these headphones excellent sound for listening to tunes from your iPhone.
If the mentions of the heat didn’t make this pick obvious enough, here you go. Don’t go to Vegas without a good pair of sunglasses. A cheap pair can mean headaches and eye strain, so make sure you have a high-quality pair. Not only will a good pair of shades keep your eyes in good shape while you’re out and about in the sun, they will make you look extra cool while sitting poolside, and they will keep you incognito if you get into a bar fight (yikes) or are hungover (likely) on the trip home. These Ray-Ban Caravans ($130) have a classic look but aren’t as ubiquitous as your typical aviator or wayfarer styles. They will also look just as good with your swim trunks as they will with your suit.
Not all swim trunks are created equal. Ditch the youngster-favorite bright and colorful baggy boardshorts for a well-fitting pair in a classic solid color. This pair of Amaury Trunks ($130) from Onia is the perfect in-between length and is stylish in a more grown-up way. Just about any pair of Onia swim trunks would be a great choice, but we also like the offerings from J.Crew.
HD video camera
Now, if The Hangover is any indication of what kind of shenanigans you’ll get into while in Vegas, you’ll probably want to get that on tape, just in case you don’t remember what happened the next day. The Sony Bloggie Touch ($200) is the perfect small camera to help you capture all of your friends’ most embarrassing drunken moments in HD. The camera records in 1080p HD, takes still photos at 12.8 megapixels, and has 8GB of onboard memory. A large 3-inch touchscreen and a flip-out USB make this one of the most user-friendly cameras around. Document your trip and plug the camera directly into your computer to transfer video files.
If you’re a female, you already know that high heels are obligatory when going out in Vegas. Fellas, it should be no different for you. Clunky shoes are the easiest way to ruin the sophistication and class of a nice suit, so don’t make that mistake. Don’t go crazy with any green snakeskin either. Choose something classic and sleek like the Cole Haan Air Adams Cap Toe Oxford ($198), which will look great with just about anything you might be wearing. Even better, the Nike Air cushioning in these shoes will keep your feet comfortable for a long night out.
Portable iPhone or iPod dock
While going out in Vegas is always a party, it’s never a bad idea to keep the party going in your hotel room with some hand-picked tunes. Make it easy by bringing along a portable iPhone or iPod dock with speakers. We like the JBL On Stage Micro III Portable Loudspeaker ($74) because it’s small enough (only 6 inches in diameter) to throw in your duffel bag, but still provides enough quality sound for a good-size hotel room. The dock is battery-operated and will charge your iPhone or iPod, just in case you pass out while the fun’s still going.