I wasn’t intending to deal with this but then I came across a retired gentleman and his wife who were thinking of visiting Vegas but were unsure because they’d both watched a recent documentary that suggested they’d be knee deep in prostitutes! I watched that same documentary and boy, was it misleading. I explained to them they had nothing to worry about and they’re now booking their trip but it occurred to me I ought to give a little more detail, for their benefit and for yours and to correct the misleading impression that’s been given.
What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, right? Shagger’s carte blanche? Films and TV have a lot to answer for. The perception seems to be that if you’re male there will be lovelies throwing themselves at you day and night but it’s just not like that. If you see a woman in Vegas the likelihood is she’s there with her husband or partner or with a group of girls who are in town for work or a hen night or equivalent. Young women, as a rule, have no interest at all in gambling and Vegas is not somewhere they would choose to go. You can bet they’re there to please someone else so the chance of you hooking up for free is really quite remote.
But I can pay for it, right? I doubt there’s anywhere in the world where you can’t pay for it if you look hard enough and that’s certainly the case in Vegas but you’re certainly not tripping over it! You’ll see the billboard vans driving up and down the Strip advertising ‘girls to your room’. I have no personal experience of this but I’m reliably told that a phone call will get a girl to your door but there will then ensue lengthy negotiations and bargaining the likes of which belong at ACAS. Apparently the entire exercise can be one giant rip off.
Similarly, I’ve mentioned elsewhere the number of Mexicans who line the Strip after dark handing out what appear to be business cards. If you take one you’ll see that they too are inviting you to telephone for a lady to visit you in the privacy of your hotel room. I think the same procedure applies. Beyond this have you actually encountered a prostitute yet? No.
I’ve told you about the massage therapists who’ll massage your head/neck and shoulders while you play poker or sit at the gaming tables for $2 a minute. They’re on the lookout for a mark then? Absolutely not. All these girls and the very occasional guy are employed by a handful of reputable companies or by the in-house spa facility. They are closely monitored and if anything untoward went on they’d be summarily dismissed. I’ve seen countless young guys try it on with them and they all crashed and burned without exception!
What about having a massage at the spa though? Surely this is a way to a happy ending? This I do have personal knowledge of and, again, absolutely not. The casino hotel spa facilities are all run to a high standard of performance and ethics and if you ask for extras the chances are you’ll be thrown out and/or the Police will be called. No, I didn’t ask.
I’m not saying I’ve never noticed a prostitute in Las Vegas, I’ve seen many (in the observation sense only) but you have to be in the wrong place at the wrong time whether by design or otherwise. It’s rare in the extreme for one to be so brazen as to approach you without solicitation and I say this as someone who appears single when I’m in town. There’s no chance of you being bothered by them if you’re a couple or in a group.
If you are going to encounter one it will be after dark and usually not before 11pm. There are certain places that they hang out, after midnight in particular, one being the footbridge from Bellagio to Caesars Palace. You may also see a single woman or, more often, a pair sitting at a slot machine not too far from your hotel elevator yet not appearing to play. This isn’t racist but they are almost invariably black and dressed like they’ve been to a nightclub. If they catch and hold your gaze you’ve probably found one. As the night progresses and patrons thin out they become more obvious, particularly on the quiet nights of the week when business is not so brisk.
The casinos go to great lengths to discourage them. I’ve had many a laugh playing a table game in Mirage late at night. That property employs a member of the security staff, dressed in plain clothes, whose job it is to remove them from the premises. They know who he is, he knows who they are and you’ll often see what appears to be a Benny Hill sketch as a line of girls, walking rather too fast, dart in and out of the slot machines pursued by a man, also walking peculiarly quickly.
At Harrahs the night security staff wear yellow T shirts and they are often to be seen escorting certain young ladies from the premises. The Metro Police are rarely seen but I’ve also known them to be involved in these ‘operations’ to catch known and persistent working girls.
Vegas has more than its fair share of lap dancing clubs but I can’t think of any on the Strip itself and they’re all a cab ride away. There is one Downtown on Freemont Street. I also understand from someone who knows that they are vastly expensive and likely to be a major disappointment.
In short, it’s there if you want it but you do have to go to some effort to find it and the suggestion that you can’t walk about town without it ‘slapping you in the face’ is simply not correct.