By definition, experiments involve trial and error. And sometimes, “error” wins. So, perhaps it shouldn’t have been a surprise when on July 13 the Cosmopolitan issued a statement regarding the status of its own “grand social experiment,” Rose. Rabbit. Lie.: Vegas Nocturne, the beloved show portion of the perhaps-too-mysterious venue, had closed.
Cue a return to the laboratory for another experiment. Noted the Cosmopolitan in its statement: “Rose. Rabbit. Lie. will constantly evolve” and “continue to create extraordinary experiences for guests blurring the lines between restaurant, bar, club and live entertainment.”
Sounds great. But what exactly do these blurred lines mean?
Lisa Marchese, chief marketing officer at the Cosmopolitan, offered some clarification … but not so much as to dispel the venue’s purposeful mystique. Likening Rose. Rabbit. Lie. to an old-time club in Havana, she says it’s about “bringing back the social magic of the past.”
Still confused? Good. That’s still the plan. The venue is meant to appeal to the Cosmopolitan’s target demographic, the curious class, i.e., patrons who “don’t need a prescribed experience.”
“Rose. Rabbit. Lie. was and will continue to be a bit mysterious,” Marchese says. “It’s not easy to define, but now it’s going to be much easier to consume.”
So what will we be consuming?
Here’s what we know:
- Coastal Luxury Management will continue to run Rose. Rabbit. Lie.’s food and beverage program, which means that you can still splurge on caviar tacos ($15 or $78, depending on type of caviar) and feast on a whole roasted giant Alaskan red king crab ($1,200).
- Contrary to rumor, no performers from Vegas Nocturne have been contracted to stay behind.
- There is no longer, at least for the time being, a nightclub aspect of the venue.
- The ballroom (formerly the showroom) is temporarily closed. It will occasionally be used to host one-off ticketed shows. Nick Waterhouse and Eli “Paperboy” Reed—two musicians with a catchy retro-hipster sound that matches the Cosmo’s vibe—are booked for August, with more to potentially come.
- A rotating retinue of live and atmospheric entertainment will perform in the venue. This could include such acts as a neo-soul band, a funk dancer, acoustic guitarists playing EDM music or a hard rock cello duo.
- There’s no cover.
How does this all work in practice? I recently visited Rose. Rabbit. Lie. 2.0. to find out. What I saw was the house band playing lively covers. The musicians were talented, and with the inclusion of a sax player, a pianist and three singers, the band offered a fuller sound than the usual Vegas lounge act. But was it so far above and beyond the typical Vegas bar-food-live music setup as to enter the realm of magical transcendence (as it did during the short-lived but delightfully odd Vegas Nocturne era)? Eh, not really.
But with Rose.Rabbit.Lie’s strategy focusing on the creation of a dynamic experience that will never be the same twice, that could change. In fact, as the grand social experiment continues, your experience is pretty much guaranteed to be different than mine. After all, as the venue’s website promises, “Anything can happen. Everything will happen.”
Rose. Rabbit. Lie.
At the Cosmopolitan, 5:30 p.m. to close Wed-Sat, 877-667-0585.