No, I don’t live on the (Vegas) Strip!

My hairstylist, Amber, and I.

Admit it, you’ve been wondering: This chick appears normal, yet she lives in Vegas. For all of my local people out there, you’re already nodding your head. It kills me when even people who love Vegas, who have been coming to town three times a year their entire lives, still go, “I could never be there more than three days; I don’t know how you do it.” Easy. I’ll tell you EXACTLY how I “do it.”


This might come as a surprise.

I don’t live on the Strip.

It’s amazing to me how many perfectly intelligent people don’t realize this, but off the Strip there are two enormous suburbs that resemble Phoenix or somewhere else people deem respectable. I interviewed a diner owner a few weeks ago who hadn’t been to the Strip in five years. It’s totally possible. Me? I live in a cute little townhouse with two big dogs, I work in a corporate building four minutes away, I eat locally, run to Target, hit up Whole Foods — the most suburban life I’ve ever lived.

I thought I’d give you a little slice of life via my Hot Box, the best of the neighborhood Vegas salons. Meet Amber. I see this girl every single Friday at one pm, and the occasional Saturday when she talks me into fixing my highlights or cutting my hair — usually weeks after I’m due. I’ve got enormous amounts of hair and hate doing it myself, especially if I am going to fancy events like Chanel, have to do TV appearances or other public speaking, and this is even her handiwork when I was skiing. I just go in on Friday afternoons and then don’t worry about my hair all week, whatever it is I end up doing.

Several of my coworkers go to Hot Box, too. This is so much our favorite of the neighborhood Vegas salons, that when they did a photo shoot, one of the models is reading Vegas magazine in a photo now hanging in a prominent spot on the main floor.

How cool is that?

Model reading Vegas magazine.


So, you see, we live very normal lives here in Vegas. We have our local “spots,” have normal friends, go to 9-5 jobs… The only difference is that when we want to go see a fabulous Rod Stewart concert, attend a Miami Vice-worthy white party or grin as we walk the red carpet with a TV star, we can.

Because we have the Strip, and you don’t!

The March issue of Vegas magazine is out, featuring Brooke Burke from Dancing with the Stars. Take a look!

The following two tabs change content below.
I'm a life-long travel junkie journalist who works hard to find adventure in everyday life after two years of travel and expat living.

Related Content


  1. Hilarious! I love it. I didn’t think you’d be living a suburban life but I can see how it probably keeps you sane. And when you need to get insane, like you said, you can just go to the strip! Nice dichotomy of two worlds. Me likey!

  2. Love this. I have a friend who lives in Vegas & works in a casino & spends SO MUCH TIME trying to convince people that she doesn’t gamble or party her life away. This is sort of like people thinking that because I lived in D.C., I must spend every waking minute at a museum or talking politics. In reality, I hadn’t been to a Smithsonian museum in years & spent as much effort as possible avoiding Hill-talk in favor of pop culture conversations!

  3. It’s so funny how people look at big cities!!

    Yes, everyone thinks we party all the time, when it’s quite the opposite. I’m over it. If you come here as a tourist, even if you’re my friend, you’re on your own after about 10 pm! (If I can stay up.)

  4. Best of both worlds! Although I still kind of think you live a glam life 24/7 – if dogs and Whole Foods can be glam, in their own Vegas-y way.

  5. I can vouch- Abby does live in a really cute townhouse with two adorable dogs. If it weren’t for the fact that she works crazy hours and goes to fabulous events, I’d call her a suburban housewife 😉 Abby you always have fabulous hair, so clearly you’re in good hands!

  6. Lol my street dogs know how to party!

    I am so a suburban housewife — without the husband!

  7. Who are these people thinking that “this chick is normal”?
    What you’re saying is the same argument I use when people ask me how I can take my kids to Vegas. It’s simple, I don’t take them to the strip. The best parts of Vegas are away from the strip anyways.
    I still have a hard time picturing you as a suburban housewife though.

  8. It was fun to show off a tiny part of my “real” life! Admittedly, I am not THAT domestic lol.

  9. It’s funny because while I know this is true, I still have a hard time thinking of anything else going in Vegas but the strip. Thanks for giving me a reminder that it’s just like every other American suburb. That’s a good thing, right? 😉

  10. It’s ok!! I’m used to people not knowing about the ‘burbs. It doesn’t help that the airport is like half a minute from the Strip, and there’s no cheap transportation out there. You’d have to really try!

  11. Yep… you don’t have to convince us. With Caanan’s bro having lived there, we know what it’s really like. Although – now that I think about it – his brother did head to the strip A LOT.

    Sidenote: Once while on the road in a small hotel gym, there were 3 people working out – the two of us and Rod Stewart. We could not believe how SMALL he was in real life.

  12. Oh, no way! He’s small but SUPER-fit!!

  13. I think many don’t even realize that people actually LIVE in vegas, let alone outside of the strip. Thanks for your insight into the town!

  14. Thanks for reminding us that outside of the strip Vegas is just another suburb. However, if you want to be fabulous it’s an easy commute.

  15. Whew….. glad to find out that you’re normal! Cool to have the Strip available for great shows and nightlife when you want it. Nice endorsement for Hot Box — hope you get a complimentary styling. 🙂

  16. I’ve never made it to Vegas, but you’re right, I never really thought of it as more than a long strip of neon in the middle of a desert 😉

  17. You have just crushed my glam-fab image of you Abby. 😉

  18. So true! I don’t know why people think that just because you live in Vegas you’re out partying until dawn every day. That’s what people do on VACATION, not if they live there. (At least I hope there aren’t people partying until dawn every day of their lives. They’ll wind up having short lives.)

  19. You know how much I love my salon, but if it wasn’t for mine, I am pretty sure I would be at yours in an instant. What a cute place! Plus, your hair always looks amazing!

  20. I’ve never really thought about what life in Vegas would be like for the people that actually live there, but a suburbia existence is definitely not what I pictured.

  21. I’m one of those who could never see myself in Vegas for more than a couple days, so this was interesting to read. I couldn’t find the cool neighborhoods, but I’m sure there are some!

  22. love this post! i always like seeing how people actually LIVE in a place that i visit! 🙂 but yes, you CAN rub elbows with the stars when you want to, and that’s the part that gets people wishing and hoping.

  23. I’ve never been to Vegas so I had no preconceived ideas of where you lived. 🙂 But I’m so happy to know you’re safe and sound in a place you love close to people who make you happy. 🙂

  24. Love it! If I make it to Las Vegas, I totally want you to show me life OFF the strip. And, well, on the strip too…

  25. Hi!!

    I’ve never been to Vegas but it’s a very fascinating city!! After reading this post, I have some reason why, I want to go there as soon as possible!!
    At the moment, I like this city more than ever because nearly every night there is the great performance of “Celine Dion”. I was in Paris in 2008 for following her Tour around the world. I can’t forget how wonderful was that night when I had the chance to listen to her magnificent voice. She was able to express powerful and lightness at the same time! Amazing! I know that during last few days she’s had some problems and I hope that everything it’s going to be all right as soon as possible!!

    Bye for now.

  26. Celine’s show is soo good. I saw it opening night. It’s so powerful!

  27. I love this post! I’ve seen your nice little suburban hideaway & know you’re “normal” but I could see how other people might assume other things based on where you live. I think it’s the same with a lot of big cities. Toronto is the English language media center of Canada so, we have our share of parties, night life & glitz & glamor. Although I do take advantage of this kind of stuff, I can’t live that lifestyle non-stop (although I know some people who do). It’s just too exhausting. I actually really enjoy doing the “normal” everyday stuff in Toronto – going to the deli, eating at local hole in the wall restaurants, shopping at my local bookstore. Sometimes I spend a whole week barely leaving my little tree-lined neighborhood & it’s awesome.

  28. Melissa W. says:

    I was totally one of those people! Now I get it!! Love Vegas! xoxo Abs!

  29. this is so funny! Living in Myrtle Beach, everyone assumes I live ON the beach…. nope, that small part of the real estate market is kind of limited – not to mention $$$. Ok, I mentioned it! Difference is I would love to live ON the beach, instead of two miles away from it. Interestingly people never assume that I live in the middle of the “fray” of it – which I do, kind of – I can hear the foghorn at Margaritaville from my house, and I tell people to navigate by Planet Hollywood to find my neighborhood. WEIRD.

  30. …and oddly enough, whenever i hit vegas for “vacation” and not work, i ALWAYS do something in the ‘burbs…

Speak Your Mind