Vegas Unstripped Sets Date, Location

The Vegas Unstripped festival will return on May 18, event creator Eric Gladstone recently told the Food and Loathing podcast.

“But the really exciting thing is, this year, we’re moving out of The Arts District and into the Palms Resort,” continued Gladstone on last Friday’s episode.

Rick Moonen (right) sabers Champagne at Vegas Unstripped 2023

Vegas Unstripped launched in May 2018 as a neighborhood-focused counterprogramming to the Strip-forward pomp and circumstance of Bon Appetit magazine’s annual Vegas Unstripped festival (since discontinued). In the years since, they’ve staged events in both the Spring and the Fall, always in the Arts District, close to Chef James Trees’ flagship restaurant, Esther’s Kitchen.

“It was maybe a little selfish on my part, the part of being near Esther’s Kitchen because James helped me co-create the event,” concedes Gladstone, who heads the Las Vegas-based PR firm The Feast Of Friends.

So when The Palms courted the festival as a possible host, he saw a chance to position Unstripped as more than one neighborhood’s event. Moreover, a casino partner could help court a wider audience.

“We’ve always wanted to attract more visitors to the city, to [show them] how amazing the food scene is here, throughout the city,” he explains. “And it kind of felt like we were limited being on the street in the Arts District.”

At The Palms, he expects room packages and/or resort promotions to boost the festival’s appeal to out-of-town guests, as will “all the other amazing restaurants that are at The Palms.”

As far as moving his neighborhood festival into a casino, Gladstone doesn’t see a problem.

“Well, it’s not on The Strip,” he notes of The Palms’ W. Flamingo Road address.

“And,” he continues, “we’ve already opened [the festival] up to Strip chefs.”

“It’s not about Strip versus off-Strip anymore. What it’s about is local versus not local. We want to be very clear on that messaging: this was always about local Vegas chefs, chefs who are based here, chefs who have their stakes in the ground here. It will always be about that. It’s still about that.”

However, he’s not ready to share the lineup of participating chefs or restaurants. Nor is there an official on-sale date for the tickets. But we know the price: $150, with fees expected to be less than in previous years. As always, a local charity is expected to benefit from the proceeds. To date, Vegas Unstripped has donated nearly $30,000 from its ticket sales to deserving local causes.

When more information is available, you’ll find it (along with a link to buy tickets) at