The lady from California carefully downloaded dark chocolate M&M’s into a clear plastic bag. She says M&M’s are her favorite candy, and she comes to M&M’s World on Las Vegas Boulevard every time she visits Las Vegas.
M&M’s World has been a fixture on the Las Vegas Strip since 1997, but I had never visited the store until last week. I had heard about the new Hershey’s Chocolate World opening June 3 as part of the remodeled facade at New York New York Las Vegas Hotel & Casino. One of my favorite podcasters had also heard the news and talked about “chocolate wars” on the Las Vegas Strip. Now that’s my kind of war. I had to visit both stores.
M&M’s World was a revelation. (See the video above.) What a fun place to visit. Obviously, lots of folks with children already knew that M&M’s World would be a family memory. Children and parents were everywhere. Not only does a wall of M&M’s get the juices flowing, but the many logo items available for sale are stunning in their color and variety. Want an M&M cell phone cover, a cookie cutter, a jean jacket, a purse, an ice cream scoop, a toy train, a note pad….it’s all there and more. The cute faces on the M&M characters make everything fun.
On the third floor of the four-floor M&M’s World store, a free movie is shown. It’s in 3-D, and the 3-D really works, with “stuff” coming off the screen making audience members duck. That’s more than I can say for some commercial 3-D films I’ve seen that weren’t worth the extra money. You can also get special M&M’s with one’s own name embossed. The embossed M&M’s like the logo items are not exactly bargains, but then again, losing $30 in a slot machine leaves one with nothing but a loss of $30. The same money spent at M&M’s World could result in three pair of colorful new M&M shorts!
And the candy? The wall of candy on the second floor is mighty impressive. You find your favorite flavor and download it in a bag and pay $12.99 per pound for the privilege. I doubt many people leave without at least some of ET’s favorite candy. (The temperature last week in Las Vegas was hovering around 100 degrees, but even with the heat, M&M’s, of course, don’t melt on your fingers; they, oh yes…melt in your mouth.)
Hershey’s Chocolate World, almost literally across the street from M&M’s World, features the kind of chocolate that does melt. BUT because it is attached to New York New York Las Vegas Hotel & Casino, you can purchase chocolate and stay in air conditioning until you’ve had your fill or until you find a way to transport your purchase in an air-conditioned vehicle.
Hershey’s Chocolate World features more product than souvenirs, but indeed, souvenir hunters will have planty of choices as well. The big attractions are an all-chocolate Lady Liberty and a chocolate recreation of the Empire State Building. Hershey’s Chocolate World also features a five-pound chocolate bar which would last….I wonder….how long. (It costs $50.)
Personally, I have a hard time not eating chocolate when it’s in the house, so I dared not load up during my visits. Yes, a small container of M&M’s made it home with me, and a day later, with my husband’s help, the M&M’s had just about disappeared.
One subject not covered in the attached video is parking. If one is walking the Strip, no problem. M&M’s World is located right next to the MGM Grand. Hershey’s Chocolate World is across the boulevard. Both stores can be accessed from the other by simply using the overhead walkway between the MGM Grand and New York New York Las Vegas Hotel & Casino. Parking is available at the both resorts. NOTE: If you walk from M&M’s World to the overhead walkway, you will pass through a shaded area. When I did that, I found six costumed characters and one guitarist hanging out. Do we have too many costumed characters “available” for tourist photos? Yep.
Costumed characters aside, you should have a great time visiting the two worlds of sweet things on Las Vegas Boulevard.
P.S. Another favorite local chocolate destination, from the Mars company, which produces M&M’s, is the Ethel M factory, gift shop and garden in Henderson, NV. M&M’s candy and merchandise and Ethel M chocolate (expensive and delicious) is available in the gift shops there. The cactus garden is very special as well.