Tuesday, July 9, 2013

The Bellagio Resort: A Mosaic Tile Showcase



The Bellagio fountains at night.
Image via Photographersnature.

Located in the southern part of the famous Las Vegas Strip, the Bellagio Resort Hotel has dominated its surroundings from the time it opened in 1998 with lush landscaping, classic architecture and elements, and a man-made, eight-acre lake reminiscent of Italy’s Lake Como.

With an original cost of $1.6 billion, this Italian-styled property by MGM Resorts International exudes charm, luxury, and aristocracy while simultaneously welcoming the masses into its ornate lobby.


Artist Dale Chihuly’s 2,000-piece “Fiori di Como” hand-blown glass sculpture comes to life above the Bellagio's lobby.

It’s within this lobby that Bellagio’s true form and nod to the artistic masters, new and old, come to fruition. From the moment guests walk into the lobby, eyes are first drawn to the artwork on the 18-ft ceiling. This is artist Dale Chihuly’s 2,000-piece “Fiori di Como” hand-blown glass sculpture comes to life. 

As beautiful and stately as the individual glass blossoms are, one’s eyes are then diverted to the intricate mosaic and stone tile work on the floors, walls, staircases and even ceilings – all thanks to the talented artisans of Italian mosaic manufacturer – Sicis.


Elegant mosaics and marble tiles adorn the reception area of the Bellagio's lobby.
Elegant mosaics and marble tiles adorn the reception area of the Bellagio's lobby.


Above the entrance/exit doors, lighting niches are further enhanced by  painstaking mosaics.
Above the entrance/exit doors, lighting niches are further enhanced by detailed mosaics painstakingly applied by tile and stone masters.

From the lobby, guests and visitors are encouraged to stroll through the hotel’s famous Conservatory & Botanical Gardens. With glass ceilings measuring 50-feet high and a space measuring more than 13,500 square feet, the amount of foot traffic the lobby and the conservatory see on a yearly basis could easily surpass a million people!


The Bellagio's Conservatory & Botanical Gardens fully decorated for the summer season.
The Bellagio's Conservatory & Botanical Gardens fully decorated for the summer season. 


This is one snail I wouldn't mind having in my garden!
This is one snail I wouldn't mind having in my garden!

Thousands of square feet of stone, mosaic tile, medallions by Italian manufacturer Sicis can be seen and appreciated throughout the Bellagio hotel and resort. Here are several mosaic stone and tile patterns seen in just the Conservatory and Botanical Garden area alone:


Intricate mosaic designs flow throughout the Bellagio's lobby and reception areas.
Intricate mosaic designs flow throughout the Bellagio's lobby and reception areas.

Classic and timeless stone mosaics patterns happily reside alongside the floral motifs.
Classic and timeless stone mosaics patterns happily reside alongside the floral motifs.

Glistening mosaic stones form floral focal points throughout the Bellagio's lobby  and conservatory areas/
Glistening mosaic stones form floral focal points throughout the Bellagio's lobby  and conservatory.

Mosaic floral bouquet.
Mosaic floral bouquet in the conservatory.

Detailed view of the mosaic floral bouquet.
Detailed view of the mosaic floral bouquet.

And this is where artistry, talent and experience are integral to a long-lasting and successful installation. With hundreds of thousands of casual visitors coming into the Bellagio’s lobby, wearing everything from flip-flops to stilettos, the role of the highly experienced stone and tile installer becomes even more imperative. With so much at stake, lippage or uneven tiles, are hazards that no hospitality facility can ever afford to overlook or tolerate.


Interlaced mosaic stone borders gracefully accentuate the Bellagio's solid marble floors.
Interlaced mosaic stone borders gracefully accentuate the Bellagio's solid marble floors.

Hotel lobbies, such as the Bellagio’s, have steadily evolved from an area where people merely check in our out of rooms to that of a public living room where all guests are welcomed on a grand level. 

Therefore, it’s on this social platform where the master tile and stone artisans’ of Las Vegas-based Carrara Marble Company of America (the stone and tile contractors for Bellagio) proved vital in presenting the hotel’s first impression to newcomers. 

Do you appreciate the level of hospitality and artistry that hotels and resorts now offer? Have you ever been drawn to a destination because of the variety of tile and stone installations? I'd love to hear your story if you have! 

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