Sunday, March 3, 2013

Flamingo Hotel Wildlife Habitat

It had been years since my last stay at the Flamingo Hotel & Casino, and I was curious to see how the Wildlife Habitat had fared since the hotel's renovation.
Was it still there? A quick check of their website confirmed that when I made my reservations online. What changes, if any, had been made? I soon found out, the first day of my stay. In a couple of words, a fair bit.
The biggest change is that the playful frolicking waddle of penguins wasn't there anymore, which is a shame, because I'd always enjoyed watching them swimming around and cooling off in the hot sun. Heck, I enjoy watching them anywhere – zoos, aquariums, parks.
I remember an information sign saying they were actually tropical penguins and actually enjoyed the heat. A likely story. They were gone. Where did they go? I had to do some research online and learned they had been transferred to the Dallas Zoo.
The habitat's newest additions include two brown pelicans named after the original hotel's founder, Benjamin "Bugsy" Seigel and his girlfriend companion, Virginia Hill. Bugsy and Virginia had been rescued by the Pacific Wildlife Project after suffering fishing-line injuries. They now reside in the former penguin area.
In addition to the pelicans, the Flamingo Wildlife Habitat houses about 500 animals including ten pink Chilean flamingos, ducks, black swans, a white sturgeon, koi fish, parrots, guinea fowl, turtles and an ibis. They make themselves at home on islands and streams surrounded by waterfalls and foliage – a wonderful place for a casual, relaxing walk.

They've even got a wedding chapel there if you're looking for a lovely venue to get married in. Long ago, the habitat area featured a large swimming pool with rows and rows of chaise lounge sunning chairs. The south tower wasn't there; instead, during one trip n the '80s, I stayed in a two or three-story apartment-like building that housed guest rooms.
Although I snapped a bunch of pictures, can you believe that of all things, I forgot to take pictures of the flamingos and the wedding chapel. Looks like I gotta go back someday.

No comments: