Bellagio, Picasso and Le Cirque Receive 2009 AAA Five Diamond Award

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For the eighth consecutive year, Bellagio received AAA’s prestigious Five Diamond Award as did Julian Serrano’s renowned restaurant, Picasso. Additionally, Le Cirque received the distinction for the sixth consecutive year, making Bellagio once again the only hotel in the United States to be home to two AAA Five Diamond restaurants.

“The AAA Five Diamond award acknowledges our commitment to excellence,” said Randy Morton, president and COO of Bellagio. “AAA is a trusted source of quality, and I couldn’t be more proud of this important recognition for Bellagio.”

Picasso and Le Cirque are among only five restaurants in Las Vegas to earn this coveted award. “Many of the world’s finest restaurants are located in Las Vegas,” Morton said. “Having two of the very best among such an elite group is an incredible honor.”

Julian Serrano, executive chef at Picasso, said, “Our exemplary team deserves all of the accolades. Receiving this prestigious award for eight consecutive years reaffirms to them we are successful in creating an exceptional dining experience.”

The regions of France and Spain where Picasso spent much of his life inspire Chef Serrano’s exceptional Mediterranean cuisine. Picasso masterpieces, as well as a collection of his charming ceramic pieces, further delight the senses of diners enjoying the Picasso experience.

Created by Sirio Maccioni, known as the world’s most charismatic restaurateur, Le Cirque invites guests to indulge and relish world-class wines, haute cuisine and luxurious service in an intimate setting. Le Cirque’s opulent dining room is complemented by a breathtaking panoramic view of Bellagio’s lake.

Mario Maccioni said, “As a AAA Five Diamond Award winner, we are honored once again to be among the top level of one of the most important organizations in our industry.”

AAA evaluates and rates more than 58,000 restaurants and lodgings each year throughout all 50 states, Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean, providing the broadest coverage of any U.S. rating system, both geographically and by number of properties rated. Of those, only 103 resorts and 59 restaurants, or 0.28 percent, earned the highly coveted AAA Five Diamond rating for 2009.

Michael Geeser, AAA Nevada spokesman, said, “For eight years, Bellagio has maintained the highest level of hospitality in the most luxurious surroundings. The property is really what the Five Diamond rating is all about. Once again, Bellagio is home to two Five Diamond restaurants, setting itself apart from the highest end properties in the world.”

To be considered for AAA rating and approval, restaurants and lodgings undergo a thorough evaluation by AAA/CAA’s 65 full-time tourism editors. Five Diamond establishments go through a much more extensive review. The entire experience, from arrival through departure, is taken into account. AAA experts judge lodgings on the exterior of the facility, public areas, guest rooms, amenities and bathrooms. Restaurants are evaluated on criteria including food, service, décor and ambiance.