Time Hop: Why 2010 Looks So Good From So Far Away

Remember wearing wedge sneakers and jamming to Kesha's hit, "Tik Tok," 'cause we do

By OTS Media Staff

It’s been a rocky century, so far, for Las Vegas. As 2021 begins, we’re neck deep in a pandemic that’s decimated the city’s economy and left tens of thousands jobless. Subtract the pandemic part and the rest is familiar territory for Las Vegans who lived through the city’s last slump.

Let’s dial it back a decade to 2010. You remember 2010, right? Back when Las Vegas was the Foreclosure Capital of the World? Back when Carl Ichan picked up Fontainebleau Las Vegas out of bankruptcy and we thought, “Surely, this thing will open in the next 10 years, right?”

But it wasn’t all bad. In fact, the stumbles of 2010 look quite attractive when compared to the dystopian crises of today. At the time, we never imagined a pandemic might overtake the country, David Bowie and Prince were still alive, and that Overboard remake hadn’t happened yet. 

Here Are 8 Reasons Why We’d Go Back to 2010 in a Heartbeat


311 arrived at Mandalay Bay for their annual “311 Day” concert and owned the world. The band held court at Mandalay Bay Events Center for about five hours, playing four sets and dozens of hits. Also, Hot Tub Time Machine came out that month. 


ARIA came onto the scene at the end of 2009 and debuted its Liquid Pool Lounge in 2010 with Heidi Montag (remember her?) among the “celebrities” in attendance. That was back when Vegas needed reality television performers to draw a crowd. We don’t do that anymore. We got the Golden Knights and the Raiders now.  


Encore Beach Club and Surrender held its grand opening on Memorial Day Weekend, with Steve Aoki Kaskade and Aeroplane among the headliners. Of course Paris Hilton showed up, because it was 2010. 


Nicki Minaj came alive with her debut track “Your Love.” She’d drop her first album, Pink Friday, later that year and “Starships” was just around the corner. 


Bruno Mars got pinched for cocaine possession at Hard Rock Hotel & Casino. A good thing? Not really. But this was right around the time his debut studio album dropped, and if Las Vegans didn’t know Mars before, they certainly did after seeing his mugshot on the local news. The singer, of course, blew up, and would become one of the decade’s biggest Strip headliners.

Posted by Bruno Mars on Friday, June 11, 2010


Lovely young ingenue Claire Sinclair was named Playboy’s Playmate of the Month in October 2010. We’d get to know her very well over the years. 

Now Representing CLAIRE SINCLAIR Playboy Playmate Centerfold of the Month Miss October 2010 and Playboy Playmate of the Year 2011. CLAIRE SINCLAIR

Posted by Wild Models Talent Agency on Friday, July 8, 2011


It was a midterm election year in America, so things weren’t all that different from the way they are now. Here in Las Vegas, Oscar Goodman was on his way out and his wife, Carolyn, would take his place in 2011. She’d go on to embarrass the city and state with her awful take on the pandemic, which includes the now-infamous interview with CNN’s Anderson Cooper. On the bright side, Nevadans dodged a bullet in 2010 when they gave Sharron Angle the middle finger and re-elected Harry Reid to the U.S. Senate. 


Every uncertainty, every disappointment, every bad feeling about the year that was would get washed away on December 31, 2010, when Jay-Z took the stage at the grand opening of The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas. The city’s reputation as a New Year’s Eve destination had been locked in long ago, but this was not your typical New Year’s concert. First, Cosmopolitan paired Jay-Z with Coldplay, securing two big time fanbases for a packed Chelsea ballroom audience that included, among others, Alex Rodriguez and Cameron Diaz (back when they were dating), Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony (back when they were married), Brandy, Mel B, Mark Wahlberg, Gwyneth Paltrow and Jeremy Piven. And that’s just who we remember seeing with our own eyes. Then, they added John Mayer and Beyonce—out of nowhere—on stage. Think about that for a second, Coldplay, John Mayer, Beyonce, and we hadn’t even gotten to Jay-Z yet. When Hov finally got up there, wearing a tux because, well, Roc Boys in the building, he starts going into “Run This Town” when a pre-MAGA Kanye West bursts onto the stage. It was like an earthquake on the Strip but nobody had to run for their lives. Watch the YouTube videos of the event and try not to freak out when Kanye starts “The Good Life.” The Cosmopolitan’s grand opening New Year’s Eve show will forever be the greatest concert in the history of Las Vegas, and reason No. 1 why we’d trade 2020 for 2010.

PHOTO by Christopher Victorio

Posted by JAY-Z on Monday, April 5, 2010

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