Where does Las Vegas rank?

If there’s a list to be published, for better or worse, this city is probably on it

Bruce Spotleson

Bruce Spotleson

Everybody likes a list, and a city such as Las Vegas naturally makes it onto quite a few.

There are two basic types that make the news: Those that measure how we rate as a tourist destination and those intended to be a gauge on the quality of life here.

But other than true statistical rankings — such as real estate reports based on specific household counts — list research is generally not scientific. Results often are subjective and rarely intended to be taken seriously.

That having been said, Las Vegas scores high on the tourist stuff, boosted no doubt by the economic recovery.

For example, the city came in at No. 8 on a “Favorite Cities Visited” list put out last month by Bucket List Publications, whose goal is to “portray the beauty and limitless possibilities of the bucket list seeker.” A noble cause, to be sure.

Market Watch, a section of The Wall Street Journal, listed Las Vegas as tied for No. 8 for “Top 10 Cities to Live in if You Like Bars.” Turns out we have six bars for every 10,000 households, which puts us even with San Francisco. Who knew?

Orbitz ranked us at the top of its annual list of “Sexiest Cities,” which means we typically are the most booked American destination for Valentine’s Day weekend. That holiday fell during the week this year, but we still were the city of choice for lovebirds.

National Geographic last year ranked Las Vegas one of “America’s 15 Best Hiking Cities.”

Sadly, we’re further down on other lists.

Forbes recently ranked Las Vegas No. 168 for “Best Places for Business and Careers.” The good news, however, is that we’re still ahead of the capital of California, Sacramento.

Forbes also reported that Las Vegas moved up its list of “Best Cities for Working Mothers” released last October. That survey takes into account a metropolitan area’s unemployment rate, affordability and general quality of life. While we weren’t actually ranked with a number on that list, we didn’t fall last, either. Congratulations, Los Angeles.

For anyone who is into lists, a website by Bert Sperling takes it to a different level altogether. Decades ago, Sperling developed a software program to evaluate potential places to live, work or retire.

Las Vegas ranked No. 5 by Sperling among “The Best Cities for Thanksgiving,” which sounds quite warm and fuzzy — although we’re also No. 8 among “The Most Single Cities.” He has us at No. 21 on the list of “Most Energetic Cities” and No. 27 on “Fiscally Fit Cities.”

There’s also national research conducted annually by Honest Tea, a beverage company that sets up unmanned drink stands across the United States with honor-system payments. Las Vegas came in 10th last fall on the group’s National Honesty Index. We tied with Washington, D.C.

I’m really not sure what to make of that.

Tags: Opinion, Business