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For many visiting Las Vegas, a trip to the city is incomplete without a stop at the iconic Fountains of Bellagio. As a water-based attraction in the desert, you may be curious to know where the resort gets the water for its giant fountain system.
The water in the Bellagio Fountain comes from a private well underneath the property that previously served a golf course located on the site. The Bellagio Fountains use less water than the golf course that came before it!
In this article, I’ll take you through the Bellagio Fountain’s water supply system and discuss its sustainability. I’ll also answer some of the most commonly asked questions about this famous Las Vegas landmark.
Click here to learn about the Bellagio Fountain schedule every day of the week.
Bellagio Fountain Water Source
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The Bellagio Fountain’s water comes from a private well belonging to the Bellagio Hotel & Casino. The well was originally dug to provide water for the Dunes golf course that existed on the property before the Bellagio was built.
While many people may question the logic of having an artificial lake on the Las Vegas Strip, the Bellagio Fountain system actually uses less water from the well than the golf course previously consumed.
As a result, Bellagio’s water fountain doesn’t directly use the city’s municipal water, which primarily comes from Lake Mead and the Colorado River. Even though Lake Bellagio is estimated to lose about 12 million gallons (45 million liters) of water annually due to evaporation caused by the dry air and the Vegas sun, the system is largely self-sustaining.
Myth Busted: For years there’s been a persistent rumor that the lake’s water comes from the water that goes down the drains (sinks, showers, etc.) in the rooms at the Bellagio. While somewhat amusing, this urban legend is simply not true.
How Deep Is the Bellagio Fountain?
The 8-acre (3.2-hectare) man-made lake that underpins the Bellagio Fountain system ranges from 4 to 13 feet (1.2 to 4 meters) in depth. The lake holds about 22 million gallons (83 million liters) of water.
Drawing from the pool, the fountains shoot jets of water high into the air in a synchronized pattern accompanied by music.
The dancing fountains of Bellagio are among the star attractions in Sin City. Bellagio’s famous fountains have also been listed by Tripadvisor as one of the most talked about and visited attractions in the world.
What Happens to the Coins in the Bellagio Fountain?
Much to the chagrin of the Bellagio, tourists purposely and accidentally drop various items including, casino chips, hats, sunglasses, wedding rings, and coins into the Bellagio Fountains water on a regular basis. So, how do they get that stuff out?
The Bellagio Fountains water is automatically filtered in addition to being manually cleaned regularly to remove foreign objects. Recovered coins are donated to local charities.
If you’re visiting the fountains during the day, you may be surprised to see a small maintenance boat out on the lake. You might even get to see scuba divers, whose job it is to maintain the fountain’s jets and remove debris that has accumulated underwater.
What Time Are the Bellagio Fountain Shows?
Bellagio Fountain shows run at 30-minute intervals from 3 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. on weekdays. The nighttime shows run every 15 minutes from 6:30 p.m. until midnight. Weekend and holiday shows begin at noon and run every 30 minutes until 6:30 p.m., then every fifteen minutes till midnight.
The show schedules can change or be interrupted due to various factors. For example, strong winds or other unfavorable weather events can lead to the halting of fountain performances.
Is the Bellagio Fountain Show Free?
The Bellagio Fountain attraction is free to watch and enjoy. Each show is unique in music selection and energy level, making every moment at the fountains exciting.
If you have a car, parking is free at the Bellagio garage for the first hour. Parking charges will begin to apply after that. See: Bellagio Las Vegas Parking Fees.
Can You Swim in the Bellagio Fountain?
You aren’t allowed to swim in the Bellagio fountain waters. You may, however, see Bellagio staff members in the water from time to time, as they are on the job maintaining the system.
If you fancy diving in the water, the best place for you to swim at the Bellagio is the resort’s swimming pool facilities. While attending Bellagio’s fountain shows is free for all, the swimming pools are only for hotel guests.
I recommend booking a fountain-view room at the Bellagio hotel (check Bellagio room prices at TripAdvisor). That will allow you to enjoy day and night shows from the comfort of your room. Moreover, you’ll have access to Bellagio’s swimming pools and all the other facilities the resort reserves for hotel guests.
How High Do Bellagio Fountains Shoot?
The fountains can shoot water up to 460 feet (140 meters) into the air. That fountain water height is nearly as tall as the Bellagio hotel building itself, which provides the background to the fountain show.
As the water shoots skyward, you’ll also be able to hear the booming sound created by the water jets firing.
The fountains of Bellagio are open to visitors daily, including holidays. You can come to the shows during the day or at night (I recommend seeing both!). The fountain’s lighting offers a beautiful display at night.
Where Is the Best Place To Watch the Bellagio Fountains?
You can get the best view of the Bellagio Fountains from the sidewalk along the Las Vegas Strip. Many guests seek this spot for the best view of the water show. As a result, it would be best to arrive a few minutes early to secure the perfect viewing spot.
While the fountain shows are a favorite attraction for Las Vegas visitors, the fountain is visible from many other spots along the Strip. You can even view the Bellagio fountain from several restaurants in the city.
If you’d like a fountain view room that is more modestly priced than one at Bellagio try Horseshoe, Caesars Palace, or The Cosmopolitan (TripAdvisor) as you can still get great day and night views of the fountains from some of their rooms.
Also, check out my tip for seeing a Bellagio Fountain show from the High Roller.
Fascinating Facts About the Bellagio Fountains
Here are a few more interesting facts about the Bellagio Fountains:
- Some of the fountain’s equipment was only designed to last five years. The Bellagio team that operates and maintains the fountain has kept it running long beyond its expected lifespan.
- The Bellagio Fountain attraction was initially budgeted to cost $4.5 million to build. The project, however, ended up costing a staggering $50 million in the end as the vision expanded, and so did the budget.
- The team running the Fountains of Bellagio works out of a concealed location dubbed the Batcave. The team comprises a variety of professionals who maintain and operate the system inside and out.
- Ducks invaded the fountain in its early years and made it their home. The Bellagio staff relocated most of the ducks, and the few that remained have learned to survive in the unnatural environment where jets of water shoot high into the sky at regular intervals.
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The Bellagio Fountains are a beauty to behold in Las Vegas. The fountain system has its own water supply that neither depends on municipal water delivery nor drains the precious Colorado River.
The Bellagio resort’s private well that previously served the golf course at the Dunes provides the fountain’s water, ensuring a largely sustainable operation.