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Photo Gallery: Bellagio botanical gardens welcome summer Italiano

Welcome to summer, Italian-style — right here in Las Vegas.

Courtesy of Bellagio’s flowerful Conservatory & Botanical Gardens, visitors can visually luxuriate in the romantic, European-inspired scenery, on display through Sept. 7.

Created by designer Ed Libby, the horticultural journey visits a quartet of Italy’s regions.

Beginning as a tribute to the island of Capri, it brings guests under a canopy of lemon tree branches and greenery evocative of the entrance to the famous Da Paolino restaurant as water streams from an 8-foot fountain at the center of the canopy. Colorful flowers flow from handcrafted vases at the edge of the walkway.

In the west garden, a trio of crystal chandeliers cast a glow over a vine-enveloped fountain in an homage to Tivoli’s 16th-century Fontana dell’Ovato in Villa d’Este. Heading to the south garden, passersby can gaze upon a re-enactment of The Palio, a famous horserace — dating back to the 6th century — that encircles the Piazza del Campo and is synonymous with summer in Italy. Behind it stands a replica of Siena’s town hall, called Palazzo Pubblico, surrounded by 17 brightly colored flags.

And across the conservatory, a floral troubadour grips a mandolin, inviting onlookers into a scene from Milan’s famous Teatro alla Scala opera house. Behind the venue’s burgundy velvet curtain is a picnic scene, with royal guests about to descend from a grand, Cypress tree-lined staircase, as two trumpeter swans float in a nearby pond.

By the numbers:

57,000: flowers on display

1,400: flowers used to create the lemons

125: Bellagio horticulture team members that assembled the display

20 feet: height of the Fontana dell’Ovato

8: Italian lanterns

The Bellagio Conservatory & Botanical Gardens is free and open to the public around the clock.

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