Nope, Vegas isn’t all glitz and gambling! Our CEO explains why we’re so psyched to be heading to Vegas in November. [Video]

By Shaherose Charania (Co-founder & CEO, Women 2.0)

I’m not the kind of gal that takes weekend trip to Vegas, ever. But I did last weekend, primarily for my dear friend Meenal’s Bachelorette and secondly to scope out the lush venue for our upcoming conference! After the experience, I must say I’m so pumped to be having our conference in the “City of Lights.”

So it’s true – Vegas has more buffets than yoga studios, more slot machines than Blue Bottle Coffee shops, more magic shows than coworking spaces. I’m also pretty sure they don’t charge you ten cents for a paper bag at Walgreens! It’s different — different than what I call home in San Francisco. But that’s what’s so exciting. I know getting out of my comfort zone and stepping into two days of conferencing in an unexpected environment will lead to fresh, creative thinking and serve as a foundation to build relationships with new and old people in the Women 2.0 community.

Vegas these days is also probably a bit different than the the image in newcomers’ heads. That’s thanks to the efforts of local entrepreneurs, in particular founder Tony Hsieh’s Downtown Project, which essentially makes the city his startup. The fascinating project aims to gut Vegas and revamp it into a city of innovation. We’ve been watching the city slowly transform (and doing our bit, establishing Founder Friday there to ensure diversity from the start). Now, we’re looking forward to seeing an authentic community of innovators develop in downtown Vegas.

But truly, before last weekend (and a short 24-hour visit to speak at a conference a few years ago) the last time I personally was in Vegas, I was 14 with my two best friends and my awesome dad as the chaperone. We stayed at the Imperial Palace, shopped during the day and by evening we stuffed our faces from buffet to buffet. It was one of the most fun times I had as a kid – but it was no typical Vegas experience!

So now I’m doing it all over again, going to Vegas and having a far from typical Vegas experience, and I wanted to share with you why I’m so excited about the far-from-average tech conference we’re planning.

Killer Speakers, Panelists and Mentors

From Megan Smith of Google[x] to Dawoon Kang of Coffee Meets Bagel; from icon Kay Koplovitz to emerging star Soraya Darbi of Zady; from the east coast’s Albert Wenger of Union Square Venture Partners to Christine Tsai of 500 Startups, and so many more — not only do we get to hear insights from all these influencers, we also get to have intimate lunch mentoring and plenty of time to network over two days — not one can really escape home or to their offices.

Totally Wild and Incredible Full-on Wearables Fashion Show

When tech meets fashion what happens? We’ve got female founders who make clothes that make music, sense your emotion and are created from algorithms that scraped the internet for hate speech. I can’t wait to see demos by these incredible tech-artists and get a look at their futuristic wares up close.

A Private Concert

The MOST exciting piece that brings it all together? A private concert by famed Thievery Corporation drummer Congo Sanchez with Guest M.C.’s Flex Mathews and Haile Supreme. I’ve probably seen Thievery Corporation live six times and every time it’s incredible. I’m so excited to welcome Congo, who will DJ our fashion show, before performing a private gig to open our Founder Friday Las Vegas on Friday night. Check out some vids here.

All in all? Intimate networking, thought-provoking content, an out-of-the-box fashion show, and our own private concert?! Could you ask for more? Sunshine, you say? Yes, that’s very likely, oh wait, and poolsides too. Hope to see you in Vegas — and if you like use my friends and family discount.

And since all you forget and always ask me — can I come if i’m a dude? YES, and not just because we get into trouble legally if we didn’t allow it. We want you all there!

Between now and October 14th EXTENDED: OCT 31st 11:55 p.m. PDT, get 20% off regular bird ticket pricing with my friends and fam discount. Oh, and besides my friends and fam discount we have a bunch of other discounts, so have a look to see if any apply to you. 

 Let’s do Vegas Women 2.0 style!

4e31d586b69b7a63066e5b6ab9d3008fShaherose is currently the President and CEO of Women 2.0. At heart she is a mobile and telephony junkie. She’s led new consumer products at Ribbit (BT). Previously, she was Director of Product Management at Talenthouse and JAJAH (sold to Telefonica/O2). Follow her on Twitter at @shaherose.

Photo credit: Brent Disney via Flickr