|Mayor Goodman, Derek, Greg and Oscar Goodman|
Brussels’ most famous troublemaker is making his mark on Las Vegas as the city’s newest headliner. Weighing in at 500 pounds with a penchant for public nudity, the new star is ready to expose himself to Downtown Las Vegas and will likely become one of its most sought-after celebrity sightings.
During a unique disrobing ceremony this afternoon, the D Las Vegas CEO Derek Stevens introduced the newest addition to his hotel and casino: Manneken Pis, a large-scale bronze replica of the beloved 17th century statue in Brussels, Belgium. the D has entered into a 100-year contract with Manneken Pis as the official greeter of the property, making him the longest entertainment residency in Las Vegas history.
Dutch for “Little Man Pee,” Manneken Pis is a bronze statue of a young boy cheerfully “relieving” himself into a fountain’s basin. The piece holds a special place in the lives of brothers Derek and Greg Stevens, who are of Belgian descent and visited the statue in Brussels often throughout their childhood and early adulthood. A lifelong fan of the cheeky work-of-art, Stevens always knew he wanted to incorporate Manneken Pis into the D’s playful landscape.
“Manneken Pis Las Vegas is a ‘tip of the cap’ to our parents and our family trips to Belgium,” said Derek Stevens. “We are thrilled to bring his whimsical spirit to the D, which will attract thousands of visitors from around the world to Downtown Las Vegas.”
Starting as a central water source in Belgium, Manneken Pis has played an important role in the history of the country. Created by Hiëroynmus Duquesnoy the Elder and put on display in 1619, Manneken Pis was a survivor of the bombardment of Brussels in 1695 and grew into one of the most widely visited and photographed statues in Belgium. While smiling coyly, Manneken Pis remains the emblem of the rebellious spirit of Brussels. The statue been described as hard working yet fun, loving, affable and slightly irreverent – all qualities embraced by the D.
One the distinguishing traits that sets Manneken Pis apart from other statues is his elaborate wardrobe, consisting of more than 900 suits and costumes to match holidays and other special occasions. This tradition will carry over to Las Vegas, where Manneken Pis will be spotted in a variety outfits throughout the year to match seasons, Downtown Las Vegas events and other city-wide initiatives.
Mayor Carolyn Goodman, who was on-hand for the unveiling ceremony, said “Derek Stevens is truly a friend of Downtown Las Vegas, and bringing Manneken Pis Las Vegas to the D is a testament to his investment in this area. The statue will be a symbol of the entrepreneurship that is taking place in Downtown Las Vegas and at the D.”
Manneken Pis can be spotted right next to the D’s main valet, and is ready to greet his public beginning today. Follow him on Twitter at @MannekenPis_LV.
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Photo Credit: Tom Donoghue Photography/the D Las Vegas