That giant, bikini-clad Hollywood star attractively perched on the desert sands is not a mirage, but the latest iteration of Maxim magazine's long-standing love affair with Las Vegas.
Maxim, to celebrate its 100th issue, has re-created a magazine cover with Eva Longoria, star of ABC's "Desperate Housewives," on the open desert outside Primm, near the California-Nevada border.
Adrants.com, an Internet blog, featured the faux-magazine cover Monday and noted that this was not an April Fools' joke.
The understated cover itself is made of a vinyl-mesh screen and reads, "THE ONLY MAGAZINE BIG ENOUGH TO BE SEEN FROM SPACE - AND ONLY IN VEGAS!" A truck parked beside the giant Longoria provides a sense of scale for the 100-by-75-foot pinup-style cover.
Lewis Kay, a representative with Maxim's public relations company, BNC in Los Angeles, confirmed that the cover will be an element in several days of events tied to the magazine's 100th issue, including a poker tournament and other events at Wynn Las Vegas.
Erika Yowell, a spokeswoman for the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, said her agency also is involved with the magazine promotion, which is "the latest incarnation of a fitting partnership."
"Las Vegas has had a very fruitful relationship with Maxim for years," Yowell said.
She said the magazine's readers are a good target audience for Las Vegas.
Maxim is one of the best-selling new "lad's magazines" that feature scantily clad, but not nude, young female celebrities.