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Heather Graham dishes Vegas advice from filming Hangover

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Heather Graham.
Photo: Erik Kabik/Retna/www.erikkabikphoto.com

Heather Graham has learned her lesson from The Hangover – and it has nothing to do with drinking in moderation.

The 39-year-old actress said she’s become somewhat of a Vegas buff thanks to her new movie that was shot in and around our fair city last fall.

“I became an expert, now I know everything, where everything is,” she boasted from the red carpet outside Vegas magazine’s sixth anniversary party at Pure on Saturday.

Graham spent several weeks on location, from mid-September to mid-October last year, and has recently returned for two weekends of publicity-related events.

Heather Graham.

Heather Graham.

After spending so much time in the city, she has a few tips to share:

“You need a lot of moisturizer, because it’s kind of dry here,” the Vegas June cover model said, her own skin positively glowing.

More of Graham’s lessons learned: “You can’t open the windows (in hotels) … because I guess they’re afraid you’ll jump out or something … but the sunsets are beautiful. I feel that’s the most beautiful time of day here,” she said.

Much of The Hangover takes place at Caesars Palace, where she and other members of the cast stayed during filming.

(The film also stars Bradley Cooper, Zach Galifianakis, Ed Helms and Justin Bartha, and opens in Las Vegas today, nationwide on Friday.)

While Graham admits she once found the massive resort’s layout confusing, she said she has come to know the hotel like the back of her hand.

“Mostly I just stayed here,” she said. “I was kind of loving my hotel room … and the room service is actually really good.”

Despite her affection for her suite and its in-suite dining, Graham said she did take in some of the city’s other sights including the Bellagio water show and dinner at Olives. The Wisconsin-born star also said she is a Cirque du Soleil fanatic.

O is my favorite one,” she said, noting she has seen five of Vegas’ resident Cirque shows.

“I took Bradley (Cooper) and Todd (Phillips, the film’s director) to see Zumanity,” Graham said, smiling. “They took Bradley on stage and took his shirt off and started rubbing him all over. We were really, really laughing about it,” Graham said, of her costar’s unexpected part in the production.

Now, she says, she wants part of the action.

“I want to be in a Cirque du Soleil show!” Graham exclaimed, her already wide eyes widening. “I want to be ... the girl, in Love, when she flies … (and) she’s carrying this cloth (during) ‘Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds’.”

While Graham enjoyed the city’s sunsets and Cirque shows, she admitted she enjoyed playing a few hands of poker while she was in town, too.

“There was a poker tournament during the shooting that I did really well in and I got that gambling rush, you know, where you feel so excited,” she said. “I won, like, $350.”

But Graham had been bitten by the betting bug long before The Hangover drew her to the casino floor.

“I got really obsessed with it for a while, I watched every poker show on TV … and then I went on Celebrity Poker and got so competitive that I was, like, ‘This is a problem’,” she laughed.

She said it was at that point that she made a conscious decision to step away from the tables: “I (was) like, ‘I have to cut myself off of this competitive craziness.’’”

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Melissa Arseniuk

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