The recent Venice recreation in Las Vegas is not an original nor modern idea. The city was rebuilt temporarily in London in the late 19th century by brothers Imre and Bolossy Kiralfy, “professional organizers of late Victorian spectacles” (Venice: The Tourist Maze).
These ambitious brothers built “Venice” on five acres inside the Olympia Exhibition Hall, and the "brilliant spectacular production" included hundreds of gondolas and singing gondoliers. The show ran for over a year and attracted as many as 30,000 paying visitors a day. I found these advertising posters in the Library of Congress archives.
And speaking of other Venices, there are some amazing photos of Legoland Venice on Flickr.