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10/11-15 Hotel 32 / Monte Carlo - The dice were not kind

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by offandon, Oct 22, 2014.

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  1. offandon

    offandon Tourist

    Joined:
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    My Trip Report

    Not a day by day blow but just some thoughts from our trip.

    6 of us from NY, NJ, PA and FL headed to Vegas for 4 days for some fun gambling and a football weekend at the sportsbook. We were staying at the Monte Carlo/Hotel32.

    Transportation

    Took United out of beautiful Newark, NJ on the first flight of the day. My buddy and I were in seats A and C and we get on the plane. At the end of the boarding process I was greeted by someone with a boarding pass identical to mine. A couple had seats A and B in our row while we had A and C. So one of them went to a flight attendant to straighten it out and the attendant sent her back to work it out among ourselves. I was floored. What terrible service. Flying can be stressful for people and seating is certainly one of the stressors and she asks passengers to work it out among themselves. To make a long story short I moved to a different row so the couple could sit together and unfortunately that negated any chance of talking with my friend for the flight. 5 hours later and after a pretty bumpy ride we land in Vegas. We were at the Hotel 32 which includes limo service to/from the airport and sure enough my name is on an iPad at baggage claim and we were all set to go to the MC. The driver was very friendly and attentive and I thought it was a great service.

    Lodging

    We ended up with a total of 5 different room types and I will give thoughts on them all except one which I did not see.

    Monte Carlo regular room - I did not see this one

    Monte Carlo Diamond Suite - Room was certainly a nice size. Unfortunately it looks a bit dated and there is not much special about the room other than size. There is a bar area but it is totally empty other than a coffee maker. I would say if you are on a budget but you need a decent size space for some socializing then the suite would be fine. Otherwise I do not think many people would be impressed.

    Hotel 32 - This is the part of the Monte Carlo located on the 32nd floor which is a concierge floor with a dedicated lounge and updated decor. Everyone was SUPER friendly and accomodating from the folks downstairs at VIP check-in to the people on the 32nd floor themselves. It seemed like people were just going overboard with friendliness which I found quite nice. The lounge has some little appetizers and snacks and always has coffee, water, and pepsi/diet pepsi. These are free for people staying on the floor which is nice if you want a little snack or drink. The views from up there are quite good although I bet they were better before the Aria existed.

    Studio room (Hotel 32) - This is a basic room. Standard size. No special tech. The only benefit to this room is that you get access to the lounge on Hotel32. It cost more than the Diamond Suite downstairs. I personally do not think it is worth the money at all but some may like staying on that floor enough to justify it.

    Loft Suite (Hotel 32) - This is a one bedroom suite. It is significantly larger than the Diamond Suite. It has a living room area with a large sofa and TV. Behind that is a dining table area with another TV. Next to that is a desk/minibar area. In the back is the bedroom and bathroom. The bathroom is large and has some cool features. There is a TV in the mirror. The shower is really cool with spray coming from the ceiling and wall in front of you in addition to the regular shower head. There are lights in the shower too which you can set to supposedly do some sort of color/vision therapy. I just thought they were cool to play with. The tub is a bubble tub and looked really nice but I am not much of a bath person and prefer showers. In every room there is a control panel which controls lights, curtains, TV, music, etc. I loved the tech in the room but my music input was a bit flaky and would cut in and out when playing music from my phone. There is both the regular hotel TV channels plus DirecTV in the room.

    One Bedroom Penthouse Suite (Hotel32) - A little story first. So originally 2 of us had a loft suite. Apparently the night before a guest decided to flood one of them so there was only 1 available the day we checked in. So the manager of the floor came over and offered this to my friend: Spend one night in the Aria or one night in the Diamond Suite downstairs and the remaining 3 nights of the reservation will be in the Penthouse suite instead of the Loft suite. Oh, and for the trouble we are comping you all 4 nights. Wow. Now I understand they want to make you happy when a mixup like that happens but holy smokes they went overboard in my opinion. So my friend and his girlfriend got a totally free stay in the Diamond Suite for 1 night and the last 3 in the Penthouse. I paid in full for my 4 nights in the loft. Sometimes it pays to be the first one the manager sees when walking into the lounge lol. Anyway the room was kinda like the loft on steroids. It was a bit bigger but had the same basic amenities. 7 TVs total with 3 right next to each other at the dining table area. All of the tech was the same and the bathroom had the same features but the shower was a little bigger. To be honest I actually expected more from the penthouse (I had seen one picture where a pool table was in it) but it was certainly very nice too.

    I really liked the Hotel32. I am not sure I can justify the expense again however. I just do not spend enough time in the room to enjoy all of the tech and relaxation/socializing you could do there.

    Gambling

    This trip should just be named : "Can't win a dime at Monte Carlo".
    My favorite game is craps. In the entire trip there were 3 decent rolls. A few sessions I bled out slowly, most I went down in a pile of flames, and just once did I leave the table with a small profit. I don't have a ton of detail to share. It was very depressing. I will say that Joe (dealer at MC) was fun and friendly in the mornings which kept it fun. We have a few of us who prefer shoot to win craps because of the lower limits and not needing to remember all of the odds, etc. The machine at the MC and NYNY both limited place and buy bets to $14. That ruined the game for us but it was probably pretty good because we got destroyed by those dice just as much as the little ones on the live table. I wish I understood why they limit those bets to $14 when you can play pass and odds for $500 max. At the Bellagio the machine is $5 min and the place/buy bets could go at least to $100 which was better. We all won a few bucks there.

    I played exactly one roulette spin because my wife wanted me to play the 13 while I was there. $10 table so I put 5 on the 13 and 5 on the 18 which is my birthday. The 18 came in so I won at roulette.

    Blackjack - I just could not get myself to play the 6/5 game at MC. We did play some of the "liberal 21" at LVC which is fun but it is not the same as the rules from about 10 years ago which is the last time I played there. Now they only pay even money on BJ unless it is suited which pays 2/1. A buddy of mine won on the 6 card rule and another doubled and won on 3 cards which was fun. We also played Free Bet BJ at the Golden Gate which was a lot of fun but I did not spend enough time looking at the strat so I know I made mistakes especially on the free hand. Unfortunately the 22s came at the worst times and we all lost at FB BJ.

    Slots - Slots are mostly a little diversion for us once in a while but I actually was ahead this trip in slots by a couple hundred. The one to note was after breakfast at the Peppermill I put in $100 into the Wheel of Fortune machine at the Riv and with about $30 left got a spin for $400. $300 profit from that machine which was cool.
    The end result of all the gambling was I lost about 80% of my budget for the trip. Not good but I always arrive with the attitude that it is ok to lose 100% of the budget otherwise it should not be my budget.

    Sportsbook

    The MC sports book is not the best sportsbook thats for sure. It sufficed for us. We got there early on Sunday and had a row of chairs to watch the games. The TVs are a little small and the room is laid out strangely but we got enough drink tickets and got decent enough drink service although neither is anything to rave about. The rules for tickets are you get a drink for each $100 of sports bets or $20 of race bets. The highlight for me was that 3 games turned (vs spread) in the last 30 seconds and I was on the right side of all 3. The pick 6 by Denver against the Jets, the pick 6 by Arizona against Washington and the GB touchdown against Miami all made those teams cover when they were not and were all right at the end of the game. Very exciting stuff. Actually the real highlight had to be the Dallas win over Seattle. I had Dallas money line bet and they are my favorite team so that was a great game for me.


    Food

    MC Buffet - Ate there for a breakfast. It was ok. Nothing special and nothing bad to say really.
    800 Degrees Pizza - A fine flatbread with toppings. I will take a real NY pizza any day over that stuff but it was tasty although a bit soggy especially in the middle. If you are not hooked on real NY pizza I would think most people would really like it. There are a ton of toppings choices to make just about anything you want.
    HHAGG - Every year we hit the HHAGG. Unfortunately because it is only once a year I order the same pork tenderloin dish every time. It is delicious IMO and did not disappoint. Like usual the first timers to the HHAGG were amazed at the sizes of things.
    Peppermill - on recommendation from the taxi stand worker we went to the Peppermill for a breakfast. Everyone was impressed with the taste and preparation of the food. It was certainly a fine breakfast IMO. I would go there again.
    Bellagio buffet - I was very impressed with this buffet. They had some really tasty beef options and there was a guy making made to order tacos which were really really good. The drink service we got was amazing. This server was energetic, friendly, polite and totally on top of everything. He got a really nice tip as we really appreciated his work. I will say I was disappointed with the desserts. I am a big fan of dessert but prefer some simple desserts like apple pie, chocolate cake, etc. They only had a sugar free apple pie and no chocolate cake. The cookies were all gone except one kind with nuts which I do not like. The ice cream soft serve was not very creamy at all and tasted more like ice milk or yogurt. So dinner was great and dessert not so much for me but I still give that buffet a high grade.
    The Pub - Did fuel the duel here and had some average appetizers. We also did a lunch here and I had a very good burger. We all gave the burgers high marks here. Nothing really special to say about the place other than that.

    MyVegas

    I redeemed $50 freeplay at the MC, Bellagio Buffet, Fuel the Duel and monorail tickets.
    I already talked about the buffet which was very good. The Fuel the Duel was not so great. We had 2 of us with the $100 comp. They said that only 2 people could be on each comp so we had to have 3 checks for the 6 of us. 2 on one comp, 2 on another and 2 to pay cash. So I had for a while wanted to try Johnnie Walker Blue but never would pay that kind of money for it. So I figured that this was a great time to get one because 2 of us would have a hard time drinking $100 without some expensive drinks in it. So long story short ... get the bill and get charged for 2 of them. They are insisting to me that if you order whiskey like that on the rocks that they automatically give you a double. Now my pour was not tiny but did not seem like a double to me. In the interest of keeping everything positive and not getting into a fight about it I let it go. They did let the 2 comp checks combine which helped and we ended up only laying out $12 cash plus the tip on our check but I was feeling a bit hosed by that business about the blue being a double which was $94. Of course the next night a buddy of mine did his whisky tasting comp at the high limit bar. He tells the guy running that bar about the double charge on the blue and he just starts laughing and telling him how we got ripped off as he used to work at the Pub and there is no such policy. So that kinda sucked and I probably should have insisted on talking to a manager at the time but like I said I just wanted to keep spirits up and have a good time. The appetizers at the Pub are overpriced and nothing special IMO.

    I think that about wraps up my thoughts for the trip. If you have any questions I am happy to answer them. I am sure I forgot a bunch of stuff in the week I have been home. Thanks for reading.
     
  2. bjpcyclone

    bjpcyclone High-Roller

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    Thanks for the report. Monte Carlo has been our home base for the last few years and I pretty much agree with your assessments. Too bad about The Pub. We go each trip and enjoy the food, reasonable prices, and huge beer selection. Although last time we ended our meal when Fuel the Duel was starting and service was pretty bad. But that's been the exception.

    We plan to stay elsewhere next trip primarily due to 6/5 blackjack conditions and some unfriendliness we had at the Mlife booth and with a pit boss.
     
  3. thestugot

    thestugot Low-Roller

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    Sorry to hear about the gambling. It sucks when you can't get a couple points from one shooter. Thanks for the report.
     
  4. PayTriple

    PayTriple The Cucumber King

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    Thanks for the report.
    Your experience at the craps table has happened to me too many times...that's why I now start out playing the Don't side.
     
  5. M0rtyC

    M0rtyC Low-Roller

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    Thanks for the Pub update. It used to be our MNF go to when it was the brew pub. I've read A lot of recent bad reviews about lousy service and overcharges. Nothing worse than getting a check slammed.
     
    Annual end of the rodeo trip
  6. jamesxnj

    jamesxnj VIP Whale

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    Good report..must have been fun to cover the NFL games like that late..

    Just a suggestion but I think your problem with United and the identical seat assigments is enough to warrant an email to them,because the attendant said handle it yourselves.
    May just get a goodwill voucher out of it and I think it is deserved for sure.
     
  7. MarkDC

    MarkDC Tourist

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    Small world! So that was you I saw when I was up in the lounge on Oct 11th! I had just checked into an H32 Loft and I was coming from three nights in the Diamond Suite, which I got for $134.24/night (Aria regular rooms were going for over $200). I saw Nina talking with your party giving options of the Diamond or Aria and I was saying to myself Aria, Aria, Aria! One should only take Monte Carlo when the price is far less than Aria, but I understand friends wanting to stay close to each other.

    The Loft's shower is the best I've been in. The Jura Coffeemaker is also a big perk (pun intended). Hope you took advantage of the complimentary mimosas in the morning. A great way to start your day. The only thing missing in the Loft is a wet bar, and the safe really should be somewhere else. However, Hotel32 is still a beautiful property. Also hope you took advantage of the 25% discount code. If you can deal with only 700 sq ft, and don't care about the DirecTV, you might like the regular suites. No tub, but the shower is big with the 3 body sprays, the regular spout, and a wand. Coffeemaker is a Keurig Pod machine, and it comes with the limo as well. They are a bit more affordable.
     
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