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11/28 - 12/5 All Along The Strip...

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by AeroSKI5150, Dec 10, 2009.

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  1. AeroSKI5150

    AeroSKI5150 Low-Roller

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    My Trip Report

    Where to begin? Decided to travel on the Saturday after Thanksgiving in hopes of avoiding most crowds and it worked out pretty well... departed BOS at 8pm 11/28, arrived a bit early even 10:30pm local - gotta love JetBlue non-stop! Picked up a piece-o-crap from Advantage (thank you Priceline - $100/week!) and dropped my traveling companions at Bally's while I went to MGM for the night on a pretty decent offer, $59 room with $50 freeplay and $30 food credit on a Saturday....

    Which sounded great until they put me in a room which was ALREADY OCCUPIED! Great deal, huh... security was supposed to bring alternate keys... 45 minutes later I drag myself back to the desk, finally got a clean, non-occupied room and spent a few hours gaming before bed. Happy to report that the Lion's Share is still there, hungry as ever, $2.2M. I paid it a fair bit of homage on a couple visits. Loves to give you $15-$60 at a time and with restraint you can turn $20 into $160 on a semi regular basis. Who will ever win the damn thing?

    Next morning enjoyed a free Studio Cafe breakfast and some more blackjack ups and downs before picking my co-worker friends and heading out to Hoover Dam for the day. Upon returning, I switched hotels to Planet Hollywood where I'd remain the rest of the week... was supposed to be 3 days on a special Starwood/Expedia promo (Resort room upgrade with match play and the free alchohol deal) and then I'd be moving over to the new PH Towers for the last 3 days... [which of course did not open on time due to some combo of financing and the Harrah's deal - major debacle since I'd prepaid for a suite and PH front desk management wanted nothing to do with it... thank you graveyard shift manager Joe the one person with common sense who found me a somewhat comparable room - Vista]

    Daytime Mon-Tues was spending some time at a conference next door (Paris) along with wanting to be at PH for the Cabo Wabo grand opening (Sammy Hagar) and checking out City Center so location was the main driver this time around. Really tried hard to fall in love with PH but it just wasn't happening.. and if the Harrah's deal goes through, that's likely the end for me. Back to MGM, Club Grazie, etc.

    After a few days of mostly work my friends departed and I stayed on, awaiting the wife and other friends arriving for the weekend. Managed to pass the time by visiting the Las Vegas Advisor's offices which has a great discount bookstore.. picked up my 2010 ACG among a few other things... Elvis gave me 400 quarters at PH... spent quite a few hours playing my favorite blackjack on the strip -- Mirage $25 double deck...

    Meals - breakfasts at MGM Studio Cafe and PH Daily Planet both really good.... lunches at BB Kings, Emeril's Fish-house, Spago all excellent... dinners and snacks included Lagasse's Stadium (eh, didn't blow me away), California Pizza Kitchen, Cabo Wabo and the one super-meal of the trip, N9NE steakhouse at the Palms.

    Gaming cocktail service at MGM and Mirage - right on top of things. PH pretty average.

    Enjoyed a few shows - Ron White at Mirage, Trans-Siberian Orchestra at Orleans, Sammy Hagar at Cabo Wabo... friends in town for Metallica... between the NASCAR victory parade, the Rodeo ramping up, and the Marathon, it was a busy weekend in Sin City!

    CITY CENTER - yes, I managed to be one of the first regular joes to spend time in Crystals. Interesting place. Having enjoyed the architecture, it seems to be just another high end 'mall' otherwise. Tram to Bellagio & MC enjoyable, photo opportunities within CC appreciated... basically looking forward to Aria's opening and trying it out in the near future...

    Finally back on the late Saturday flight yet again, painful as it is, sure nice to have most of Sunday for recovery rather than traveling all day (and by 11:45pm Sat, McCarren was pretty darn quiet, a breeze to navigate).
     
  2. VegasDiva

    VegasDiva VIP Whale

    Joined:
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    Great report and pictures :thumbsup:
     
  3. sailor53

    sailor53 Tourist

    Joined:
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    Thanks for the details and photos!
     
  4. shiny

    shiny Low-Roller

    Joined:
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    Love your photos! I heard that City Center is huge. Did you walk a lot inside that big complex? Is there any eating place with reasonable price over there? Thank you for posting a great report.
     
  5. bgvegas

    bgvegas Tourist

    Joined:
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    How was Cabo Wabo?

    Is it like Margaritaville, great drinks and food an after thought or is the food decent as well?

    Sounds like a great trip. Thanks for posting.
     
  6. zerofan

    zerofan VIP Whale

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    Thank you for sharing! :thumbsup:
     
  7. JulieM

    JulieM Low-Roller

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    Thanks for the nice TR...How was Cabo Wabo???? Glad to hear the Tram is running between MC & Bellagio
     
  8. AeroSKI5150

    AeroSKI5150 Low-Roller

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    My first time through Crystals and in/around the publicly accessible parts of CC (Thurs 12/3) took about 2-3 hours, but I was of course checking out every nook and cranny, looking for new and different photo ops etc. The actual mall is probably less than half the total square footage of Fashion Square and maybe 20-25% occupied at this point. All open stores are high end clothes/jewelry/etc except for one really cool bookstore and a small coffee shop. I think the next thing to open is probably the Todd English/Eva Longoria restaurant Beso... I guess reasonable prices remains to be seen!

    Vdara, being fully opened, had a restaurant and bar but I didn't investigate the menus closely. Other than what's been published, I don't know what Aria's or Mandarian Oriental's offerings will be...
     
  9. AeroSKI5150

    AeroSKI5150 Low-Roller

    Joined:
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    Cabo Wabo

    The Cabo Wabo was great... of course I am a biased long-time Sammy Hagar fan aka ' Redhead ', as well as a self-professed margarita/tequila connoisseur, but I found that it held up the Red Rocker's standards in every way.

    I was in there three times during the week prior to the big "Grand Opening" when crowds were small... service was extremely attentive and entertaining (waitresses dance on the bar a'la Coyote Ugly anytime Mas Tequila plays). Drinks excellent and not overly priced ($10-$12 for a Waborita is a great price... I've paid $16 - $20 for high end martini's and cosmos elsewhere on the strip!)

    All of the small plates and appetizers I tried were excellent. Late one night as the kitchen was closing I got some 'signature' fajitas which tasted good but the sides were clearly at the end of their day.
     
  10. Chuck2009x

    Chuck2009x VIP Whale

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    Nice pics and TR :thumbsup:
     
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