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4 days, All Stage Pass, Sterling Brunch, Lots of Tipping and Real Low Rollers

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by kralthewizard, Dec 6, 2012.

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  1. kralthewizard

    kralthewizard Tourist

    Joined:
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    Messages:
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    Trips to Las Vegas:
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    My Trip Report

    Well I've been reading lots on this board for a while now and figured it was time to post and share our experiences. I do want to thank everyone who shares on this board as it's always enjoyable and a huge help. I am also thankful for the Southwest drink coupons and the LVA that were sent to me free by awesome board members...you guys rock! :thumbsup:

    This was my 4th time to Vegas and my wife's third. We were there Dec. 1st-5th and enjoyed pretty much every minute of our trip. We are definitely low rollers and are always seeking a deal, so you'll probably see a theme throughout the TR of money saved and special offers.

    I promised my wife, after a busy time gambling on our last Vegas trip in September, that this trip would focus on shows for her. We were able to hit 10 of them using CET's All Stage Pass...but that's getting ahead of ourselves.

    Day 1/Dec. 1st

    We left Detroit around 5pm after an hour drive to the aiport. We once again used valetconnections.com which provides a little different experience when it comes to airport parking, but saved us over $2 a day and gave us a great experience. We flew Southwest as we got tickets for $160 round trip each, and I was able to pick up a $100 southwest gift card for only $65 on ebay, our total flight cost was only $285 for both of us. We arrived in vegas after too long of a layover at Chicago-Midway around 10pm Vegas time. We were beat but too excited to be in Vegas again.

    We were able to book a car through Advantage for a total of $58 for the trip. We were given a free upgrade to a Mazda 3 and enjoyed it. After picking up the car we headed straight to Ellis Island for a great steak special and breakfast for my wife. :licklips: I was disappointed they didn't let me use the B1G1 coupon from the ACG this time with my steak special, but they still gave us 50% off my wife's breakfast for a total with tip of $15 for the meal. The steak was especially good this time, and so was the stout beer. :beer: We gambled a bit, but didn't seem to win much. Pretty disappointing, but I did pretty well on the Muliplier VP (don't remember the exact name) which I hit well on at the Palms later on in the trip as well.

    After we were pretty wiped we headed downtown for our one night stay at the Fremont ($29 for a saturday). We valeted our car (only way we park in Vegas, so worth the couple of bucks in tips...to be honest though, it's the only way to park at Fremont since self park is not available). We headed into Fremont and really enjoyed the inside of the casino and the room. We were given a small upgrade to a bigger corner room with a fridge, couch, etc. Only problem was it had two beds instead of one and I could hear pretty much everything from the room next door. Oh well, pretty room anyway.

    Day 2

    Woke up pretty early as the older folks next door were wide awake and talking quite loudly. :faint: I got ready (really small bathrooms) and headed downstairs to play a little VP while my wife got ready. I was disappointed by the pay tables, but was able to find one 25cent 9/6 JoB outside of the elevators. It was not very nice to me. I then moved to the 10 hand penny VP. Hit a couple of nice 4oak on bonus and made a few dollars (hey it was pennies!). I finally got my wife to finish getting ready and we sprinted off to Bally's (after checking out) as we had 10:30am reservations for the Sterling Brunch Buffet.

    Well I had no idea there was a marathon happening that day, so it was not a good idea to take Las Vegas Blvd. to Bally's. I did see the famous Pawn Stars pawn shop and was excited to visit it later in the trip. :wave: We finally got to Bally's at 11 and to the brunch, after checking our bags and valeting our car, around 11:15am. We had about a 20 minute wait and tried a bloody mary from the bloody mary bar. I love grey goose, but really don't like bloody mary's at all :vomit: ...then I figured I'd ask if I could just have grey goose on the rocks. The great guy behind the bar said, Of Course! and filled up about half a glass. It was i-n-c-r-e-d-i-b-l-e.

    We sat down and experienced some of the best food and the best service we've ever had.:nworthy: I agree with some that the lobster can be dry, but just ask...our waitress brought out fresh ones from the kitchen that she also took out of the tail for us, and that was without us asking, she just noticed how dry they looked. My wife, who is not a big meat eater, loved loved loved the filet mignon. The champagne was delicious and we both were feeling really, really good after probably a few bottles between the two of us and three or four more grey gooses on the rocks. :drunk: Our waitress did everything she could to serve us, even cleaning up after me when I spilled my champagne...I was feeling really good. The rest of the food was quite good too. I tried caviar for the first time...to be honest, not sure what the big deal is, but I ate it anyway. I thought the sushi was pretty good. We ate and drank and ate and drank for almost 3 hours.:ssst: They never once tried to hurry us out, and we thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience. Definitely worth the amazing deal we got on Groupon for $98 total for the two of us. One of the best experiences by far. :thumbsup:

    After walking...stumbling...to the front desk we figured we'd try to check in early while there was no line. We got a great clerk (probably middle age guy). I gave him my credit card and ID and held a $20 in my hand while asking for a complimentary upgrade..maybe to a Grand Suite? We had the cheapest room booked possible as we were given two nights free by Total Rewards and the third night was only $15. He said, Let me see what I can do. After a little typing he said, I think I can take care of you. :beer: Gave us the keys, I gave him the $20. He seemed somewhat surprised (not sure why, since he could see it in my hand) and said, Thank you! We walked, stumbled, again to our room on the 8th floor and were blown away by what we had. The grand suite was definitely the best room we've ever had. We enjoyed the hot tub as soon as we got to the room and had our bags brought up. After, the drinks from earlier caught up to us. We took a much needed nap then woke up to head out for some fun.

    I spent quite a bit of time on TR's website to plan out our attack :wink2: on the All Stage Pass. We picked up the passes (total $233 for both) at Flamingo by 6:45pm and then picked up tickets for Vinnie Favorito. We then waited an hour and picked up our tickets at Bally's for Anthony Cools. Went to Vinnie at 8pm...enjoyed the whole show. He is definitely raunchy, but is very unapologetic as that is his style. I couldn't believe all that he said, but it truly made my jaw hurt from making me laugh so much. :evillaugh

    We quickly headed over to Anthony Cools at Paris. It started at 9 but we didn't get there til 9:10. Missed a bit of the beginning but still enjoyed the show. It seemed to not be his best as some of the "hypnotized" were not really and he had to excuse them halfway through the show. After a good laugh we headed back to Bally's for tickets to Jubilee and headed right in.

    The tickets you get from the Pass are definitely the worst in the house. But with a couple of bucks we had a table right in front of the stage. It was a bit close to get the whole picture and my wife thought the boobs were a little more in your face there, but we didn't all mind.... I thought the show was surprisingly good. :thumbsup: The set and dances were great, and even the intermission acts were very impressive. I would definitely recommend it if you don't mind see a bunch of boobs. Still very classy though and not done in a dirty way.

    We gambled a bit and excitedly I hit a great couple of bonuses on a Survivor slot and turned $20 into $90. Lots of fun! We headed for bed and I was surprised we weren't more hungry after only eating once all day.

    Day 3

    Monday we woke up early as we wanted to head to see the Hoover Dam for the first time for both of us. I was glad I talked with the valet at Bally's about the Dam and any advice he had. He told me to go past the Dam and skip the first lot I see that is $7 to park at. He said just a little further up is a free parking lot. Sure enough, he was right! I gotta say the Dam is much more impressive than I thought. I was in awe of the beauty of creation and also the greatness of what man can create. We stopped on the way at Hacienda and used our BOGO coupon for the breakfast buffet ($6 total). We thought it was pretty good for the price. Not lots of options but the basics were there and pretty good.

    We got back into town around 11:30am and headed to Mandalay Bay. We parked and played our way through MB, Luxor, Exaclibur and then finally to NYNY as my wife wanted to see it from the inside.

    We were starving and couldn't figure out what we wanted so just picked up some McD's for $6 including a couple of Sundaes. We then headed to Tropicana to use our $40 voucher for slot play we bought for $25 from slotplaycoupons.com. We were able to turn our $80 in vouchers into about $70 real money. Made for a $20 win for us and we had a lot of fun. I really like how open and bright Tropicana is, but it really wasn't hopping at all.

    Afterwards we headed to Harrah's to pick up tickets and go to Defending the Caveman. I didn't tip this time as we've seen it before and the theater isn't too big. We were excited to see Kevin Burke again as we really enjoyed him. Unfortunately he wasn't there and instead Ben somethingorother filled in. :rolleyes2: He was good, but just not great like Kevin. I'm not sure what the difference is, but I think Kevin is just a little more genuine with it all.

    Next we headed to the Rio to pick up tickets to The Rat Pack is Back at 7pm. Again, worst seats in the theater and a couple of bucks got us up much closer. We played VP at a bar for a few drinks before the show started and somehow lost $60 fairly quickly. We then went back to the Box office to pick up tickets for Chippendales before we headed to Rat Pack. The Rat Pack show itself was pretty good. I think it was a little more for the older generation as we're only 28 and 25. "Sinatra" was definitely the best and truly made us enjoy the show. It's a weird theater to have it in as the shape of it makes the sound bounce around making some distracting noises. We enjoyed the Christmas additions as well.

    This show went to 8:15pm and then we headed to Chippendales which started at 8pm...awe so sad we missed the first 15...haha. I'm not into guys at all, but the guys are good looking for the most part. I was hoping my wife would enjoy it, but it was definitely more like a strip show than we were expecting...guess we didn't do our research. I think she enjoyed it more than she let on. The women there were definitely crazy. :faint: The funniest part was when any of the guys tried to talk to the crowd, the women would just scream "take it off!". I was surprised at one scene where the guys were completely naked with only pillows in front of them which they were "making love" to. Oh well, interesting I guess.

    We grabbed the car from valet and headed to Imperial Palace/The Quad to pick up tickets to Divas. The lady doing the seating was not interested in tips or even showing you to your seats. So we got our horrible seats in the back. I don't think that was the worst for this show as the "ladies" probably looked a little more real from farther away. We enjoyed the show, especially Marino's jokes/hosting, but by now were starving again.

    We headed back to Ellis Island as we were both hungry for one of the Philly's. Turns out, they have an extremely limited menu on Monday evenings and they actually shut down the cafe and move it into the BBQ area in the back. It seems like this is their way of making sure they don't get shut down again so that they can actually give their cafe a solid cleaning each week. The only plus side was that I was able to use the BOGO coupon with the steak special because it was actually on their "limited menu". This bill only came up to $12 with tip. Great deal once again. We also grabbed our free drinks with the LVA coupon and gambled my $10 freeplay I got with the ACG coupon on Saturday. We one a little and had fun. We headed back to Bally's and got some sleep.

    Day 3

    We decided to sleep until we couldn't sleep anymore...got up about 10am got ready and headed to Palms by 11am for lunch. We used a Restaurant.com certificate which they used to give us one meal free and another one at their discounted club member rate of 7.99. We had a great meal of ribs, asian specialties, and great desserts including beer and wine for a total of less than $13 total including tip...btw our waiter was one of the better ones we've had at a buffet. :wave:

    We then used our slot play coupons we bought for Palms. We had a great run...the craziest win was when I was playing on the Nickel VP with the mulipliers. I was playing 3 hands at max bet and blew through $10 pretty quickly. I only had enough for one more hand at 5 credits per hand (so no extra bet for the multiplier), thankfully the multiplier from the previous hand still plays even if you're not playing it the next hand. I casually held a jack and was about to stand up and walk away when I hit the Deal button and the machine started paying something off. It turned out I hit 4 Jacks for 400 credits...but it had a 4x mutiplier from the previous hand so I hit it for $80! :faint: Big win for us low, low rollers. We then kept playing and kept winning or breaking even for the most part. We walked away turning our $80 in free play (that we paid $50 for) into $130.

    We missed out on the next show we were headed to - Mac King, but I knew he had another at 3pm. So we headed to park at Harrah's and walk over to IP to pick up tickets for Jeff Civillico. It turned out that TR had the wrong dates and times for his show and he only plays Wednesdays through Saturdays now...bummer. We then used our coupons we got on our last trip to get $5 free play for each of us at IP. We lost it and moved on back to Harrah's. We picked up tickets to Mac King and while at the Box Office we found out that the 7pm Legends in Concert show we planned on seeing was completely sold out. Another bummer! Well we headed into Mac King after a long wait in line (get there early!) and handed the lady a couple of bucks. We were taken to the 3rd row right on the center aisle. Perfect seats. My wife was even the first one brought on stage. I have to say, his was one of my favorite shows. The magic was solid and the jokes well done. I have to say I see why he gets so many great reviews.

    After the 3pm show and a picture with Mac, we stopped at the Box Office to find out if there was anyway to get tickets to Legends. She said they were completely sold out. I said, well can I get tickets to the Improv early since I can't get those tickets? You're not supposed to be able to get tickets to shows until 2 hours before they start. She made a call and said sure! I then figured I'd ask about the later Legends in Concert show. She said we could make both...but techically our pass would expire before we were able to get tickets for it. She was incredible and said...well since you couldn't get to the 7pm show I'll make it work for you. She gave us tickets to both the Improv and the 9:30pm Legends show...score! I gave her a tip for great help.

    We then headed towards downtown for my wife to grab some cheap gifts for friends and I played craps at the D. On the way we stopped at the Pawn Stars shop and I got to walk around and go "oooh I saw that on tv" lots. We met a great employee Ben who I'm sure will be on their show one day as he was very personable and really seemed to get the business..after only two days of working there. Then we headed downtown and valeted at the D. We grabbed dinner at Magnolia's at 4 Queens using the BOGO from the ACG or LVA I can't remember. We got our Philly's and they were pretty good. $14 with tip.

    As far as the D, I like what they've done with the refurb a lot...I do agree with a lot of posters that say the D's music is a bit much. But I have to say the staff was great. :thumbsup: From the valet to all of the dealers it was a great atmosphere and I think my favorite place to gamble downtown. I bought in for $100 and it quickly went down by half. I then got to roll and went on a nice streak. I just wish I bet on myself like others did. I was able to make it up to $155 and had to cash out as we needed to get back to Harrah's by 8:30pm for the Improv.

    With a couple of bucks we went from the dead last row in the theater to the 2nd table from the stage. Seats were great, comedy was pretty good. Dat Phan was the headliner and got us laughing pretty good. I then spaced out and forgot Legends was at 9:30...thought it was at 10...so we went downstairs to get some drinks playing VP. We do like playing one credit VP and getting great drink service. We broke even between the two of us so only out the tips. We then headed up to Legends and realized our mistake....oh well! With a couple of bucks we found our way to the 6th row from the stage on the center aisle instead of the last row again. For missing out on part of the show, we still really enjoyed it. The blues brothers were a lot of fun. Whitney Houston was absolutely incredible. I couldn't believe her mannerisms and voice...wow. Then Elvis came out to wrap it up and was awesome as well. We then really enjoyed the finale which was Christmas songs with all of the performers. Really a top notch show that ended our string of 10 shows well.

    We then headed over to Flamingo to cash in our tickets. On the way we caught the Mirage Volcano erupting....very cool. We won a little money on the Wizard of Oz slots and had some fun with some community bonuses. Actually we more than doubled our $40 buy ins...pretty good for us. We came back to Harrah's and I played my favorite "lions" game...I have no idea what it's called...but with a max bet you can win a progressive amount of free games. We played through $25 and had enough for one max spin left...then hit...three purple lions! :faint: That gave us 19 free games and a $60 win! It was a lot of fun to have that many free games, but not the most you could have...the green lions gave you over 60 free games.

    We headed back to Bally's and played a little more. I won again on the Survivor slot and some on the Deal or No Deal slots. Finally around 2am we headed for bed....and had to wake up at 4am.

    Day 4

    Had to wake up at 4...okay 4:45 to drop off our car and get to our 6:55am flight. I know, not enough time. Well we were doing okay until we realized we were starving and would be on planes for 4.5 hours straight (10 minute layover in Denver, not enough to get food). We searched and searched for a McD's or something similar. We got lost...and then more lost. Finally found the address for the rental car return to put into the GPS. On the way back...bam, McD's. I knew we were late but on principle stopped and picked up some breakfast. Well we were much later than I realized and only had 25 minutes til our flight left when we got to the airport. I know, stupid, stupid, stupid. We were afraid our bags wouldn't make it back to Detroit since they weren't there 45 minutes early. Thankfully everyone was very nice to us and we made it just before the doors closed for the flight. Both flights went well and the luggage made it...although a little damaged. But we are grateful to Southwest for their great employees and their amazing attitudes through it all. :nworthy::peace:

    Overall this was our favorite trip to Vegas so far. We fit in a lot and didn't spend much, but still got to have lots and lots of fun. Our total cost for everything, including the Sterling Brunch, All Stage Passes, transportation, gambling losses ($80), gas, airport parking, lots of tips, etc. etc. was less than $1000. :thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup:

    Hope it wasn't too long of TR, but had to share our fun time. If you want my schedule for the All Stage Pass let me know and I'd be glad to share it, although it is set up for a Sunday through Tuesday schedule based on current shows and times. Thanks for reading if you made it this far! :wave:
     
  2. btodd

    btodd High-Roller

    Joined:
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    Great report!! Wow, that was a lot of shows in a short time! Thanks for taking the time to write about your adventure........
     
  3. PrincessaMyron

    PrincessaMyron Low-Roller

    Joined:
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    Great TR!

    Great trip report, thanks for sharing!

    Question about the Bloody Mary Bar - is that included in the Sterling Brunch buffet price and where's it located?

    Probably going this year, but dangit, we missed the Groupon, so it'll be full price for us...but it's worth it!

    Thanks and happy Vegas'ing!

    lauren in TX
     
  4. MikeOPensacola

    MikeOPensacola VIP Whale

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    Nice detailed TR. looks like you did a lot and had a good time. Happy holidays.:peace:
     
    Annual Summer Bliss in the Land of Milk and Honey!!!
  5. sammowhammo

    sammowhammo VIP Whale

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    Stellar TR! great details. Y'all did great so much food entertainment and fun for around 1K that is awesome!

    You are the Wizard!
     
  6. gazilionar

    gazilionar Tourist

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    Great TR!

    Couple of questions about your tipping to get better seats:

    How much did you tip to move up at the shows?
    Who did you tip?
    What did you say?
     
  7. kralthewizard

    kralthewizard Tourist

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    Thanks!

    Hey Everyone, thanks for the great replies and I'm glad our TR is helping some! The bloody mary bar is right after you walk into the steak house...hard to miss. They even offer it to you when you're waiting for a table. Definitely worth it, even at full price.

    As far as the shows, we based what we tipped by the level of show we were at. For the smaller shows just $2-3. A couple of the bigger shows, like Jubilee and Legends we gave them a $5. To be honest, when we gave them a $5 they seemed really appreciative like they only hoped for a couple of bucks.
     
  8. kralthewizard

    kralthewizard Tourist

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    Sorry...

    Sorry, forgot the other two questions. We tipped the ushers I guess? They're the people that take you to your seats when you get in. Usually I just handed them the tip with the tickets. There was one time I made mention of how horrible the seats were that the tickets were for, the guy said, they sure are, but tonight you'r going to be VIP and took us to the second table from the stage. Very cool experience. Sometimes I think it just helps being nice. I think it also helped not trying to get a better seat 30 minutes before the show. We would normally show up right before show time so they had a better idea of what seats were available for us.
     
  9. eviliciouz

    eviliciouz Low-Roller

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    Thank you for the TR! I think that All stage pass really worth it. I've been wanting to go see Chippendales especially now Jaymes & James are on the Amazing race. So I'm jealousss you got to see them. Great TR! Thank you so much!
     
  10. Nevyn

    Nevyn VIP Whale

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    Nice report.

    Thanks for the tip on Valet Connections!

    I usually park big blue deck and it really can add up for longer trips. Not so bad for Vegas, but 14 days in Florida? It was almost enough for me to get an airport shuttle ride from home, and I hate those things.
     
  11. sco5123

    sco5123 VIP Whale

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    I thoroughly enjoyed your report. Sat literally on the edge of my seat....fun with exciting deals! Awe-inspiring.
     
  12. blackjacknut

    blackjacknut VIP Whale

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    Wow....nice TR and the fact you did it on less that $1000.00 you should right a book about low rolling Vegas and still have an amazing time....:thumbsup::thumbsup:
     
  13. Chocoholic

    Chocoholic Newbie

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    Loved the trip report! Thanks for instructions on tipping for shows, will have to try that. Heading out tomorrow, staying at the Cosmo.
     
  14. kralthewizard

    kralthewizard Tourist

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    Glad you enjoyed!

    So glad you've all enjoyed the TR! I was definitely surprised about the benefits of tipping at shows, but it was confirmed by one of the workers at the Box Office...she said, it's still Vegas, tipping goes a long way. Have a great trip!
     
  15. LV2GAMBLE

    LV2GAMBLE Low-Roller

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    Sounds like a fun trip. Good job on the spending. :cool: :santa8000000082
     
    Always seems so far away............
  16. bigwill

    bigwill Low-Roller

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    Nice trip report you made a $1000 go along way great lowrolling.
     
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