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A week in July -Day 1: Fremont, Slotzilla, Cigars, Jay Bolan

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by Darreningreenwood, Jul 29, 2013.

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  1. Darreningreenwood

    Darreningreenwood Low-Roller

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Indiana
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    My Trip Report

    A week in July: Fremont, Shows Gambling

    Edit: I changed the title on this thread; I'm going to include all days in here. I hate making a trip report into multiples.

    Just got back from my "annual" late July get away to Vegas. I enjoy going in July when it's nice and hot, and the heat gives you another reason to grab another drink. This was a solo trip, as none of my friends could find the time to get away and join me. This is my story of gambling, storms, more gambling, a show, more gambling, and, unfortunately, one of my least satisfactory vacations.

    I'll break it down into days; this may be one long post, maybe a couple. I'll take a break when I think it's gotten to be a bit long.

    Day 1: Flight to downtown

    Friday was the day I had been waiting 3 months for. With a little help from my roommate, I would go to work for a few hours (meaning no need to use a vacation day), then head to the airport for an afternoon direct flight to the city of jackpot dreams. The Indianapolis airport was efficient as always, so I had to wait at the gate for over an hour before boarding. And while I checked in exactly 24 hours ahead of time, Southwest gave me boarding pass A54. This led to a window seat over the wing, so I wouldn't get much of the view I love coming into the city. Drinks of the flight was my usual scotch on the rocks, notable only that the stewardess ran my card with each drink, instead of allowing me to settle up once my drinking was done.

    The landing was smooth, as the pilot remembered to land rear wheels first. Since this was a solo trip starting with 3 comped nights at the Golden Gate, I decided to take a shuttle from the airport instead of a cab. Yes, it takes a little longer, but it is always interesting for me to check out what's going on in the city. Unfortunately, the van I was in had a very weak AC system, and I was subjected to a long, stuffy ride. Our first stop was the Flamingo, and the traffic on Flamingo was a bit backed up due to construction at the Casino Formerly Known as Bill's. But finally, we made it, followed by stops at Venetian, the Riv, and the LVH. The trip to the Golden Gate was also interrupted by a bit of construction, as the driver decided to drop me off at Main and Fremont, instead of pulling in at the back of the GG.

    Check in was simple as usual, and I got a "quiet" room overlooking main. I'll admit. The room was a standard Golden Gate room; a bit small (especially the bathroom), but cozy. And the bed was as comfortable as ever. And since I already had experience with the showers, I was able to quickly figure out how to adjust this one with minimal fuss.

    To Fremont Street! Since this was a long trip for me, I decided to try and see as many shows as I could, since I couldn't spend all my time gambling. I hustled over the the 4 Queens to claim my LVA coupon for the Jay Bolan Acoustic Retro Rock Show. While waiting for the show to start, I decided to check out Fremont. A few observations that I wanted to bring up:

    Slotzilla Yes, it is in the middle of Fremont St. But from my observations, it will NOT be as intrusive as the old FlighLinez. The far landing area in front of the Golden Gate sits pretty much where the old stage was located. As a matter of fact, a stage is build into the FSE side of the landing platform. So not only does this platform not change the layout here, but it actually is a bit nicer of a stage. The second landing platform (in front of 4 Queens), is about the same size as the old one...but without the support cables. Plus (and this was a biggie), it appears once the construction barriers are removed, pedestrians will be able to walk UNDER part of the platform. So there should be a bit more room for foot traffic. Finally, the launching platform itself. Damn, it's tall. But again, it appears foot traffic will be able to walk under part of the platform. Is it ideal? No, but much better than it's been made to sound. I'm surprised nobody has caught onto the stage or walking under the platforms yet. And yes, there were actually people there working on it. Those fears I had of another abandoned Vegas project have subsided.

    Cigars There is a cigar store on 4th street, just north of The D and the Harley store. A very small shop; nice collection of name brand cigars in a walk in humidor. They also advertise selling their own home-rolled cigars. Plus the guy on duty offered me some cigars from his special locker. I picked on of the home rolled ones; it was a very nice cigar. I may have been able to buy a fancier name brand, but I'm glad I picked one of theirs. Nice draw, not too harsh, pretty smooth, if I do say so myself!

    Up to the View bar with my cigar, and some video poker to pass the time. Double double bonus, and quickly hit four of a kind 5's (so close!) for a quick progressive of $78. Not bad...I'll take my money and wander around a bit. Well, when I went to the door, I was confused by the people standing there looking outside, then I noticed the downpour and sheets of water flying across the street. I though I'd come to Vegas to get away from thunderstorms! After a few minutes of watching people trying to walk through the downpour, back to the View bar for more beer and VP.

    Once the storm let up, it was up to the 4 Queens. Now, some friends of mine do acoustic shows around home, so I was interested in seeing Jay's show. Up on stage was a chair, a microphone, 5 guitars, and a bucket with a couple beers in it. Jay just comes right out and starts playing. I won't bore you with the entire set list (I wrote it down), but lots of good stuff. CCR, Johnny Cash, Crosby Stills and Nash, Janice Joplin for the 60's. He would talk a bit about the songs as well, but not as much as I would have liked. But you can tell that he really enjoys the music, and loves playing for the crowd. 70's songs were all request, so there was some Frampton, Led Zepplin (Stairway to Heaven), James Taylor. There were only two 80's songs (Peter Gabriel and Journey). It was actually a pretty good show. I'd go again, and bring my friends with me. It's a great way to spend a few hours listening to someone who enjoys playing good music. He has a meet and great at the end, and I got to ask him if he ever gets sick of people requesting Stairway; he said no, he loves that song. But Hotel California....that's a different story.

    So by now it was getting late, especially for me. I stopped by a blackjack table at the GG for a bit. Unfortunately, I should have taken this as a sign of things to come. I got crowded in at the table (I hate being pressed in from both sides), and the waitress couldn't find it in her to stop and ask for drinks. I guess the fact the cards weren't very nice to me didn't help, either. So I made a bit of a snarky (OK, just a bit loud and shitty) comment when the waitress walked by. Well...that got the dealer a bit concerned, so I figured it was time for me to go. I made sure to go around and call the pitboss over, and apologize to him and tell him it wasn't a problem with the dealer or waitress or anyone, that I just let a few little things get to me. He waived it off, even gave me a free shrimp cocktail. So, it was off to bed, for some much needed sleep.

    So this is where I'll end it; I think this is the longest trip report I've written, and this is just day one. Hope I didn't bore you to death! I'll pick up tomorrow, and try to to not be such a windbag!
     
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2013
  2. Keyser Soze

    Keyser Soze Low-Roller

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    Good stuff man. I like your writing style. Thanks for posting.
     
  3. Lolly

    Lolly Tourist

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    You've talked me into seeing Jay's show. Thanks for the review!
     
  4. Keyser Soze

    Keyser Soze Low-Roller

    Joined:
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    Darren- you should try the WAX bus from the airport to downtown.

    From the baggage claim area, take the escalator down to "Zero Level." Go outside- you'll find the bus stop a short walk to the right.

    Cabs are too expensive, and the shuttles are just brutal.

    The WAX is only $2 bucks. Its the freaking bomb.
     
  5. marcianofan

    marcianofan Low-Roller

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    I've stayed at the GG twice, don't think I'll ever again unless its definately on the main st side.keep up the good work on the trip report!!!
     
  6. smartone

    smartone VIP Whale

    Joined:
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    Good start... lookin' forward to the rest, though I missed the part where you spend an hour of your precious vacation time combing your room in search of bedbugs? Seems to be a bit of a board consensus brewing that needs to be done!
     
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