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Aliante Station / Green Valley Ranch - Trip Report (10/06/10 - 10/14/10)

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by cruiser, Oct 21, 2010.

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  1. cruiser

    cruiser High-Roller

    Joined:
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    My Trip Report

    Brenda and I returned from 8 days/nights in Las Vegas on October 14th, staying at the Aliante Station Casino & Hotel the first four days/nights (10/6 - 10/10) before heading to the Green Valley Ranch Resort & Spa the next four days/nights (10/10 - 10/14). This was our 21th trip to Vegas over the past 8.5 years, our 1st time staying at Aliante Station and our 8th time staying at Green Valley Ranch. You can check out their websites at:

    http://www.aliantecasinohotel.com
    http://www.greenvalleyranchresort.com

    We had originally booked this trip with the first four nights at Sunset Station but on 9/29, I found out that Sunset Station pulled (removed) the one and only video poker game we play - Full Pay Deuces Wild (FPDW). How could they do that??? It was too late to learn a new strategy (for a different video poker game) so I was scrambling at the last minute (a few days before we were to arrive at Sunset Station), first verifying that Sunset Station had in fact removed this game from their video poker machines and then had to find a replacement casino at the last minute.

    My research left us with only a couple choices. First, there was The Palms just off the Strip. They had a bank of 10 or so machines with this game near the front entrance. I contacted a host at The Palms and got an offer to stay in their Palms Tower for four nights. The rate wasn't great but it was better than the online rate since we had no history at the Palms other than playing for maybe an hour during our first trip to Las Vegas back in May, 2002. They offered rates of $69, $69, $179, and $249 plus tax for those four nights and no resort fees. Hmmmm... Okay, let's book it - I could cancel if I found something better. My research found that the Palms Tower was in need of a makeover and that I should ask to be put in the Fantasy Tower. I contacted the host at The Palms and was told sure, they could move us over to the Fantasy Tower - but the rates would be higher - $119, $119, $229, and $329 plus tax for those four nights. Yipes!!! We were getting all four nights comped at Sunset Station but these rates were too high for us.

    Our second possibility would be Aliante Station in North Las Vegas. We've talked about checking out this Casino which opened in 2008, but felt it was too far away for a cab ride. Maybe it was time we checked out Aliante Station. I contacted a host and was offered four nights at a Casino Rate of $74.99 plus a resort fee of $14.99 plus tax per night. I was told the Host could not remove the resort fee unless she comped the night(s). For the past few days, I was unable to access the www.mystation.com web site to check on any Station Casino offers but then I was finally able to reach the web site and saw that we had an offer of up to two free nights at Aliante Station. I contacted this Host at Aliante Station and we now had an offer of the first two nights comped and nights 3 & 4 would be at a rate of $84.99 plus a resort fee of $14.99 plus tax. Okay, this is a better offer so I asked the Host to book it. We had no history at Aliante Station so she was not able to send a car (limo) for us at the airport. On Sunday 10/3, after I received confirmation that we were booked at Aliante Station, I canceled our reservation at both The Palms and Sunset Station. I also booked a Limo (non-stretch) from Presidential Limousine for the ride from the airport to Aliante Station and a stretch limo from Aliante Station to Green Valley Ranch on 10/10.

    For those of you not familiar with our gambling habits, since I've given up playing blackjack, we pretty much stick to playing full pay deuces wild video poker. We play quarter machines, max coins (5) and here's the pay schedule:

    1 coin 5 coins
    Natural royal flush 250 4,000
    Four deuces 200 1,000
    Wild royal flush 25 125
    5-of-a-kind 15 75
    Straight flush 9 45
    4-of-a-kind 5 25
    Full house 3 15
    Flush 2 10
    Straight 2 10
    3-of-a-kind 1 5

    As you can see, a Natural Royal Flush pays 4,000 coins ($1,000), Four Deuces pays 1,000 coins ($250), and a Wild Royal Flush pays 125 coins ($31.25).

    As I've said in the past, although I try to be as accurate as possible in these trip reports, there are some things better left in Vegas. I'll leave it at that. Our primary mission is to "Beat the Casino".

    Day 1 (Wednesday, 10/6):

    For this trip, we stayed at a hotel near the airport the night before the trip. On the morning of this trip, we're up at 4:30am. We left our car at the hotel and took the shuttle to the Providence Airport at 5:30am for a 7:15am flight. We arrived at the airport 5 minutes later and checked our luggage at curbside. We then made our way through security and then headed for our gate. On the way we stopped at Dunkin Donuts for coffee, juice, and a couple breakfast sandwiches.

    Our nonstop flight was fine taking off at 7:15am, arriving in Las Vegas just before 10am. We head down to grab our luggage and meet our driver. It's about a 30 minutes drive (24 miles) to Aliante Station which is not as far north as I thought (we can still see the Strip), I tip the driver, leave our luggage with the bell desk and headed to the front desk to see if they have a room ready for us. It'll be about 15 minutes so we walk around a bit checking out the gift shop. Fifteen minutes later, we're back at the front desk. We have a room. The lady said she would have Larry (from the bell desk) bring up our bags. 20 minutes later, still no luggage. I call down to the bell desk and Larry was not asked to bring up our luggage. A little miscommunication there but let's not sweat the small stuff. We unpack a bit and head to the casino floor.

    My research told me ahead of time where our video poker machines would be so we checked out each location, then picked a couple machines and starting our play at noon of day 1. We play the "optimum" video poker machines. With these machines, for every $4 cycled through, you get 1 point added to your account. Okay, where's the drink lady? Shortly after we started playing, a drink lady shows up. I started with a Corona Light with lime while Wifey had a Miller Light with a glass. For lunch, we split a turkey sandwich from Capriotti's sandwich shop. Later for dinner, I ordered takeout from TGIF. I selected the Jack Daniel's Chicken which is two juicy chicken breasts served with vegetables and mashed potatoes. Of course, we ate lunch and dinner at our machines.

    We have a collection of party animals at home and allow some of them to accompany us on each of our Las Vegas trips. The general rule is that if you help with our 'four deuces' and 'royal flushes', you get to come back to Vegas. If you're useless and just sit around on our machines, then you're more likely to remain home. Sorry, those are the rules. This trip we took Ducky, Pugsley, and Ape. This is Ape's first trip to Vegas because he's so big (compared to the other party animals) while Ducky and Pugsley have helped us in the past. These guys may technically be on the casino floor with us but half the time we leave them in a plastic laundry bag we take with us. The other half the time, they're sitting on our machines wishing us luck. We sometimes have to move them around between our two machines and sometimes we have to threaten them with going back in the bag if they aren't going to help us. Okay, enough about the animals. It's time to gamble.

    Today is Wednesday and every Wednesday is "Senior 50 Plus Wednesday" at Station Casinos. For all the "under 50s" out there, see what you have to look forward to. On these special Wednesdays, there's 5X points all day on Slots, Video Poker, and Bingo, ½ points dining at all restaurants 6am-6pm, as well as monthly specials. Normally, on our Optimum Play machines, for every $4 cycled through the machine, you earn 1 point. On 5X days, for every $4 cycled through the machine, you earn 5 points. During the month of October (they seem to do this every month), for us '50 plus seniors", there's a drawing every Wednesday afternoon at 4pm. For every 10 points earned (while gambling), you have 1 entry in the drawing. You have to "activate" your earned entries between 2pm and 3:45pm on the day of the drawing. There are four or five cash prizes ranging from $250 to $1000.

    At 12:38pm, I hit my first 'four deuces' of the trip. Yippee!

    At 1:56pm, I hit my second 'four deuces' of the trip. Yippee!

    We order our first Merlot of the day and are surprised to have our wine served in these small juice glasses. What the heck? I figured maybe they were out of clean glasses but that didn't make sense. When our second wine also arrived in these small juice glasses, I questioned the drink lady. Apparently, they don't serve wine in wine glasses on the casino floor because the glasses tend to tip over. Sounds like someone ordered the wrong wine glasses. Later in the afternoon, I asked the drink lady if she could find us a couple of wine glasses. She did and it was much nicer drinking wine from a wine glass than a juice glass. There was only one drink lady while we were at Aliante Station that said they weren't allowed to use wine glasses on the casino floor so she couldn't bring us wine glasses. I decided not to argue with her and simply waited for a different drink lady and received wine glasses when we requested them. We kept our wine glasses and accepted wine brought to us in the small juice glasses since it made it easier for the drink ladies to carry the wine on their trays plus the juice glasses held more wine that these little wine glasses so it was a win - win situation for us and the drink ladies.

    At 4:51pm, Wifey hits her first 'four deuces' of the trip. Yippee!

    At 4pm, there's the drawing but we didn't win anything. Wifey played until 5:30pm and I played on until 6:30pm. Time for me to head over to the Poker Room. Tonight, I'm entered in a Texas No Limit Hold'em Tournament. The entry fee is $65 plus for another $5, you get an additional $1,000 chip for a total of $5,000 in chips. This is a bounty tournament which means when you knock someone out you collect a 'bounty'. The bounties are worth $25 apiece. For this tournament, there's only 13 players and the top three will cash. I made it to the final three, collecting one bounty along the way. At that point, one of the players suggested we take back our own bounties and we agreed. That gives me two bounties ($50) to cash out at the end of the tournament. I earned $112 for taking 2nd place plus $50 for the bounties, less a $10 tip to the dealer. I'm back in our room by 9:42pm.

    Day 1 Gambling Summary (Aliante Station):

    Me
    - up $100.00 for the day (7 'wild royals', 2 'four deuces')
    - up $100.00 for the trip
    Wifey
    - up $50.00 for the day (7 'wild royals', 1 'four deuces')
    - up $50.00 for the trip

    Day 2 (Thursday, 10/7):

    We're up at 2:55am . I left $5 on the pillow and asked housekeeping if she could please leave extra towels and a couple laundry bags which she did after making up the room. I did this every morning on this trip at Aliante Station. During my research on Aliante Station, I read that someone called this casino a "mini Red Rock" and I agree. The bathroom was a bit smaller than I would have liked with no tub, but a very nice shower. It was a bit cramped with two people using the bathroom at once but we managed okay. It's a heck of a lot nicer than Sunset Station. We're out the door by 3:30am. We headed to the machines and were playing our video poker by 3:37am.

    Our Station Casino offers include three 3X points days for each of us (during this trip to Vegas) where we pick the days to use these offers. Today, we decided to make this a 3X day which means for every $4 in, we get 3 points rather than 1 point added to our account. I also found out last night that I get some extra points when playing in poker tournaments (roughly 600 points per hour). We're hungry but decide to wait until 6am for breakfast. When the drink lady shows up, we order a decaf coffee and kahlua (no whip) for Wifey and a coffee and bailey's (no whip) for me. Yum.

    At 5:48am, Wifey hits her first 'four deuces' of the day. Yippee!

    We both play until 6am and then head over to the Pancake House for breakfast. Wifey ordered the Grand Treat, coffee and water while I ordered ham and eggs with a large OJ and coffee. By 6:35am, we're both back to playing our video poker.

    At 7:15am, Wifey hits her second 'four deuces' of the day. Yippee!

    At 8:17am, Wifey hits her third 'four deuces' of the day. Yippee!

    At 8:45am, I hit my first 'four deuces' of the day. Yippee!

    That turned out to be all the 'four deuces' either of us would hit today. I started playing today with a $200 ticket I cashed out last night and feed my machine five Ben Franklins after that. I was playing a hungry machine today. For lunch, we again shared a chicken sandwich at our machines. We washed that down with a couple beers. Wine will come later in the afternoon. We played until 5pm and then headed over to the IL Vino Cucina & Wine Bar for dinner. Wifey ordered a House Salad and I had a Caesar Salad. For the entree, we both ordered Spaghetti Bolognaise. The entire dinner was excellent. We will eat here again when we return in 2011. By 6pm, we're back at our machines. Wifey played for another 20 minutes while I played until 6:40pm. I played in another Texas No Limit Hold'em Tournament this evening. Tonight, there are only 9 players, and only the top two will cash. Crap, I finish in 3rd place. I went all in with trip 8s and got beat by a full house (8s over 5s). Oh, well... I head back to the room around 9pm.

    Day 2 Gambling Summary (Aliante Station):

    Me
    - down $650.00 for the day (14 'wild royals', 1 'four deuces')
    - down $550.00 for the trip
    Wifey
    - up $350.00 for the day (15 'wild royals', 3 'four deuces')
    - up $400.00 for the trip

    Day 3 (Friday, 10/8):

    We sleep in a bit and don't get up until 4:05am to start the day. Out the door by 4:50am. By 5am, we're sitting side by side playing our 'deuces wild' video poker. We played until 6am and then headed to the Pancake House for breakfast. This morning, Wifey ordered oatmeal, a fruit bowl, water and coffee while I ordered canadian bacon and eggs, water and coffee. By 6:40am, we're both back to playing our machines.

    Later this morning, a smoker starting playing next to wifey so we decided to move to other machines. We moved to a bank of machines in a nonsmoking section. This might be a good move since the machine I had been playing earlier had already eaten a few Ben Franklins. The only problem we seemed to have is that in the early morning, this area of the casino floor seems to be off limits to drink ladies. I even started singing the "Where's the drink lady" song. Finally, a drink lady shows up. Wifey orders a large tomato juice and water while I go for a large OJ and water.

    At 10:09am, Wifey hits her first 'four deuces' of the day. Yippee!

    For lunch today, we had a couple salads at our machines. Today was a rough day for me, feeding Ben Franklins one after another into my machine. By 3:30pm, after starting the day using a $50 ticket that I cashed out last night, between the machine I played earlier today and this machine, I had feed my machine ten Ben Franklins, some not lasting 10 minutes. We try to be patient knowing that some days, we could play all day on one hundred dollar bill while other days, all the machines seem to do is eat eat eat. Today was turning into one of those big eating days for me. Luckily, Wifey is doing a lot better than me so as a team, we're not doing that badly. Plus, Aliante Station serves pretty good Merlot.

    At 3:52pm, I hit my 'Royal Flush'. Yippee!

    I was dealt a K, J, A of hearts and then drew the 10 and Q of hearts. I took a video using my phone and sent it to our daughter to show our granddaughter. Wow, I needed this royal ($1000) after putting $1050 into the machines today. I'll now slightly ahead for the day (but not for long).
    At 3:58pm, Wifey hits her second 'four deuces' of the day. Yippee!

    Wow, over the past 6 minutes or so, the "team" won $1,250.00. That helps getting us closer to being even for the trip. We're still down slightly as a team.

    At 5pm, we stopped playing and headed over to MRKT Sea & Land for dinner. This is Aliante's Steak and Seafood Restaurant. Wifey and I were disappointed and thought Sunset Station's Sonoma Cellar Restaurant was much better. I ordered the 'Lobster Bisque En Croute' and a 'Caesar Salad'. Wifey ordered a 'MRKT Chopped' salad. I was disappointed in the Lobster Bisque. I've had much better at other restaurants. We both thought we liked the salads at the Italian Restaurant here much better. The Petite Filet Mignon was very good.

    By 6:15pm, we're back playing video poker. Wifey and I both play until 6:45pm. While Wifey heads to the room, I head to the Poker Room. Tonight is another Texas No Limit Hold'em Tournament with a bounty. The buy-in is $70. Tonight there are a lot more players (maybe 40) and I get knocked out after an hour and 45 minutes. I did not collect any bounties. I then head back to the video poker machines and play from 8:50pm to 9:40pm.

    It's time to head to the Roulette table. Hey, it's not my money I'm risking. Someone at work requested that I place two separate $10 bets for him. Since I don't want to use his real name, I'll call him Socks (a.k.a. Sock Mama). Here's his brilliant betting scheme for bet #1:

    1. Bet $10 on red.
    2. If he should win, let it ride on black.
    3. If he should win again, let it all ride on red.
    4. Should red win again, let it all ride on red again.

    I wasn't sure what night I would head to the Roulette table but I figured it would be on my way back to the room one evening. For some reason, I decided tonight's the night for bet #1.

    So... I throw down $10 and get two $5 chips. The minimum bet is $5. I make the $10 bet on red. There were a few other folks playing at this table. No more bets and the wheel goes around and around and stops on ................ Black. Sorry Sock Mama, you lose. Time to call it a night.

    Day 3 Gambling Summary (Aliante Station):

    Me
    - down $150.00 for the day (11 'wild royals', 1 'royal flush')
    - down $700.00 for the trip
    Wifey
    - up $200.00 for the day (14 'wild royals', 2 'four deuces')
    - up $600.00 for the trip

    Day 4 (Saturday, 10/9):

    We're up at 3:55am and out the door by 4:30am. By 4:35am, we're both back in the nonsmoking section playing video poker side by side. Today, we decided to make this another 3X day which means for every $4 in, we get 3 points rather than 1 point added to our account. We'll still have one more 3X day of our choosing and we'll use that while we're at Green Valley Ranch. Where's the drink lady?

    At 5:14am, I hit my first 'four deuces' of the day. Yippee!

    We play until 6:05am before heading to the Pancake House for breakfast. In the 1.5 hours before breakfast, the drink lady never showed up - bummer. Wifey and I both order ham and eggs, coffee, and water.

    By 6:50am, we're back to our machines in the nonsmoking section. Where's the drink lady? By 8:36am, still no drink lady. This is just wrong! Okay, time to reach for the sign. I pulled out my "Thirsty, Please Send Drink Lady" sign and held it up to the eye in the sky. I held it up for a good 30 seconds or so while rubbing my throat and mouthing the words, "Thirsty". I had hoped this would send over a drink lady. 20 minutes later, still no drink lady. I flagged down a security guy and asked if he could send over a drink lady. He said sure and came back a few minutes later saying they were in the middle of a shift change but someone would be over shortly. A few minutes later, we finally have a drink lady to take our order. We ordered large juices and coffee drinks. Coffee and bailey's (no whip) really hits the spot.

    At 10:44am, Wifey hits her first 'four deuces' of the day. Yippee!

    At 11:31am, Wifey hits her second 'four deuces' of the day. Yippee!

    For lunch, I got Wifey a slice of vegetarian pizza while I had a slice of pepperoni pizza. Of course, we ate at our machines. This was another hungry day for my machine. All it seemed to do is eat Ben Franklin after Ben Franklin. By 5pm, I had already stuffed 7 Ben Franklins into my machine and cashed out $25. We headed over to the Buffet where we had a couple free buffet coupons as part of one of our mailings. We actually had lots of coupons for free buffets but tonight is the only night we choose the Buffet. It was okay for a quick meal. By 5:50pm, we're back at our machines. Wifey plays until 6:20pm while I play until 8:50pm. No poker for me tonight. After dinner, I had fed my machine a $25 ticket that I had cashed out before dinner, followed by a couple more Ben Franklins. Time to call it a night.

    Day 4 Gambling Summary (Aliante Station):

    Me
    - down $850.00 for the day (13 'wild royals', 1 'four deuces')
    - down $1,550.00 for the trip
    Wifey
    - down $25.00 for the day (17 'wild royals', 2 'four deuces')
    - up $575.00 for the trip

    Day 5 (Sunday, 5/16): 'Moving on' Day (heading to Green Valley Ranch)

    We're up at 2:55am and after packing, we're out the door at 3:45am. We starting playing video poker at 3:50am.

    At 4:46am, I hit my first 'four deuces' of the day. Yippee!

    We played till 6am and then headed over to the Pancake house for a couple omeletes. After breakfast, we head to the room to grab our luggage. We checkout just before 7am and I asked that our host review our bill and I would contact her upon returning home to see if she could further reduce our charges based on the gambling we did while at Aliante Station. Then we headed outside to our limo for the ride to Green Valley Ranch. Wifey gets a red rose (actually, she got two) and we share a bottle of champagne. It was about a 35 minute ride (26.5 miles) to Green Valley Ranch. After tipping the driver, we leave our luggage with the bell desk guys, and head to the front desk. Too early to get a room so we ask for a room by the elevator. They will call my cell phone when our room is ready. Time to head to our machines between Terre Verde and Hanks. We found three Optimum Play slant-tops but these are not great machines. The buttons are smaller and it's a bit awkward to play. We start playing at 8:05am.

    At 8:34am, Wifey hits her first 'four deuces' of the day. Yippee!

    About 5 minutes later, I take a walk and find the other three Optimum play slant-tops near the entrance to the I-215 parking garage. These are much nicer machines. One of the three machines was in use so I hurried back to Wifey and we cashed out so we could move to these nicer machines. They were not as new or fast as the machines at Aliante Station but we could live with these machines. We grabbed the two available slant-tops and starting playing our video poker. My aching wrists/hands were giving me trouble so I wasn't able to play quite as fast as I did at Aliante Station but we're still on a mission to 'beat the casinos'. Luckily, I brought along lots of SALONPAS which are medicated patches (2.56 in. x 1.65 in.) for temporarily relief of minor aches and pains of muscles and joints. These patches work wonders.

    At 9:15am, Wifey hits her second 'four deuces' of the day. Yippee!

    About 3pm, the front desk hadn't called yet so Wifey went to check on the room. Yeah, our room's ready so Wifey went up to the room and had the bell desk folks bring up the luggage. We ended up with a very nice room near the elevator on the 6th floor in the East Tower.

    I don't remember what we had for lunch but we had New England Clam Chowder from Tides Oyster Bar for dinner and several glasses of Merlot. We ate our clam chowder at our machines. It was yummy. GVR's Merlot is at least as good as the Merlot served at Aliante Station but here at GVR, our wine is served in good size wine glasses, not small juice glasses. Very nice. I also found out today that GVR no longer serves Bailey's Irish Creme. What's up with that. So no coffee and bailey's for me at GVR, nor will I be able to enjoy a bailey's on the rocks. This is so wrong.

    Wifey played until 6pm and I played until 8:10pm before calling it a night. I was back in the room by 8:25pm.

    Day 5 Gambling Summary (Aliante Station - morning, before checkout)):

    Me
    - up $175.00 for the day (4 'wild royals', 1 'four deuces')
    - down $1,375.00 for the trip
    Wifey
    - down $75.00 for the day (6 'wild royals')
    - up $500.00 for the trip

    Day 5 Gambling Summary (Green Valley Ranch):

    Me
    - down $250.00 for the day (11 'wild royals')
    - down $1,625.00 for the trip
    Wifey
    - up $400.00 for the day (15 'wild royals', 2 'four deuces')
    - up $900.00 for the trip

    Day 6 (Monday, 10/11):

    We're up at 4:10am and out the door at 4:35am. I left $5 on the pillow and asked housekeeping if she could please leave extra towels and a couple laundry bags which she did after making up the room. I did this every morning on this trip at Green Valley Ranch. By 4:40am, we're both playing side by side again on the slant-tops near the entrance to the I-215 parking garage. Our backs were to the doors of the casino but when we turn around we could see when it starts getting light out. We were also able to walk outside and pick our room out in the East Tower. It helped that we stuck some post-its on the windows before leaving the room that morning. Today, we decided to make this our last (of three each) 3X day which means for every $4 in, we get 3 points rather than 1 point added to our account.

    At 4:55am, Wifey hits her first 'four deuces' of the day. Yippee!

    We played until 6am and then headed over to the Pancake House for breakfast. Wifey ordered the Grand Treat, coffee and water and I ordered ham and eggs, coffee, and water. By 6:30am, we're (you guessed it) back at our machines.

    At 9:23am, Wifey hits her second 'four deuces' of the day. Yippee!

    At 10:46am, I hit my second 'Royal Flush' of the trip. Yippee!

    I was dealt a K, Q, J of clubs and then drew the 10 and Ace of clubs. Video time. Okay, where's the drink lady. She shows up and I order my first Merlot of the day.

    At 11:39am, I hit my first 'four deuces' of the day. Yippee!

    Today, for lunch, we had pizza and for dinner we shared a 12 inch turkey sandwich from Capriotti's sandwich shop. We asked our drink lady the name of the Merlot we were drinking and she said it was Vendange. I'll have to google that sometime.

    At 5:42pm, I hit my second 'four deuces' of the day. Yippee!

    Wifey called it a night at 6:50pm while I played a bit longer until 7:25pm.

    It's time to head to the Roulette table. Hey, it's still not my money I'm risking. This will be Sock Mama's second $10 bet. Here's his brilliant betting scheme for bet #2:

    1. Bet $10 on black.
    2. If he should win, let it ride on red.
    3. If he should win again, let it all ride on black.
    4. Should red win again, let it all ride on black again.

    I wasn't sure what night I would head to the Roulette table for this second bet but I figured it would be on my way back to the room one evening. For some reason, I decided tonight's the night for bet #2. So... I throw down $10 and get two $5 chips. I make the $10 bet on black. There were a few other folks playing at this table. No more bets and the wheel goes around and around and stops on ................ Red. Sorry Sock Mama, you lose again. Time to call it a night.

    Day 6 Gambling Summary (Green Valley Ranch):

    Me
    - up $650.00 for the day (15 'wild royals', 2 'four deuces', 1 'royal flush')
    - down $975.00 for the trip
    Wifey
    - down $100.00 for the day (20 'wild royals', 2 'four deuces')
    - up $800.00 for the trip

    Day 7 (Tuesday, 10/12):

    We're up at 3:50am and out the door at 4:20am.

    At 4:26am, Wifey hits her first 'four deuces' of the day. Yippee!

    We played until 6am and then headed over to the Pancake House for breakfast. We both ordered canadian bacon and eggs, coffee, and water. By 6:45am, we're back at our machines.

    At 7:26am, Wifey hits her second 'four deuces' of the day. Yippee!

    At 8:59am, I hit my third 'Royal Flush' of the trip. Yippee!

    I was dealt a K, Q, 10 of diamonds and then drew the J and Ace of diamonds. While the credits were counting out, I took another video of my good fortune.

    This afternoon, we decided to buy a couple liter bottles of water from the gift shop rather than ask for those small water bottles from the drink ladies. This evening before heading to the room, I'll pick up a couple more of these liter water bottles and I'll put them on ice in the room so we'll have cold water in the morning. The rooms at GVR now have these heavy duty paper coffee cups with lids that we'll take in the morning and fill with ice so we'll have ice water at our machines.

    Around 4pm, I ordered us more New England Clam Chowder from Tides Oyster Bar. We love their clam chowder. Wifey played until 5:30pm before calling it a night while I played on a bit longer.

    At 5:46pm, I hit my first 'four deuces' of the day. Yippee!

    I stopped playing at 5:47pm so I could get to the Poker Room for my final Texas No Limit Hold'em Tournament starting at 6pm. The entry fee was $80 and this was another bounty tournament. Bounties are worth $40 each. I was knocked out after almost two hours with no bounties collected. I then played video poker from 8pm till 9:10pm. Time to call it a night.

    Day 7 Gambling Summary (Green Valley Ranch):

    Me
    - up $470.00 for the day (16 'wild royals', 1 'four deuces', 1 'royal flush')
    - down $505.00 for the trip
    Wifey
    - even for the day (15 'wild royals', 2 'four deuces')
    - up $800.00 for the trip

    Day 8 (Wednesday, 10/13):

    We're up at 3:40am and out the door at 4:25am. As we approach our machines from 100 feet away, we see two people enter the casino and sit down at our machines. Crap. Okay, Wifey you take the end machine (the one she has been playing the last few days) and I will head over to Fatburger to get us a couple sausage, egg, and cheese breakfast sandwiches. We brought cups of ice and two liter bottles of water from the room and when the drink lady shows up, we'll order a large tomato juice and large OJ. While waiting for our breakfast sandwiches to be made, Wifey calls me to tell me the end machine is free so by 4:55am, I'm also back to playing video poker. Today is Wednesday and every Wednesday is "Senior 50 Plus Wednesday" at Station Casinos. That means today is a 5X points day. For every $4 cycled through the Optimum machines, we receive 5 points rather than the normal 1 point.

    At 6:31am, Wifey hits her first 'four deuces' of the day. Yippee!

    This other girl is playing the middle machine (the one I've been playing the past few days) and she ends up putting $400 in that machine before cashing out for $90. Hey, I'm sorry lady but better you than me. I've been feeding these machine enough. When she left, I moved to this middle machine about 7:15am.

    At 7:20am, I hit my first 'four deuces' of the day. Yippee!

    I sure hope that girl that left this machine 5 minutes ago has left the casino. I'm sure she wouldn't want to know this machine hit 'four deuces' 5 minutes after she left. That happens sometimes.

    At 7:50am, Wifey hits her second 'four deuces' of the day. Yippee!

    Hmmm, I don't remember what we had for lunch today but I think we had sandwiches from Capriotti's sandwich shop for dinner. Of course, we ate at the machines.

    At 1:29pm, Wifey hits her third 'four deuces' of the day. Yippee!

    Wifey calls it a night at 5:40pm while I play on till 6:20pm. I just can't focus anymore. I'm playing very slowing and my hands/wrists are hurting bad. I need to get some sleep. I get to the room and forgot to pick up a couple more bottles of water from the gift shop. I'm too tired to head back out. We can order water from the drink lady in the morning.

    Day 8 Gambling Summary (Green Valley Ranch):

    Me
    - down $350.00 for the day (9 'wild royals', 1 'four deuces')
    - down $855.00 for the trip
    Wifey
    - up $300.00 for the day (17 'wild royals'3 'four deuces')
    - up $1,100.00 for the trip

    Day 9 (Thursday, 10/14):

    We're up at 3:21am and pack up for the last time. We head out at 4:05am. We're both at our machines by 4:10am. We have just under 2 hours left to "beat the casinos". We are starting the day up a combined $245.00 for the trip. Where's the drink lady? It was an hour and 10 minutes before the drink lady shows up. I order a Merlot and water while Wifey orders a decaf coffee and kahlua (no whip).

    We're taking the 7am shuttle to the airport so we figured we could play until just after 6am, grab breakfast at the Pancake house before checking out. At 6:05am, we cash out. Crap, my machine seems to be out of paper and I need my $50 ticket to cash out. We decide Wifey will head to the Pancake House to order breakfast for the two of us and I'll wait for a change person or floor tech. I turned on the 'change' light on multiple machines and after 5 minutes, no one shows up. I turn on the change light to a bunch more machines. 5 minutes after that, still no ones shows up. Finally, I whip our my cell phone and call the hotel. Helloooooooo, I need someone here ASAP so I can get my ticket, cash out, and catch a plane. I explained where I was on the casino floor and then they put me on hold for 5 minutes before I hung up. The drink lady comes by with an empty tray (she had forgotten my second wine order) and I explained my problem to her. She said she'd send someone over. Finally, after waiting for 20 minutes, some guy shows up. I explained my problem and he apologized and got me my $50 ticket. I went to the cashier, swapped my ticket for cash and headed to the Pancake House. I arrived just before our food was bought out.

    Day 9 Gambling Summary (Green Valley Ranch):

    Me
    - down $100.00 for the day (4 'wild royals')
    - down $955.00 for the trip
    Wifey
    - down $100.00 for the day (4 'wild royals')
    - up $1,000.00 for the trip

    We head back to the room, grab our luggage and head to front desk to check out. I asked the front desk to have our host review our charges and I would contact her upon returning home. We pick up the 7am shuttle to the airport. Our combined gambling at video poker resulted in a net profit of $45.00 after 8 grueling days/nights. At the airport, we headed over to a couple Wheel of Fortune slot machines. We each put $20 in and after 15 minutes or so, we cashed out $100 for a $60 profit. We spent the $45 winnings from video poker on a box of Ethel M chocolates for our daughter and son-in-law. While at GVR, we picked up something for our granddaughter from the gift shop. I think we forgot to get something for our grandson but he's only 3 months old so perhaps he won't hold it against us. We then headed for our gate for a 9:35am takeoff.

    Upon returning home, I sent an e-mail to our host at Aliante Station letting her know that we had a wonderful but exhausting trip to Las Vegas. We managed to cycle $85,689.00 through the video poker machines over 4 days and lost $875.00 while at Aliante Station. As it turned out, Aliante Station was not impressed with this $ amount cycled through over four days at their casino and explained that she could not comp anything else off the room charges. We were hoping for a third night to be comped but that's not happening. I asked our host to use our points worth $238 'Station Bucks' to reduce our room charges which she did. Overall, we had a great time at Aliante Station and plan to return in 2011.

    I also sent an e-mail to our host at Green Valley Ranch letting her know that we had another wonderful but exhausting trip to Las Vegas. We managed to cycle $83,462.00 through the video poker machines over 4 days at Green Valley Ranch. I did not mention that we won $920.00 while at GVR. Our host at GVR was also not able to comp us any further which is what we expected since we did win at GVR.

    Total Gambling this Trip:
    Wifey/Hubby combined for $169,151 ($21,144 per day average) cycled through the machines over 8 days/nights
    Total combined number of hands played = 135,321 @ $1.25 per hand
    Total hours played - ~200.5 hours (~25.1 hours per day @ ~ 675 hands per hour)
    Royal Flush (3) - average of 1 every 45,107 hands
    Four Deuces (26) - average of 1 every 5,204 hands
    Wild Royal (234) - average of 1 every 578 hands

    Total Winnings/Losses this Trip:
    Wifey: +$1,000.00 in casino gambling (video poker)
    Hubby: -$955.00 in casino gambling (video poker)
    Combined: +$45.00 after 8 days/nights

    Comps this Trip:
    - Aliante Station - 2 of 4 nights comped, 3rd and 4th nights at casino rate of $74.99 plus a resort fee of $14.99 plus tax per night. We cashed in 142,800 points for $238 Station Bucks to go towards our final bill.
    - Green Valley Ranch - 2 of 4 nights comped, 3rd and 4th nights at casino rate of $91 + tax (no resort fee).

    Final Thoughts:
    - Mission accomplished - we lost at Aliante Station, won at Green Valley Ranch, won (slightly) overall.
    - Presidential Limo is really nice - stretch limo comes with red rose for Wifey and bottle of champagne - this is perfect for moving from Aliante Station to Green Valley Ranch.
    - Aliante Station and Green Valley Ranch serve pretty good Merlot
    - Aliante Station need to buy new wine glasses for the casino floor
    - Green Valley Ranch needs to serve Bailey's again.
    - Wifey beat Hubby good this trip (gambling-wise)
    - 8 days/nights in Vegas is perfect for us as long as I don't have too much of a problem with Carpal Tunnel or arthritic hands. Thank goodness I brought (and used) my wrist brace and SALONPAS (medicated heat patches) for my hands. These made the occasional wrist/hand pain manageable.
    - We find we can play longer each day if we hold off on the Merlot until later in the afternoon.
     
  2. jpw711

    jpw711 VIP Whale

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    Nice Report, amazed with that much play, they would not comp your rooms.

    Happy you had a win!
     
  3. westie

    westie VIP Whale

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    Cruiser - congratulations on surviving the trip. You 2 are awesome playing so many hours each day, I got tired just thinking about the average of 12 hours per day you put in.

    We also only play FPDW and I cannot force myself to learn/play NSUD when there are still a few FPDW machines available. Thanks for sharing your trip with us.
     
  4. G. Money

    G. Money Newbie

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    Great report...and a great trip as well!
     
  5. techie223

    techie223 High-Roller

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    Wow, that's dedication. You keep really detailed records :nworthy: Have you been playing VP for a while? How do you keep track of how many hands you play, or is an estimate based on your average play/hour?

    Enjoyed reading your report, and nice to see you came out ahead, if only marginally. Breaking even is a win for me, but I still love Vegas :cheers:
     
  6. Jinx

    Jinx VIP Whale

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    Interesting report, , although I definitely don't think I could play 10 hours straight for 8 consecutive days it was interested reading your adventure. Love the statistical analysis.
     
  7. sailor53

    sailor53 Tourist

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    Boy with that much play you'd think they would give you some comps. I guess it doesn't pay to be a smart gambler anymore.

    Always enjoy your reports and thanks for posting!
     
  8. drgar

    drgar Tourist

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    Terrific report. I have to ask I dont understand the references to the Party Animals?
     
  9. suecasey

    suecasey Low-Roller

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    I suspect the lack of additional comps was because you played 100% games exclusively. $875 is a very small loss over 8 days in the eyes of the casino. You accomplished your goal and came out ahead for the trip by playing FPDW, but the tradeoff is fewer comps.

    You did good -- congratulations! I am amazed that you were able to play that many hours and not even take the time to sit down and eat in a restaurant. :)
     
  10. cruiser

    cruiser High-Roller

    Joined:
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    Techie223,

    Wifey has been playing video poker (full pay deuces wild) since our first trip to Las Vegas back in May, 2002. I didn't start playing video poker until trip# 6 back in June, 2004. A couple bad beats at the blackjack tables drove me to switch to video poker.

    It's rather easy to track the number of hands we play. While we're at the machines, we keep track of the base points that show up on our boarding pass cards we have plugged into the machine. Since we play only the 'Optimum' machines, we know it takes $4 cycled through the machine to earn one base point. So if we play for 2 hours and each earn 500 base points over that time period (we can see the base points earned flash up while we're playing), we know we each cycled $2000 through our machines for that 2 hour period. And since we play quarter machines at max (5) coins, that's $1.25 per hand. $2000 divided by $1.25 per hand tells us we each played 1600 hands over that 2 hour period. And dividing the number of hands played by the number of hours played tells us we each played at a rate of 800 hands per hour for 2 hours. It gets a little tricky on "point multiplier" days. For example, Wednesdays are 5X days for 50+ seniors. That means for every $4 we cycle through an 'Optimum' machine, we get 5 points instead of the normal 1 point. But those extra points don't show up until after we pull our cards out of the machines. So even on "point multiplier" days, we can easily monitor the number of "base" points ($4 in = 1 base point) we earn while playing our video poker.

    Regards,
    Cruiser
     
  11. cruiser

    cruiser High-Roller

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    Drgar,

    The party animals for the most part are little beanie babies except for Ape who's a lot bigger (about 8 inches tall and almost as wide). These guys usually bring us luck at our machines. I did forget to mention in the trip report that Ape came diapered thanks to our 2 year old granddaughter but on day 8, the diaper came off. Ape is now potty trained. We explained the good news to our granddaughter when we returned home.

    Regards,
    Cruiser
     
  12. Joe

    Joe VIP Whale

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    Great report! I'm with you on the wine glasses, can't stand drinking it in any thing other than a true wine glass.
    Don't ever go to The Cal and order wine, it comes in a plastic cup, even at the bars:grrr:
    Ever since they had an outbreak of roto-virus about 5 years ago, all drinks are served in plastic, except for the restaurants.

    Gotta agree with suecasey on the comps. They don't care for people playing full pay machines. Now if you were playing 6-5 job, they probably would have comped most of it:evillaugh

    At MSS on some of the full-pay machines, they have a little plaque that tells you that you are earning points at a reduced rate when playing them.
     
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  13. cruiser

    cruiser High-Roller

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    Suecasey,

    You're correct that we only play the 100% (Optimum) machines and we realize the casino will give us less comps than if we played slots or video poker on machines with less than a 100% payback. We actually did take time away from our machines to sit down in several restaurants. We ate at the Pancake House a lot and at Aliante Station, we ate at the Italian Restaurant and their MRKT Sea & Land Restaurant. We also dined at one of the buffets for dinner but other than that we grabbed food to eat while playing at our machines. We would have had a bit more play on video poker if I hadn't played in any Poker Tournaments.

    Regards,
    Cruiser
     
  14. Liondownnow

    Liondownnow Tourist

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    Cruiser, I have always been a fan of your reports. Thank you for taking the time to write them. I echo the fact that you should be getting full comped rooms for every night you come to visit. My wife and I play far less than you and still get comped rooms at multiple properties when we visit. I don't have a recommended casino for you to get the comps but it seems criminal that you are ever paying for a room. The evil empire of HET would give you 5 comped rooms a month based on your earned points alone. I hope some casinos start stepping up for you. Silverton? Southpoint? M? Good luck, you two deserve it!

    Lion
     
  15. Joe

    Joe VIP Whale

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    Yes but, at the evil empire you're getting a return of 94% compared to 100%. Of course luck is part of it, but if you're going to play that long every day, you've got to look for good pay tables.
     
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  16. Jinx

    Jinx VIP Whale

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    just curious, have you ever thought of playing at higher levels for less time? Just a question that came to me in reading some of the responses. Plus it could open up some other casinos as options, since the paytables at some places do get better at the higher level.
     
  17. techie223

    techie223 High-Roller

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    Thanks for taking the time to respond Cruiser. Good explanation.:peace:
     
  18. Joe

    Joe VIP Whale

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    I really think you should consider 9/6 JOB at MSS. Not quite 100%, but close at 99.54%. $1 in equals 1 point. With your level of play, the entire trip would most likely be comped.
    OK, the rooms aren't as nice, but hell, you don't spend that much time in the room anyway. The 777 Brew Pub is terrific and the buffet is very good. If you want a steak dinner, I'm sure a comp could be arranged at Redwood across the street at The Cal. If not, there are plenty of other options downtown for a good meal.
    Cash pay out is $1 for every 1000 but if you use your points for food and drink, then 600 points equals $1. Those are good at MSS, The Cal, or Fremont.
    I know the thrill isn't the same but 9/6 JOB can still make you some money and earn comps for future trips.
     
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  19. justmare

    justmare High-Roller

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    Congratulations on three royals, that's awesome!!! Sorry it wasn't actually a bigger win, but it sounds like you had a good time for those 8 days.

    Sorry the casinos wouldn't comp anything additional. I don't play full pay games, so I'm spoiled by comps and wouldn't be happy ending up with a bill at the end, but I realize full pay is the most important thing for many people. It's a shame that your options are getting fewer and fewer, though.

    Looking forward to 2011's report!
     
  20. Jimbucc

    Jimbucc VIP Whale

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    Thanks again for a great report. Always look forward to reading about your adventures at VP. If someone told you that you were going to get 3 royals this trip all by yourself, you probably would figure to come out ahead. Wife ends up on top with no royals. Go figure. :rolleyes2: Ah, the ups and downs of video poker.
     
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