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April 19-23

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by bswim, Apr 25, 2013.

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  1. bswim

    bswim High-Roller

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2013
    Messages:
    898
    Location:
    Western WA
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    7

    My Trip Report

    Not used to writing anything so bear with me :)

    Trip started on Friday 4/19. I'd only had about 10 hours of sleep in the previous 3 nights and we had a late flight, not the best way to start a trip off. I work graveyard and my wife works days. As soon as she got home, we tossed everything in the car and tried to get out of town before traffic started backing up. Drove to my moms house about 75 miles south of us, dropped our daughter off and my mom and brother gave us a ride to the airport in Portland, OR (another hour south). Didn't want to take a chance of bad traffic so we got there really early. But dinner and drinks at the airport are always relaxing :)
    Shortly after take off the pilot announces that we're going to have an exciting flight to Las Vegas (oh great). Says things are clear and calm and unless they really screw something up in the cockpit it should be a good flight!! Thanks to a 90mph tailwind we got to Vegas 20 minutes early. Didn't know Alaska Airlines was now using Terminal 3, walked out "hey, what the hell happened to this place?"
    Baggage and car rental process were completely painless. This city has processing people in and out down to a science.

    Drove straight to the Monte Carlo, was so tired I'm sure people thought I was borderline drunk at this point. Was nearly midnight so walked right up to check-in. Got our room squared away, had a high floor strip view King reserved. Got to the room and it was a 2 queen room on the 22nd floor. Worked out ok though, gave us another spot to set crap down on LOL. Headed down to the Mlife desk to get new cards and get our email address's squared away in their system. First time we got cards whoever typed the info in screwed some stuff up so I went in at home and made all new accounts and then had them merge the two accounts together this night. MLife desk was slow as hell, this was before our card fiasco, most of our stops at MLife desks had the same results, took forever to do anything. Wasn't the employees fault, they stayed busy and appeared to know what they were doing, must be a cumbersome system they're working with?

    headed to the MC Cafe for a late night meal. I had a burger, don't remember what my wife had, it was decent food, nothing to brag about but it filled us up. At this point I'd been up for about 36 hours with an hour nap somewhere in there, so off we went to bed.

    Saturday:
    Went down to the MLife desk again to get our myVegas MC cafe buy one get one free entree and 2 free frozen drinks at the pool, decided to use the cafe one for breakfast. Same as the night before, was a decent breakfast, nothing spectacular but better than Denny's.
    Went up and changed for the pool, turns out the trunks I brought were from more than a few pounds ago, left my wife at the pool and headed across the street to Ross. Holy Christ!! there was about 50 people in line waiting to checkout. They didn't have any actual swim trunks, just shorts, picked up some white ones so my blinding white skin didn't look quite so bright (hhmmm white shorts, and headed to the water, I'll get back to this in a min). Line moved pretty decent for how busy they were, waited in line for about 5 minutes and got to talking to a woman from Australia, took her 16 hours to get to Vegas and she was no fan of our TSA, LOL. Stopped at the ABC store and got some Jack Daniels and vodka and a couple souvenir cups. Dropped everything off at the room, changed into my new shorts and headed back down to the pool to try and find my wife. We wandered over to the pool and sat on the edge for a bit. Suddenly a light bulb goes off that these white shorts just might be see through when they get wet!! Splash some water on thigh, sure enough, could see the hairs on my legs through them. As I'm sitting there cursing myself, I suddenly feel that my ass is now wet. The water I splashed on my thigh had run onto the pool deck and it was sloped back towards me, so now I'm sitting in a puddle of water in white shorts. Scoot over to a dry spot of concrete, after a while I was still wet. BUT I was still working on my drink (2nd one of the morning). By the time I finished my drink I didn't really care anymore and got up and wandered across the pool area, picked up our towels and meandered our way back to the room. (My apologies to whomever is now suffering nightmares!)

    I booked our room with a smartervegas.com code and we got happy hour specials all day long at The Pub. Had a few Jim Beam and coke well drinks (buy one get one free) and a few $1 sliders for lunch. From this point it gets a bit fuzzy for a bit LOL. We hopped on the tram to Bellagio, Watched a fountain show or two. Crossed over and picked up a couple frozen drinks at Evening Call above the Walgreens (near the Goretorium and Twin Peaks). Back down the strip we head. When I was at ABC earlier all I was focused on was getting booze, forget to get a red bull or monster for the wife's red bull and vodka's.
    So we stop at the next Walgreen's, still have drinks so I'm standing outside holding the drinks and get to talking to a woman folding those flowers up (from bamboo?). She starts talking about how hot it is in the sun and she doesn't want to damage her boobies, she was showing some ample cleavage :) Wife comes out and as we turn to walk away I tell her not to burn those nice boobies, oddly enough my wife wasn't even surprised at this comment LOL, guess after 19 years she knows me.
    Next stop, ABC. Things are still a bit fuzzy, not sure why we didn't get anything at Walgreen's with Ms.Boobs out front. But this stop found me sitting out front on some power box next to a nice and drunk blonde woman who lives about 6 hours from us. She reminded me of that blonde woman in 40 year old virgin, only in her 40's and not in a slutty way but drunk enough to say whatever the hell was on her mind. "my freinds got fucked right in the ass when they got laid off!!" but just talking to her you knew she was nothing like this normally LOL. Wife shows up with Monster drinks and all 3 of us hang out in the sun BS'ing for a while like we'd known one another for a long time. Suddenly we stood up "bye!" and wandered off like we'd see each other again in 10 minutes.
    We had planned dinner at Dick's Last Stand at the Excalibur but we were pretty wiped out from the long week and not much sleep the night before. So in place of dinner we took a well needed nap. Woke up and hopped in the shower to get ready to head to Red Rock to see Jeff Bridges. Really nice little venue and Jeff put on a really good show, he seems like he'd be a cool guy to hang around with....
    Red Rock gives you free slot play, anywhere from $3-500. Sure enough, I get $3. Was at a machine I didn't like to check it while the wife got something to eat. So I put a $1 in and win a $1. repeat this a few times, Pretty soon I'm to $20. Walked towards the concert, put it in a dollar machine and 3 spins later I hit $160. After the concert I fed it back to a machine and played it down to an even $100. But I managed to get about an hours play in and I was showing $1500 coin in in an hours play. And I was up $99 on my initial $1 investment :) I think my wife cashed out down about $5 or so?
    As we got back to the MC the check in line was empty and I had a question, ended up taking care of express checkout right then for the next morning so all we had to do was walk out the door. Headed up and went to bed.
    Sunday:
    Simple fast breakfast at the MC food court at McDondalds. (I hate eating at places like this, McD's is the same everywhere you go and that's not why I'm in Vegas) Picked up the rental from the valet, hoping for an early checkin at Mandalay Bay. Check in line was moving good, we got there and only had about a dozen people in front of us, but it was only 11:00am, checkin time isn't until 3:00pm. We had a free suite through myVegas so wasn't expecting a whole lot. Set my license and debit card down along with a $20, told her I was hoping for an early check-in and a good view. She got us right into a room on the 20th floor with a view looking straight up the strip. Could I have gotten the same room without the $20? Probably but it was already a free room, she was super nice and I wanted to do whatever I could to increase my chances of getting a room, getting changed and hitting the pool before it closed at 6pm, not to mention I still had to buy some new swim trunks.
    Got into the room, it's REALLY nice and big, but that said after staying here for 2 nights it seems like a lot of unusable space. We're still kind of up in the air how we felt about the room overall, not complaining in anyway, just not sure we'd book that room again.
    Headed down to the MB buffet for brunch, I'd heard it was small, which it was. But I was expecting better quality food considering it was in the MB. It was a notch up from the Rio buffet but not as good as Spice at Planet Hollywood.
    Now with full tummies we headed to the outlet mall so I could get some trunks and not scare everyone at the pool. Found some trunks at the outlet mall and headed back to the MB. Changed into my brand spanking new non-nightmare-inducing trunks and headed to the pool.
    WOW, Mandalay Bay pool complex is quite nice and on a sunny hot April afternoon there's plenty of nice scenery to be take in as well :) Got a couple of $20 frozen drinks and hung out for a bit, Had to go try the water in all the different pools and hot tubs, made a couple laps around the lazy river. Laid out in the sun to dry off just knowing I was going to turn into a lobster, I don't tan, I burn and then I'm white again. Amazingly I just got a slight tan, even on my shaved head. And this is after being in the sun for quite a while at this point.
    Up to the room for dinner.
    Stopped in at NYNY on the way to dinner and fed a $10 bill to a dollar machine and cashed out just over $100 in a few minutes. I did this one other time while passing through NYNY too. I think I may have to stop into NYNY more often, don't stay long, take the money and run.
    Dinner.......I still feel full thinking about it...
    I don't remember how the topic came up but a friend suggested Smith and Wollensky for a steakhouse on Facebook and then a couple family members chimed in as well, all 3 said it was some of the best food they'd ever had. So I made reservations for 6:00pm Sunday. Turns out it's right after they open and it was nice and quiet. We each ordered the 10 oz filet mignon and the 1.5 lobster and a side of mac and cheese, on top of the bread they bring you. In hindsight we could have ordered one meal and split it.
    Everything was cooked PERFECTLY!! I'd had lobster before, tasted like crab to me, we have fresh crab available here in the NW most the year, didn't see what the big deal was about lobster, I'm not sure how they cooked it but I need to research this!!
    We ordered the filet Oscar style med-well. Was cooked PERFECT. Slight crust on the outside and slightly pink the whole way through. Not a varying shade of pink but one nice even shade. 2 entree's, a side and 2 drinks, grand total with tip was about $250. I'm not a high roller, this was the most I've spent on a meal but it was also the best meal we've ever had. We should have quit eating long before we did but it was so damn good we couldn't see it going to waste. Oh and the bread they bring is flat out amazing. I need to see if you can get this at the bar/grill up front.
    ah yes, one other thing, the service was top notch as well. Will definitely be coming back here again. Can't afford it to many times but we will be back.
    We headed back to the MB and while still having some decent looking clothes on we decide to head up the MIX and the top of THEhotel.
    I had seen pictures from up here but nothing can do it justice without seeing it in person. Got here just after dark, temperature was perfect, probably mid 80's. Hung out here for a bit and had a couple rounds of drinks, think they were $12-14 or so, not as much as I was expecting for where it was. Being a Sunday night the dance floor was empty but the outdoor patio was pretty full. Nice and quiet and laid back atmosphere. I'm not sure what my favorite low key hang out spot is now. MIX on a quiet night or the RHUMBAR's outdoor patio, both are pretty relaxing.
    Headed to bed, I slept for a bit then woke up for a few hours in the middle of the night, wandered around the casino for a bit, don't remember the name of the bar but they had a good live band playing in the Mandalay Bay. After having a few drinks I headed back up to bed.
    Monday:
    Woke up and was still full from Smith and Wollensky's the night before. Is this a food hangover?
    Today we have the Bellagio buffet for lunch and Bacchanal buffet for dinner on the schedule. Don't want a huge breakfast since we're still not hungry but with the heat (we're from WA LOL) and the drinking we figure we should get something light for breakfast. Nothing in MB sounded good but for a couple years we've heard so much about Hash House a Go Go. I know it's not light but we figure we'll split it between us. We have some myVegas rewards to cash in on the way so instead of the monorail we take off walking north. Stop at the MLife desk in the Luxor, slow again, pick up a voucher for 2 margaritas. Walk north to Excalibur, stop at the MLife desk and pick up a voucher for 2 free Cocktails at Octane. Walk across to NYNY, feed a $20 into the same dollar machine and cash out $100, hmm seeing a pattern here.......
    Walked up the MC and hopped on the tram to the Bellagio, picked up our voucher for the Bellagio buffet lunch pass, walked from here over to The Quad. Couldn't find their damn restaurants, I'd seen pics of their rooms and how nasty they are, the casino seemed pretty new. Finally had to ask a woman where Hash House a Go Go is at. She pointed towards some stairs that went around a corner. Ok, off we go. We end up going down some maze of a hallway that two people could barely pass by each other, all of a sudden we're at a check-in desk for their hotel in the middle of this tiny hallway. They have a rope going down the middle so that new "guests" could line up for the desk, in the meantime people trying to get to/from the back of the hotel couldn't even pass each other. We make our way through this crap and go up the stairs to Hash House a Go Go and the waiting area is completely full. By this time I've had it with this turd known as "The Quad". Off to the Mirage across the street to find something to eat.
    I'm a sucker for the Rhumbar and their King Cola with Jack frozen drinks so we had to find some breakfast close to this :) ended up at Carnegie Deli. Never been here before but "light breakfast" and Carnegie Deli should never be in the same sentence together. Really good food, if you're hungry they had some of the largest sandwiches I've ever seen. Me? it was breakfast so I just had a burger LOL.
    We finish up here, and head out to the Rhumbar for a drink. WTF? it's after breakfast and I'm in Vegas, I want a drink! Damn, it's 10 am and they don't open until 10:30am. ok, off across the street to Casino Royale, get a $1 Michelob in the bottle and sit down at a slot machine. $1 beer turns into a $10 beer but I had some fun for a bit so off we go down the strip.
    Next stop Gilley's. Have a couple of Jack and Coke's, wife was drinking something, oh hey look she's still with us :) And so is the hot blonde bartender that's being trained :) I ask the bartender about their Jack Daniel's Honey machine they have, ask him if they really go through that much, he said it's mainly to chill it but he prefers American Honey by Wild Turkey. Says if I'm drinking Jack and Cokes I might not like it that much since it doesn't have the same bite as whiskey. How much for a shot? $7.75 (damn Vegas prices) ok sure what the hell, he gives us an iced shot which is how he likes it, I will admit it was a large shot, probably 2-3 ounces. Wife slurped some off the top which had me cringing but when she said "YUM" I wasn't quite sure what to think. I toss that sucker back and started cursing him "damn you!! this could get dangerous!!" LOL We sit there for a while longer looking at the bottles that we've never seen before, watching country videos from the 80's (which is a good thing, makes us feel old and young at the same time) and I polish off my last Jack and Coke. We'll be back here sometime at night when things really get going.
    Back we go to Casino Royale, we stopped at Walgreen's but I'm not sure why. Another fuzzy point in the trip.......Oh wait, I remember, we stopped in to price American Honey....

    Back to Casino Royale. Sit at the bar and play some video poker. Sit at the bar FOREVER before someone takes my order for a $1 Michelob. I shouldn't complain but when you're 15 feet away it shouldn't take that long to get to me. But whatever.....get my beer and wander over to the BJ tables. I'd been playing on myVegas and studying the stragedy cards a bit. I see they have $5 min single deck so I buy in for $100. After 20 minutes the dealer is replaced with another so I tip her $5, about 10 minutes later I'm back down to original $100. tip the new dealer a couple bucks and color up with my original buy in. I figure if I can sit down at a table for the first time, never drop below my initial buy in, be up 40% and cash out with my original money and tip 7% of my initial buy in I did alright!! Walk out feeling like a king LOL. (took some liquid courage to get me to sit down at that table LOL)
    Cross back over the the Rhumbar, YAY the King Cola machine is working (was broke everytime I passed by last summer) get me a 24oz King Cola and Jack Daniels. Wife got some fruity drink, at this point I have my Rhumbar cola and Jack drink so I'm a happy camper sitting on their outdoor patio in the sun. :)
    Drink about half our drinks and start wandering towards Caesars Palace to see where the Bacchanal Buffet is at for later tonight.
    While the wife is in the restroom and I'm holding her Rhumbar drink I see a video BJ machine, having just played a real BJ table for the first time and not losing or looking like a complete imbecile I'm feeling like a BJ king. Feed it a $10 bill and within a couple minutes I'm up to $20 at $1/hand. Collect my $20 ticket and off we go to find the buffet for later. We find it and about that time it's 2:20pm and our Bellagio buffet pass is for lunch that's over at 3:00pm, granted it's next door but good luck finding your way out of Caesars!
    We get there about 2:40, and there's almost no line, this was somewhat disappointing since the pass came with a line pass to walk past the 50 people that are normally lined up. Yeah, that's kind of an asshole feeling but for once it would have been nice to walk past everyone with a smile on my face LOL. She says we could have used the pass for dinner and just paid the difference. GGrrrrr. We get in, get seated and it was good, but I think we would have liked it better if we were actually hungrier. We were still full at breakfast from the night before and at this lunch we were still full from breakfast......Needless to say we were quite full when we rolled ourselves out of here.

    We headed out and watched a couple fountain shows, before walking our guts off back to the Mandalay Bay. Changed and headed to the pool for a bit. Scenery at the pool wasn't quite so plentiful on a Monday but was still quite good! :)

    Things are a bit hazy at this point. We left the pool about 5, took a shower and headed north. If you remember this morning we walked our asses through the Luxor and Excalibur picking up myVegas drink vouchers. So this time we walked back through again stopping off to get our free drinks.
    I remember going up the Eifel Tower and watching a fountain show. I don’t like heights at all but it was definitely a cool perspective to see the fountains from.
    We left the pool at 5 and I remember asking what time it was when we were in the tower and it was 8:20. So somewhere in there we burned a few hours up. Who knows? It’s Vegas!
    Hustle over to Caesars before the Bacchanal buffet closes at 10pm. Nice short line of about 5 people. Didn’t take any time at all before we were seated. Order a couple bottles of water. “I’m sorry but we charge extra for those” Huh? “Anything we have to get from the bar we charge extra for”. So lemonade was now sounding alright.
    I really wish we’d had more room for food. Everything we had was so good. Will definitely be back again only we’ll make sure we’re good and hungry next time.
    So back south we go, we have an early flight the next morning. Decide against walking to the back of the Bellagio to hop the tram to MC only to have to walk back out of the MC. All that walking probably doesn’t save you much from just walking the strip.
    So we walk from Caesar’s to Excalibur for the 2nd time that day. Get to Excalibur and the damn monorail to MB is closed for the night.
    After a few expletives we start trudging our way to MB. Finally get there and pack up so we don’t have to in the morning. Soak in the tub for a while and sleep like rocks until the alarm goes off at 6:30am.
    We drop the rental car off and as we’re getting on the bus I look up and “whoa, what are you doing here?” Ran into some old friends we’d lost touch with. They’d just dropped their car off, were flying out of the gate right next to ours about 10 minutes after our flight. Small world!!
    Pretty boring flight home, little bumpy most the way, must be that wind that got us to Vegas so fast Friday night.
    As we’re on the approach into PDX, I hear the landing gear whirring away. Then I hear it again, and again and again. WTF is going on with that? Never did hear why they were cycling it. Must have worked though because that was about as smooth as landings could get.
    The day after getting home I get an email offer from Mandalay Bay, link wouldn’t work so I call the casino VIP number and reserve a 2 queen room for 3 nights the end of July for $39/night plus fees and taxes. Works out to $70/night total. Hard to find a hotel anywhere for $70 night.
     
  2. bswim

    bswim High-Roller

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2013
    Messages:
    898
    Location:
    Western WA
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    7
    Wow, guess that was alot of typing......
     
  3. btaller

    btaller Tourist

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2011
    Messages:
    48
    Location:
    Ottawa
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    11
    Great Trip Report. Thanks for posting!
     
  4. kitson

    kitson VIP Whale

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2004
    Messages:
    1,881
    wild turkey honey makes a great hot whiskey drink!

    your medium well steak was probably perfect because they cooked it medium?
     
  5. VegasGarden

    VegasGarden Low-Roller

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2010
    Messages:
    354
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    89
    Well done. Thanks for sharing
     
  6. bswim

    bswim High-Roller

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2013
    Messages:
    898
    Location:
    Western WA
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    7
    Your welcome everyone! Thanks for the compliments. That's the most I've written since high school and I'm not sure I did that much then either!

    As far as the reason the steak was cooked so well and whether it was medium rather than med-well? It had a slight pink color throughout it, which by definition is medium-well and how we prefer them.
     
  7. kitson

    kitson VIP Whale

    Joined:
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    Messages:
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    glad you enjoyed your steak! i need to go find a definition chart for beef steak levels of doneness.
     
  8. tringlomane

    tringlomane STP Addicted Beer Snob

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2013
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    9,886
    Location:
    Missouri
    Trips to Las Vegas:
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    That quickly? Did you gamble more at Mandalay Bay than this TR lets on?
     
  9. bswim

    bswim High-Roller

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2013
    Messages:
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    Location:
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    Trips to Las Vegas:
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    I fed a grand total of $40 into their slots and we drank a grand total of $40 of drinks at their pool
     
  10. breanna61

    breanna61 Super Moderator

    Joined:
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    Laughed at your white shorts.....knew where that was going! Congrats on your Mandalay Bay offer, great deal.:eek:
     
  11. Tranzport

    Tranzport Tourist

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2011
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    Location:
    PDX
    Trips to Las Vegas:
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    Great read! I look forward to reading your future TRs.
     
  12. Jepockn

    Jepockn Tourist

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2012
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    Trips to Las Vegas:
    5
    Awesome tr. enjoyed the read
     
  13. waverunner

    waverunner BBHMM

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    Wonderful trip report. An i echo your comments about Smith and Wollensky. Been there 3 times overall and it has never disappointed me.
     
  14. addicted

    addicted Low-Roller

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2011
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    Location:
    Lincoln, NE
    Trips to Las Vegas:
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    Glad to hear you had some wins!
     
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