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Ballys 3/10-3/14

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by Steve in RI., Mar 15, 2013.

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  1. Steve in RI.

    Steve in RI. Low-Roller

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    My Trip Report

    Just got back from a 4 day trip to Ballys with my brother Dan. Awfully tired from the Red Eye to JFK, and the train ride back to RI! Will post more details later. It was another one of those trips when I was losing immediately and won it all back plus interest the last day. That seems the best way to go!
     
  2. Steve in RI.

    Steve in RI. Low-Roller

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    Got a burst of energy after a good meal, so I decided I would bang out a few things:

    Traveling:
    First time on Jet Blue out of JFK since Dan lives in Southern CT. and the airfares from Bradley(Hartford) and TF Greene (Providence) were much more than the total of $330 each we were paying for the flights and 4 nights at Ballys. I was VERY impressed with the service such as hot towels before landing, and the sleep mask and earplugs provided for the return trip. I think I would pay extra to go Jet Blue than deal with the cattle car that is Southwest. Free Direc TV kept me entertained when I wasn't able to sleep.

    Upon arriving at terminal 3 and getting a cab at 12:30 AM, we were long hauled! Dan was a few steps ahead of me, and I forgot to tell him about the tunnel scam. It took me some time to catch on, and I was not a happy camper. The fare came to 26.10, we handed him 27, and he said something like"That's it?" I said yes, since you long hauled us! I was soo fed up, I ended up taking a shuttle on the return to the airport. The one other time I took a cab, it was from Mandalay Bay up to Monte Carlo and the driver was good and asked if I would prefer to go the strip or back roads, then advised there was construction behind MC. The fare was about $8.50, no problems there.

    Bally's Hotel:

    First time staying here since 2002. We were booked for a classic room, but I called them a few weeks ago and requested a North Tower room, Non- Smoking, 2 queeens. Due to the late hour and being the night of the NASCAR race, the hotel was sold out and they said all they had left was smoking. We were advised we can request a room change in the morning. Upon getting to room 2573, it was like stepping into a time warp to 10-11 years ago. The room looked exactly the same as I remembered it, except for a new flat screen TV. This room has a balcony, but the door doesn't open. I could barely detect the smoke smell, and it had a decent view looking over Flamingo Road and north on the strip, we were satisfied and had no desire to move. There were a few maintenance issues like the carpeting being scuffed up in one spot, and some dirty, slight peeling of wallpaper. As I remembered from the last trip, there was some issues with outside noise along Flamingo, so I'm glad I brought the ear plugs! Went to the spa one afternoon, and it was a nice relaxing experience. A good tip is to go after 3 PM if you are able so you only pay half of the regular admission charge.

    Entertainment:

    We only went to one show on this trip. As a belated 40th birthday gift for me, Dan got tickets to X-Burlesque at the Flamingo. I was a bit nervous, since it didn't get as good reviews as Fantasy or Peepshow from what I could recall. I could have saved the worry. It was a very enjoyable, quite provokative show. Its worth upgrading to VIP tickets, since you will be really close to the stage, and may even get some attention from the girls! The only part of the show I didn't care for is the female comedian Nancy Ryan. Very profaine which is not a problem for me, but not very funny and just using the profanity for laughs.

    To be continued....
     
  3. Steve in RI.

    Steve in RI. Low-Roller

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    As a continuation, one thing I forgot to mention about X-Burlesque that I didn't like was the seating. It is very cramped in the showroom with a lot of chairs pushed closed together. 9 dollars is also a bit steep for a Southern Comfort/ Diet Coke.

    Meals:

    Had a few really good ones on this trip. Had breakfast at the Planet Hollywood buffet for breakfast for the first time. Used the LVA coupon for 10 dollars off. 20 bucks for breakfast seems pretty high, but when you consider paying 10 dollars for pancakes and 5 dollars for coffee as I did in the Sidewalk Cafe at Ballys and its not bad by comparision. Speaking of the Sidewalk Cafe, it has gone downhill and it was the worst meal of the trip. Despite the mostly negative reviews on this board, I went to the seafood buffet at the Rio. It was decent without being spectacular. Not sure if I would go again, but it didn't dissapoint.

    The best meal we had was at Binion's Steakhouse, another place where it felt like being in a time warp! We went on Monday Evening, right when the sun was setting, and got in right away without a reservation, although it seemed to get quite busy by the time we left. Dispite reports about it going downhill, I did not find this to be the case. Another good meal was at KGB Burger at Harrah's. Maybe it wasn't quite as good as Le Burger Brassiere at Paris, but it was close. The last meal we had before leaving was at the Mirage Buffet. It may not get the repuation that some of the fancier places have but it was well worth it, especially with the 2 for 1 coupon.

    Gambling:

    For most of the trip, I got my butt kicked pretty good. I mostly play video poker with a little blackjack and craps mixed in. I did pretty well on the electronic craps games at Ballys and Ceasars. Its not quite as fun as the real deal, but if you have a nice group playing, it makes for a nice time. I didn't play too much BJ on the strip, since 3-2 games were tough time find even at the 10 dollar level, and i prefer to play 5 dollars when possible. I played a good single deck 5 dollar table at El Cortez, but didn't have much luck. I came close to a good royal and four of a kind countless times, but not being able to pull it off. Finally the last day at Monte Carlo, my luck started to turn. Within an hours time, I hit 3 good 4 of a kinds at the quarter level playing max coins! Leaving there, I was in a good mood and went to Cosmopolitan to take advantage of the 100 dollar in slot play if you lose 100. I figured the best way to approach this would be to try my luck at a high donomination machine and within 5 minutes hit 4 of a kind on a 50 cent machine playing 5 coins. Suddenly a 150 loss for the trip turned into a 150 dollar win for the 4 days. I love this town!

    Other Observations:

    I took the bus trip to Laughlin for the first time and was glad I did. At 40 years old, I was probably the youngest person on the bus, but I feel more comfortable with seniors than the spring break crowd. I found Laughlin to be very laid back, and I enjoyed the river view. Some of the casinos there are older, with only the Golden Nugget and Harrah's appearing to be nicest ones. Since my last trip 2 and a half years ago, there seem to be a lot more strange characters roaming the strip in different coustumes. So far the Quad looks pretty cool, but unless the rooms are all redone, I would never give any thought to staying there. Ballys does need some work to bring it up to date, as do most of the Ceasars places. With the resort fees coming in, I might give one of the MGM properties a try next time. It was nice to see a good crowd Downtown, even on a Monday Night, it was jumping. Afer finally taking the SDX bus and the Deuce, its now the best way to travel the strip. It took about 30 minutes to get Downtown on the SDX from Paris, but it sure beat the 30 dollar cab ride each way.

    At this point I'm not sure when my next trip will be. If I get a good amount of OT, I might do another trip with the wife October/ November. If not, hopefully next year!
     
  4. oldcrabtom

    oldcrabtom Low-Roller

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    Thanks for the report. I just got back from a week in mecca and had quite the opposite experience. For the first three days it seemed I couldn't loose, after that it was timberrrrr !

    Did see some good shows, Carrot Top (vulgar but funny) and Penn & Teller..meh !

    We had good (meaning not too crowded):thumbsup:flights with SW out and back to Columbus, oh......:thumbsup:
     
  5. weluvvegas

    weluvvegas Vegas Slot Junkie

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    Where did you score that Mirage buffet 2 for 1 coupon? We could sure use one on our trip....we are actually quite fond of the Mirage buffet. We like staying at the Mirage because all of the food options are great...we usually eat most of our meals there.
     
    40th Birthday Bash!
  6. Steve in RI.

    Steve in RI. Low-Roller

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    If you have a membership to the Las Vegas Advisor, they give you a coupon book with all sorts of good deals, including a 2 for 1 for the Mirage buffet. I used a coupon 3 years ago for Sunday Brunch and that was excellent as well.
     
  7. S'AllGoodMan

    S'AllGoodMan High-Roller

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    Thanks for posting. I know Ballys is run down, but I still love it.

    B
     
  8. LV2GAMBLE

    LV2GAMBLE Low-Roller

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    Thanks for you post. Looking at Bally's for a future trip, not booked yet as we will be staying at Harrah's in two weeks. Always like to try out new places, and we may also look at Mlife properties now that CET has resort fees, unless on a comp of course.
     
    Always seems so far away............
  9. bubbakitty

    bubbakitty native Texan; born and bred.

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    I If you like the older crowd you definitely need to visit the Suncoast as my wife and I (a bit older than you) were EASILY the youngest of adults the visit we made....and not in a bad way, it was just interesting in comparison to the strip clientele. Good report and thanks for posting.....
     
    1st Super Bowl DT...Panthers / Browns no doubt
    Spur of momento trip
  10. McGoo

    McGoo Low-Roller

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    Steve,

    Thanks for the report, I have wanted to take that bus trip to Laughlin for some time. Can you tell me what tour company you took? I was looking at one that Dropped off at Golden Nugget Laughlin for $10.
     
  11. Steve in RI.

    Steve in RI. Low-Roller

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    Sorry for the delayed response as I have been back at work, and don't have another trip planned to LV until possibly October, 2014 when it will be a multi generational trip for my Mom's 70th birthday, and my parents approaching 50th anniversary(they've never been). The company that I used for the Laughlin tour was allvegastours.com, but the bus itself said "Key Tours" go figure. Either way, it was the same one that dropped us off at the Golden Nugget in Laughlin. Our tour guide was awesome, the bus was comfortable, and I enjoyed the relaxed atmosphere of Laughlin.
     
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