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Best Boyd property Downtown?

Discussion in 'Downtown Hotels & Casinos' started by josephbabbitt, Feb 13, 2013.

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  1. josephbabbitt

    josephbabbitt Newbie

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    Hi everyone...... I'm thinking of spending my next trip to Vegas downtown. It looks like the Boyd properties are nice and that is what I am focusing on. I was thinking about the El Cortez as well.

    A couple questions?
    1. Are the California and MSS unsafe to walk to at night because they are off Fremont St? What about the El Co?

    2. What are everyone's favorite Boyd properties? Does anyone have any other suggestions besides what I mentioned?

    I am a low roller, 30, and will be playing mostly VP, possibly some slots and maybe I'll try a little blackjack this time.
     
  2. Dtyst1

    Dtyst1 Tourist

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    I've never felt unsafe walking to Cal or MSS at night. There is also a skywalk between the two properties. The most you would have to walk outside off of Fremont is the intersection between Cal and the back of Las Vegas Club.

    My favorite Boyd spot, and the best Boyd spot for VP is MSS. All the places would be relatively equal, but the scratch off tickets at MSS (and their own brewery) push MSS over the other properties.

    You also mentioned walking to El Co. It will seem more unsafe to walk there than the Cal, but, it's all in your head. I've never had the slightest issue walking there from the FSE, and that's with me staying at El Co and walking to and from there multiple times and evening/night.
     
  3. Joe

    Joe VIP Whale

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    9/6 JOB and 20x odds on craps make Main Street #1.

    We've never had a safety issue, but if you're concerned as mentioned, take the bridge from MSS to The Cal than either cross over to Vegas Club at the SW corner, or go to the SE corner and go into Binion's. Either route brings you out to Fremont.

    Also, my wife and I have never had an safety issue walking to/from Elco, no matter what time of day.

    This may be a small issue to some but it bothers me that at The Cal, they have no glassware at the bars, everything is served in plastic cups. I hate a glass of wine in a plastic cuo!
     
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  4. POPO2012

    POPO2012 Low-Roller

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    :beer:Without a doubt Main Street Station. Someone will throw Fremont into this but I would be apprehensive about Fremont. Main Street is a cant miss for what you are looking for !:drunk:
     
  5. Iu25

    Iu25 High-Roller

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    I cant say I have ever felt unsafe walking to any of the places you menitoned. The El Co is at the end of Freemont East now so there are bars up and down that section with downtowners coming and going at all times of the night.

    Like the post above said, just walk through the Las Vegas Club and out the back door. RIght across the street is the entrance to the Cal. Go upstairs and take the skywalk over to the MSS.

    The scariest part of that walk will be going through the closed down section at the back of the Las Vegas Club, shivers!!!!
     
  6. zolar31

    zolar31 Low-Roller

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    Related question.
    Can you still walk through the back of the LVC? Last time I was there the back section was kind of dark. It was not blocked off, but it looked a bit scary.
     
  7. Joe

    Joe VIP Whale

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    You still can, but as mentioned, it is deserted back there. About the only time I cut through it is weather related and I'll cut across from The Cal into Binion's, rather then going through LVC.
     
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  8. mckevin32

    mckevin32 Low-Roller

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    Yep, cut through the back of LVC 2 weeks ago and it was exactly as described, dark and deserted but open. Frankly I would feel better outside, lol...
     
  9. Buddha

    Buddha VIP Whale

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    We have made those "short-cut" walks through the LVC and Binion's hundreds of times over the years, and never had a problem. We have also walked straight from MSS down the sidewalk, directly to the Plaza (past the train car) ... no problems.
     
  10. Iu25

    Iu25 High-Roller

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    I kind of like the walk out the back of Binions myself. The Porte de Cochere is really neat even though it isnt used any longer, and the room right as you walk in used to be full of big time poker players back in the day. I myself enjoy walking around the unused parts of downtown casinos, reminds me of the days gone by down there when the places were in their heyday.

    Ive said this many times before, but just 6-7 years ago the back of the LVC had numerous slots and VP machines. I enjoyed going back there to play since it was usually quiet and gave you a breather from the chaos that goes on in the main casino itself. No to mention it had some of the cooler baseball memorabilia you could ever see. Place was like a mini Hall of Fame at one time!
     
  11. makikiboy

    makikiboy VIP Whale

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    I think the 3 boyd properties all have their good points.

    Fremont. Right on the FSE. Close to just about everthing downtown. Elevators open right up on the casino floor. $3 craps and bj. Counters on craps tables so you can see how long a shooter has thrown. prizes for throwing so many rolls. Negatives: rooms are a little smaller, bathrooms are some of the smallest downtown. parking is all valet so you have to add a few dollars a day for tipping if you rent a car. While not usually a problem I have heard about cars being damaged by valet once and a while. Only 2x odds on craps. Comps are easier of all downtown boyd properties.

    MSS. nice rooms. Good VP and 20x odds on craps. Buffet and 777 restaurant. Free parking, most of the time no need validation except during special events. Nice atmosphere. Advantage rent a car near players card area. Negatives: Noise from your room, either from freeway (room facing north) or the train (room facing south). Distance to get to your room, you have to traverse the casino floor to get to the back of the hotel (and front desk) and then from elevator walking all the way back down the hallway to your room. Not a big deal but when you are tired and want to get to your room it can seem like a long walk. MSS usually $10 a night more over fremont and Cal. No sports book.

    Cal: Very convenient. many eateries. golden arm club on craps. rooms are similar to MSS. Newer (west) tower bathrooms are roomy. escalator to 2nd floor promenade and walkway to mss (including ethel m's, hawaiian specialty restaurant and store and ice cream place). Only boyd pool downtown. a block from FSE. decent sized parking structure. overflow lot for mss and cal across the street. if you go early enough, free newspaper (USA today) at bell desk. sports book on 2nd floor. Negatives: need to validate parking if not hotel guest (hotel guests can ask for parking pass upon check in). 2x odds on craps. Never noticed glassware/paper cups at bar as I usually order when I'm at the table. they serve glassware to table patrons. Pool is small and not very nice. Ask for lower numbered rooms, kind of a walk to your room if you are at the end of the hallways. Comps seem harder to get at the Cal versus fremont and MSS. Hint when staying at the cal, in west tower ask for a west facing room. in the east tower ask for an east facing room. That way you avoid the rooms facing each tower and the fans between towers.

    Very easy to walk between cal and MSS so if you aren't lucky at one casino, just take the walkway to the other casino.

    As others have mentioned, if you don't feel safe walking outside, best to go through back side of binions (well lit) or the LVC (not as well lit or well traversed lately). 2 entrances to get to LVC from the Cal, one on east side at intersection between Cal, LVC and binions. The other on west side of Cal along Main St. (might be the safer looking entrance). I have encountered panhandlers once and a while (but not regularly) along the walk from MSS to plaza, along rail cars. interesting to see inside rail cars though.

    I like the Cal over the other 2. I usually rent a car so fremont is a pain for parking, plus small bathrooms and noise from FSE. MSS I don't like always having to ask for specific rooms to get away from the train and freeway noise although I like the free parking.

    As for the El Cortez. I usually have been staying there of late. Hotel rates are some of the lowest downtown. 4 types of rooms for each level of person, vintage the lowest (located above casino, very convenient), then pavillion (although some like vintage better), tower rooms (larger in a smoke free tower) and cabana suites (nice rooms and awesome bathrooms, fitness center and overall premium type of room, smoke free also). lots of free parking with 2 structures. flame steakhouse, cafe cortez 24 hour coffee shop. subway and other eateries in back area. $3 craps and bj most of the day. you can even have them deliver meals while you are playing on a machine. lounge act. Jackie usually there playing poker. automated craps machine if you want to play $1 craps. New guests usually receive a coupon booklet with $5 discount on food and freeplay and match play. walgreens on the next block. Negatives: usually lots of smoke as ventillation system is antiquated. yes it could be a walk from the FSE, away from all the other downtown action (a few minute walk to get to the other casinos). a few bums and transients sometimes hanging out along the walk from fse (past neonopolis). Not a big problem as there is a security guard on intersection looking to the FSE but some people may feel a little uncomfortable.


    Other places to look at. D (formerly fitzgeralds). I think they renovated their rooms. Plaza, renovated rooms. Direct TV has many channels including HD channels (all free), very pleasant change from all the other downtown hotels which only have 10-20 channels). While plaza good to stay at, most of us gamble elsewhere. 4queens, standard rooms. golden gate, smaller rooms but convenient place and good gambling. Golden nugget, similar to the strip hotels, probably the nicest (and most expensive) downtown hotel. Spike, recently renovated. watch out for resort fees at the spike and plaza. vegas club rooms are probably the worst of all downtown rooms lately but still a cheap place to stay.

    I don't think you can go wrong with most of the downtown hotels as long as you don't have strip like tastes.
     
  12. josephbabbitt

    josephbabbitt Newbie

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    Thanks for the help everyone. So the rooms at MSS and Cal are similar?
     
  13. robert m.

    robert m. High-Roller

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    Makikiboy gave an excellent review of the three Boyd hotel/casinos!!

    I usually stay at MSS, but there is something to be said for the Fremont -- mainly the excellent location. You walk right out onto the Fremont Street Experience, and never have to be overly concerned about "walking home in the dark".
     
  14. boxcars

    boxcars High-Roller

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    Nice review Makikiboy!

    My favorite place to eat breakfast is Fremont buffet. I LOVE the atmosphere of that restaurant.
     
  15. makikiboy

    makikiboy VIP Whale

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    Thanks guys!

    almost. the cal has 2 towers, east and west. the east tower is the older tower, I would say that MSS might be similar to the Cal east tower, especially with the bathrooms where the vanity is outside of the bathtub and toilet area. The bathrooms in the west tower contains the tub, toilet and vanity. I think most of the downtown properties have similar things, tv, drawers, table and chair, etc. if you go to tripadvisor and look at reviews for the Cal and MSS you can see pics of the rooms for you to check out.

    http://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g45963-d91763-Reviews-California_Hotel-Las_Vegas_Nevada.html

    the bathrooms on the west tower of the cal is located right near the entryway (roomier). the bathrooms in the east tower is at the back of the room, near the window.

    http://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g45963-d91885-Reviews-Main_Street_Station_Hotel_Casino-Las_Vegas_Nevada.html

    guess that's why I like the cal over MSS, I like the Cal west tower rooms and bathrooms.

    Boxcars, I don't mind the fremont buffet. I like the tuesday seafood buffet, at least they split the snow crab so you don't have to struggle to get the meat out. At the MSS seafood buffet you have to ask for those things that crack the crab leg open, messy as heck IMHO. Some of my friends don't like the fremont buffet though, too dark in the outlying areas, plus they feel like they are in a deep and dark jungle (lol) eating there, afraid that something will jump out of the foliage, lol.
     
  16. smartone

    smartone VIP Whale

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    Great post! 100% agreed!
     
  17. Julie888

    Julie888 High-Roller

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    I've only stayed in the MSS. That's where my offers come from so I continue to stay there. Whichever hotel you pick will likely be the one giving you more offers.

    Not that there's any great distance to any DT casino, the Cal might be a little more central. You can use the cross over to get to MSS and you're one block closer to FSE. And it does have the pool, if you might be staying in swimming weather.

    There are usually groups of people walking back and forth to FSE. Just walk near them if you feel unsafe alone.

    The one thing I don't like is the shutters rather than blackout blinds. I think they all have this.
     
  18. AlwaysVegas

    AlwaysVegas Low-Roller

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    I usually park in the MSS open-air parking lot. It's $3 and refunded at the MSS casino cage. Or just show the parking attendant your B-Connected card and it's just free. Always easy parking during the day, though obviously bakes your car in the summer. I always start and end my Fremont time at MSS. I love its Victorian theme and much of the decor has interesting history. Don't forget to check out the Berlin wall behind the urinals in the men's room...well, if you're male. :ssst:

    Plus I really like their buffet, though not quite as good as it used to be. The quality has slipped a bit, but still worth the very reasonable prices.

    As others have said, once in MSS, I just take the walkway to the California then either walk to Fremont or go in the back of Las Vegas Club and out to Fremont.

    I've never had a problem walking down Main Street to Fremont street, though there can be quite a few panhandlers at times.
     
  19. Nevada Kid

    Nevada Kid VIP Whale

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    All three are good in my opinion, and I think Boyd has done a good job of making each one unique, with it's own special attributes. Here is what I think is nice about each place:

    Main Street- (My Favorite)
    Good Buffet, Larger rooms, VP at Boar's Head Bar, 777 Microbrewery, beautiful

    The Cal-
    Aloha, the golden arm club

    Fremont-
    2nd Street Grill, full pay pick em poker, treats from the Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory, location, east access to rooms

    All three have great employees and are fun to visit!
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2013
  20. Joe

    Joe VIP Whale

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    All these years, I never knew that. I know if I have shown my room card, parking is always free, but never knew about the B Connected card.
     
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