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First Time to Vegas - Yes, Another Which Hotel Thread

Discussion in 'LV Strip Hotels & Casinos' started by TheLTFM, Jun 16, 2012.

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  1. TheLTFM

    TheLTFM Newbie

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    Ever since I booked our airfare to Vegas to celebrate our anniversary, I have been pouring through the wealth of information you guys have assembled here. What a resource!

    We are 39 and 37 years old, have never gambled, don't party, and this may be our first and only trip to Vegas. We are going to get away from the kids, enjoy some shows, hang out by the pool, and we plan to rent a car to see Hoover Dam & Red Rock Canyon one day. We will be staying 4 nights arriving early evening on Saturday, July 7th.

    After the Hoover Dam day, that leaves us 2 days to sleep in and hang out by the pool. I first started my search looking for the best pool, and it seemed Mandalay Bay and Mirage fit the bill. I like the location of the Mirage over MB, so I booked the Mirage. Then I read that folks line up before the 8am pool opening and race like idiots to put towels on chairs. Plus the loungers are jammed in there touching each other. We're not on vacation to line up before 8am to get a spot at the pool, so I cancelled my rez, though I'm still considering the Mirage. 4 nights in a Tower Deluxe room are pricing out at $535 incl. resort fees.

    If we end up at the Mirage, I am budgeting $200 ($50 x 2 of us x 2 days) to reserve loungers in the private area at the pool (this would put the cost of the Mirage in line with our other 2 finalists). Can anyone tell me more about where those are located? I'm worried that the space may be all shade and not actually near the pool. Is there still an early bird mentality to those to get the best spots within the private area? If so, I may just be out on the Mirage.

    While we can afford it (and had almost decided to book it), my first choice probably would be a fountain view room at the Bellagio. But it is pricing out at $1,240 incl. resort fee for the four nights. Instead, I am considering a resort deluxe room (in the renovated original tower) there for $753 incl. resort fee, and try for the $20/($50 at the B?) to get an upgrade to fountain view. I just can't justify paying $500 for the fountain view. The Bellagio pool doesn't look all that interesting to me, and many of the loungers are positioned far away from the pool. I suspect that's where we will end up coming down after sleeping in.

    The other property we are strongly considering is Aria. Our 4 nights are pricing out at $656 incl. resort fees, for a king deluxe, but the special includes a complimentary upgrade to a city view plus a $100 resort credit. Aria looks nice, but the pool looks a little small for a property this large. I'm also worried that it may be a little more congested in general than the other 2 properties.

    I thought about a Paris Red Room premier with a view of the Eiffel Tower and fountains, but Paris seems a little more worn down and tired than my 3 finalists (lots of low price/non-renovated rooms) and the pool area isn't that great looking. I thought about a fountain view Planet Ho room, but their pool looks awful. I thought about Wyncore (a special puts it in the same price range), but I eliminated it because of location and the loud club scene at the pool. I had actually booked the Venetian, but then I saw that it really doesn't have much love around here. It was pricing out at about $730 with resort fees. I think for that money, I would be happier at the B.

    In summary, I'm looking at The Mirage Tower Deluxe Room for $535, Aria City View King for $656 (-$100 resort credit), or Bellagio Resort Deluxe Room for $753. Which of these would you recommend for us? Are there any other options you would recommend over these 3, including some of our discarded options?

    Any help you all can provide to help steer us would be greatly appreciated!
     
  2. Joe

    Joe VIP Whale

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    I can't help you with a suggestion, but congratulations on doing your homework before you came and asked.

    I'm sure you'll get plenty of opinions.:evillaugh
     
    Christmas
  3. Robinjanks

    Robinjanks Tourist

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    Hi, While I have never stayed at Bellagio or Aria, both are quite beautiful, my favorite is the mirage, definitely not the nicest, but it is a great hotel. The pool is great and there is a good vibe there, especially by the pool. I have seen Bellagio and Aria and quite frankly I feel you will like the Mirage the best. They have great restaurants and it is in the middle of the strip!!! Good luck in your decision.
     
  4. shifter

    shifter Degenerate Gambler

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    the fountain view at the B really is worth $500. since you're arriving on a saturday night and it's July 4th weekend and there's a big UFC fight that weekend among other things, your chance of scoring a free (or $20) upgrade to a fountain view is slim to none. SB weekend i got an extra room for my buddy and i wasn't even able to score him a fountain view and this was on thursday night and i have a lot of pull around there. they were just 100% full. it will be the same thing this weekend, but worse because you're arriving on Saturday night.

    i like the B pool a lot because there's several pools and there's actually a lot of loungers. but i've never been to the Aria pool to compare.
     
  5. nostresshere

    nostresshere Mr. Anti Debit Card

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    You have all these things bolded above working against you.

    The good news, you are on the back end of the July 4th weekend(s). By that Sunday things will be calming down. Saturday night will be real busy. Great night to just walk around and watch the crazies.

    Pool at Bellagio is great if you do not want to party and only want to hang out by the pool. Not sure what you mean about loungers to far from the pool though.
     
  6. cloudi63

    cloudi63 MIA

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    We have stayed at both the aria and bellagio we love love love the bellagio's swimming pools. The best pools IMO are the MGM's Mandalay Bay and Monte Carlo, I'm thrilled that you and your wife will be getting away from the Daily grind of life I hope the both of you truly enjoy yourselves don't stress yourself before you leave over the pool situation, in the grand scheme of life it's just not worth it, just enjoy each other and what Vegas has to offer.
     
  7. tapakip

    tapakip Low-Roller

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    Don't discount Mandalay Bay. Especially because you can pay to go use Moorea, their adults reserved beach club.

    You can also stay at THEhotel instead, which is all suites, and still have access to MB's pools. THEhotel has some great rooms.
     
  8. TheLTFM

    TheLTFM Newbie

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    Thanks to everyone for all of the replies! I'm taking them all in, and it is helping me think through the decision.

    tapakip, I had ruled out Mandalay Bay/THEHotel because of its south strip location. For a first timer, I was thinking I wanted to stay more center strip to be able to easily walk to the different casinos of interest. Am I misunderstanding the importance of a central strip location? Until I factored in location, the pool area at the MB was my first choice for the stay.

    I did just check and both MB and THEHotel have similar promotions going that puts the price right there with the others. THEHotel even has a 2for1 reserved beach seating as a part of one of their specials. What are the thoughts of THEHotel vs. MB proper?

    nostresshere, this is what I am talking about the loungers far from the pool at the Bellagio: http://www.oyster.com/las-vegas/hotels/bellagio/photos/pools-bellagio-v209802/

    Please keep the suggestions coming! Thanks so much.
     
  9. tapakip

    tapakip Low-Roller

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    Well I'm biased when it comes to staying in Suites hotels vs normal hotels, but I definitely prefer them hands down. THEhotel being a prime example.

    I actually think with your itinerary to Red Rock and Hoover Dam that the south end of the strip is ideal. Check it out on google maps....you're simply avoiding any Strip traffic anyway. As far as seeing the rest of the strip, I guess it depends what you want to see. There are several monorails available, including one from Mandalay. This map here does a decent job showing you. The ones on the left are free. The long one on the right is not, and it's set pretty far back. I wouldn't recommend it.

    Also, if you have a rental car, then being on the south end is no big deal. Parking is free everywhere, either garage or valet. And taxis are plentiful, too. Worse comes to worst, you can always walk it. I've done the Strip all the way from Treasure Island in the north to Hooters in the south. Around 2 miles.

    In the end, however, it's your trip, so stay where you feel most comfortable. Just know that for what you are looking for with the pool/beach area, that MB is probably your best bet.
     
  10. -(J)-

    -(J)- Low-Roller

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    I would not rule out MB/THEHotel. I stayed there on my first LV visit with my girlfriend (now my wife). I was much younger than you guys (first visit was my 21st b-day!). I have stayed at a couple other locations but we always come back to MB/THEHotel. It's like our home base!

    It seems pretty typical for people to say MB is so far south from anything else. It is at the far south end but I really don't consider it that far. If you like walking, it's very walkable to the center strip.
    If you drive, it's very easy to get anywhere. If you take a cab, it will cost about $10-$15 to go anywhere on the strip.

    Don't get me wrong, I like to see and experience all the action (I guess that is considered the middle of the strip) but it's very nice to have somewhat of a "retreat" or "safe-zone" that you can return to after getting a taste of all the action and craziness! ...if that makes any sense. I think some like this and others could care less.

    I think this time of year will bring more people in their 20's to MB for the pool. Although when we were there last December it was mostly really laid back 30's/40's crowd. We were the very few in our 20's. ..but that was December. Things will be much different in July!

    Not sure if any of this helps. I'm just typing away my vote for Mandalay Bay (and when I say Mandalay Bay, I really mean THEHotel!)


    I'll be back there July 1st. Cant wait!!....
     
  11. VermonterJohn

    VermonterJohn Low-Roller

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    To TheLTFM:

    First, I think you've done a great job with your research. Keep at it, as things change quickly!

    I've never stayed at MB, or TheHotel but I want to say that if you have a car (as you said you do) then I would not be concerned about staying on the south end of the strip.

    In fact, as someone else pointed out, it will give you much quicker access to your planned trips to Hoover Dam and Red Rocks Canyon...two excellent choices, by the way.

    It would also give you quick access to Southpoint Casino and the M Resort...both worth checking out, in my opinion. I would recommend the dinner buffet at the M resort.

    When the time comes that you want to explore the mid-strip area, simply drive up to a hotel such as Paris and use valet parking. Simply give the attendant a $2 tip when you pick your car back up.

    John
     
  12. TheLTFM

    TheLTFM Newbie

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    Again, thanks for everyone taking time to help us! Very much appreciated.

    As for the car rental, I had planned just to rent one for the day of our trip to Hoover Dam & Red Rock. I hadn't planned on having the car the whole time.
     
  13. Leeza14

    Leeza14 VIP Whale

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    Just another couple of two cents:
    I stayed at Aria and MB last summer, and I would definitely recommend MB pool over Aria. Aria actually has three (I think) pools, and when we were there last June, it felt very crowded and had too many kids for our liking (could be a factor if you are leaving your kids at home -- we do, too, and so we really don't want to be around other people's kids if we can avoid it). The pools felt really small.

    We LOVED the MB pool area! Pay, though, to get your chairs and umbrella; you really will need to have those.

    Our room at MB was in desperate need of a face lift. Our room at Aria was fabulous (in fact, I just bought the closest mattress possible to the one there!).

    Personally, we are big fans of Paris and its pool. It's pretty mellow but has good drink/food service, and is very relaxing.

    In my opinion, choose the top couple things that are most important to you, and book. Location won't be much of an issue since it's so easy to get around. There's SO much to do and see that you'll be overwhelmed the first visit, so book where you will be most comfortable and can get your best down time. Have a great trip! Hope you come back and write a trip report; I love reading about people's first time out there. :)
     
  14. Aero22

    Aero22 Low-Roller

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    I thought the price you quoted for Aria seemed high, so I looked at Hotwire to see what was available for your dates.

    July 7 for 4 nights is showing 5 star strip south for $99. The only qualifying properties are Aria, Vdara and Cosmo. The offered property has a casino, so it is not Vdara.

    They are offering 5 star Strip North for your dates for $128.....It is either the Venetian (or Palazzao) or Wynn (or Encore).

    Given your desire for top notch pool, and based on the prices offered right now on Hotwire, if it was me, I would book one of those properties.

    To carry it a step further, I would actually bid through Priceline a bit lower than the offered Hotwire Prices. I suspect you could get North $115 and south $91.

    Lastly, you can use www.betterbidding.com to find out exactly what property is offered via Hotwire you simply post the complete list of amenities and other information, and they decode to find out exactly whether it is Wynn versus Venetian etc. Betterbidding will also help you with pricing strategy for Priceline.

    Best of luck

    cheers
     
  15. Aero22

    Aero22 Low-Roller

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    With respect to car rental, I would suggest that you keep it for the whole 4 days. you don't want to have to return the car, then go through the hassle of getting back from the car rental to the Strip., then you have to taxi it back to the hotel again. It's worth it just to keep the car for the 4 days for airport transportation; you might want to do a WalMart run, In & Out burger, the off strip joints like Rio, Palms etc. If you have a car for 1 day, it makes no sense to not just keep it for the 4 days

    cheerios
     
  16. bluerider

    bluerider Low-Roller

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    Would you mind sharing which make & model said mattress is? Since my stay at Aria in Sep '10, I've been very close to purchasing theirs right off of the Aria website. It's a bit pricey, but is by far the most comfortable bed I've ever slept in!

    Any additional info you could offer would be greatly appreciated!
     
  17. heatherlovesvegas

    heatherlovesvegas VIP Whale

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    I'm not a pool person, but I would go with Aria out of that list. It's the newest, fanciest resort. I also like Mandalay Bay as everyone is saying, it's amazing!

    Since you said you don't gamble, I'd recommend Trump or Vdara :). My two favorite resorts as of late.

    Trump is $99 a night during that week, and $133 for a 1000 sqft 1 bedroom, 2 bath suite. Which is hands down the best room I've ever had. It's also a less busy place, I would imagine the pool would be less of an issue.

    Do rent a car, it's hotter than hell in Vegas right now, you don't really wanna be walking the strip. We always drive to a hotel, maybe walk to one or two others, then drive elsewhere.
     
  18. Leeza14

    Leeza14 VIP Whale

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    ***I bought the Sealy Posturpedic top of the line from Slumberland -- I got a queen, and it was about $1300, I think, for both box spring and mattress. My salesperson said it would not be exact but would be as close as it gets for the consumer version of it. I am very happy with it! It's darn close.... :)
     
  19. -(J)-

    -(J)- Low-Roller

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    Good point. This week's LV highs...
    Mon - 106F / Tue - 104F / Wed - 108F / Thu - 109F / Fri - 106F

    That looks pretty deadly and there is a good chance temps will be even hotter in a couple weeks during the OP's trip (during my trip too).
    Even right now at nearly midnight it's 93F out there.

    Walkable under the cover of darkness but it will be out of the question during the day!
     
  20. VermonterJohn

    VermonterJohn Low-Roller

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    Aero22...

    You wrote:

    "They are offering 5 star Strip North for your dates for $128.....It is either the Venetian (or Palazzao) or Wynn (or Encore)."

    Wouldn't Trump Tower also be included in 5 star Strip North?

    John
     
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