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Ghostbusting Trip - MGM - 18th Aug to 25th Aug

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by Dearns, Sep 2, 2013.

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  1. Dearns

    Dearns Tourist

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    My Trip Report

    Hi all.

    Recently got back from Vegas after spending a week there for both my 30th birthday and a slightly belated 1st wedding anniversary trip. Joined the board around Christmas 2012 and got so many tips and ideas that I thought I would write a trip report to hopefully help others as much as I was helped myself.

    My wife and I are from the UK and I have been to Vegas once before for 4 nights with 4 friends but my wife has never been to (and had no desire to go to) Vegas before. I'd always wanted to go back and she probably got tired of hearing it because she said just before Christmas that we could look at booking a trip to Vegas for this summer - WOO!

    We flew direct out of Manchester to Vegas on Sunday 18th August and returned a week later on the 25th. I'm going to break the report down day-by-day over the next few posts.
     
  2. Dearns

    Dearns Tourist

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    Day 1 - Sunday 18th August

    As has become tradition when we fly early morning, we stayed at The Radisson Blu Hotel at the airport the night before. We started doing this so that we were nice and refreshed when we check in. Nothing worse than rushing around the day that you travel. Now we simply wake up, get ready, have breakfast in the hotel restaurant and literally walk around the corner to check in.

    We checked in 2 hours before the flight which was no problem as we had pre-booked seats so there was no rush as we were guaranteed to sit together. Took around 40 minutes in all to get through security as they seemed to have a rush on early morning flights. Once through was simply a case of waiting for the gate to be put on the info screen and then a quick sit down at the gate before we boarded.

    We flew with Thomas Cook and there isn't really much information out there about their flight to Vegas so for the UK board members I'll give a bit of detail. the flight was direct and scheduled for 9:20am and give or take 10 minutes that's the time we took off. There was a group of around 20 people flying out for a wedding and they kept me 'entertained' on the flight. One of them might as well not have had a seat because he preferred to sit on the floor near the others or on the crew chairs near the exit doors. A few were repeatedly smoking the e-cigarettes and drinking their own duty free which they were told a number of times not to do. The crew limited the bar service to them to one alcoholic drink each which didn't go down too well.

    The food on the flight was half decent for airplane food. We got a hot dinner (chicken or sausages) and afternoon tea (sandwiches and scones) which were adequate for a 10 and a half hour flight. You do have to pay for drinks which is different to Virgin (£1.70 for a can of Pepsi).

    The leg room was excellent but arm room was poor (I'm a big fella so this was probably why :) .) Their entertainment system was very poor though. 4 films and other channels e.g. comedy, documentaries. Not all were working and one film my wife couldn't watch because the screen was flickering and jumpy. the worst bit though is that it isn't on-demand. They start them all at the same time and you just 'tune in'. When the longest has finished they then start the tapes again. Also, you have to buy their earphones or adaptors as normal earphones won't work.

    We landed on time but after 10 and a half hours I was more than ready to get off!
     
  3. Dearns

    Dearns Tourist

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    Day 1 - Vegas!

    So now the boring stuff is out of the way.....

    Finally land in Vegas at 12 noon (8pm UK time so been awake 15 hours). Walked what seemed an age to security but was through in around 15-20 mins or so. Bad luck with security continued as this one was probably more miserable than the one in the UK! One thing that did cheer me up though was when the pair in front of us went through.

    They were a father and son, around 45 and 15. The father handed over their passports and Grumps behind the counter held one up and looked very keenly at the father. An extremely confused face came across Grumps and he looked seriously puzzled. The father then slowly raised his hand and pointed to his son. Grumps then slowly swiveled on the spot and then looked keenly at the much younger son. Puzzle solved! I laughed out loud at this and got an elbow in the ribs from the wife telling me to be quiet or I'll get myself arrested.

    Pick up the cases and out to find a cab. One thing to note is that a Thomas Cook travel agent rep was there to greet us with info and to invite us to a welcome meeting the day after. Nice touch was she told us when we get in a cab say "no tunnel". I knew this already but they seem to look out for the uninitiated.

    Cab straight to the MGM and we get in line to check in. Who should be behind us? Our 'entertainers' from the flight. The woman had magically changed into a bikini somewhere between the airport and the check in line. I prefer to wait until I get to the room to change into mine. Check in was quick and easy. Didn't try the $20 trick - chickened out. Very pleasant young lady checked us in and she managed to keep the pleasantness up until she asked me with a nod towards my wife "And what's her name?" Thought that was a bit abrupt at the time but it only hit me on the way to the room how rude it was.

    You get to Vegas and what's the first thing you do?

    [​IMG]

    My wife is addicted to Cheetos or 'Cheesy Nobblies' as she calls them. She used to live in Cyprus and got addicted to them there but you can't get them in the UK unless you go to a shop that imports them (around $2 for the smallest pack). Cheesy nobblies in hand we went to our room.

    We were booked into a petite king (8503) and I'd heard a lot of people criticise them for being small, the bathroom is open etc. We got there and we honestly thought there was no problem at all with them. We thought it was big enough for us, there was a safe in the wardrobe, you had a table and chair, a comfy chair as well, the shower was plenty big enough and there was air conditioning. We opened the cases but had to get engineering up because one of the locks was bust and incapable of opening. They came up within 5 mins and used a pair of pliers to snap it off no problem. After unpacking everything and hanging clothes up, placing valuables in the safe etc. we went out to explore the MGM.

    It's MAHOOSIVE! Really everything in there that you could need, a little difficult to find your way around at first, but you get the hang of it. Grabbed a quick McDs and put $20 each into a machine which my wife thought was reckless abandonment. Lost it all on a Ghostbusters machine which we would end up spending a lot of time on during the week.

    Went back up to the room for a quick nap as we had now been up around 20 hours in all. The wife slept soundly, I just lied there awake plotting our route to riches and got no sleep at all - come on, it's Vegas! Got up again and decided to have a walk to NYNY. One of the good things I found with the room was that we were the first petite king from the main lifts on our corridor and this meant we didn't have to walk too far to the main lifts or the ones that are near the West Wing Bar. Used the West Wing lifts to go past Rainforest Cafe (the crocodile made my wife jump a mile) and up to the walkway to NYNY.

    When we got there went to Coyote Ugly, both got ID'd because of our youthful good looks (at least I like to think it was that) and got a beer each. $8 for 2 Bud Lights which didn't seem too bad. Got a stool around the outside of the room and watched a rowdy group of men and women take part in challenges led by a woman that worked there who was so warm she was walking around in just a bra. First beer in Vegas! :drunk:

    I'll be honest. It was a struggle. Been up now around 23 hours and we were flagging. Finished my beer and half of my wife's then decided to call it a night around 8pm. I didn't need any rocking to sleep that night. Asleep before my head hit the pillow. And so ends the first day in Vegas.
     
  4. Ford-stu

    Ford-stu Tourist

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    Nice start to your trip report and being fellow uk travelers for the first time next year it is good to read a uk perspective of things.

    Now who you gonna call? :thumbsup:
     
  5. weluvvegas

    weluvvegas Vegas Slot Junkie

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    "Cheesy Nobblies" I love it! Looking forward to reading more!
     
    40th Birthday Bash!
  6. Dearns

    Dearns Tourist

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    Day 2

    Day 2 began around 7am feeling refreshed and ready for the day. Went to McDs for breakfast and took it back to the room. Got lost on the way and ended up asking for directions off someone on the casino floor. Getting lost did mean that I got to walk round rocking to Jimi Hendrix and Bon Jovi - good way to start the day! Rouge had quite a few people in for that time either finishing off or just starting for the day. Hey, it's Vegas right?

    Had breakfast and got ready to head to Excalibur to collect a MyVegas reward for the steakhouse for that night. Got this at the beginning of June on literally the last day before it changed. This caused a little bit of confusion because they seemed used to the new ones now but we were only waiting around 5 mins.

    We put $20 each into some random slots. A cocktail waitress came round and I automatically said Captain and coke. My wife thought about it then went for her usual fallback - strawberry daiquiri. At 9am. Considering she'd never wanted to go to Vegas she was getting into the swing of things!

    [​IMG]

    Played a little and ended up a winner

    [​IMG]

    Woo 18c! Bank that.

    Went back across to MGM to get the monorail up to the north side of the strip. There were 3 things that my wife wanted to do while away - eat Greek food, visit The Venetian and get her picture taken with 'Bumblebee'. The first two we were definitely gonna do today, the third one maybe. Had a MyVegas BOGO for a 7 day pass. Worked out at $4 each per day so I think it was worth it - it's $5 per single trip and not really that far extra to walk to and from when you think of the convenience. Exchanged quickly and easily. Got the monorail to Harrahs then walked into The Venetian past Tussauds.

    The reason my life wanted to go to The Venetian is that she fell in love with the rooms while we were looking where to stay but we couldn't afford it. She left disappointed. We walked around the shopping area and a quick walk around the casino and her general feeling when we left was that she felt it was a little 'tacky'. As I say, we only really saw the shopping area so this isn't a reflection on the rooms or hotel part. Left here to go to Fashion Show Mall to complete another wifey mission - Greek food.

    Went up to the food court to grab a bite from the Greek Island Cafe. But it had a cover over it! Gutted. We settled for a Jac and Ray sandwich each - a cheese steak and some other 'hot American' sandwich. Both got large and a drink, came to $28 and it was really good. Too much for us though so we left some - maybe order small next time. Went for a walk around the mall, priced up an ipad, came out and went into Wynn to sign up for their card. Got $10 free play which I turned into $20 then headed back to MGM to play on Ghostbusters and relax before the evening.

    Headed out to The Steakhouse at Excalibur around 9pm and got a table no problem. Was asked if it was a special occasion so told them about the birthday and anniversary. Got a table right next to the kitchen which was good as we could see the chefs at work. Ordered a cocktail each and both had French onion soup to start. For main I ordered the 20oz ribeye on the bone, wife had the 16oz ribeye off the bone and we shared a stuffed potato, mushrooms and creamed spinach. I finished my steak, wife left some of hers, the potato went as did most of the mushrooms but we hardly made a dent in the spinach. All the food was fantastic and I'd have been happy if we'd have paid for it. Came to $143 inc. tax so we used up just about it all. Our server was Greg and he was brilliant - kept us topped up with water, attentive but not too much. Definitely recommend.

    After dinner we spent some time in NYNY and MGM. Grabbed a peek at the dueling pianos in Times Square which we were going to see on day 3 (MyVegas again) and then spent time on Ghostbusters again where we lost around $50 between us which completely wiped out my 18c win from the morning then went to bed. I'm now convinced that there are only two people my wife would ever leave me for - Slimer and Kermit the Frog.
     
  7. dbueler

    dbueler High-Roller

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    Great report! My friend and I have used the MyVegas $150 comp at the Excal steakhouse twice and loved it both times! We, too, enjoyed the table near the kitchen, so cool how it is glassed in. We liked it so much we decided we would use the $50 credit if you spend $50 on our next trip.... we get most of our food comped so it's really good if we think paying for the meal is worth it!

    I don't envy your long flight, those 10+ hour flights are brutal. Thanks for posting, looking forward to more!
    diane
     
  8. pebbles

    pebbles VIP Whale

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    Good one Dearns. I'm enjoying the trip report.

    Not. Long. Now.
     
    First trip of 2017.
  9. weluvvegas

    weluvvegas Vegas Slot Junkie

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    I love Ghostbusters. If you get on a bad run, it can wipe you out fast but the bonus rounds are so much fun!
     
    40th Birthday Bash!
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