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Impromptu trip to Caesars Palace: Wed. 04/25/12 - Sat. 04/28/12

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by elika42, Apr 30, 2012.

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  1. elika42

    elika42 Tourist

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    My Trip Report

    Impromptu trip to Caesars Palace: Wed. 04/25/12 - Sat. 04/28/12

    Background: My girlfriend’s parents and uncle visit us in Los Angeles from Hawaii annually during the Christmas holiday season. This year we are planning a trip to Las Vegas during the week between Christmas and New Year. We already have three rooms booked at the Flamingo from 12/25 to 12/28. Her uncle wants to stay downtown and we will have to convince him to stay on the strip, so I’ve been doing some research in order to convince him to stray from his usual haunts and try something new. In doing that research, I got the itch to return and simply could not wait until December to go back.

    Wednesday, 04/25/2012

    Around lunchtime I started to read the forums casually, as I normally do; this time however, I really started to get the urge to just pick up and go. I have an app on my phone called “hotel tonight” and I decided to check the app to see if I could get a deal in Las Vegas for that evening. As it turned out, Caesars Palace was listed at a discount. I thought about it for a little while and tried to call my girlfriend at work to see if she could take off for the next few days. I couldn’t get ahold of her until around 2:00 pm. I was able to talk her into the idea of driving out to Las Vegas after about an hour of negotiations. Quick aside: we were supposed to take a weekend trip to Pismo Beach and Santa Barbara a couple of weeks ago, but we didn’t go because it was raining the whole weekend. So the money we allocated for that trip was able to be transferred to this trip; at least, that’s how I was able to sell the idea ;). She spoke to her boss at around 3:00 pm, came home at 3:30 pm, and we were on the road at exactly 4:00 pm. Just before we left Los Angeles, we booked the room at Caesars through the app for $245 for three nights.

    The drive took four hours; we hit a little traffic getting out of L.A. and stopped in Barstow for gas and a bathroom break. We pulled into the valet at Caesars at 8:00 pm, just after sunset. There was no line at the registration desk and we were helped by what seemed a new employee in training. I was going to try the $20 trick, but I wasn’t sure it was appropriate because of the training situation. So instead, I asked if they had a room with a nice view. Well, of course we booked the cheapest room so that was not possible, but they offered us the opportunity to upgrade to the Augustus tower for an extra $50/night. We said “what the hell” and went for it. Although I did ask for room with a nice view of the fountains. The woman who was training the new guy started typing on the computer, moving people around, and got us a great room with a beautiful view. I think that was the first time either of us stayed in a room with a view of the Bellagio fountains. It really was a treat.

    By the time we settled into the room and went downstairs for dinner it was probably 9:00 or 9:30. We didn’t want to walk very far to eat, so we went to the Forum Shops and ate at that restaurant kinda in the middle next to a loud fountain. We were hungry, but the food was not the best and the service was even worse. I don’t remember what my gf ordered, but I got the chicken parmesan. They forgot to make my meal and only brought out my gf’s food. It took a few minutes before I realized they were not bringing my order and I flagged down the waitress. She said it would be a couple of minutes, but I waited about 15 minutes for my food to be delivered. By the time I got my food, my gf was finished with hers. But it was our first night and we were just excited to be there. Especially since when we woke up that morning we could not have imagined that we would be eating dinner in Las Vegas. I ate quickly and we got out of there vowing never to eat there again.

    I’m not exactly sure what we did next but I think we played the slot machines for a little while. My gf loves the penny slots with the bonuses and everything. When we played slots throughout the trip, we pretty much stayed in this one little alcove near the player’s club desk just behind the table games. The “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” slot became our go-to machine. Although my gf had a soft spot for “Sex in the City.” I also liked the $0.25 pinball machine, that was fun and cheaper than some of the penny machines. We probably played for an hour or so, but decided to call it a night around midnight. Well, that was a mistake. I woke up at 3:00 am and seriously debated whether I should just go back downstairs and play for a little while. I didn’t; but got little sleep for the rest of the night.

    Thursday, 04/26/2012

    We woke around 6:00 am and I was not about to linger in the room on my first full day. We decided to walk over to Paris and eat breakfast. We originally planned on getting some crepes from that crepe place near the buffet, but decided on the coffee shop near the buffet instead. Boy was that a mistake. My gf ordered some waffles and I got the frisee salad with poached egg. I thought this would be a Salad Lyonnaise. We were in Lyon, France last Summer and that was the best thing I ate when I was there. However, at the Paris hotel, the egg was hard-poached, so it did not run when you cut into it, and the lardons were bacon, so it was too salty. I didn’t eat much, but I was in Vegas, so I didn’t really care.

    After breakfast we walked over to the Flamingo to check out the place we are going to stay at Christmas. We walked around a bit and my gf found some penny machines that she wanted to play. After she played for a little while, we went back to Caesars to take a look at their fitness center. I told my gf that I would use the fitness center if they had a rowing machine. I hate treadmills and ellipticals, but I love the ass-kicking workout I can get from a rowing machine. We didn’t see one there so I decided not to use the facility this trip. She went back up to the room because she had to attend an online meeting for work. While she was in the meeting, I went to play the machines for a little while. It was very dry, so I decided to walk around the Caesars property and get the lay of the land. Afterwards, I went back to the room just as my gf was ending her meeting.

    We decided to go over to that Greek place in the Cosmopolitan for their lunch special. It took about 15 minutes to walk from Caesars to the Cosmopolitan and figure out where the restaurant was. It’s an interesting place. I kinda like all the private nooks in the bars and playing areas. We found the restaurant on the 3rd floor and were seated immediately. It was crowded, but we didn’t need reservations. My gf ordered the scallop appetizer, tuna burger entree, and yogurt martini dessert. I got the meze plate, mediterranean bass entree, and walnut cake dessert. It was the best meal we ate the entire trip and it was only about $20 per person. Everything was amazing. it is very high quality food for a bargain. After lunch, we went back to Caesars to relax before going over to my gf’s friend’s house for dinner. I won’t say too much about being at their house except that they have a 2 y.o. son who soaks up all the attention and we were there from about 4:00 pm to 9:00 pm.

    We got back to Caesars and my gf wanted to play her slots for a little while before going to bed. So we played for an hour or so and then she went to bed at around 11:00 pm. As far as I was concerned, this was my only night to do what I wanted to do. I didn’t drive in that day and I didn’t have to drive the next morning. So, after my gf went to sleep I walked over to the Flamingo to play some table games. It was too expensive at Caesars and I really wanted to sit at a table. I wanted to play 3 card poker and found a table. Now, the last time I played 3 card there were 3 possible bets, now there are 4. Needless to say, I lost pretty quick. I walked over to the area in the front where they have the girls in pink and sat at another 3 card table (I must have been a little drunk). Well, I changed another $100 and lost about half of it before I got up and cut my losses. I wanted to play a table, but the craps and blackjack tables were either too crowded or too expensive. Just as I was going to leave the casino, I saw these two little old Chinese ladies sitting at a $10 table.

    I had no idea what game it was, but it was $10 per hand and I wanted to play something, so I sat too. It turned out to be that Dragon Mini Baccarat. When I sat, I told the dealer that I never played before but I wanted to learn something new. She was great. She taught me the basics of the game and the Chinese ladies were keeping track on their paper. I decided to only play the player bet and not play when the Chinese ladies piled their money on the banker. I sat at that table drinking free beer and smoking cigarettes (I quit in Dec., but allow myself to smoke in Vegas) until 5:00 am. In that entire time, I only lost $50. If I was playing craps or blackjack, I would have lost a lot more money in the same period of time. I found my new favorite game. Somehow I made it back to the room. You know, you can’t really feel the alcohol until you stand up and try to walk.

    Friday, 04/27/2012

    My gf had a spa treatment booked for 9:00 am and she was awake and out of the room before I woke up. I was hanging a little from the beer the night before and took it slow waking up. I watched a little t.v. and finally showered and was ready to leave the room at noon. Just as I was leaving the room to go back downstairs, my gf arrived and forced me to stay until she showered and was ready to leave. If I left 2 minutes earlier, I may have missed her and been able to meet her downstairs instead of wait in the room for her to get ready to go to lunch.

    One of my caveats for this trip was that my gf come with me to Ellis Island for the steak special. The last few times we went to Las Vegas, she refused to eat there with me. But this time I was able to talk her into it. We walked over to Ellis Island and both had the steak special with a root beer (I drank too much the night before to even think about a micro brew). I didn’t realize it was $7.95 now; I think the last time I had it, it was around $5. But it is a steal even at $8. I think she is convinced that we should go back every time we are in Las Vegas. I wouldn’t mind trying the ribs. Although, I am a bit weary because I have a very good bbq place near my house and can get some of the best ribs I’ve ever had. But I still want to try the Ellis Island variety because it is just so dang cheap.

    The entire day we were trying to figure out what we wanted to eat for dinner. My gf wanted to go someplace nice, but because we left in such a hurry, I didn’t bring clothes for a very nice restaurant. So we were a little conflicted about what we wanted to do for dinner. After Ellis Island, we walked back through Bally’s and took a look at the menu for their steakhouse. I’ve never been there, but heard good things. We then walked through the Flamingo and I just had to sit at the Dragon Mini Baccarat and show my gf how to play. Keep in mind, she hates table games. But she sat for 15 minutes and made $275. I think I convinced her about that too. We left to go back to the room and relax for a little while. We were both tired and stuffed from lunch and I think we napped for a couple of hours.

    We decided to walk over to the Venetian for dinner. It was not clear where we were going to eat, but we made a pact that we would not leave the Venetian without eating dinner. Both of us can be quite indecisive when it comes to what we want to eat. It was a nice walk because we went through O’Sheas for the last time. After some conversations, we picked the Wolfgang Puck restaurant in that large square where they do the performances. We had the shrimp cocktail appetizer, she had the Peking duck entree, I had the pea pasta, and we had the banana souffle dessert. Everything was good, but I will forever remember that banana souffle dessert. It came with a homemade nutella, brown sugar ice cream, and whipped creme fraiche; it was easily the best dessert I’ve ever eaten. I think I would go back just for the dessert.

    After dinner we went walking around the Venetian, but quickly came to the realization that we wanted to go back to Caesars. My gf was wearing uncomfortable shoes, so we cabbed it back. it was $15 between the Venetian and Caesars. I think $10 of that fee was us just sitting in traffic. We got back to Caesars and played the slots in our alcove for a little while. My gf wanted to go to sleep, so I went back to the Flamingo to play that Dragon Baccarat game. I was given strict orders not to stay out too late because we had to drive back the next morning. I left the table at around 1:00 am and was about $100 up.

    Saturday, 04/28/2012

    Check-out day. We accidentally slept-in because we had the blackout blinds closed. I wanted to wake up at 6:00 or 7:00, but didn’t until 8:45. We decided to pack up completely and be ready to go before we left the room. That way we could leave our bags in the room but go play until it was time to check out. We had breakfast at the coffee shop and played the slots for about an hour before heading back to the room to grab our bags and check out on the t.v.. It’s always a little sad checking out. We took one last view of the Bellagio fountains from the room and headed out. The wait for the valet was about 20 minutes and there were a lot of people waiting with us. On the drive back, we stopped at stateline for some lunch and gas. We stopped in Barstow for gas (but we didn’t really need it) and then made it back to Pasadena by 3:45 pm.

    Final Thoughts: This was my girlfriend’s first time driving to Las Vegas, and I think she’s convinced that it is not that bad. The lunch special at the Cosmopolitan Greek restaurant is easily the best deal for fine dining. Caesars Palace is not as difficult to navigate as I once thought. Finally, use the “Hotel Tonight” app to find last-minute deals on rooms.
     
  2. dbueler

    dbueler High-Roller

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    Ahhhhhh..to be young again without children obligations...just pick up and drive to Vegas for a few days....bliss! Hats off to you, sir, that was one great weekend!

    I also love Caesars, and it isn't hard to navigate at all, once you learn the layout. Good for you upgrading to the Augustus Tower room! They are such nice rooms and I'm envious of your view!

    Sometimes the best trips are the ones you just DO, without alot of thinking or planning. I live too far away to do that, but have often not come home from Vegas when I supposed to. Those extra days feel like true BONUS days, which is how your trip must have felt!

    Thanks so much for posting!
    diane
     
  3. travelfiend

    travelfiend High-Roller

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    Great trip report, enjoyed it. Seemed like you packed in quite a bit for an unplanned trip! I love last minute get aways!
     
  4. jpw711

    jpw711 VIP Whale

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    Way to go! I miss the days of deciding about 10AM to take off for a few days and gamble.

    That first night, I believe I would have canceled my food and had a liquid dinner.

    Enjoyed your report!
     
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  5. LV_Bound

    LV_Bound VIP Whale

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    How great is that. Even if were were to decide at 3:30 to go it would still take 3-4 days to get everything in order due to arrangements needed for the dog. Plus airline tickets on such short notice would be expensive.



    Is this an actual Slot machine or an actual Pinball Machine?



    After 4 nights we are ready to go home but it is indeed a tad bit sad knowing you are leaving but knowing you will be returning brings the smile back.
     
  6. jack1057

    jack1057 Low-Roller

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    Thats one of the advantages of getting older and getting the kids grown too. My wife and I do this frequently and have learned over the past few years that the best trips are the unplanned ones. Great report.
     
  7. BlueSkadoo

    BlueSkadoo VMB Sweetheart

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    Yay! Another Hotel Tonight fan! :)
     
  8. elika42

    elika42 Tourist

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    This was a quarter slot with a virtual pinball bonus. I think it was 6 credits for max bet.

    I'm glad you are all enjoying the report. I've read so many through the years but I think this was my first time writing one.
     
  9. thecarve

    thecarve Misanthrope

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    I’d love to be able to do spur of the moment trips. Of course, I’d be in the poor house…

    Good stuff. :thumbsup: Thanks for the report.
     
  10. veovis23

    veovis23 Low-Roller

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    Thank god I live in FL and airfare is crazy right now, or I'd be broke due to trips like this....
     
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