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Jinx's trip report 6/30 through 7/3 IP and MGM warning long

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by Jinx, Jul 16, 2008.

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  1. Jinx

    Jinx VIP Whale

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2007
    Messages:
    1,790
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    25

    My Trip Report

    So another trip has come and gone, this report is likely to be long, just for a warning to those that like shorter ones.

    My last trip was in March and it was the first time I haven’t done a trip report. See I had a 5 day trip extend out to 8 days, as my flight was cancelled due to a blizzard back home. I know, I know, 3 extra days in Vegas, while it certainly sounds great on the surface, being in Vegas after taking a beating for 5 days with the liver and lungs on life support and then throw in 3 extra days is certainly no picnic. However I did enjoy the extra days and even managed to find rooms for $0 to stay over with during that time. After that trip though I was so exhausted of Vegas the thought of a trip report made me a bit sick to my stomach, so I passed.

    Anyway, as April and May came around and knowing I had a trip in October planned, all I could think about is how I wanted to get out into the Vegas heat for a week and really take a relaxing vacation. The offers were piling up and airfare kept rising, so thinking outside the box a bit, I decided to try and be creative. My wife and I were heading out to Tampa for a job fair for her and she didn’t want to go to Vegas, so I decided to fly to Vegas and then home on the day we were to leave Vegas, and let her fly home to Cleveland. This worked out nice, as it saved me one full leg of an airfare, and southwest made it very easy to book in this manner, which didn’t hurt either.

    So my whole trip would be for 8 days, 3 in Tampa and 5 in Vegas, with 2 of those 3 days in Tampa focused on work, I was eagerly anticipating a nice relaxing Vegas trip.

    So bright and early 4am eastern on Saturday, June 28th, I take the wife to the airport, unfortunately my flight didn’t leave until a full 4 hours after hers, which made for some nice paper reading time. I booked a non-stop on SW, and had no issues, the only comments I’ll make was that I saw the dollar raffle for the first time and our flight attendants did their showing of gone with the wind (tp in toilet, then rolled out through whole aisle, flush and watch the whole toilet role move down the aisles). I had always heard of these through other reports but had never seen them on flights out of Cleveland or connecting from there. Oh well, quick 4 ½ hour flight and to the baggage claim (which appears to be done with renovations) and pick up my luggage.

    I decided to cab it since it was Saturday morning and the line shouldn’t be too bad, unfortunately the ropes were still up for long lines though and with my laptop bag pressing on my roll away bag, I melted my wheel on the suitcase queuing up. (ahh nothing feels like 110 degree heat). Vegasrex.com posted a great comment on the heat, while it’s a novelty for tourists it sucks for those that live there and I’d have to agree. For 5 or 6 days it’s bearable, but any longer then that and I’d go a bit nuts.

    Into the cab where the driver proceeds to ask me if I want to take the highway, no thanks, through town is fine. $13 cab ride to the IP, and $7 tip. My first 2 nights are at the IP. I can’t complain, they are all comped and I get Saturday checkin although as usual my room is never ready (about 1pm local time now). I do miss the Flamingo for this, as I’ve never had an issue checking in early there, they do tell me to check back in 2 hours or so, so I stash the bags, except for the laptop and start wandering.

    A board friend who I had met before was in town, so I texted him and found out he was in a tourney at the Mirage, so I headed over there to say hello, after much wandering and no luck finding the tourney, I decided to just walk some through the Mirage and Caesars. I have a sort of rule that unless I can get checked in and situated I don’t feel like gambling, so I wandered through the forum shops and back to IP. At which point they were able to check me in around 3 (after about 20 minutes of reviewing to verify if the room was clean). The clerk gave me a room on the second floor, only had one requirement I didn’t want to be by the carnival court. Don’t mind the noise so much on a solo trip, but when I want to crash for a couple hours, I’d prefer not to have to worry about whether boogie nights is getting down. The 2nd floor room was pretty cool in that I didn’t need to take the elevators (big plus at the IP) and my balcony door opened right into the pool, and they gave me a key to lock and get back in through that door as needed. Now the IP pool is a hole in the ground, but it’s not the worst think in the world. Its not Mirgage, Flamingo, Mbay, or MGM, but it serves it’s pupose and is pretty much completely in the sun most of the day, towards late afternoon the building begins to build some shadow. Anyway having the room open up to it was kinda neat, and I took advantage of it some throughout the stay there.

    I waited on my bags and ordered room service. IP has a pretty darn good reuben at their coffeehouse, which is the one room service brings, and I didn’t feel like eating at a bar or dealing with people for a bit, so started getting unpacked and enjoyed the meal afterward. After that, my friend sent me a text and I headed over to Caesars to say hello. He was off to the fight that night, so only got to visit for a couple minutes, we were going to try and hook up Sunday, but didn’t have much luck with it, so if he’s reading, sorry, and we’ll catch up next time.

    Once done there, I headed off to put some play on my card, rapid roulette, mini baccarat at the Flamingo and a variety of VP and slots were what I played for the next 4-5 hours. Drinking rather heavily I eventually started stumbling back to the IP. It’s been a while since I walked the strip on a Saturday night, and let me say the walkways were packed, the interesting thing I found though were that they had security guards walking in sets of 2 at least every 20 feet you’d see a new set. This was around 10-11 at night, definitely a bit of a welcome sight I’d say as previous trips, I’ve noticed that the Margaritaville corner has had a ton of people hanging around just “chilling out’ and while there was nothing wrong with it, you could see the potential issues brewing with that mix of people loitering and all of the alchohol fueled college age crowd at O’Sheas. Needless to say though the wall to wall people was a turn off for me, and I quickly headed up to the IP karaoke lounge, it was packed for a Saturday, so I grabbed a seat at the bar and people watched most of the night and slowed my drinking down. I was pretty beat at this point, but figured I’d do one song, chill out and then get some rest, staying up later on that first night sometimes lets me get on a bit more regular schedule. I ended the night down about $200, which for a first day wasn’t too bad. I’d figure $40 of it was drinking $20 cab fare and $140 in gambling losses with about 4 hours played on the card. One thing I did notice is IP has hired a host of new waitresses, for a time there the IP was really a bit of an unknown gem in that the cocktail waitresses were very attractive, there were a whole slew of tall European waitresses I found on this trip. One other point, in my opinion cocktail service at the IP is the best on the strip. I never have to wait long for a drink and return service is just about guaranteed. Many of the other strip places it seems to be hit and miss for me, and I really thinks it’s the size of the casino, but for my money drink service at IP wins hands down.

    So finished my song and headed up stairs around 2am, slept til about 7 am, which is pretty darn good for me in Vegas, decided to get some breakfast and headed over to Flavors at Harrahs. In my opinion this is a pretty solid buffet for this side of the strip, been remodeled recently with some upscale items without the huge cost. Most know that the IP buffet stinks, and the flamingo while it has one of the best rooms for eating in my opininion, has left me disappointed for some time with what their offerings are.

    It was Sunday, but they don’t start the champagne brunch until 10, too bad as I would have indulged, I paid with points and had a $5 off coupon, so it was like $10 for the buffet, good omelet, eggs benedict, smoothie, and some pretty darn good French toast. For $10 it was definitely worth it, figuring most restaurants on the strip your going to pay more for breakfast anyways, unless you find one of the ones offering a limited special.

    So then I headed over to play some Monopoly Up up and Away at Harrahs, I’m not a huge slot fan, but when I find one I like, I enjoy playing for a bit. I played for an hour or two on the same hundred and either won $20 or broke even. Took a break from that and did a strip walk up to Miracle Mile shops, kept looking for a wind up music box for my daughter but didn’t have any luck here, all anyone seems to carry is a jewelry music box that plays when it opens, but will play continually until it closes.

    I then headed back to my room grabbed my Rockhouse Daiquiri cup took it up front to get it filled and came back to the room, grabbed a book and stepped out in the inferno that was the outside by the pool. In order to not die, I think I jumped in the pool at least every 10 minutes, spent about 3 hours out at the pool, had a couple drinks as well, all in all a good time. Talent at the pool is right on par with the IP overall, probably 5-10 really nice looking ladies enjoying the sun, but not much more then that. The Hard Rock it isn’t.

    Got back in and caught a nap, woke up around 7 and decided to take a strip walk toward PH. I decided to try Hawaiian Tropic Zone for dinner, since I hadn’t made it here last trip and the lunch menu looked like it had something I’d like. Well the dinner menu was a bit disappointing, and I settled on two appetizers (bbq chicken egg roll, and beef carpacchio along with some mojito) the food was average and while well presented not worth the price, the drink was fine. The thing that sort of threw me a bit is that the service pretty much stunk. Granted it was a Sunday in Summer, so there weren’t a lot of people here, but it felt like a morgue, except for the 3 brits at the bar, enjoying their shots, unfortunately they weren’t there long. Anyway, I’m sure on a Fri or Sat night out on the patio it might be a completely different experience, and maybe I just had a bad server, but it just wasn’t for me.

    I headed back down center strip. I had read on Vegastripping.com that Carnaval court was hosting the Air Guitar regional championships and had seen early it was starting at 9pm (no luck on tracking that start time down on any website) but anyway, I needed to find something to do, while I drank and I didn’t feel like gambling. Sidenote, my previous trips have been extremely gambling heavy and often resulted in chasing some losses, I’ve found that when I can find something different to do in Vegas, that I’ll fit my gambling in, so that was my goal for most of the trip, if I keep the bankroll in tact the first few days, then I take my shot on the last 3 and see what happens. I had become a bit addicted to $1 vp since hitting a 4k royal 3 trips ago and this trip I forced myself to play quarter and .50 more to start to get some gambling in but not subject the bankroll to heavy play. After all the rooms are comped and I’ve become savvy enough to keep my ADT up where needed.

    So I wander down to carnival court, no cover to get in and with the misters here, it’s downright comfortable, I drink a few more rum and cokes and mix in a shot or two of jager and chill out for a bit. The air guitar show was just about what you would expect it to be. Those that were signed up for it, made you realize that no matter how immature you think you are past 25 you have nothing on them. The real fun of the show though was the wildcards, audience members they let come up and pick a song. Which started out with women who basically were drunk and just wanted to let out their inner stripper, all the way to the English or German gentleman, who came up and really let out his inner stripper by taking off his shirt and pants, and then mooning the crowd, Las Vegas’s finest gave him his own personal escort out of the carnival court after that performance. They were convinced to wait for the judging to complete on his performance though before whisking him away from all of those autograph seekers.

    So while I wasn’t expecting much entertainment, in a train wreck sort of way there was a good amount. In addition, it was nice to hear rock songs for 2 hours or so. I had picked up a ticket for X Burlesque on Goldstar.com before the trip, general admission $33. I know there are ½ price tickets booths all over town, but getting to them and then waiting in line to see if they might have a show I want isn’t very appealing, so while this wasn’t half price, it was worth it in my opinion, you are required to hit the box office within the 2 hour window before the show, I got my ticket (GA seating) and handed the maitre’de a 10 with my ticket and had a front row seat, lots of leg room. The show was good, besides beautiful women, I enjoy seeing their athleticism, and the whole dance troupe was very good. I’ve only seen one other topless show in Vegas before, Erockticka at the Rio, which the wife and I walked out of after 5 minutes, just wasn’t very good. This on the other hand, was more of what I would expect from a show like this. Intimate showroom, drink service, not a bad seat in the house, 60-75 minute show.

    The comedian during the mid-part of the show wasn’t bad, I had heard the former comedian who passed away was a riot, but the current one seems cut in the same vein to a degree, female insult comic, although the insults stayed on the side of funny.

    I’d definitely recommend the show to anyone interested in a show like this. After that, I for the life of me can’t remember what I did, I’m sure I drank some more and probably gambled some, but I believe I was asleep by 2 or 3.

    Monday morning, well I’m moving to MGM today for 3 nights, so I got stuff packed, I have the IP room until Tuesday, just so I don’t have to be without a room for my stuff for the day, so the plan was to head over to Qua and get a massage and relax today. Problem was I had no interest in going over to Caesars and knew that if I went to Qua I’d spend 5-6 hours there easily and I just didn’t want to do that today. So I called the IP spa and got an appointment. 50 minute massage was $90 this month, so a bit of a discount there, the IP spa is a basic spa, steamroom, sauna, whirlpool, standard showers and serves the purpose, I got an appt and spent about 3 hours in the spa total between the massage, steamroom and whirlpool. I am kicking myself a bit though as the therapists at IP and Flamingo are always hit and miss for me and today I had a miss, just not a great massage, whereas at Caesars’s my 3 times there so far, I’ve had excellent therapists every single time. I’m going to have to go back to keeping the names of the ones I like to request for my next sessions. I did this when I first started, but haven’t done it in awhile. Just have to try and remember my therapist from Caesar’s last time.

    Back to the rooms and I take a look at my melted bag wheel and see I can fix it (so I think). I leave bags and head down to MGM, I decided to walk as I didn’t have anywhere to be for the day, so why not. Got down there as I was about to combust and decided to grab some lunch since it was around noon and I figured an extra hour might mean the difference between my room being ready or not. So I went to Puck’s Café. Had another mojito (does anyone make rum drinks anymore, besides mojitos? Just curious as I didn’t see many) The mojito was fine, and then I ordered the maytag blue cheese potato chips as an app. And the prosciutto sandwich for the main course. Oh man the blue cheese sauce was extradorinary with the fresh fried chips. I shouldn’t have eaten the whole thing, but eagerly did, just outstanding. This goes with my experience in Vegas, I’ve ate at some of the nicer restaurants, and typically I’ve only had outstanding appetizers with maybe a dessert or two thrown in, entrees have never made me jump up and down no matter where I’ve been. This appetizer, definitely fit that bill. The sandwich was so-so, I ate half and they packed the other half up for me. I figured I could drop it in the room and have it later if I didn’t want to get a full meal.

    Quick walk to the lobby and the invited checkin line with only one person in front. This would be my first time staying at an MGM property, last trip with my 3 extra days and some tilt gambling I put some serious cash into some machines at TI, and based on the offers coming out now, I think due to the occupancy rates for Summer, MGM threw me a bone, 3 nights free and $35 in freeplay in a West Wing room.

    So that’s what I got a former Marina hotel room, now dubbed the West Wing. The room was available and I ran up to check it out and drop my sandwich off. What can I say, it was a haul from the main elevators, furnishings were newer, but not great. Bed was very good, and the bathroom, sink/shower area was pretty unfunctional to laying out toiletries. It’s a very similar layout to the Flamingo Go room for style, but I think the bright colors gives the Flamingo room a bit of an edge in that department and the bathroom layout is better. It’s not a bad room and the bed was very comfy, but if I got a free offer from a HET property vs $80 or $90 here, there would be no reason for me to stay. I did take the “West Wing†elevators later in the trip and man they have to change that carpet, it looks to be the same carpet in the elevators that was part of the original hotel before it became part of the MGM.

    Now to the MGM itself, I’ve never been a fan of playing here, as in my opinion, it’s just too darn big. There are people constantly everywhere you turn, which for me exhausts me a bit as I tend to try and be aware of my surroundings. The other thing is, the damn casino floor in all the times I’ve been there, never seems a bit slow, why is that a problem you ask, well it isn’t I just get a kick out of being able to find sort of quiet reserved spots in the chaos of Vegas and MGM has always screamed “Vegas Baby†to me. The reason for my stay there was simple though, take advantage of the comp, with likely insufficient play to get more down the line and a chance to try a new Vegas hotel and stay on that end of the strip. All of my trips I’ve always been center strip for the most part, so I was hoping to take advantage of the location to try some new things.

    So I decide to jump on the monorail, grab my stuff and bring it back to MGM. I debated taking a cab back from IP, but with a monorail pass and usually having good wheels on my luggage, it’s usually simpler to just hop on the rail and ride back. Boy I should have taken the cab. As I got to the monorail station at IP, I realized that my wheel really wasn’t fixed and was about to go. Along with my laptop/backpack and garment bag, I was seriously dragging suitcases though the monorail and then into MGM, couple that with the walk down the MGM hallway and 3-4 stops along the way to rest, and I was soaked from the heat and exertion. Now mind you I’m not really an out of shape guy, but having to pack for 2 trips (tampa and vegas) in addition to the wheels going bad on the suitcase really did you in. Good news is that I realized then, I had to get a new suitcase, and walked down to the souvenir shops by fatburger, which sells them and picked up a fairly nice one that was the same size for $30, for the trip home.

    So my worn out ass, decided to rest up and then do some playing that night. The good thing was I wound up not playing at HET that whole day, so no hit on the ADT there. I slept for a few, showered and got ready to head out. Last trip in March, all the properties pulled the WSOP vp machine, much to my dismay, I could play that dang thing for hours, and with the top bonus on an essentially .50 machine being 800 outside of the royal, I always seemed to manage my bankroll and hit that darn bonus 3 out of 4 trips. I hadn’t really found anything until my extra couple days in march to replace it, where I felt I had a reasonable chance of getting some money back on a machine and could play for awhile without subjecting the bankroll to too much volatility, until I found the single zero roulette machines. MGM has them HET does not, so I sat down to play some at MGM, playing my daughter and my nieces’s birthday, 16 and 24 (which coincidentally on a single zero wheel are right next to each other). So I played some $2 spots on those and played $10 on the 1 of 3 column areas for awhile. I hit the girls dates a couple times throughout the session and walked away with $100 in profit, not a bad start and got some play on my card.

    Then I was off to Planet Hollywood shops V theater, to see the Fab Four Live, I got the show on Goldstar for an $8 service fee total. The show seemed to take forever to let everyone in line go in, and the organization there, was a bit irritiating, but once the show started, I have to say, it was pretty damn good. I know that someone posted that recently the Fab Four Mania group broke up, and I’m not sure of what members are left from that, but I’d bet for sure one of them is the one playing Paul as he was outstanding. The others were not in the class with the John imitator probably being 4th out of the group, but the music was good and so was the presentation and it was a great diversion, which I needed. I kept thinking as I waited in line, that I should just skip the show, and I almost walked away 4 different times while “in line†(they show off other performers on stage during this period from V. The guy who spins the cube is pretty darn cool. But anyway, I stuck around for the show and I’m glad I did, I wouldn’t recommend this as a $50 show, but at half price, I’d say give it a shot especially if you are any type of Beatles/Music Fan.

    .I then went to Centrifuge and played. 50 vp and drank many more rum and cokes and a shot of jager, good quick service and nice bartenders, I hit 4 aces in BP early on for $200, played that down to a $25 profit, and switched to video bj, where I got it back up to a $100 profit. So with a nice $200 profit, I headed back up to the room and had the rest of my sandwich. At this point in the trip I was feeling pretty good, my gambling was up or even, and I was probably down about 4-5 hundred including food, drinks, tips, and massage.


    So then I decided I’d head over to MB, as I’ve always wanted to go to the HOB Rockstart Karaoke on Monday nights, but never made it up there for that. I walked over, and found a seat in the courtyard where they hold it, as they put the stage together. They have a front and back page of songs, where you can sign up for one song on the night, with no song repeating throughout the night. They then call you up and you sing with the band, 2 guitarists and a drummer. So I did Pour Some sugar on me by Def Leppard. Little backnote here, many years back when I was a teen my bestfriend and I recorded this song at an amusement park on tape. My brother and bestfriend looked and looked and tried to find the tape to play at my wedding reception, (it was bad). They couldn’t find it, but they did get me to sing that song at my reception. Anyway, I’m a bit of a singing junkie now and much improved, so I was comfortable doing the song. The experience itself was outstanding, I’m so glad I never tried to play in a band when I was younger, otherwise, I would have never done some of the work I needed to do to get where I am now, as being up there with the guitars blaring next to you, and the drum behind you was quite an experience, and I’ll definitely be back. I did meet some people who were there from Chicago, that were out smoking in the casino during the night. After two days of Kung Fu like isolation, Vegas can drag on you a bit, and I needed some socialization, turned out they were Vegas fanatics like myself and head out every three months or so, they invited me to join them over at their table, so I did, which is nice as a smoker, leaving a place where it’s non-smoking to go out and smoke, you always open the chance your table will be taken especially if you are by yourself. But anyways, I hung out with them for the rest of the night, they were seated by a bunch of Vegas Virgins, guys from Bowling Green University, about and hour and a half away from Cleveland, who were on their second night in Vegas, and were having a good time as well.

    So by the time the show is halfway through, I’ve got a new group of Vegas friends, which was just the kind of thing, I needed. I don’t know why but I’ve found the isolation of being solo in Vegas very refreshing, but the combination of stimulus, alcohol, and exhaustion, can where on you pretty quickly and bring your mood down significantly especially when solo. ,.I’m not entirely sure of the reasons this happens, but it’s happened to me on other trips as well, maybe it’s the fact that on a solo trip I get a chance to see Vegas through a different pair of glasses, in that it’s a big grind machine for the tourist and part of the fun is enjoying it without getting caught up in the cogs and right before the Beatles show I was really starting to hit one of those patches, the Beatles show for some reason cheered me up immensely and started getting me out of the funk and hanging out with the other people at HOB that night was a good time too, I digress though, it was a good night though and I spent about $80 drinking some more with everyone and exchanged information with the Chicago girls as they were headed to Mix and Ghostbar the next night and I thought it sounded like a good plan when they invited me.

    I stumbled back to MGM, don’t know why but I always miss finding the tram from MB back to Excal, by the time I realized I wasn’t anywhere near it, I was in the Luxor and just decided to continue the walk. I’ll say this, it was a pretty good stumble back though, I decided to throw in another hundred in a roulette machine at MGM, and hit my nieces birthday twice on a $2 bet for $140 total win, yay paid for the drinks that night and off to bed around 3 or 4am

    Tuesday
    Up around 8 or 9 again, well at least I’m sleeping four hours. I head back down to IP to settle up for my room there and put some play on my card. Not much eventful happened there, played some slots, vp and settled up my tab. I put a measly 600 points on my card, which leaves me 500 short of Plat for the next year, but even coming home, I’ve found my comp nights at IP are the same, so I managed my ADT ok for the trip. I’d have liked to put more on there, but it just didn’t work out that way this time. I’m headed out again in October anyway, where I can get that final push to 4k on there, and set myself up for all of next year. Not to chase comps but its been a good year for rooms for me. By the end of the year, I’ll have taken 3 trips to Vegas, and all of them will have had at least one weekend day, usually two and I’ll have 19 comped nights total on the strip. My gambling for the first part of the year, certainly paid for some of that, but still it’s not a bad perk considering room rates in some other cities.

    I wound up going back to MGM and played Roulette video machine for most of the afternoon and took another nap later in the afternoon, got up and headed toward MB as I was going to meet the group at Mix. I really wanted some sushi, but nothing in MGM or MB seemed to be what I was looking for, I eventually started walking toward Luxor, where I decided to give Cathouse a try for dinner. Interesting décor in the place if you aren’t familiar with it, it’s one of the new restaraunts/club/lounge at Luxor, servers wear lingerie style outfits and the theme is an old style bordeau. So I got a seat at the bar, ordered some berry mojito and decided to try the stuffed mushrooms and slider burger, which came with onion rings. I knew the menu was tapas style (small portions) and I was prepared for it, the bartender did remind me though, and I could appreciate the advisement as I’m sure it saves them a good deal of arguments once the food arrives. The mushrooms were just so so, they were stuffed with sausage and some type of blue cheese I believe that I found extremely mild and almost flavorless. The slider was delicious, and the onion rings only average. The slider itself was cooked perfectly as I requested and had a ton of flavor, truly too bad it wasn’t a larger entrée style offering. I had another drink or two there, and settled up. Had a chance to talk with the bartenders here some and they talked a bit about how hard it was during the closed period for the restaurant, as originally they weren’t getting paid, but then the company decided to pay them until they reopened, however the amount tended to be life sustaining rather then anything they might have been making.

    They also talked about a few celebrities that had been in over the weekend, it seems this spot is a favorite of Mike Tyson, there were also two others in over the weekend, and for the life of me I can’t remember who, but it was polar opposite of Tyson and they were commenting on how it was a rather odd night for the place, as while that group wasn’t together, you probably couldn’t have predicted three less likely celebrities in the same room/restaurant as these were.

    So I headed back to MB. One note, their center bar, seems to have some happy hour special during the weekdays, ½ price drinks or something of that nature, I didn’t head over, just saw some signage for it, and a good crowd for an early weekday.

    I head back to MB and played some more video roulette, got two more rum and cokes and hit for another $100 profit and decided to head up to Mix. It must have been about 8 or 9 at this point, as it was getting dark, no cover, no line, just straight up, the lounge area was completely dead. I grabbed a seat at the bar and ordered another rum and coke. Did some walking and taking in the view on the outer deck and settled into one of the seats and chilled for about an hour, drinking 2 mojitos in the process. The Chicago group texted me and it seems they were told at the entrance that Mix wasn’t open yet, and they were off to Ghostbar, I said no problem, but they were wrong as I was up in the lounge, but no issue (I did catch up to them on the next day). Anyway I didn’t feel like heading to Ghostbar nor did I feel like gambling, so what does that mean, Cheetahs.

    So headed back to MGM, headed to the room to take a look at the cash flow and then came back down and tried to get up a quick $200 in order to pay for a portion of the night, of course that failed, and lost $300 in a bit of a tilt, but I decided to head out anyway, I decided to take the monorail to center strip and see if anything was going on, before I headed over to Cheetahs, but alas it was a pretty dead night.

    I took a cab to Cheetahs, should have looked up the shuttle number, as they’ll pick you up at a strip hotel, and for a driver tip, waive the cover. (The cover pays the cabbie kickback). Anyway I didn’t so a $10 cab ride and $30 cover was the damage. I stayed here for about 3-4 hours, with about 4 shots of jager and god knows how many more rum and cokes. I like Cheetahs, as it’s in my opinion as high pressure as some of the other places, and you can relax a bit more. Details of the night though shall remain in Vegas, but I can assure you that if your into this sort of night out, you can do worse then this club.

    So back to the hotel about 2:30, they will take you back for a flat $20 on their shuttle, or you can wait for a cab, I decided on the shuttle and was back at MGM quickly, had some interesting baseball conversation with the driver.

    So back and MGM, and I’ve rockstarred it a bit today in that my budget which had remained close to the vicinity of my start was now significantly down with one day to go. So I could go to bed or wander and gamble. I head up to the room, grabbed some cash and hit the $25 mini bac table in the mansion. Full table and I’m a bit weird as I like a bit more mellow gambling experience which is something I have a hard time finding in MGM. Anyway, this suited me fine, I’m not usually a $25 better but for baccarat and late in the trip, I knew where I stood with it. So I played for 5 hours, at one point, I had $575 profit, but couldn’t hit the 600 I was going for, so I lost all that, and vowed to get a $200 profit from this session, so I played a bit more and got to $175 a bit of an omen, but I cashed out and headed to bed. Another successful all nighter pulled in Vegas as I got to bed about 7:30am.

    Slept in til the late hour of 10:30am and headed to the coffee shop at MGM. Had another breakfast of champion a reuben and fries, hmm the review of it, it sucked, tasteless and about $5 more then the IP sandwich, which is just a bit of the tax you do pay staying at a place like MGM vs IP. Let me pontificate a bit here though as well. As I get older I find myself looking to try and break my routines wherever I can, and it’s harder and harder as I find value in those routines, Vegas is no different and as I said earlier I was dreading the MGM in some senses, but after a couple days, I have to say I’m glad I did and I’d stay there again, some of the pretentiousness of the “new vegas†was definitely putting me off on staying there, and while I’m not old (35), I find myself locking my views in more and more. But upon staying there, the MGM went from a pretentious place, to just another Vegas casino, except the cover for this one, was Swinger style, and I mean that in the way of running around screaming “Vegas Baby†is cool, or something along those lines. The MGM tries too hard to be hip and until I stayed here I would have never seen it. I don’t know whether it’s the bad carpet in the West Wing elevator, the piped in music, or the types of magazines in the room, or something else altogether, but it hit me, and once I saw the wizard behind this particular curtain, I kinda liked the place. Every other place I’ve stayed at in Vegas, I’ve been able to see it and it’s not until I stay there, that I get to see what style the cover is in though, and it was just kinda refreshing to see it in the MGM properties too. I’m sure that doesn’t make sense on some levels. But put it this way, there are many that worry that Vegas is becoming too this, or too that, with restaurants, clubs, “or other luxury revenue streamsâ€, and while those additions in my opinion fill a void Vegas always had, in my opinion casinos are still the end all be all of the properties and they will always be about the casinos, regardless of how much they under publicize it. It’s the engine that drives the machine, and seeing it at on the “hipper†places sort of made me feel at ease, that the Vegas cheese will always be there in some way, because from now until it’s gone, it’s always going to be about how they can package it.

    Ok enough pontificating. The meal at the coffee shop sucked, I puttered around with some more video roulette and got up 1 or 2 hundred I believe, definitely a solid start to the day. So I went and bought my suitcase, came back soaking wet from sweat as it was hotter then hell out and I took a nap.

    Woke up and played some more mini bac. Had some interesting pit staff and dealers, had some good conversations with them, with the majority of it, being they wanted to know how I decided to play baccarat, when I mentioned that I liked the quieter pace, the dealer laughed and did concede it definitely fits that. Enjoyed a good number of capt and cokes and actually won another $200. A very good day for the last day so far.

    I headed over to Diablos for dinner, I think I lost a quick hundred on the roulette or vp machine before that though. Anyway, sat at the bar at Diablos, I tried the triple decker quesadillas last time, and ordered them again, it’s chicken, pork, and steak on a quesadilla, very tasty and extremely filling, I also had to Twisted Sisters, which is just a cable car for the most part, pretty damn tasty rum and cointreau drink. Spent about $60 with tip here, the Chicago crew texted me and said they were off to the Hilton and Quarks if I wanted to go. I knew Quarks might be closing so decided to head down there.

    Nice monorail ride down there, and decided to play some full coin Star Wars slots, last trip, these machines kicked my ass quick on full coin, towards my last days in town, when I was on a bit of tilt and I probably dropped $300 without hitting the deathstar or Obi Won bonus. Anyway, I start playing and quickly hit a $100 winner and assorted others, no bonuses, but I was up $140 or so quick, and then hit another $100 winner (still no bonus) so I decided to head into Quarks. Met up with the group and the waiter confirmed they are closing Sept 1. I know some won’t miss it, but the food and drinks here are pretty good in my opinion and not extraordinarily overpriced. Everyone at the table had a min or full size warp core, borg sphere, or james tea kirk. I settled for and andurian fizz. Lemonade, strawberry puree, and rum with a topping of 151, these are damn good and have enough kick in them. I also grabbed an appetizer (even though I wasn’t hungry at all) of the spicy asian chicken tenders, for those that have read my reports before, I’ve probably gushed over those before, I will say, they weren’t as good this time, they seemed to have changed the cut of chicken they use, they seemed flat and plain, where previously they used a type of tender that curled up nicely with some ridges for the sauce. It was ok and something I had to do with the place closing.

    So I basically sat back and watched the group get a good drunk on, for the most part only finishing half of their drinks, the waiter made 5 trips back getting to go cups for all of them and I wound up with a full glass of warp core. There were about 8 in their group and they were going to the strat then downtown. I decided to pass as it was my last night and while I didn’t have an early flight, being down only around 1k for the whole trip, and doing much of what I wanted to, I didn’t feel like doing much else, besides maybe some strip wandering and maybe a push for a breakeven night. So I bid farewell and hit the $1 vp machine in the spacequest casino at the bar. And after losing a hundred and debating whether to keep playing, I put another hundred in and hit within the first $20 4 aces on bonus poker, woohoo a $400 win, slapped the bar as it counted up, cashed it out and decided to hit the star wars machine again, 100 to play until lost or doubled at least. Well I lost it pretty quick (no damn bonus either ) So all in all a very profitable Hilton trip for about 400 on the plus side. Subtract the food and drinks and I probably made $320 or so, this was definitely turning into a good day.

    So back to the MGM, to the room, reviewed what I had and I believe it was around 15 or 16 hundred. I’m sure my day by day accounts above leave out some losses somewhere at times, as based on my today winnings, it would have appeared I was up higher, but I enjoyed a variety of specialty drinks and such and paid cash as I went too. So anyway, I decided that I wanted to go home with 1k, so I put it in the safe and took the rest to go gamble. I headed down to Rouge as they used to have a cable car on their menu, and I was going to play some VP and drink a few more of those, they didn’t have one, so I just drank some more comped capt and diets. The bartender was pretty cool though and asked if I wanted a shot, so sure a shot of jager it was, comped as well. So feeling pretty good and eventually lost that $100. So back to baccarat, $400 in and my luck of picking the right side abandoned me and my buyin was basically gone. So I decided to take a walk through NY NY and around that area for a bit..

    Grabbed some more just in case money from the safe, just enough to have a hundy buyin if I wanted somewhere and hit the strip. I played for a bit at Excal on their Spanish 21 game, but decided to be over aggressive in my betting style and on $100 buyin that doesn’t last long. The thing is though, as I was pushing those bets, it made me realize I just wasn’t interested in gambling for any length of time, the jones was done for this trip and I have some bankroll for the next trip.

    So back to MGM, walking into Excal I noticed the number of working girls hovering on the walkway. Trust me there was no doubt they were, as I haven’t seen heels that high and skirts that short on that many girls that managed to stay isolated by themselves and within 10-15 feet of each other, checking out potentials like prey. But coming out of the Excal I notice them still there, and as I get close to the walkway area, I see one looking back at the Excal entrance and see security coming out, a quick whistle to the other ones, and next thing you know there are heels flying everywhere, it looked like the scattering of gazelle when a lion or other predator gets near the herd. Comical in so many ways and an only in Vegas moment for sure. So I decide to observe some more and it seemed they made a heading for the Tropicana for their refuge, so I walk in that direction, and they must have met up with another herd, as there were easily double the number here.

    Deciding it probably wouldn’t be long until one decided to solicit, I headed back to the MGM, and headed to bed. A wake up 3 hours before the flight in the morning, a quick starbucks and pack and short taxi ride to the airport. And this trip is in the books.

    In the end it was a great trip, I managed to do a ton of new things, got to get away from the constant gambling rut I had gotten into, seemed to win some as well (last trip it was like an endless vacuum and by the time I won anything, it was way too late) and just had an overall great time. I’m definitely getting older though, I typically don’t ever not have a drink in hand when I’m in Vegas and that makes for a long recovery time when getting home.

    I was able to push myself to start a bit later in the day (drinking) that is this trip, I got away from the baileys and coffee, in order to do some shots and specialty drinks later in the day when I was bored, and wanted to get a bit stronger buzz on without going over the edge. This helped, but I still consumed way too much alchohol. Have to remember I’m not 22 anymore, I’m dreading a bit the trip with my brother in October, as pacing is going to be necessary.

    I’m definitely chomping at the bit for the next trip, only 3 months away and airfare paid for already makes it very nice, and I think it helped me manage my time better on this trip too. Thanks for hanging in there on this long report, likely with numerous grammatical/spelling errors that I refuse to go back and correct. Feel free to post any questions you might have and I’ll do my best to respond.
     
  2. SCRATCH73

    SCRATCH73 Assman

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    Nice read Jinx, Thanks for the TR!:thumbsup:
     
  3. shaftyjay

    shaftyjay Tourist

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    Nice TR. I was going to post something about Cheetah's and related clubs since my next trip is for the BIG 3-0. I'm not looking to get put in the chair onstage, but, I was still curious of the quality. :ssst:
     
  4. Jinx

    Jinx VIP Whale

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    Probably on the 7-8 scale compared to some of the other places in Vegas. Although I have no doubt you'll find a 10 or a 5 there, depending on the night you go. I would say if your looking at a Vegas experience, the Rhino or one of the bigger clubs might be a better choice. If you want something similar to what maybe at home (well depending on where you live), but kicked up a couple notches vegas style, then Cheetahs is a better fit in my opinion.

    Hope you have fun on the 30th.
     
  5. michigander

    michigander Tourist

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    Nice​
    Trip Report. but I wondered all the way through it what did you sing at the karoeke bar lol?
     
  6. gotavegasjones

    gotavegasjones VIP Whale

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    Jinx - thanks for posting your TR. You sure did a bunch of stuff and made some new friends to boot. Have a great trip in October.

    GVJ
     
  7. Leeza14

    Leeza14 VIP Whale

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    Great TR -- I want to try those blue cheese chips at Puck's next time, I think! Thanks for the suggestion! :thumbsup:
     
  8. peanutmnm

    peanutmnm Scotchy

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    Nice report jinx. Gave me the feeling I was right there with you. I send you my dates in Oct hopefully they line up with yours.
     
  9. Jinx

    Jinx VIP Whale

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    Thanks all for the nice comments.

    Michigander, I'm a karaoke junkie, so at HOB, it was Pour some sugar on me by Def Leppard (they have a one page list, and only let each song play once through the night) At IP karaoke, I did Bed of Roses by Bon Jovi. As a karaoke junkie, I have a ton of songs that I'm comfortable with, just depends on the feeling for the night :)
     
  10. Thor

    Thor Beer Drinker

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    you need to hit up the ellis island karaoke!!! great times there...and cheap, good brew!!!!!:beer::beer::beer:
     
  11. ghetto71

    ghetto71 Tourist

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    Nice TR!:peace:
     
  12. kodidog

    kodidog Low-Roller

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    Thanks for..

    ..the nice lonnnnng read!
     
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