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Low roller and silver strike hunt

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by dewey089, Mar 13, 2003.

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  1. dewey089

    dewey089 Guru of Value

    Aug 4, 2001
    averill park (near albany) ny
    Trips to Las Vegas:

    My Trip Report

    I wasn’t going to return to Vegas so soon again, but my buddy Peter from Florida called with free and reduced hotel room deals and a wife who did not want to go back, and I have all these 2-1 buffet coupons and a wife who doesn‘t go, so how could I say no. I spent eleven nights there and the total cost (air, room, week of rental car, shows, food) was $514. A true low roller deal.

    It was a fine week even with the rain. I actually ran through a hail storm to get to the Venetian and then watched it from the balcony. That was unusual.

    I met some interesting people: a fellow in the poker room who two weeks ago buried his wife and that morning had just gotten a new job driving the people to the girls in Parump and had some stories, another fellow with a printed strategy chart for VP who was spending a month at Amerisuites in Vegas after losing his wife. In NYNY I watched an Australian new bride in bridal gown, her groom and best man have a very good series of craps rolls to the shouts of “thunder from downunder†from table player answered by some Australian unison chant. And I met a fellow at the MacKing show who told me a great story about losing his guide in the Amazon jungles of Peru and stumbling into a spear toting, blowgun armed isolated indigenous tribe for some tense minutes before the guide found them again. Vegas people are really quite a mix.


    Palace Station: We stayed four nights and enjoyed our room and the gambling. I was happy to see 10/7 Double Bonus there. We also enjoyed the Monday and Tuesday late night free tournaments in which men compete against women. It was easier to qualify as a man perhaps because fewer men participated in the tournament. You also had to wait less time between the qualifying round and the final playoff if you were male. I won $20 one night.
    Staying at the Palace Station gave us free tickets to Laugh Trax and I enjoyed the show.

    Stratosphere : I like staying here, but this time they did not have very good music

    NYNY: Peter had free weekend rooms in spite of a rather modest record of play. He probably will not again as we did not play much there. We did play some fine JOB 9/6 and put a little in Megabucks.

    I enjoyed the late night crowd excitement, but this is not my favorite casino. I forgot to ask for a room away from the roller coaster, but it was not loud enough to bother us at all. The rooms were very nice.

    PLAZA: After Peter left I took a couple nights by myself at the Plaza and the rooms there were comfortable and quiet. Mine looked down Main Street and the view of Las Vegas Club and other neon at night was delightful.


    We stayed in these hotels because they gave us the best deals, but none of them really satisfy me for location. I did enjoy the nostalgia of Palace Station because on my first long visit to Vegas, about eight years ago, I had stayed there with an old college buddy and my oldest son. We actually walked to the strip then all the way to the other end and back to see all we could see. This was in August. but now I know so many more satisfying places to go.

    I liked the Friday and Saturday night crowds around NYNY area and I did enjoy some of the music, especially a band that featured two black male dancers who danced in a graceful harmony, some of their movements approaching acrobatics. But the NYNY lounge is not built so that you can see the acts from the lounge tables. People stand in the way. Getting a seat and waiting for the next set was of no use.

    I usually like downtown, but lately I am getting less pleasure from it. The gambling is much better than the strip, but not better than other off strip areas. There are just too many seedy characters around. At the Plaza some fellow grabbed a cup of quarters and ran with it. I suppose that can happen anywhere, but I doubt it happens much at Silverton or Fiesta Henderson as there is no where to run to, nor do I feel the same tension in Rio/Gold Coast/Palms/Orleans area. When I stayed at the Plaza, I found myself taking a bus to Harrah’s then the free shuttle to Rio, walking to the Palms, then catching the free Gold Coast shuttle back to Barbary Coast and taking a bus back downtown.

    We visited Silverton for the first time and we both liked it. We visited Jean also for the first time and we both hated it. Silverton had great gambling, a friendly crew. Jean had stressed dealers and very bad VP.

    The entire week was driven by Peter’s desire to expand his collection of silver strikes and he managed to do that, coming home with about $2000 in collector coins including four of the $200 coins. I guess he has some representative coins from every casino that currently offers them.


    I play 10/7 Double Bonus video poker for the most part and just did not have much luck all week. No royals, one set of aces, and some nights when quads were as scarce as Megabucks jackpots.

    I played a small amount of money in the Megabucks, hitting and keeping $100 of profit the first night, but losing it by the end of the week. Peter hit for $450 and then again for $1500, both at the Palms while waiting for me to leave a live poker game. But then Peter hit everything he tried coming back with a profit of about 4 grand, about half of that i collector coins

    Peter looks for the haywire slots with two coins that do not pay huge top jackpots. His reasoning is that he will hit more of the smaller pays and it seemed to work that way on this trip. His Silver Strike gambling also seems to pay very well for slots. Perhaps the casinos can set the slots a little looser because they know that a certain portion of the coins won will never be redeemed for money.

    I introduced Peter to craps at the Fiesta Henderson in the morning. This is the best craps game in Vegas. There you can play $1 on the line with 10X the odds, so taking three numbers is not a bankroll killer. I had fine rolls and walked away with a profit of $300. Peter rolled well too and also benefited from my good rolls. I highly recommend this place, especially if you want to teach someone the game. The dealers are easy and friendly and a modest $5 Yo bet for them is met with incredulity. The other players are easy, often locals who come often. It is a nice game all around.

    But then I like the casino overall. Good 10/7 Double Bonus, inexpensive and good buffet, and great tournaments and point promotions. You swipe your card for meal comps, or accumulated points can be used at other Station Casinos simply by going to the promotions booth and moving points. I did it at Texas Station. It is quieter than some places, but sometimes I want a relaxed time.

    At the Stratosphere I played over 100% 9/5 Bonus Poker but did not do well.

    There are some great coin fed JOB machines at the Plaza just inside one of the doors. They are really antiques, and I expect we will not have a chance to play such old fellows in the future of coinless tickets. So try them out for a bit if you have the patience. Be careful about selecting what you hold, however, as you can’t change your mind and decide to hold other cards.


    Monte Carlo’s daily FREE slot tournament and raffle:
    If you are willing to spend time in the casino or at least in that area, this is a great deal. For signing up we were given a great traveler beverage cup or really good quality key chain. The raffle ticket is held until later in the evening and five are drawn for $100 each. You play a qualifying slot session. Top two scores of the eight hourly sessions are invited back in the evening to play with a total of twenty people for $500. Each of these final round participants gets a tee shirt that reads “tournament winner.†Losers are given tickets for a drawing at the playoffs. Four seats of the twenty are drawn from loser tickets as well as hats and shirt prizes. We played on three days and I ended up with a tee shirt and a hat and four of the colorfully decorated Monte Carlo traveler cups. (We signed up for one session and did not make it to the slots in time)

    Fiesta Henderson has daily VP, Pai Gow or Blackjack tournaments with free entry coupons in their mailings. Replays are $5 with the fifth one free. So I tried the VP tournament five times for $15. It is played on 10/7 DB formats. Hitting quad jacks or better gets you a nice extra large Fiesta sweatshirt. The high score for the day gets $1000. We did not do too well, but I won two sweatshirts and Peter won four.


    If you want a friendly, easy, fun game of either seven card stuff or Texas Hold ’Em go to the Palms in the afternoon. Their 3-6 structured stud game, when they have enough players is a fine game. Unlike those 1-5 spread games, the pots are large enough to offset the rakes. Their beginners $2-4 Texas Hold Em game was a great way for me to learn how the game goes. I have been intimidated other places because the Hold Em players all seem to have a much greater grasp of odds and poker and some of them are too serious and too arrogant. I tried a $1-$8 spread limit game at the Sahara and ran into that kind of crowd. Ugly manners and no slack for beginners. At the Palms a dealer named Joe took time to show me the basics and suggest a safe strategy while I was learning. A young kid from the higher stakes games also showed me a little information and both Joe and the kid then checked on me to see I was comfortable and things were going well. I never got such fine attention in any poker room anywhere.

    While waiting for a seat, I could play 10/7 DB Poker on a fine, new, clean, ticket out machine and listen for a pager call. Food comps bought me the buffet or a fine late night steak at the diner.

    There is no huge progressive, so the game does not attract those old locals who play tight every day and have a bad attitude as they are just waiting to get beat with four of a kind and hit the thousands. There are nice bonus pays for four of a kind or better. Of course, as luck would have it, while I was playing a guy with four kings beat four sixes. At another casino I might have shared a few thousand dollars for being in that hand. But that won’t happen very often.

    My most frustrating hand was to have aces full in a seven card stud game and be head to head with a fellow who had kings full only to have him go “all in†and so stop what would have been a fine betting frenzy. I hate those “all in “ players.

    FOOD and DRINK: Our buffet choices were usually determined by 2-1 coupons or comps and often we ate just once a day, midday.

    Fiesta Henderson
    Main Street Station
    Texas Station
    Palace Station

    The Hilton was clearly better quality than the others, offering beer or wine with the meal and nicer selections of food.
    Although the buffet is very limited at the Silverton I rate it high because the food was very tasty and unlike food in other areas. I loved the pepper pot soup there.
    We were also comped at Chin Chins NYNY The food was very good and it was the only good cup of tea I had on my entire visit.

    Once I snacked at the Gold Coast. I used my two drink LVA coupon for a couple Coronas, bought a $75 hot dog with kraut, and took them to my table to hear the Dixie land Jazz Group.
    We had a cheap breakfast once in Jean. Just Okay.
    I caught the unadvertised late night steak at Binion’s and enjoyed it.
    I tried the 99 cent artificial crab cocktail at Gold Coast and liked it as much as the shrimp..
    Peter is a coffee person. At McDonald’s he bought coffee once, saved the cup, and got many free refills other mornings.

    For breakfast I like a hot chocolate while playing video poker. I drink Corona or scotch or cognac always ordered with a bottle of water. Playing poker at the Palms I drank double Hennessey. Very pretty and friendly waitresses.


    The Drifters tribute at the downtown Horseshoe was a good show.

    I finally caught the comedy/ magic of MacKing at Harrah’s and enjoyed it very much. Get there early if you want a good seat. Everyone has free coupons.

    The Dixie Land music at the Gold Coast was great as always, but their off the cuff rendition of “She’s Got It Bad and That Ain’t Good†in Louie Prima style with four different endings was top notch. Nothing canned about that afternoon’s performance. I just wish the sets were longer.

    I guess that about sums it up. A good week. A great price. When I go again, I guess I want to stay in the Gold Coast/Palms area and just skip renting a car. Unless I get a great deal at the Fiesta Henderson.
    Happy gambling!

    [ March 13, 2003, 07:46 AM: Message edited by: dewey ]
  2. Andsen

    Andsen Well-Known Member

    Feb 25, 2002
    Wow! A $75 hot dog! Just kidding but you did forget the decimal point. Actually you mighta payed 75 bucks if you had bad luck at the tables while there. It's a great dog at 75 cents. [​IMG]
  3. bigdogmom

    bigdogmom VIP Whale

    Mar 9, 2002
    Aurora, CO
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    Hi, Dewey! I was happy to see your trip report; it was great as usual. You sure meet some interesting characters in your travels, don't you?

    I've got my May trip booked; leaving May 15 for 5 nights with a friend from work (meeting 3 other friends there) and staying at the Orleans again unless something better comes up.

  4. dewey089

    dewey089 Guru of Value

    Aug 4, 2001
    averill park (near albany) ny
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    Sounds yummy, bigdogmom! You will have plenty to look forward to. I did not make the Orleans this time, nor do they mail me anything in spite of all that DB play. Sometimes I think that they don't want me to come and play the over 100% machines.

    My friend in Florida already has more offers in the mail. it must be because he is a slot player. He has another deal at NYNY and I can't figure that out based on his play. Well, I don't know when my next trip will be. I may go in August or December as both times the prices are low. I liked going when the rodeo was in town and may try that again. What a contrast between seeing all the rodeo costumes in December and then riding the bus with those wild jacketed Southern drawling NASCAR fans. It would be cool to see both groups on the same block. Don't work too hard. Send an email if you feel talkative.
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