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New Years in Vegas: A little bit of everything

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by AndyGator, Jan 5, 2014.

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  1. AndyGator

    AndyGator Tourist

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    My Trip Report

    Dad and I took advantage of some overlapping time off and went to Vegas 12/27-1/3. We booked rooms at Rio (12/27-29), LVH (12/30-31) and Encore (1/1-2).

    Part I - Hotels:

    Rio:
    Things got off to a bad start here. First night was a Friday night, our flight got in around 11pm local time, got to Rio around midnight. I had booked a two-queen non-smoking room through TR. I tried the $20 trick, and thought things looked good as the young lady at the front desk looked at the computer screen for a while. She then informed me that we could either have a king non-smoking room or two-queens smoking room. At least she returned the $20. We moved to a room with two-queens after brunch the next morning. No upgrades as far as view or room type, no comps for the trouble.

    As far as gaming at Rio, I had a pleasant enough time. I enjoy the bevertainer eye candy, but had trouble getting noticed Friday night, went back to the room after an hour or so of not getting served. Majority of my gambling this trip was sports wagering. I thought the sports book there was decent - functional but nothing too fancy. At least they're not too stingy with drinks.

    Did Carnival World brunch Saturday and Sunday. I really enjoyed the selection, probably the best of the CET buffets I've tried (Rio, Planet, Paris). They were comped as part of the 2 free BoB passes that come with the TR Visa, so that made it even better.

    Overall, probably won't stay at Rio again. I enjoyed it, but nothing to really draw me to return. To be honest, it made me miss some aspects of my stay at PH. Next CET property I'll probably stay at would either be Bally's (location + monorail) or Caesars (have always wanted to check it out).

    LVH:
    I was bracing myself for two rough nights. Some of the reviews online are enough to scare you out of ever booking this place, but it was the only economical New Years option (2 nights for $165ish total) with strip access (monorail).

    I know New Years Eve is probably their biggest night, but I still tried the $20 trick. The young lady checking us in was appreciative of the tip and did her best to accommodate us. We ended up with a North Tower room (read these were better, so I asked for it) on 23rd floor with decent view. The room and the beds were clean and comfortable, and that felt like a victory at LVH. I would give the room and beds 4/5, but shitty showers, slow elevators and lack of ice machines make me bump it down to 3/5.

    12/30 and 12/31 were busy days and nights for us (concerts, shows, fireworks), so I don't have much to say about the casino. The SuperBook was very impressive, though I only made one bet there and was not around to watch the game. Service as far as getting a beer during vp play was slow, but it was NYE, probably their busiest night of the year.

    I could see myself returning during a busy time (holiday weekend, March Madness, etc) just for the cheap rooms and monorail access.

    Wynn:
    Final two nights were booked at Encore for $123/night through Last Minute Travel. When we checked in (around 2 p.m.), I again tried the $20 trick. The young lady immediately returned it, saying I could tip if I was satisfied with her service. No complimentary upgrades for us (I asked about high floor and strip view), but she offered a $50/night upgrade to Wynn Tower Suite. We accepted, though there was some confusion about "not having to pay the resort fee." Obviously, the room and the service in the Tower Suites was very impressive.

    I really enjoyed the Wynn gaming experience as well. I got good mileage from the machines, and beverage service was pretty good. Red Card workers were friendly and helpful.

    Buffet at Wynn is the best in my opinion in both selection and quality. The sushi selection was impressive and I really enjoyed the grilled filets.

    Overall, really impressed with Wynn, but I will probably want to check out Aria and/or Cosmopolitan before returning to Wynncore.

    Of the hotels I've stayed at over three trips:
    1. Wynn
    2. Planet Hollywood
    3. Rio
    4. Harrah's
    5. LVH
     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2014
  2. smartone

    smartone VIP Whale

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    Good report! Thanks for sharin' the visit with us! I haven't been in the LVH in some time, but have friend in Vegas who fancies himself a pro-gambler (sports-bets)... he loves their sports book.
     
  3. AndyGator

    AndyGator Tourist

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    Part II - Other Stuff

    Sports Books Superlatives
    A couple times when we were out trying buffets or seeing Cirque shows, I had a chance to pop into a couple sports books to check in or place bets.

    Most comfortable: Aria
    Worst location: Planet Hollywood - I stayed here a week once, visited the property three times this trip, and I still have trouble finding the damn thing tucked away in that corner.
    Worst service: Hard Rock - Watched about an hour of Oregon/Texas and did not see a waitress stop in once.

    Customer Service
    Though I didn't stay at any MGM properties, I was most impressed with their customer service. At Aria, I went to pickup tickets for Zarkana and Ka. I told the woman at the box office that the Ka tickets I had purchased were no longer convenient, I'd prefer the 7:00 show to the 9:30. She volunteered to call the Ka box office and get the tickets exchanged. At Zarkana, we got seated on the inside end of a row. The curved wall made the end seat very uncomfortable for tall people (Dad and I are both over 6-feet tall). We alerted the usher, she called the box office and they upgraded us to a couch seat a few rows down. At Bellagio, when we redeemed a MyVegas pass, the lady at Mlife told us to use the invited guests line to skip the line (saved us over an hour).

    No one at Rio seemed to care that I did not get the room I had reserved. The man at the TR desk when I redeemed the BoB offer was helpful, but otherwise I was disappointed with the staff at Rio.

    Rhino

    If you saw my intro post, you know I like to hit up the Rhino. I had a bad experience 1/13, but decided to give it another chance. I'm glad I did. I think tipping the bouncer who showed me in made all the difference in the world. He sent a girl over, and I ended up spending an hour with her in VIP. She asked me to do something during our second dance that no stripper has ever asked me, made for quite the memorable experience.

    NYE

    Great fireworks show. Figured I had to do the strip experience at least once, but that will be it for me. If I do NYE in Vegas again, I'll either watch the fireworks from a garage (with dad) or go to a concert/DJ set (with friends).

    Buffets
    My rankings after three trips:
    1. Wynn (dinner) - The best selection and food.
    2. Aria (lunch) - Great layout, excellent deserts.
    3a. Paris (dinner x 2) - Not best selection, but quality of food (especially prime rib) is best of CET I've tried
    3b. Rio (brunch x 2) - Amazing selection, especially the deserts
    4. Bellagio (lunch x 2) - Love those sliders
    5. Spice Market (dinner) - Pretty much defines middle of the road
    6. Spice Market (breakfast) - Not bad, but glad it was free
    7. Orleans (dinner) - Good bargain, but the food's nothing too special
     
  4. TheCanoe

    TheCanoe Low-Roller

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    I'm gonna go find that intro post now. I've been to Rhino three times now, and I'm 1 for 3 in enjoying myself. I think the two times I had a bad time were prime nights, too crowded, too hard to get a drink, etc.

    I'll be back though.

    For what it's worth, I started just getting in a cab and asking them if they want to take me to a strip club and negotiate from there. Best deal I got from a cabbie was free trip to sapphire, no cover, and two free drinks. That way I don't have to wait on the complimentary limo/escalade. You may also end up at the Crazy Horse Too or lower level club, but I enjoy those as well.

    Worst deal I Got was a free ride and free emission to Rhino (leaving this autocorrect typo for the Lol's)

    (I did always have somewhere else I planned on going, like downtown or the other end of the strip in case they were pissed that I got in heir cab to make a deal. Like I'd always PLAN on taking the ca downtown, but I'd bring up the club and plans changed. )
     
  5. dfalk

    dfalk VIP Whale

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    Well what was it?!?
     
  6. AndyGator

    AndyGator Tourist

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    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 6, 2014
  7. charliepeete

    charliepeete Low-Roller

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    i was there for nye and we went to the rio so that we could make an escape back to red rock....we went on top of the roof of the parking garage by the masquerade tower........grabbed a beer at the burger king to watch the ten minute show..........
     
  8. Readingfanman

    Readingfanman Low-Roller

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    Gonna say! Talk about a let down moment right there!
     
    NFL Championship Weekend
  9. Tubbs

    Tubbs High-Roller

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    Thanks for the report, enjoyed the read. What happened with the resort fee at Wynn? Was it waived after you upgraded to the Tower Suites?
     
  10. kel3420

    kel3420 VIP Whale

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    "Did Carnival World brunch Saturday and Sunday. I really enjoyed the selection, probably the best of the CET buffets I've tried (Rio, Planet, Paris)."

    Gotta say, that really surprises me, I've never heard anyone rank Rio buffet above Paris'. :peace:

    Nice read, thanks!

    :beer::beer::beer:
     
  11. Sin City Sinner

    Sin City Sinner Low-Roller

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  12. hammie

    hammie VIP Whale

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  13. TheCanoe

    TheCanoe Low-Roller

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    In for the pm list?
     
  14. john1516inny

    john1516inny Low-Roller

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    one more pm

    any chance of a pm?
     
  15. Lost_Castaway

    Lost_Castaway Tourist

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    ok now I am curious now??
     
  16. vegasqc

    vegasqc VIP Whale

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    Need a lot more info on this
     
  17. D in the D

    D in the D Low-Roller

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    I'll take a PM as well....:nworthy:
     
  18. captainron62

    captainron62 VIP Whale

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    You have everyone wondering....... we have to know!! ha!
     
  19. warpdrvr

    warpdrvr Low-Roller

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    Yeah, inquiring minds want to know! Add me to the PM list....
     
  20. Lost_Castaway

    Lost_Castaway Tourist

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    Can I get on PM list?
     
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