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Orleans 12/4-->6 (new tower, new spa)

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by DebB, Dec 10, 2002.

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  1. DebB

    DebB Low-Roller

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    My Trip Report

    Did not bother with valet since self-parking was available close to entrance
    @ around 1:30 p.m. Wed. Lots of cowboys and cowgirls around for rodeo,
    and table of National Finals Rodeo souvenirs (jackets, hats, etc.) set up at entrance.

    Had a nice room offer $30/night (that included free drinks, 2-for-1 buffets, fun book
    with other offers including a deal on spa service) for two nights. [Didn't share
    with this group because offer was made in a personalized letter I had to produce
    at check-in with an ID]. Check-in went fast and I was given all the coupons, etc.
    that my room offer included with no problem. Room on 6th
    floor of new tower. Additional elevators were built on opposite side of security
    guard's spot from original tower elevators.

    Except for newer carpeting the new room was very similar to old. We've only
    had king beds in older tower. The new room had the same layout but seemed
    a bit more cramped than older tower -- might just be the king bed leaves more
    room. Room was fine, but thought they might take the opportunity to jazz
    up the decor or plumbing fixtures in a new tower -- rather than just clone their
    existing rooms. Also -- in new tower, there is no room 666 -- skipped over,
    guess they don't want to draw satanic hotel guests? :eek:
    ;)

    Terrible's discount liquor store still has the best prices on Sierra Nevada pale
    ale (my s.o.'s favorite). Bottled water price went up, now same as gift shop
    (cheapest 99 cents for small).

    Never made it to coffee shop for Graveyard special breakfasts, but the sign
    is still prominently displayed there -- we were either too full from evening
    buffet [​IMG] or overslept past the 7 a.m. cutoff. Had good service and
    sandwiches there during regular hours.

    The Spa @ the Orleans was surprisingly nice. Of course, I got a massage there
    just to share the experience with you all on this site [​IMG]
    Spa is straight past the new tower elevators and past salon. After checking
    in at reception desk (where they have ubiquitous body products on sale)
    I continued back to the women's area, where decor is not just neutral colors.
    There are some blue and green-blue accents in tiles, etc. Lockers have keys,
    and are so new that the locks are still a bit stiff.

    On a weekday, it wasn't too busy. I mostly had the place to myself, although
    2 women came in and went to massage appts. while I lazed in the whirlpool.
    There are the required nice shampoos, etc. in the showers. My impression
    is that they have at least as many showers as the Treasure Island spa (where
    I went later in the week) but maybe a bit less counter space with sinks and
    hair styling products and dryers. I got what I needed from the attendant, but
    she didn't hover over me like they can at other spas.

    The door into the locker room is a bit annoying; swinging short louvered
    double door. Yes, you can kind of see if someone is on the other side
    so you don't crash, but the hinges are noisy and keep flapping after someone
    has gone thru. _Not_ relaxing, especially on the outside where there are two
    padded chairs for those waiting for massages, etc.

    The therapy rooms are off a quiet deadend hallway (unlike the busy hallway
    at the Treasure Island spa, where they have posted signs asking for quiet).
    My masseuse (Bonnie?) was friendly, professional and skilled. I was very
    happy with my 50 minute Swedish massage. I plan to go back for sure
    [​IMG] And maybe get the 90 minute version!
    There are a variety of offered services; I'll dig out my brochure
    if anyone has questions.

    Lots of choices for video poker, including nickels. And the pay tables were
    the best I saw all week, except for those good ones at Green Valley Ranch.
    Until I hit the Strip on the weekend, I was ahead gambling. It can get smokey
    there, the only downside [​IMG] I planned to see a movie but gambled instead.
    My s.o. enjoyed the poker room.

    Buffets were good overall, but perhaps with our 2-for-1
    coupons we aren't too harsh?

    Hope this helps anyone considering the Orleans.
     
  2. bigdogmom

    bigdogmom VIP Whale

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    Thanks for the report, Deb, and glad to hear your Orleans spa experience was good. I just booked a massage there for next Monday! I hardly ever do this (this is really just the 2nd time I've treated myself to a professional massage), so I'm really looking forward to it! :cool:
     
  3. geeman

    geeman Guest

    Deb, a nice, imformative report. Mrs. G. and I are planning to be at Orleans in Feb. You touched on some things we haven't heard before.This will be our first stay off-strip. We are looking for good V.P. and this seems to be the place! ;)
     
  4. Lmadrid

    Lmadrid Tourist

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    Deb...you mind me asking how much the Orleans charged for their massage?
     
  5. DebB

    DebB Low-Roller

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    $55 for 50 minute massage at Spa Orleans -- tip NOT included, and I did tip.

    This is more affordable than Strip spas which also do not include tip.
    [Big exception is Canyon Ranch @ Venetian -- more expensive but includes gratuities.]

    Prices for all the services are on the orleanscasino.com website, enter site,
    click on spa, then click on "treatments" and or "packages" and there
    will be price list.
     
  6. bigdogmom

    bigdogmom VIP Whale

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    Deb - can I ask how much you tipped? I'm kind of clueless about these things; is $5 enough? :confused:
     
  7. HoyaHeel

    HoyaHeel Grammar Police & Admin

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    For most beauty services, (including spa) tipping recommendations are 15%. Now's the time of year everyone is publishing tipping guidelines, so you might be able to find some online. I don't think Sonya covers spas in her tips guidelines here, but can't remember. The Today Show usually has someone on in December going over recommendations, which may be posted on their website. So if I got a $55 massage, I'd tip probably $10 b/c that's a nice even amount. I've never had a bad massage, so I don't know how I'd lower a tip.

    OK, lasvegas.com recommends 15-18% for spa tipping, tipping.org only has holiday tips for spas, but recommends 15% for beauty salons, oxygen suggests 12-18%.....Get the idea? [​IMG] As always, tipping is personal and depends on your budget & your experience with the person you tip.

    [ December 11, 2002, 09:40 AM: Message edited by: HoyaHeel ]
     
  8. bigdogmom

    bigdogmom VIP Whale

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    Thanks for looking, Hoya! Guess I'll go with $10. Tips are so weird... the woman who cuts my hair is fabulous, but she does it out of her home. So I'm never sure whether to tip her or not... I've been going to her for 5 years... she charges $35 for a cut (the best cuts I've ever had) and I always tip her $5. It's probably chintzy but I'm not even sure I need to tip her!
     
  9. DebB

    DebB Low-Roller

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    Tipping is so very confusing. Although most of my valuables were locked
    away, I crammed three $5 bills into the pocket of my robe. Then I knew
    I could use my own judgment at the end of the massage session as to
    how good the service was, and hand it to masseuse directly. $5 (about 9%)
    for basic, $10 (about 18%) for good, $15 overtip? (27%) if excellent.
    [I prefer to tip personally, and hand money to service provider, although
    you can also put the gratuity on the bill you pay as you leave, at the
    desk where you check into the spa. Call me crotchety, but I don't think
    it is the business of the other spa personnel or hotel to know my tipping
    amount -- that's between me and the tippee [​IMG]

    I do not know the charges for massages or other services at other off-strip
    properties. But I suspect that the rates at Orleans are a bit low during this
    early time in the Spa's first year.
     
  10. HoyaHeel

    HoyaHeel Grammar Police & Admin

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    Conventional wisdom is you don't tip the owner of a salon, if that's who does your hair, so you're probably fine [​IMG] www.tipping.org has some great guidelines--some things I'll never use, and other stuff that is very handy!
     
  11. HoyaHeel

    HoyaHeel Grammar Police & Admin

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    Also, most spas and larger/fancier beauty salons have envelopes at the front desk--if you are uncomfortable going back to find your masseuse, but don't want to put the tip on the bill. You just stick in what you want, put their name & yours on the outside, and leave the envelope at the desk. I find that if I'm relaxing after a treatment or massage & my attendant leaves, I might not find her/him again when I'm ready to leave, so it's easier to use the little envelopes.
     
  12. DebB

    DebB Low-Roller

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    A followup to Hoya Heel's comments about the discreet evelopes for
    tipping -- I saw envelopes like these @ Treasure Island's salon and spa,
    but did not notice them at Orleans. [They might have been there, just
    did not see them.]
     
  13. DebB

    DebB Low-Roller

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    Reviving this thread and my trip report since Orleans questions keep coming up for discussion.
     
  14. hgmom

    hgmom Tourist

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    DebB,
    Thanks for the lowdown on the Orleans! This will be our 3rd time coming to Vegas for our anniversary. The 1st stay was at the Stardust and 2nd at Treasure Island. We have yet to have a bad experience. I work for an upscale hotel chain and I am very spoiled....very picky about what I expect as far as service and cleanliness. So, I am always looking for other traveler's experiences about their stays. It really says alot.
    This year we are on a much tighter budget but cannot give up our Vegas anniversary, so we are considering a package through America West that includes the Orleans at a great deal! I haven't read one bad thing about it yet.
    I just want to know one thing. How often does the shuttle run to and from the Barbary Coast and is it hard to get on one? Also, if we missed the shuttle or came back really late, how much is a cab ride from the Orleans to the strip? (closest point on the strip) Is the Orleans in a good area? (as in, not "shady"?)
    Thanks so much for your help, thank god I found this board!!
     
  15. HoyaHeel

    HoyaHeel Grammar Police & Admin

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    I don't know about the shuttle, but the past couple times we've gone and taken a taxi to Orleans, it's been around $10 (from South or mid strip--Luxor & Monte Carlo) I think that's a base fare of $7 plus more for extra people or something. Not $30, for sure. It's a quick trip, too.
     
  16. Andsen

    Andsen Well-Known Member

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    The shuttle runs about every 20 minutes and sometimes is too crowded to accomodate all the would be passengers. There is no way to assure "first come-first served" so it is possible that someone will shove their way in front of you and leave you waiting more than once if you are going during busy times. I've noticed this more on the Barbary Coast to Orleans portion but it may only be because of my timing. I have found a better way (for me) to be the Harrahs to Rio shuttle (every 15 minutes and they add additional shuttles as needed) and walk across to the Gold Coast. From the Gold Coast you can catch a shuttle to the Orleans and it is seldom full. You may not want to go this route but it works for me. ;)
     
  17. DebB

    DebB Low-Roller

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    Never used the shuttle, had rental cars.

    Hmmm, you ask if Orleans is in a shady area. Not really, but there's nothing to walk to outside. Good thing there is so much inside: movie theater, new spa, late night coffee shop specials, poker room.

    It is in a very busy -- heavy traffic -- commercial area bordering industrial. The Palms (great VP and we like Garduno's New Mexico food) is a short cab ride or maybe you could take Gold Coast shuttle and cross over to Palms.

    Have a cool trip. [​IMG]
     
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