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Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by Annie Vegas, Jun 16, 2013.

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  1. Annie Vegas

    Annie Vegas Low-Roller

    Jun 2, 2005

    My Trip Report


    Sorry this took so long to post. I’m ashamed it’s been so long. If you’re not interested in reading something from 6 months ago, stop now. I’m truly horrified with myself. I know I haven't been on for awhile, but real life got in the way, unfortunately.

    I've inserted a picture link at the bottom. Keep in mind my pics aren't nearly as good as others on this board but I did what I could with my little camera and my unphotographic talent.

    The one thing we’ve learned from this trip was to never, ever travel before the holidays again – granted it took us three December trips to learn that lesson. We rush around to get all the decorations up before we leave and then it’s so crazy when we get back, we don’t have time to bask in the post-vacation glow (or even do trip reports). That aside, it was a blast, as always, went by way too fast, and we can’t wait to get back there.

    Saturday, December 1, Day 1

    Saturday arrived and this time our flight was in the afternoon, although we would have preferred early morning. The upside is we didn’t have to rush around at the crack of dawn and could take our time.

    DIL took us to the airport, leaving #1 Son with our other son (the dog) and the cat. There was hardly anyone at all there! Security was a breeze. To boot, it was not a full flight. We had a connection at Chicago Midway (courtesy of Southwest who don’t seem to want to fly direct from our parts much anymore). Got to Midway, and our gate was literally right next to the one we were coming out of. Our Vegas flight was delayed 1/2 hour so this gave us almost 4 hours there. Thank God the seats were comfortable, not the usual garden variety plastic ones. Grabbed a bite at the McDonalds right there, and watched Taken on my iPad. (Midway charges a fee for wifi – no thanks). In spite of all this, it was still just too long a time there, making for a very long day.

    Unfortunately, it was a very full flight to LV. T couldn't sleep for the 4 hour flight. Got to LV, and the weather was surprisingly mild given that the year previously was in the 30’s and 40’s. Got a free upgrade, a Toyota something, and headed downtown to our home for the week – the Four Queens. It wasn't as crowded as we expected given it was a Saturday. Valeted the car, checked in, and got our room, 402, right next to the elevator. The bed was very comfortable, bathroom was much smaller than I had read in reviews, but it was ok. There was one floor lamp, no table, which was a bit annoying, but there was a desk and chair. There were two nightstands, one on each side with lights, and three dresser drawers, and a television on the dresser. The room was very clean and that's all that really mattered for all the time we’d spend in there. Loved, loved, loved the view. Right on Fremont. Just loved it. We didn't mind the noise at all. Unpacked everything and went out for a bit. Checked out the D, which has really changed. The inside escalator is gone (its outside), the long bar is cute, but the place is too dark, like the Aria and clearly catering to the younger set. Fitz was our home in recent years so we were a bit disappointed – it was just too loud and dark, a sign of our age.

    We got players cards and while the clerk said they would honor the Fitz coupons from LVA and ACG, they couldn’t honor ours because they weren’t relevant (i.e. no more restaurant upstairs, etc.) We headed upstairs to the “retro casino” we had heard so much about. Noticed some of the machines were moved around (my fave VPs by the bar were gone and the set of Wild Cherries by the change booth were gone). Played some Wild Cherries and the Triple Devil Keno that were still there and all total lost about $10. The "retro" of the upstairs is the fact that the machines give change, that’s pretty much it. I never thought I’d say this, ever, but I now prefer the TITO! We got a couple of buckets to bring home and agreed we really liked the old Fitz better. Maybe because we were regulars there I don’t know. By this time, which was about midnight, we were really dragging our butts, having been up about 18 hours. Went to Magnolia's for a bite and couldn't even finish our meal. Finally got to bed about 1 am.

    Sunday, December 2, Day 2

    Got up about 9:30, taking our time to get ready, and headed out about 11:30. Walked over to the Nugget and got a Starbucks and sat outside for awhile. This is our favorite downtown thing to do. Have our Starbucks and people watch. Played awhile at the Nugget and as usual, couldn't win a thing there. Lost about $60, even including some $5 BJ.

    There was a notable absence of people, and especially characters on this Sunday. They had a citywide marathon going on on Fremont Street so it was blocked off from traffic.

    Heading to the El Cortez, we decided to lunch at the Heart Attack Grill which was fun! A great gimmick, but all gimmick. The burger was overcooked and the chocolate shake had a pat of butter in it, and was really ice cream with a spoon, too thick to drink. We didn't finish the food and insisted we get paddled which really hurt but got we pics of it. Even bought a paddle and a menu. The place is so cool with cigarette machines selling Lucky Strikes (everything non filter). The waitresses are in nurse’s uniforms and the cook is dressed as a doctor. They were filming some type of promo because the owner was there. Our waitress was telling us that he originally had the place in Arizona for a few years, then opened in Texas but didn’t last long there (surprisingly) and then opened in Vegas last year. There weren’t many people in there, only about 3 and I do hope they stay around because it was a fun place although we probably wouldn’t go back in. Once you do it, you’ve done it. It was $35 for the meal and $7 for the souvenirs.

    After lunch, we walked over to the El Co. Got my $10 ACG free slot play and played a bit. Lost about $20 in VP DDB and put another $20 in and got a 4OAK for $100! Yay. Met a nice older lady next to me who loved my jewelry and had some as nice as mine so we compared our jewelry and how fabulous we were. LOL. Played BJ awhile too loving their SD in a shoe. Walking back we stopped at the Burlesque Museum and had a nice chat with Annette who worked there. We chatted awhile and talked about the shows in Vegas, and Annette said that the iCandy burlesque show wasn't really burlesque but just dancing which was interesting.

    After that, we walked back and opted for a one hour nap. Woke up refreshed and headed over to Fremont at about 6:30 where we proceeded to lose our asses but I did like the I Love Lucy machine where I got up to $40 but put some back.

    Of note is the fact that this trip we really loved the Fremont for its $5 BJ any time of day. Four Queens was a huge disappointment in that regard even after 11 at night when the joint was mostly empty the BJ was $10. Why didn’t they take a hint from their packed-to-the-gills neighbor?

    Went over to MSS cause I didn't know what time Brew Pub closed (open all night) and I really wanted to eat there again. We had a nice dinner (prime rib for Tony and a rack of ribs for me). We then tried to gamble, but again each lost about $75 each on BJ and VP. The dealer we had was newish and kept correcting our hand movements, which irritated me. He asked what day Xmas was, was it the 21st? Although he appeared to be of Asian descent, he was American which made it all the more confusing and I was convinced he was on drugs. LOL. I won’t mention his name but he was weird. Played some slots and VP and just couldn't win a thing as we never, ever do there.

    Walked over to 4 Queens making a mental note that we would get back to the California to play cause I love it there (we never did) and played progressive VP and won a little. Played a little BJ with Julian from Cuba, and lost. Played more VP but got nothing going. T was losing too and we were both too tired to walk back over to the Nugget for another Starbucks. Was at a Triple Cherries machine that was paying a bit. Just as T left I hit a 3x and 7s for $90. Got it up to $100 and cashed out. I had every intention of going on but, admittedly I was just too tired. Went to the room and fell asleep about 1, down about $112 total. T was down about $273.

    Monday, December 3, Day 3

    Woke at 8:00 and discovered that the heat was turned on. We notified housekeeping and thus began a week-long quest of getting the hotel to fix the ridiculously blasting heat vents in our room. We are from the East Coast and find 60 degrees quite balmy. T did a Starbucks run, while I worked on my notes turning away the maid and engineering who responded right away apparently, asking both to come back after 11. We showered and dressed and headed out.

    Retrieved the car and headed to Ellis Island. Disappointed to learn you can't get breakfast anytime anymore. After 11, it was a limited menu of 3 items. Got a club (ham/turkey) and fries which was pretty good, and T got the ham/eggs which is what he always gets. Portions were just as good as always. I used our ACG coupon ($7.99).

    Went to the players club to redeem our $10 MP slot coupons (LVA/ACG) and played a bit/T lost $20, me $10. Questioned the bartender about the egg nog but he insisted it needed to be kept refrigerated even though we called before we left Boston and a woman said it would be okay to bring home. We chose to just have a glass when we returned later in the week rather than spend $35 to bring home bad eggnog.

    Drove over to Bill’s to valet but discovered the valet is now closed. Valeted instead at the Flamingo and did a little window shopping where I saw the coolest cookie jar of Elvis (I collect cookie jars) and went to play awhile. Made a mental note to get back for the cookie jar since even though I found it online for about $18 cheaper, with free shipping, I wanted to get it here because hey it’s Vegas and free with points.

    While Tony waited at a bank of VP machines we liked, I had to get a new players card. There were only 2 people working the booth and the line was pretty long. I got my card and we played about an hour on $20 and I think I broke even. The tables were all $10 even the 6/5 ones so went on to Margaritaville, so excited to play there because last year we played $5 BJ there and it was so much fun, but much to our chagrin, they too were $10. T played BJ a bit and I tried an Elvis slot and a keno machine (almost got duped by a JOB that was double the $$) and within 20 min between us we lost $115 so we literally ran out.

    Headed to IP and saw the vast difference. O’Shea's is gone too. T got a chip, and we watched the Dealertainers awhile (they had a great Michael Jackson) and headed over to Harrah’s to catch Big Elvis. We met him again – he is such a nice man - got pics and talked T into going up for the contest Big Elvis has (his second time) and he was a riot, and won! He won a DVD and a certificate. You must understand what makes this so funny is that my husband is extremely reserved but clearly gets the Vegas bug. We bought another DVD of his and got some pics, and on the way out saw the Piano Twins were playing nightly at 9. Made a mental note to return (unfortunately we did not).

    Walked back to Bill’s and played a bit of $5 BJ, each of us winning about $20 (T $25) and then lost it in VP. The slot attendant was very helpful getting me a new card too when mine wouldn’t work. Saw the Metro Police cars parked at the Flamingo sign from where we were sitting at the BJ table and there were some officers there but we couldn't see their faces. The dealer told us though that the cops were always coming in for water, etc. (This of course is because we watch that show Vegas Strip, I think it’s called?)

    Finally went to get the car opting not to get the cookie jar just yet. However, we bought an ornament at the Flamingo shop and headed to the P-Ho for their buffet. Hadn’t been to the buffet since it was the Aladdin but heard how great it still was. Used our LVA $20 off and paid the remaining $39.98 with points and had a great meal. It was a really good buffet, sushi and all. The waitress was very chatty and told us how they don't let the employees eat free, that they charge them, which I thought was disgraceful when you consider all the food they throw out. She gave us extra bottles of water and after we tipped her ($6.00) we left about 11:30. Got the Advantage Card at Cabo Wabo, but because of the excruciatingly loud music there and the fact that the place is basically for young adults only (it seems), it just didn't attract us to play there and we left getting a Starbucks on the way out.

    Headed back downtown to the Four Queens and gambled awhile til about 2 am, losing about $60 then won a whopping $10 at BJ and finally headed to bed.

    At this point, the room was so hot that, upon complaining again, engineering came while we were gone and shut the heat off, leaving us a note. We also requested an ice bucket and a DND sign which we didn’t get when we checked in.

    Tuesday, December 4, Day 4

    Got up, forget what time, probably 9 or so and after showering, went down to Magnolia’s for breakfast. T had ham and eggs and I had I chicken fried steak and eggs. We used a LVA cpn getting $10.95 off + .50 on the over-50 discount.

    After breakfast, we headed over to the Mob Museum (the Bell Desk John was kind of sarcastic about how it was just a short walk there when I asked him how far it was – I sometime have mobility issues.)

    There was a lot of walking and if walking is not for you, don’t bother. However, it’s fascinating, chock full of information, 3 whole floors’ worth. Went to the souvenir shop which the tour conveniently drops you into at the end, and bought a few things. They had an ordinary stuffed dog toy (fake bundle of $$) that was $15.00 to give you an idea of the prices. I wouldn’t buy my dog a $15 toy that he would destroy in 30 seconds, at the point of a gun. Seriously?

    On the way back, stopped in at the Mob Bar we heard a lot about but were surprised that it really is just a bar. Nothing fancy at all. Played VP, had a soda to cool down, won 6.00, and left. Didn’t want to start drinking after all that walking just yet.

    Back at the hotel, T went up to the room to leave our purchases. I couldn't get my card to work in the casino downstairs so I didn't gamble. When he came back down, we got the car and headed to the North Outlets. Had never been to the Vegas outlets before, mainly because we were too busy pissing away our fortunes in the casinos. Also, we have 2 outlets near us so it’s not that big a deal. However, I did want to visit them because there were a couple of stores we didn’t have back home (Lancome, Kate Spade, Dooney & Bourke).

    Needless to say, I loved the outlets, but more walking! Why did I think it was okay to do both of these things in one day? Bought lots of stuff (a Dooney & Bourke bag and a Kate Spade bag, Yay!), 2 Moisturizers saving about $10 off back home, and a phone case set from Juicy Couture for my niece for Xmas. Saw the same leopard bejeweled phone case that a kiosk at Harrah’s had for $20 and this time it was $39 (Fremont wanted over $40!). Sometimes you can’t get it cheaper elsewhere! :eek: Had fun there and then left and dragged our butts to Sam’s Town, stopping for a Starbucks along the way. Much to my chagrin, the Bogart’s Luggage store was closed (7:00 pm) so if I wanted the extra leopard carry-on that I bought last year and loved so much I had to have two, we’d have to go back another day for it. Played awhile on the VP and a little on a WOF winning about $15 on that. Played a little BJ and went to the buffet (one of our new favorites) that was $21.60 total. I hadn’t played enough beforehand to get points for a free one but who cared. At the door was a family of 4, couple, child and another guy who rudely cut in front of us demanding their seats be moved closer to the buffet. After we went up, this guy and his kid were in front of me and we figured that we finally met Vegas Vacation’s “Eddie”! The food on his plate and his child’s were piled so high, it was absolutely sickening – I mean it’s a buffet, you’re sitting right next to it, you can go back up. Not this guy. The way he was scraping manicottis onto his dish made me skip it completely. In spite of this, we had a delicious meal, making sure to get the broccoli cheddar soup that I fell in love with the last time we were here, and then off to gamble a little bit more. Played some more BJ and a little more VP but didn’t win much. Knew I was officially a non-smoker when the guy next to me at a BJ table was absolutely making me sick from the smoke. After getting a Dunkin Donuts coffee, headed back downtown to 4 Queens.

    Played awhile, at least 45 minutes on this great VP at the bar. Loved sitting there because the drink service was of course fabulous. T lost $60 at the tables because they were all $10 and the place was half empty. We went over to the Fremont for more reasonable $5 tables, and although I lost about $30 on LIR, I spent the next 1 ½ hours winning it back (hard won $$). Went to bed about 2 or so, was so tired I thought I was getting a second wind, but passed out when I got to the room. :faint:

    Wednesday, December 5, Day 5

    Spent most of the day downtown. We just wanted to gamble and shop a bit since we hadn’t had a chance to look in all the stores and really absorb downtown.

    There were more people than ever today (The Rodeo starts on Thursday). There were more characters too, of course, something that was blissfully absent earlier in week.

    We stopped at Mermaids and took Tony's pic with girls, whereupon one of them whispered 'you know we do this for tips', so he gave her $2.00. Sorry but that pissed me off. I will tip freely but it irritates me when people ask for tips. IMHO it’s rude.

    Went over to the Plaza to HHAG using the Vegas Advantage 25% card (saving us $7.15). I ordered the biscuit/gravy/eggs which was ginormous and as usual, Tony had the ham and eggs, ginormous as well. Talked to a friend on the phone, trying to work out getting together, but we couldn’t make it work. Gave the rest of my food to a street person in front of GG. Before we left the hotel, we checked it out, but as usual and sadly, although it was much cleaner and nicer, it was still mostly empty. Wonder if it makes matters worse that they now charge a resort fee. Hmmm. Had to use the bathroom, and as soon as I walked in, the smell was awful and overwhelming. While I was in there, I didn’t hear anything unusual except another person in the bathroom. According to T who was waiting outside, a woman (presumably homeless) was escorted out of the bathroom by security. Did she kill a small animal in there I ask?

    Went over to the Golden Gate where we checked out the renovations and played BJ awhile. Used a $10 LVA BJ coupon and won on it. Made about $55 at VP (but lost $30 at BJ). The female dealer reminded me of an Asian hooker, flirting with the older guy at the table and literally not paying attention at all to me, or to T for that matter (maybe he gives off the vibe that he has no money, ha ha). I tried to get a nuts & berries but there was this big deal about how to make it and I wanted to say forget it but the cocktail waitress went to so much trouble to get it for me insisting the bartender could do it, and finally brought me one that was close but substituted with raspberry, but I didn’t have the heart to say anything so I just thanked her and of course tipped her. The new renovations were nice but was disappointed that the shrimp cocktail restaurant was gone and the shrimp was now offered in Dupar’s only.

    Made a quick pit stop in the mostly empty LVC using a Western MP ACG coupon and making $12.50. This seems to be a pattern with these two casinos, Plaza and LVC. It’s sad because I used to love the Plaza, even when it was a dump.

    Walked around to the stores, picking up a few souvenirs. Played awhile at Binion’s VP, making about $40 on VP getting a couple of 4OAKs. Played $5 of a friend’s $10 on roulette and kept getting yelled at by the dealer that I was doing it wrong – I don’t know what he was talking about but he was extremely rude and after losing the $5 I got up and left.

    While we were walking around, I was taken aback by a homeless guy in a wheelchair who had no legs. I felt really bad, so I gave him a one dollar tip, trying to ‘pay it forward’. We are certain that later that night on Flamingo Road, we saw the same guy in a wheelchair, only this time with both of his legs, hanging out with a couple of other guys under a bus awning. Felt a little foolish, but hey, I tried to do the right thing.

    Went over to the Nugget and sat awhile at our fave spot outside at Starbucks and people watched a bit. There was a woman walking by telling people she was homeless and could they spare any change. For some reason, I just didn’t believe her, but T felt bad and gave her a dollar and in return she gave him an expired parking garage ticket she picked up off the ground. Fair deal. LOL.

    Decided to take a break from the gambling and shopping and try our luck running out to Sam’s Town for the bag and maybe to Flamingo for the cookie jar before coming back for dinner. Drove out there, and hit a bit of traffic, but got there in time, got the bag and headed back down Flamingo Road, telling the valet at the Flamingo that the store was holding an item for me. He let T park there and I ran up the escalator to the shop. At the point of sale, of course, I didn’t have my players card with me, and the clerk was adamant that I had to have it to get the points off. I had to run to the casino to the players booth where thank God there wasn’t a line and got a card, and ran back to get the cookie jar. Made it back downstairs to the car, and headed downtown to dinner.

    Took a few business calls on our way downtown, and got business quickly out of the way.

    Valeted at the 4Q for the night and headed over to the Fremont Buffet where after points, paid a whopping $4.76 for both buffets, woo-hoo! After dinner, went over to the stage area (Third Street?) by Binion’s and waited 1 ½ hours during the Hoedown for Uncle Kracker. I just wanted to hear him play Smile which was almost at the end of his set.

    There were a lot of cowboys this night, with the 26th Annual Rodeo starting the next night. Fremont Street reminded me a little of what New Year’s Eve could look like. There were a lot of rude people standing with us, everyone pushing in front of others. We were amused by the security guard in front of us only letting people into the stage area with VIP passes. It was funny watching girls trying to flirt with him to get by, etc. During the concert, there was a fistfight in front of the stage area with 2 guys.

    We played awhile and walked around a bit more, and really got a hot machine at the 4Q bar where T and I had a lot of laughs where we sat about 1 1/2 hours and I played on my $20 and on other $20 and cashed out at 2:15 a.m.. at $130!

    Did well today, coming out with $160 more than I started with (technically having lost only $100 Sat and $114 Sunday).

    Thursday, December 6, Day 6

    Woke up at 10, really LATE for us! After showering, hanging out, working on notes and reviewing bankroll for the day, we left the room around noon, we headed uptown stopping along the way to take pics of various sites.

    Called the Palms Spa and made an appointment for my Friday Birthday Massage, and headed to the Peppermill because this is a Vegas must at least once during the trip. T got his - guess again?- ham and eggs which were enough for 3 people, IMHO. I tried something different, an omelet with feta and provolone and spinach and it was very good, really good but as usual, expensive, at $51 including tip (a side of bacon was $5!). Jen was our waitress and she was excellent, very eager to please. We asked about T's fave waitress, Angela, and Jen brought her over to say hello, taking pics. We asked her about the rumors of the Peppermill selling, and she told us that there was a rumor that a few years ago Steve Wynn stopped in and had breakfast and liked it so much he bought the land and refused to sell it to the people who own the land next door (who tore down the souvenir shop, the old Landmark) so they couldn’t get rid of the restaurant. It was a nice story even if it may be a myth. On the way out, there was a happy drunk on the sidewalk, literally smiling which was funny.

    T waited in the car, hoping we wouldn’t get towed, and I went into Ross, where I'd never been. What a ginormous store! Like Marshall's or TJ Maxx. I found a Michael Kohl satchel for $146 so guess who got bag #3? Yep, the bag did!

    After that, we went over to NYNY for a little gambling. We had not been back here for awhile, and clearly missed it. We were pleasantly surprised to learn they had $5 BJ all day long, making them a contender for a repeat future stay (stayed there years ago). This was at one time our very fave casino, but when they renovated it, it lost some of its charm for us, but we still loved it.

    We played a couple of hours. T came out ahead a little, I lost a little, about $35. Left with the thought on our minds that we would consider staying there again. (Also discovered we were upgraded to Pearl status, which means we could get some better offers.) We didn’t get a chance to walk around the “city” part, but promised to do it next time.

    Headed over to the Paris but the tables were all $10 and unfortunately we had very little time so we played some VP each losing about $40 and left after about. 45 min. I vowed next trip to make it more of a priority and stay a little longer. I was also sorry I didn't eat at Mon Ami Gabi this time. I don't want to eat there unless we can sit outside and last December was too cold, so we didn’t plan it. However this year the weather was 70's every day, but there’s something for the bucket list.

    Was really worried about getting to the Mirage on time because of their stupid ticket policies, so we left the Paris and got over to the Mirage for what I like to call the official screw-the-customer-as-much-as-possible event.

    I know that we all expect to pay too much for things like drinks and souvenirs at events but that doesn't make it right. We valeted and headed for the Terry Fator Theatre for our tickets. We had to rush and it was a long, long walk (for me) and I was really a little peeved at their (and Rio's) policy that you have to get there a half hour before show time, no later or they can give your tickets away. In what circumstance should this ever be allowed to happen if one was a little later than 30 minutes, I don’t know, and I told the clerk so. He apologized for the policy and said they wouldn't really give them away unless I wasn't there at show time and even then if you call, it's usually ok.

    Anyway, back to the screwing. We now had a little time to kill, so we went into the nice cozy, comfortable coffee shop by the theatre, a faux Starbucks. However, for 2 MEDIUM ice lattes they charged us $12.97!!! Even the Almighty Starbucks charges $9.54 for two LARGE. We guzzled them down, because we assumed you couldn't bring food and drink into the theatre and then of course saw the snack bar. Too late. Once we were seated (4th row, stage left, amazing seats), T had to go get me a bottle of water to take medicine and comes back with the small bottles they sell for, get this, $3.75!!! A large plastic glass with Fator and his characters brightly on it was $17 filled with liquor (according to a guest after the show). All I can say about the show is that we were both blown away. The most amazing talented performer I can ever recall, I joked that he was the love child of the late, great Danny Gans and Jeff Dunham. After the show. we bought too many souvenirs of course, including a Bobblehead which was only $4.99 shockingly. After the show, my player’s card didn't work (a pattern all week) and I got a new one and we lost a bit on VP. Didn't play BJ because the tables were all $10 and we knew $5 ones were waiting for us downtown. We left there shortly thereafter and headed to Bootleggers for a wonderful dinner. Our waiter Richard (?) remembered us or so he said (he looks like the late Pete Postlehwaite). Tony had the sausage/peppers/potatoes which were awesome and I had the chicken parm w/capellini. Cannolis of course (for 2) for dessert. Total bill was $65.00 which we found completely reasonable for such a great meal. We were so stuffed we brought our dessert cannoli back to our room for later.

    Left there to go to the Silverton because I was dying to see this mermaid bar. Waited at the empty valet forever and there was no one there so I went in to find someone. As soon as I walked in, I saw the bar which was a joke, so small. You could sit in chairs and look at the aquarium but this was proof that camera angles are everything. In pictures the place looked huge! Anyway, there was no point in staying so I went back out to the car and decided to just go back downtown. At that moment of course the valet came outside, but we just left.

    Went downtown, and gambled the rest of the night. Four Queens of course had only $10 tables so we played mostly at the Fremont but this evening lost a lot! Finally went to bed about 4 a.m. never knowing when to quit.

    Friday, December 7, Day 7

    Our last full day, sadly, and my birthday, even more sadly. :cry: After waking and checking a text from sister asking about getting niece a Vegas Pandora charm which I had forgotten about, we decided to skip breakfast, so we wouldn’t eat up the whole day and stopped at Starbucks on Paradise on our way to P-Ho. T double parked in valet with their blessing (and a tip) while I ran through the casino (as well as I could “run”) and into the mall (what’s the Desert Passage called now?) and to Pandora to get the charm. At the time I didn’t have a Pandora bracelet of my own (I do now) and of course why would I get one for me. I will of course next time since you can only get the dice charm in Vegas, I am told.

    Got out of there without making any further deposits and headed over to the Palms where my appointment with the Drift Spa for a massage awaited. T was very sweet about letting me get the massage by a male masseuse, it being my birthday. Plus I had a LVA 50% coupon and two $25 SpaFinder gift certificates from my sister which made the total massage a whopping price of $50.00 total. Not being a big spa person and not going that often, I didn’t realize I could have stayed the whole day for that price. Anyhoo, I got my massage by Steve of the Magic Hands as I like to refer to him, and feeling completely relaxed, went down to meet T, who was patiently waiting at the Food Court for his wife to return.

    We played awhile on some VP (T had already lost about $50 on BJ waiting for me) but had no luck. I played a matchplay that I had at BJ and lost that too. Couldn’t get any love there so we left and went over to Ellis Island for our eggnog drink that we wanted to try. For the second year in a row, we decided against buying a bottle and bringing it back due to mixed opinions about whether it would keep at room temperature. As previously stated, didn’t want to chance it. Had our drink (very strong eggnog) and played a little VP and headed back “home” downtown. We went to our room and freshened up and changed, and walked over to El Cortez for my birthday dinner at one of our favorite joints, the Flame (courtesy of $30 discount coupon from LVA thankyouverymuch). We played awhile, and I won some at BJ, and we had our dinner, both porterhouse, with mashed (me) and baked (for T) and we shared sides of creamed spinach and mac & cheese (yummy). For dessert, an ignormous piece of chocolate cake which had to come back with me to the room cause we couldn’t finish it. After the coupon, with tip, the meal was $85 which I found very reasonable for such a dinner.

    After dinner, we went into the Parlour for a couple of drinks and had the best time just people watching. This night was filled with true locals and some wacky characters I must say. We had the best time. John Brooks was performing as Elvis and T, who is a true Elvis aficionado, was quite impressed with him, even more so than he was with Steve Connolly, surprisingly. He thought that he had Elvis’ sound down cold. Anyways, that was lots of fun and then we left, walking by the El Cortez Coffee Shop which I’d never seen and thought the décor was cool, making mental note to eat there at some point (bucket list material).

    We left there and walked back to the Queens. T wanted to get a head start on packing, so he went up and I stayed in the casino, not doing so well, losing more and more at BJ at the smokiest table on the planet. Went over to the Fremont for awhile too but couldn’t get much going there either. I guess the Birthday Gods didn’t think I should win this year. Oh well. At least I know I made a nice investment in the properties. :thumbsup:

    Headed up finally about 2 am, finished packing and went to bed.

    Saturday, December 8, Day 8- Final Day

    Unfortunately, not much to report. We got up pretty early and got out of the room by 10 but to our chagrin, couldn’t find any place to have breakfast that didn’t have a ridiculous line! Magnolias wait was about 45 minutes and Ellis Island was worse. We checked out, headed up the strip to the airport, stopping at Mandalay to pick up a couple of chips because I didn’t have them from there and got to the airport at about noon or so. Had a bite there at I think Wendy’s at the outrageous price of $29.00 and waited for our flight. I’m really disappointed that Southwest no longer has later flights home and that we have to be at the airport early afternoon. I miss the late afternoon/early evening flights.

    Got home to a very happy dog and cat and even happier children who got to sleep in their own beds that night (they were housesitting).

    All in all, we had a great time as usual and highlight the following thoughts:

    The stores and our room was so damned hot! Why does everyone put their damned heat on when it’s 75 degrees?

    Three places can’t make Nuts n Berries – the D, Golden Gate and El Cortez. The 4 Queens bartender thought it was ridiculous, saying everyone should know how to make it. Guess it’s not so popular anymore.

    Still hate the City Center. :grrr: It gets more hideous every time I look at it.

    Very hard to find $5 tables anywhere anymore, which is why I love the El Cortez and Fremont more and more.

    We both came home losers, and can’t wait to go back but it will be awhile!


    Since the time the we got back and now, my son, his wife and I decided to treat my husband for his upcoming landmark birthday (read: old) and take him on a trip to Hollywood. We’ve always wanted to do this together, doing the tourist thing, visiting cemeteries, Universal, etc., even staying at the historic Roosevelt Hotel. He doesn’t know any of this and we are giving him the October trip for his birthday on July 6. Well, my wonderful son thought wouldn’t it be great if on the last day, on our way to the airport, we give Dad another surprise and just drive to Vegas for a few days! Who am I to argue? It’s going to be a great time doing Cali and getting to Vegas to boot. So HOLY COW WE ARE GOING TO VEGAS IN OCTOBER!!! Already booked the air and now trying to decide where to stay (probably downtown). YAY! Can’t wait. :wiggle:

    Last edited: Jun 17, 2013
  2. breanna61

    breanna61 Super Moderator

    Aug 6, 2008
    Ontario, Canada
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    Better late than never! Congrats on having another T-time; I was in Vegas during the same timeframe in December....the weather was fantastic!
  3. sabrina

    sabrina Low-Roller

    Jun 6, 2009
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    Thanks for the TR and the Pictures! enjoyed it!:beer:
  4. Smo

    Smo Mr. Las Vegas

    Jan 11, 2012
    6 Hours from Vegas
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    Thanks for the TR and pics.
    I had no idea where you stayed until after I was done with the whole TR, and saw in the pics you were at the 4 Queens. lol
  5. Annie Vegas

    Annie Vegas Low-Roller

    Jun 2, 2005
    I am so sorry. This is the second time I've done that. I am a certified moron. Thanks for picking up on it. I have corrected it as well. :nworthy:
  6. Joe

    Joe VIP Whale

    Sep 11, 2009
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    As Brenna said...better late than never!
  7. squidward

    squidward Probationary Member

    Sep 18, 2010
    South Texas
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    Annie please note I did not say a thing about it over here... tee-hee-hee :poke:

    Because I really enjoyed your trip report!
  8. gambler

    gambler VIP Whale

    Feb 7, 2012
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    Your trip report was worth the wait Annie. Thanks for sharing.

    What a great surprise you have planned for your husband's birthday! Adding on Vegas at the end just makes it that much better. Your son has great ideas!
  9. Annie Vegas

    Annie Vegas Low-Roller

    Jun 2, 2005
    Squid, I appreciate your discretion. :ssst: That's what I get for cutting and pasting without correcting.

    Gambler, my son is BRILLIANT for coming up with it. I booked today at the El Cortez unless I get a better offer before then. :licklips:
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