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Paris 3/6 - 3/11

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by jgates8, Mar 13, 2009.

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  1. jgates8

    jgates8 VIP Whale

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    My Trip Report

    Ah....another trip done & gone. And I don't even have any exciting stories to tell.

    I began the trip with actually a very nice day in Wisconsin to leave by. My son had come back to our house to pick up his truck which had been repaired, so he drove me to Madison airport on his way back to Milwaukee. We made a short pit-stop at the Coach outlet in the Dells so I could satisfy the cravings I would have to forego in Vegas, as I had no rental car to takeme to the outlet mall there (cancelled on Thursday to save for May trip). I only bought 2 birthday gifts & another small credit card case-came in at $96 so I thought it was a survivable stop. We ate at Qdoba's in Madison & then he dropped me off for my flight. The Midwest flight from Madison to Milwaukee was on time & that really is about where the good-luck for the trip ended!!! We had a scheduled 4 pm departure but were still boarding at that time. We had to wait on the runway for a few other planes, as we were a bit behind. Needless to say, the pilot then comes on & states - 'Due to extreme headwinds of 120 knots per hour we are forced to return to the gate & top off with 700 - 800 gallons of fuel to meet regulations'. Ok fine. A plane full of groans butwe will survive. And then, as we are getting topped off with fuel.................'Ladies & Gentlemen, as they were topping the plane off with fuel, they discovered a hydraulic problem. All passengers are required to deplane at this time & wait for repairs to be made to the plane. Estimated time frame for these repairs are 3 hours minimum.' Now you have a very unhappy crowd. So we get off the plane & wait for the gate agent to get off the phone - they have decided to put us on the plane coming in from DC instead & so it will now depart at 6:30 - about 2.5 hours late but only 2 hours from then with the delays we already experienced. I had my evening all planned & had eaten accordingly so I could wait for supper in Vegas - but that was out (I am a diabetic). My first vacation supper was a turkey sandwich at the airport. Ugh. Due to the headwinds the flight was now set at about 4 hours 20 minutes - which is WAY longer than normal. Regardless we left very late & arrived later yet. By that time I refused to go on a shuttle, so I headed for the taxi stand. I SWEAR TO GOD THE LINE AT THE TAXI STAND WAS LONGER THAN ANY LINE I HAVE EXPERIENCED AT DISNEYWORLD. It moved pretty quickly, but still was probably 25 min wait. I believe the fare was a total of $15 something since we managed to hit 4 red lights - but I had indicated no tunnel & he gave me no grief. He got the $20. Interesting conversation in that he did say that his tips were down about 45% with the economy. He indicated he still made a nice amount of cash tips & that for a single guy it was still great, but said he could see it would be difficult for someone raising a family.

    Arrived at Paris & I don't even know what time it was by then - close to 10 Vegas time I think. Only a couple people in line for Platinum check-in. She apologized that they had no Kings available in non-smoking but didn't matter - I use the other Queen bed for a suitcase holder/toss everything on it stand. HOWEVER, the room was at the FAR end of a hall (parking lot view) - I think it was room 1473. You go off to a small room on the right or left of the hall where there are actually two room doors inside the small room - one being a P room & the other being a standard room. I guess I have watched just too many horror movies as it freaked me out totally to go back in this small side room off the hallway. I actually had nightmares about it when I finally fell asleep as I felt someone would be waiting there for me when I walked to the end of the long hall late at night. So I knew what Saturday morning entailed- a room change request. I did play a bit downstairs at Paris Friday night as I was then wound up, but managed to quickly lose part of Saturdays bankroll.

    I went to the check-in desk the next morning before I did anything else & requested a room change. The clerk was very understanding &said I have a room immediately available for you if you would like to change now, & do you need Bell Assistance? I said no, I could move myself & went off to do so. (I was also out of singles for tips for the bellman LOL). Moved to 778 which then had an Eiffel Tower view - room layout identical of course. Not high enough for fountain view but I like to leave the curtains open at night with the tower lights on, & it was quieter than the strip view on the 15th floor that I had in October for noise. I didn't remember them turning off the tower lights late at night but maybe I just missed that on the past trips - either that or they are saving electricity - I think they went off around 3 or 4 am.? I was also grateful for the room change as they were indicating to walk-ins on Saturday a.m. that they were totally booked for that night. People were actually walking in with suitcases & expecting to get rooms. I have no idea where this large group of people headed to get rooms after they turned around & left there. What did surprise me is that the desk clerk didn't offer to call the other properties or the Harrah's # for them & see if any of the other properties had openings. They went out the door - I would have stopped @ concierge & asked them to call Flamingo, Bally's etc to check for me before I started hauling my suitcase up & down the strip!

    I will say that I really had nothing exciting happen over the next few days - a few wins that kept me playing. I received a major jackpot twice on Cashman Tonight games that paid around $240 each & was able to hit the 4th level (1st time ever) on Jackpot Party for a $200+ payout & a 50 game Sun & Moon on $2 bet that won back everything I was stupid enough to dump in it, LOL. So it did keep me going. Still lost everything I took with me, rather than coming home with money for my May trip with my mom. B**tards. I played at Paris, Bally's, Flamingo, Harrah's & Rio. I play normally penny slots & that was really all I did - I may have hit a 2 cent one by mistake once. I had made a goal to put $100 thru a $5 slot but I couldn't bring myself to do it . I think I put in $30 & then just gave up. As I made the mistake of not booking any shows in advance, I did not dredge up enough ambition to actually book any while I was there. So consequently I just did a small bit of shopping at Miracle Mile (love GAP body), & Margaritaville. I bought a monorail pass for 3 days with the intent of using it more, but just didn't do it. I think I only did 4 trips so I ended up spending way more than I needed to by buying that pass. I kept walking back from places I took the monorail to rather than taking it back again. Next time I will have a car, but if I didn't I would just walk from now on or buy a single ticket ride.

    I did get the opportunity to go back to the Flamingo Gardens again & retake photos that were on my camera that was lost last trip. I find the gardens so relaxing & such a small piece of piece & quiet in the noise of the strip.

    I spent so much time at the slots that, believe it or not, I got sick of Strawberry Daquiris. The waitress at NYNY suggested a Pina Colada & that became my replacement the last day of the trip. And boy did they hit the spot. Beverage service was fine at Paris, Bally's, Rio & Flamingo. At Harrah's it was great except for one cranky waitress so promised to bring me a water & then bypassed me on two trips & never brought it. I think she was ticked because I stopped her on the way out with a delivery tray & asked if she had any extras. (A lot of the servers, unless they
    were severely overloaded, had a few extra bottles of water on the tray - in fact at Paris, one of the girls asked every time if I would like a bottle of water along with my drink). Either way, she never brought the water & after watching her go by twice with new full trays, she wouldn't have received a tip if she had brought it then.

    I know that it is supposed to be slower out there but it seemed seriously busy to me. The only place that seemed considerably slower was the security line at the airport. And that maybe was because it was Wednesday a.m.- probably a slow day. You could tell some areas were trying to economize-Sidewalk Cafe' at Bally's was only open till 2pm. Bally's Total Rewards desk was totally closed & you had to go to Paris if you needed something. Cafe' St Louis closed the main dining room after supper & just had the 'outside' seating areas open. However, this created a line for customers waiting for a seat so it seemed to really defeat the purpose. I think some people just left because of the line. It was however, only one evening that I spotted that - so maybe they were just carpet cleaning or something.

    There were 'bargains' to be had also if you looked. Cafe St. Louis had a choice of two entrees for $12.99 at suppertime. One was 5 breaded shrimp with potato & vegetables & bread & the other was 3 small filet mignon chunks (maybe 4 oz of meat?) with potato & vegetable & bread. Add a salad for $2. Considering normal prices I felt they were a good bargain. al Dente had a small special menu for $19.99 with an Italian salad, entree' & gelato for $19.99. I had Chicken Fettucini & it was GOOD & I ended up leaving half of it. It was a nice serving for the special price. The gelato was a small scoop of strawberry & a small scoop of chocolate. Bill's Victorian Room still has the $14.99 Prime Rib/potato/salad special & a Chinese special. If you took your Bill's card to Margaritaville between 7 am & 11 am you got 20% off your purchase in the store. Text RIO to 227466 & receive a series of approximately 12 text messages over 4 days (No, you are not signing up for a paid program but you will pay whatever your incoming text message fee is, if you have one). I would suggest doing it a day or two ahead of time so you have a few when you get there. You have to take your cell to the RIO TR desk & pick up the vouchers, so you won't want to do it if you aren't going to get to the RIO. But one voucher can more than pay for your incoming text fees - I used the 2 free tickets to the Eiffel Tower & since I was by myself, I handed one to the British ladies behind me to use. Each text offer is good for 4 days (to pick up the voucher) & then the voucher was good for 3 or 4 days after it was picked up. I was given normal tickets when I redeemed the voucher at Eiffel Tower which were good for one year from date of issue. So the E.T. can be nice to pick up - you could just hold them until the next trip if you wanted. Here is a list of the offers I received:

    2 free tickets to Eiffel Tower (received twice)
    $5 off World Buffet at Rio
    $10 off Seafood Buffet at Rio
    Free desert w/entree at Buzio's
    i-Bar - 1 free drink
    B1G1 at Jubilee
    McFadden's - 2 for 1 Premium Drink
    Show in the Sky - 2 free rides
    And another drink offer that I deleted - don't remember what it was.
    Probably tons of other bargains out there too, but I was basically limiting myself to Harrah's properties.

    I did spend Tuesday afternoon at NYNY - they had a $20 entry slot tournament each half hour where the top scorer would receive 70% of entry fee ($1300) at end of tourney, 2nd would receive 20% & 3rd would receive 10%. 4th - 10th would receive $50 in free play. It was actually quite fun, although I didn't score high enough. I should have on the 2nd round I bought. I drew machine # 6 & she started talking to me about which machine I had the last round. She accidentally wrote that number down again & I think must have realized it after I left. So I ended up on #7 again & of course the fellow on #6 placed 2nd in the tourney overall. I didn't catch her mistake when she handed me my receipt so it was as much my fault. I didn't go back up & question it as I assumed there would be 2 #7's when the tourney lined up & I would receive the correct #6 machine but she evidently had already given someone else the 6 I had pulled & they placed 2nd. So much for $360 for me. But I would go back & do the tourney again - it was advertised as Mondays & Tuesdays.

    I ate at the following places - Paris Breakfast Buffet 3 times, Sbarro below Ballys once, Cafe St. Louis - lunch & supper, RUB BBQ (awesome), Fulton's Fish House in NYNY (so-so), Margaritaville, Victorian Room (prime rib), al Dente, & I think that is about it. LeVillage breakfast buffet was great - no problems other than long lines which I avoided with Platinum card. VR Prime Rib was great - al Dente was massively quiet but it was after 10 on Sunday so probably why. Margaritaville only had 15 minute wait on Monday night - not too bad.

    My plan of sleeping in 5 mornings was thwarted by my family on 4 of 5 days. They kept calling & texting me at 6:30 or 7 a.m. at home - HELLO its two hours earlier out here. Give me a break. I will allow my mother the one of calling to tell me she was not letting my daughter go to school one day because there was supposed to be gunfire & assault that day (in our small midwestern town) - luckily didn't happen - but only about 20 kids showed up in the entire school!!!

    So, I came home with no money, had a great time. Managed to earn enough comps to have nearly all my food covered. Could have done all of it had I done bagel & latte's for breakfast, but it's nice to relax at the buffet & not feel rushed. Trip bac`k on Midwest was 2 hr 50 min to MKE and a short hop to Madison. My complaint is that I wanted milk with my chocolate chip cookies, but she said they only get 4 cartons of milk per flight. GIVE ME A BREAK!!! Now to try to save some money for that May trip........................
     
  2. blackjacknut

    blackjacknut VIP Whale

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    Nice TR...will be at Paris in 20 some days.....:thumbsup:
     
  3. Blondie76

    Blondie76 Low-Roller

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    Nice trip report. We fly Midwest out of Milwaukee too. Usually the 7ish am going and 6:30 pm LV time coming home. Last November we had a 6+ hour delay leaving Milwaukee due to a fuel leak. That was a major PITA. So nice that you are returning in May. I hope you win a few and big enough to bring some home next time. :)
     
  4. gotavegasjones

    gotavegasjones VIP Whale

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    Glad you had a good solo trip. Thanks for posting.

    later, GVJ
     
  5. pywakit

    pywakit Low-Roller

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    Enjoyed your TR and sure do like to read about other women taking solo trips.
    Never tried it yet but think I might sometime. Will be at Paris nxt month so nice to read of others time there.
     
  6. jgates8

    jgates8 VIP Whale

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    I don't think you would regret going alone. I always enjoy it, although I was foolish not booking a show this time as I was trying to save $ for the May trip (which already involves an unplanned 2nd row seat to Terry Fator LOL). As long as I stay in the strip area I feel safe and comfortable.
     
  7. gmoney590

    gmoney590 VIP Whale

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    Our last three trips to Vegas have had flight delays that ranged from 1hr to 2 1/2 hours. It throws the timing of your Vegas off. It's strange that Paris was all booked up. I wonder what was going on and where those people went to get a room.
     
    Back where we belong
  8. zerofan

    zerofan VIP Whale

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    The last line about you wanting milk for your chocolate chip cookies is great!

    Sounds like airlines have now cut back on milk! Funny.
     
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