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Planet Hollywood - Jennifer Lopez: Feb 8th - Feb 11th

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by idtwins, Feb 13, 2016.

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  1. idtwins

    idtwins Tourist

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2012
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    Location:
    Portland Metro area
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    6

    My Trip Report

    In 2012 I made a trip to vegas with my wife to celebrate my 40th birthday with my twin brother and his wife. While getting ready for that trip I found VMB and have been a reader ever since. Vegas trips are not frequent for me. Teenage kids, jobs, and family events take priority so I live vicariously through the trip reports here. Thank you to anyone who has ever posted a trip report and brought me a little slice of Vegas over the last 4 years! I figure now it's my turn!

    In September 2015 on one Sunday afternoon my wife and I we're enjoying a couple of beers and talking about getting away. After throwing out a few ideas we remembered J Lo was starting a show in Planet Hollywood. Hey..what a great idea to go see here in Vegas! Southwest had rather cheap flights (think it was $110 each way at that time PDX -> LAS) so yeah, let's do it! We booked the J Lo lower orchestra room package directly on the Planet Hollywood site. Now I had 5 long months to wait for our 3 days in Vegas. On the plus side, the Southwest flights kept going down in price so we rebooked 3 times over those months. Ended up paying $59 for the flight to Vegas and $102 for the flight back. What are we going to do with those credits???

    February 8th finally arrived. my wife and I got up at 3:00 am to make sure we got to PDX on time to park in economy and make it through security for our 7:00 AM Southwest flight to Vegas. There's nothing like the feeling of walking into an airport knowing you're not there to pick someone up or get on a plane for a training trip for work. You're there to get on a plane to Vegas!
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    Southwest was right on time with boarding. We boarded A35 and A36 so no problem getting desired seats together with my wife. The plane had about 70 open seats according to the attendants so we ended up with a row to ourselves. Watched "Straight out of Compton" during the flight which made it go by very fast. Landed at McCarran and our bag was the first one off for our flight. Score!
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    We ended up getting a budget rental car for $45 base rate for the 3 days. We hopped the shuttle to the rental car center, waived all the extra "you'll ruin your life if you don't buy our insurance and something happens" insurance and we were on our way to the strip.

    It's 10:00 AM...much too early to check in at Planet Hollywood so we decided to just park at Mandalay Bay and check out that area. Sat down at a couple of video poker machines and wrinkled our noses at the crappy pay tables. I knew that was coming from reading the information here but to see it in person was....dissapointing. CW showed up pretty quickly and before we knew it we had Blue Moons in hand! Damn the crappy pay tables..bring on the free beer! Didn't win anything worth mentioning so we headed next door to Luxor. On our way out a time share hawker tried to stop us and my wife and I at the same time both just said "No" and kept walking.

    We spent some time doing hit and runs in Luxor on various slot machines. No big wins to speak of here either and we we're getting concerned about our low rolling bank roll. It's only been a few hours into a 3 day trip and we we're pretty much just buying $40 beers! Next stop was Excalibur. My only .25 Royal happened in Excalibur but it was so long ago that I had to feed the quarters in the machine to get it and when it hit, it locked up. So Excalibur had a special place in my heart because of that Royal..but not anymore. We really didn't like it in there. It just seemed a bit run down and the vibe just didn't work for us. We looked around for a little while but didn't play anything. We decided we should just head back to our car at Mandalay Bay. By now it had been a couple of hours since my last drink so no problems driving over to Planet Hollywood.

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    We got to Planet Hollywood around 1:30. There was only one person in line for check in so that was a snap. We booked a strip view room. Ended up on the 25th floor in a Henry Fonda room. Unloaded our bags and headed downstairs for food. We hit up a few slots and video poker around the PH floor but still was just donating to the neon fund. We hadn't eaten since 6:00 am in the airport and it's now after 3:00 PM so we were pretty famished. Took a look around PH and decided to hit up Yolo's happy hour. Sat at the bar for $5 margarita, chips and guac and happy hour quesadilla and mini chimis. They hit the spot!

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    After satisfying the stomach we headed out to play some video poker on the machines just outside Planet Dailys. The bankroll is too small for us to play triple-play STP so we we're playing nickels. I got dealt 3 to a royal on one hand and thought "what the hell..just go for it". I was very surprised to see it fill in on the 2nd line.
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    Very excited to finally make a move in the positive direction. We weren't ahead but our losses we're not as bad now! We kept playing and drinking and having a great time. Around 8:30 pm my wife wanted to head up to the room to lay down "just for a minute". So up we go and turns out getting up at 3:00 AM, some good drinking, and walking around for most of the day was going to catch up with us. our "just for a minute" nap turned into sleeping until 4:30 AM. You know what they say "early to bed, early to rise!" So we got up and headed down for breakfast.

    Day 2 starts with breakfast at Planet Dailys. We're the only ones in the place (it's 5:00 am) except for one hooker seated a few tables away who's talking very loudly on a phone. She was having an interesting conversation so we laughed a bit and had a decent breakfast. My wife was not a fan of the waffles she got but my 3 egg/bacon breakfast pretty good. They serve french fries with there breakfasts so I certainly had no problems! We hit up some of the video poker at Planet Hollywood until about 6:15. Nothing was hitting so we decided to head out to Bellagio. We got out on the strip and it was absolutely beautiful. Not many people around, it was very cool out and the sun was shining bright off Bellagio and the lake out front.
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    We headed down the strip and into Bellagio. It was dead. The carpets in the main walkway were still being dried from their overnight cleaning. We started our usual tour of the slots and video poker in Bellagio. Drink service was quick (nothing caps Vegas breakfast like comp beer!) so we we're having a good time! I found a bank of progressive video poker machines that paid progressives for 4OAK, SF and Royal. Sat down with a $20 and wasn't doing too bad. Smaller pays we're keeping me up just a bit. Got dealt 3 fives and filled in the 4th on the draw. Sweet...4oak progressive! Instead of paying though, the machine locks and shows Call Attendant with the happy musice playing. OK...call attendant for $126??...well this is old school. After about 5 minutes and attendant showed up and paid me himself with a "pouch pay". I decided to keep playing on the machine since it was treating me well. A few hands later I'm dealt 3 2's. Wouldn't ya know it on the draw the 4th one shows up! 800 quarters this time and again the machine locked up. So I wait... and wait... and wait....finally a different attendant shows up. It's been about 30 minutes waiting for this one so I'm soured on the machine.
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    We decide to move along. We basically hit up all the casinos on that side of the strip heading down towards NYNY. No good wins to speak of but did have an interesting incident happen at Monte Carlo which I asked about in another thread: http://www.vegasmessageboard.com/forums/showthread.php?128760-Can-anyone-explain-this-possible-scam-to-me

    The day gets on so we head back to Planet Hollywood to get ready for the 9:00 PM J Lo show. It's a sold out show and was the last one of the February set of shows. She started about 20 minutes late. The show was good. Pretty much exactly what we expected. Lots of dancing and she performed all of her famous songs. The crowd was somewhat diverse but older than I was expecting. The ushers kept telling us we'd be up and dancing the whole time as they showed us to our seats. Right before the show started, staff members started shouting out to the crowd that we will be up and dancing. If anyone is going to have a problem with that or the show they need to make it known in the first 30 minutes to have any hopes of getting any money back. I though that was a bit strange to start things off with a kind of negative vibe like that..but whatever. So the show goes on but the huge "dance party" we we're warned about never happened. I'm thinking that maybe they we're trying to force the dancing by planting it in our heads at first??
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    The show lets out and we make it through the crowd and back into the PH casino at around 11:40 or so. We're both starving so what a better place to fill up late night hunger than Earl of Sandwich, right? I wouldn't know cause I never tried it before but after seeing so many people here write about it I had to try it. We were not disappointed!! Head to bed around 1:00 am...end of day 2.
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    Day 3: Time to head downtown!!!! I am excited to see some good VP tables. Fremont Street Experience parking garage (4th and Carson) has an early bird special. If you park before 9:00 am and leave by 6:00 PM it's only $3 to park. Deal! We we're up at 6:00 AM so making it down by then was not a problem. I just cruised right up Las Vegas Blvd which was a breeze at that time of the morning. Saw the Riveria being gutted out and remarked at how sun faded and beat the Circus Circus looked. We parked in the Fremont Garage and headed into the D. After reading the boards here, I knew the place to go was upstairs for the "old school" slots and VP. I was playing VP and doing rather well with small pays. Turned $20 into $65 playing quarters. My wife couldn't win and wanted to move along. Cool..not a problem. On the way back downstairs there is a bank of $1 machines. I said "hey..let's drop 20 here and see what happens". So we do.. and we're slowing sinking. A few pairs was keeping us alive but nothing big was happening. My wife gets up and says "I'm done" so I say "OK..let's take off" and says "just one more". So i hit max and wouldn't ya know it...dealt a straight flush! Cha-ching..we're low rollers so this is $$ for us. We figure that would pretty much fund a good part of our day.. and it did!
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    We slowly moved along down Fremont hitting each casino and getting comped drinks. We'd walk in expecting to just lay down $20 at each one and pretty much walked out with the same $20 after a good amount of play. Love downtown!!!! I had a goal while we we're downtown - get a silver strike. I read about them here on VMB and wanted to have one. There was a silver strike machine open by the cashier in 4 queens so I put in a $5 to go for it. 5th spin in the strike symbol hit..goal!!!!!!
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    Time for lunch so we hit up the Chicago brewing company for beer salads and sandwiches.
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    That hit the spot! Back out onto Fremont and made our way all the way down to Plaza. In the end we did end up losing that $250 straight flush win plus a few more dollars from the planned bank roll but we had a great time!!
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    We left downtown around 5:30 PM, paid our $3 for parking and headed back to Planet Hollywood to get our free buffet (get 50 points on TR card in one day for free buffet..thanks again VMB for letting me know about that promo!). Hit the Spice market buffet and my wife was not impressed. The smell was not good. I am not really picky and can handle most things but I had to agree on this one. It smelled like a bunch of mixed, old food! It's free though..so we got seated. My wife made herself a salad and I hit up the Mexican food station. Back at the table my wife is just kind of looking down and hasn't touched her fork. She says she just can't do it. The combination of all the beer, fatigue, and the not-so-great odor made eating not really possible. To top it off, she asks me to take a closer look at the salad. You could tell the lettuce had been cut much earlier in the day. The edges were brown and dry. Well at least we didn't have to pay anything. I finish up my food and hit the desert station. Now that was good!! Fantastic deserts. Good enough that it snapped my wife out of feeling bad so we both enjoyed some desert!

    After eating, we head back to play a bit more. We made our way through Paris to Ballys and back to PH We have a few decent hits on random slots we tried but decided it was time to call it around 1:00 am. While in Ballys my wife and I met a really nice, older gentlemen playing video poker. We we're playing the big Video Poker section in Ballys on the main floor when this gentlemen approaches in a mobility scooter to get on the end machine next to me. I offer to help him into the seat but he refuses and remarks about only needing it because he has a bad back. We get to talking and he's telling us how often he comes out to Vegas (he's retired) and he knows everyone in the place. Seems he was telling the truth because every staff member that came by knew him! He was some kind of important person in the US Postal Service on the east coast as he's telling us about meeting senators and Postmaster Generals. He told us his wife died 3 years ago but still plays with him and how he visits the place where he spread her ashes every year. My wife and I have been married 20 years and love to hear stories like this. We chatted for about half an hour and had some great laughs with him.

    We wake up at 7:00 and need to be on a plane at 12:50 so we decided we give the casino another hour to try to make back some $$. That didn't work out as expected (or maybe it did 'cause we didn't win anything big!) I did get offered "good coke" by a guy walking through the casino floor. It took me a second to understand what was happening as this guy cruises by. I looked at my wife.."did you hear that?" Yep..she did. we both laughed. Only in Vegas!

    We headed back to the rental car facility, returned the car with no surprises on the bill and headed back to our on-time flight back to the rainy and cool Northwest!

    A few random images:
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    Thanks for reading!
     
    Wife's Birthday Extravaganza - Celine Dion
  2. LVHooked

    LVHooked High-Roller

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    Nice report, thanks for writing it up.
     
  3. sybgal

    sybgal VIP Whale

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    Nice VP hits to help out the bankroll....love it when that happens. Thanks for sharing with us!
     
  4. evoni

    evoni High-Roller

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    I enjoyed reading your TR and seeing the photos. Interesting to read about the potential dance party that might happen during a J-Lo show. :)
     
  5. Raptor

    Raptor High-Roller

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    Great report, sounds like it was a fun trip. Thanks for sharing.
     
  6. breanna61

    breanna61 Super Moderator

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    Great report and photos. I always feel like I need a shower whenever I leave Excalibur, which is only when we go to see Thunder Down Under :)

    Congrats on the Royal and SF!

    I would have expected everyone to be on their feet and dancing at JLo's show so perhaps it was just the rebel in people that kept them in their seats....."you can't tell me what to do" lol
     
  7. M0rtyC

    M0rtyC Low-Roller

    Joined:
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    Thanks for a greAt report.
     
    Bonus early day Downtown
    Annual end of the rodeo trip
  8. bjpcyclone

    bjpcyclone High-Roller

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    Sounds like a great time, thanks for sharing!
     
  9. sarah9nascar

    sarah9nascar VIP Whale

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    We were at the Feb 3 JLo show and the ushers didn't announce that at our show. There were times people did get up and dance. One usher ask the people across the aisle to stop dancing because they were getting a little wild in the aisle with it. I thought more people got up at that show and went to the restroom than any show I remember ever but we thought it was a great show. Loved every minute of it.
     
  10. idtwins

    idtwins Tourist

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    People did get up and dance during certain songs but we're pretty quick to sit back down when it was over. Didn't see anybody get too crazy. Maybe we just had a fun loving usher but not sure why the guy in the suit was yelling out the instructions to each section about when money could be returned. Seemed like everyone around us was part of a hotel package so maybe I was in the old-persons section and we needed to be warned :haha:
    We loved every minute of it too!!!
     
    Wife's Birthday Extravaganza - Celine Dion
  11. Bgoll279

    Bgoll279 Tourist

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    Nice TR. I'm glad you all had fun.
     
  12. tringlomane

    tringlomane STP Addicted Beer Snob

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    Nice report and nice royal!
     
  13. Simpatt

    Simpatt Low-Roller

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    Thanks so much for sharing! Nice report :)
     
  14. idtwins

    idtwins Tourist

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    Thanks for the compliments everyone. My pleasure to write this up!!
     
    Wife's Birthday Extravaganza - Celine Dion
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