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Pondering a March Madness Trip. Thoughts?

Discussion in 'Misc. Vegas Chat' started by vegas_or_bust, Sep 21, 2012.

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  1. vegas_or_bust

    vegas_or_bust High-Roller

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    I am a sports nut and I have never been to Vegas over March Madness, but I always hear a lot of chatter on this board when March rolls around. We are thinking about scheduling a guys trip out to Vegas for the first weekend of the tournament. I noticed that hotel prices are already fairly high, and we are still 6 months away.

    For those that have been during MM, what are your thoughts? How is your MM trip different than a regular Vegas trip? Any tips or suggestions regarding where to stay or watch the games?? How festive is the atmospher in the sportsbooks and sportsbars?

    Any and all feedback is appreciated. :beer:
     
  2. egelston2

    egelston2 Low-Roller

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    It is going to more expensive but the atmosphere is electric. They have TVs everywhere in the casino and even if you are not paying attention to a particular game, you know when an upset is happening or the game is close because of all the cheers and screams.
     
  3. mike_m235

    mike_m235 Tourist

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    I was there for one weekend of it this year, although I wasn't there to specifically see MM.

    It's kind of odd, in that the sports books are packed but it doesn't necessarily carry over to the rest of the casino. There was a nice vibe in the book, with a lot of games going on at once meaning a lot to a bunch of different people. Fun, but not as fun to me as when there's one huge game and everybody's on it.

    Not sure I ever saw an open seat in a sportsbook. I think this 'secret' is out and the young gamblers descend from all over the US.

    Also, if I was a guy looking for women, this would not be a weekend I picked as there seemed to be way more guys around than usual.
     
  4. numeno

    numeno VIP Whale

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    While I've never been out there for the superbowl, I imagine this is the closest thing for basketball and it lasts 4 days. I've gone for 3 years now and I see no stopping in the near future.

    I especially love the huge chears from a sportsbook on a close game. And by close I mean NC is only winning by 25 and they need to win by 28. Only in Vegas would anyone care. :)



    I agree with all of mike's comments as well. I'm sure there are a ton of people in town, but I've never felt the casinos(or even restaurants) were that packed. Yes it is nearly impossible for a group to find a seat in a sports book(solo is pretty easy IMO), but the rest of the casinos just aren't that busy.


    Oh and do NOT go for the 2nd weekend just because you feel you will save a few $100. While I still enjoyed it, the difference is huge and well worth the extra cost. 16 game going on Thurs and Fri is a huge difference than 4 each day.
     
  5. UKFanatic

    UKFanatic The Arbiter of Taste Caviar Kid

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    The best time in Vegas invariably is the Thursday and Friday the first weekend of MM. I go every year. The party starts at 9 and does not let up until the evening. I'm a basketball junkie, so I am sure that is part of it for me. But its wall to wall sports and sports betting, with fans of every single team hanging around. And when the games are over, a ton of people hit the tables and the clubs. Its always my favorite Vegas trip every year
     
  6. vegas_or_bust

    vegas_or_bust High-Roller

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    We are all sports junkies, as most of us played sports in college. The great majority of us are married, so the abundance of sausage won't be a big deal. We can always go to the strip clubs for that :)

    It's been on my Vegas bucket list for awhile. Sounds like we need to make it happen this year!
     
  7. mike_m235

    mike_m235 Tourist

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    If you have multiple guys, I'd suggest that you either show up very early at a book for seats, or try to set up a party type thing in a sports bar. That's a trick I've used before -- usually it only requires a set minimum amount that you'll spend per person, which is rarely a problem when you're drinking.

    Thinking it through, I'd do one day at a sports book just for the atmosphere, and then set up the second day, when you're less likely to want to show up early, ahead of time at a bar.
     
  8. KellyLovesVegas

    KellyLovesVegas certified personal trainer/retired space nerd

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    MM trips - the best Christmas present ever!


    Yes, what UK said :thumbsup:

    We go every year for the first four days of games (what was previously known as the First and Second Round, before the "First Four" games were initiated to expand the field to 68 teams). We arrive Tuesday evening, so we have Wednesday to place bets. We do a nice dinner Wednesday evening, but after that it's all basketball all the time (I don't even go to the spa on our March trips) - until the games are finished Sunday night. We've gone out every year since (I think) either 2003 or 2004.

    It's a fantastic time to go if you're a basketball fan. :woohoo:
     
  9. mikenhe

    mikenhe VIP Whale

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    loads of people gambling and drinking all day while watching sport on tv.


    I like it.

    its good for playing poker - especially as the games wind down..
     
  10. UKFanatic

    UKFanatic The Arbiter of Taste Caviar Kid

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    I'm such a basketball junkie, in years past I have showed up early on Wednesday so I could bet the NIT games. Yes, I admit it, I have a problem :faint:

    As for seats at the sportsbook, you have to get up ridiculously early to guarantee yourself setas (unless you have a connection). I would suggest getting there no later atan 7am if you want a book seat.

    The better option is to meet at a bar or somewhere else with a tv. Whomever posted above that they set up TVs everywhere is right. Two of more more fun MM experiences through the years was staying at Luxor, and sitting at the bar in the middle of the casino each of the first two mornings (no crowd, got a seat, played VP during the timeouts, and got free drinks for hours while I watched). Another time at Mandalay Bay, I just staked out a seat at the little coffee stand place next to the elevator banks (can't recall the name of the place). They had four TVs set up showing different games, so I caught all the action without fighting for a sportsbook seat, which was good because I was in full on panic mode as my Cats almost lost (it was the round one game against Princeton two seasons ago that went to the buzzer)
     
  11. Darkace54

    Darkace54 Tourist

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    Never been for the opening weekend of MM, but I have gone for the final four the past three years. Final Four weekend is crazy, I can only imagine what it is like for opening weekend. May have to make it out for opening weekend in the near future to compare.

    The nice thing about the final four is there is plenty of time to heal up from late night debachery before getting ready for the games.
     
  12. KellyLovesVegas

    KellyLovesVegas certified personal trainer/retired space nerd

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    Darkace, Final Four weekend is fun, but it lacks the atmosphere of opening weekend. Opening weekend is when everyone embraces their Inner College Fan - regardless of how many years its been since graduation. Couple that with St Patricks Day (which sometimes occurs during Opening weekend) and the Madness is even more crazy.
     
  13. UKFanatic

    UKFanatic The Arbiter of Taste Caviar Kid

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    MM is intersting insofar as the energy decreases slightly with each successive round of the tournament. Even the saturday and sunday sessions of the first weekend don't have the same energy as the thursday and friday games. Thursday and friday are the two days to be there!
     
  14. KellyLovesVegas

    KellyLovesVegas certified personal trainer/retired space nerd

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    Absolutely agree, UK. It is almost depressing on Saturday when there are so few games to bet on. The years we've done back to back trips and went for Final Four weekend were a letdown after being there for opening weekend. ImageUploadedByTapatalk1348423622.581936.jpg
     
  15. mikenhe

    mikenhe VIP Whale

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    and its done.

    due to a new job I have various things that I need to be at work for - and that includes a scheduled meeting on the Thursday of MM - the day I normally arrive in vegas!

    on top of that the SW direct flights at a high price


    so I've made an executive decision - and the only one that could be made under the circumstances.



    I'm flying out thursday night on a one stopper and back overnight on a one stopper. same number of days as normal but the overnight flight isn;t gonna be much fun. Therefore I've emptied my airmiles account with usair and I'm going first class!

    Bring it!
     
  16. vegas_or_bust

    vegas_or_bust High-Roller

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    So we made a final decision that we are going, and we have the hotel all booked. We are now trying to decide whether to fly out Wednesday night or early Thursday morning. My brother adamant about flying out Wednesday night so we: (a) are situated before the tourney and get our bet in for the early games; and (b) so we won't miss the early games on Thursday.

    Any thoughts? 4 nights in Vegas versus 3 nights may be a tough sell with the wife (this is a guy's only trip), but I certainly see my brother's point. We wouldn't be arriving until 11:30 a.m. on Thursday if we don't come down the night before.

    What do you usually do and why?
     
  17. UKFanatic

    UKFanatic The Arbiter of Taste Caviar Kid

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    I have done it both ways and absolutetly endorse coming in Wednesday evening so you are there are ready for the start Thursday morning. At least where I fly from, even a morning flight would not get me into Vegas until 9:30. By the time I get checked in and settled, it's 11 and I have mossed the first 3 or 4 games.

    Like I mentioned in my post above, MM is unique because the energy surrounding it in Vegas decreases slightly with each successive round of the tournament. So Thursday and Friday of the first round are always the most electric part of a MM trip. I wouldn't want to miss a chunk of the first day
     
  18. Buddha

    Buddha VIP Whale

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    This past March (2012), we stayed downtown during the first full week of the NCAA games, which also included St. Patrick Day. It was an absolute zoo everywhere ... in the casinos, the restaurants, out on Fremont Street ... everywhere !! Not sure what it was like on the Strip, but I can only assume it had similar crowds.

    Sooooo ... for next Spring, we are planning an April trip instead.
     
  19. KellyLovesVegas

    KellyLovesVegas certified personal trainer/retired space nerd

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    Listen to your brother - it is much better to travel Wednesday so you don't miss a minute of the games starting Thursday morning at 9:00am. We traveled on Thursday morning our first year (hubby surprised me with the trip). We found out that traveling Thursday is a BAD IDEA!!!!! As UKFanatic mentioned, if you fly from the midwest or East coast, you won't arrive before 9:00-9:30am Thursday in the best case. No opportunity to bet on the first four games. :cry: You might arrive at your hotel in time to place halftime bets on those four games depending on if you have to wait for checked bags and your mode of transport from the airport to the hotel.

    After our mistake of flying on Thursday the first year, we started travelling on Wednesdays. In the past couple years we started flying Tuesday evening which allows us all day Wednesday to make bets prior to the Madness.

    It's an awesome time to be in Las Vegas!!!
     
  20. UKFanatic

    UKFanatic The Arbiter of Taste Caviar Kid

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    Arriving early to bet on the Thursday games :Þ Come on, go hardcore! Bet the NIT on Wednesday like I do :evillaugh
     
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