We went with a group of 9 including me, DH, son, my friend and her son, my dad, cousin and another couple - celebrating my son and his friendâ€™s 21st BD. Transportation - Flew Southwest from Islip, NY nonstop to Vegas. DH, son and I had award certificates, so zero cost for airfare (great start). Flight was smooth and on time. We rented a car through Dollar using the TARR code. The cost was $130, including taxes. Went to Dollar Express counter and had no problem. The clerk didnâ€™t ask for any travel agent ID. We asked for a minivan, gave the girl a tip, got our burnt orange minivan and were on our way. Hotel - We arrived at the Rio around 11:00 a.m. Went to diamond check-in and requested 2 rooms (both were comped) on the same floor, pool view with coffee pot. The agent said he could accommodate us with no problem, but the rooms were not ready yet. He would call us on our cell phone when the rooms were available. We gave him a $20 to thank him and were off to play a little. We got a call within an hour saying the rooms were ready. We went back, and of course, the original agent was not there. Our rooms were on 2 different floors, and our room faced The Palms. No big deal - the rooms were renovated, clean and had coffee pots. Pool - The pool at the Rio has always been my favorite because it is spread out, has lots of sun, and is basically a quiet type of pool. It has become a little more crowded now since they have fenced off the back pool (which was the largest) to make it â€œEuropeanâ€ - the Sapphire Pool. We didnâ€™t go to the Sapphire Pool (nobody would want to see me topless anymore lol) and my DH will not pay admission to go to a pool. We enjoyed a few mornings at the regular pools. They make great bloody maryâ€™s and margaritas at the pool bars. Shows - I went to see Mama Mia with my 2 friends (Sue and Sue). I purchased my tickets at Travelzoo and got third row, center (right behind the conductor) for $60 each. Great seats and a great show. I saw Mama Mia on Broadway and I have to say this production was just as good. The two boys went to see Spamalot at Wynn. DH won the tickets by spinning the virtual wheel. They really enjoyed the show. They also went to see George Carlin at the Orleans. They said their stomachs were hurting from laughing so hard. Food - Wynn buffet was very good. We ate there twice - paid for it the first time and had comps the second time. The promo for new sign ups is: spin virtual wheel to win prize (I won $25 slot play, DH got 2 tickets to Spamalot, everyone else got $10 slot play) earn 150 points for 2 buffets, 500 points for 4 buffets. We unexpectedly decided to play there AFTER we ate and earned lots of free buffets (4 for me, 4 for DH, son and 2 friends earned 2 each). I actually liked playing at Wynn much more than I thought I would. I saw Mike Sexton walking through casino, talking on his cell phone. Casino was not very crowded at all, and no wait for buffet. If they send me a good offer, I would definitely give it a try. R.U.B. BBQ at the Rio - Great! We will definitely go back. We hadnâ€™t eaten anything all day, so we went there early - around 4:30 I think. All 5 of us had 2 meat combos. I had baby back ribs and burnt ends w/mac & cheese and onion strings. Everything was fresh and delicious, but the burnt ends - omg they were the best! Big portions, so I couldnâ€™t finish mine. DH and son loved the baked beans (they had bits of the smoked meats in it). Everyone had Blue Moons (beer with an orange peel in it), and I had a margarita - very good. Also, excellent service and reasonably priced. Grand Luxe CafÃ© - DH and the guys went there for dinner while the girls were at Mama Mia. They shared Chinese nachos, chicken sandwiches and fries. Food was very good as always and reasonably priced. They then went to Madame Tussaudâ€™s while they were at the Venetian. The cost was $21 per person after coupon and boys paid a few dollars less (student discount). It was good, but they wouldnâ€™t do it again. All American Grill at the Rio - We went there our first night in Vegas. Food and service was very good, as always. We had burgers, chicken sandwiches, Coronas and potato skins. No complaints, reasonably priced. WSOP DH played in 2 small satellites at the WSOP. He chopped first place with another player in the first tourney and nothing in the other. We saw a few pros while there: Chris (Jesus) Ferguson, TJ Cloutier, Barry Greenstein, Jennifer Tilly, Mark Seif and a few others. It was exciting to see everything going on. Gambling Wish I had a good story for you, but unfortunately I donâ€™t. Gambled at Harrahâ€™s, Rio, Wynn, Planet Hollywood. Rio had $15 minimum tables. I held my own at most casinos, but lost my budget in the end. I played mostly VP. I really liked the nickel triple play super times pay machines at PH. Played there for a couple of hours and walked away with a couple of hundred dollars. No luck at Rio, played for quite a while at Harrahâ€™s and Wynn, but lost in the end. DH won a poker tourney at Harrahâ€™s for about $700, but lost his bankroll everywhere else in the casino. Although Vegas was busy, it was noticeably less crowded than it was in June last year. We had a great time, as always, and canâ€™t wait to go back. Next trip October 14 - 18. Thanks for reading!