1. Welcome to VegasMessageBoard
    It appears you are visiting our community as a guest.
    In order to view full-size images, participate in discussions, vote in polls, etc, you will need to Log in or Register.

Startdust Trip Report June 24-27

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by KVR, Jul 9, 2003.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. KVR

    KVR Newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2002
    Messages:
    206
    Location:
    Odessa, TX
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    9

    My Trip Report

    Las Vegas Trip Report June 24-27, 2003


    We had just gone in April for my birthday and had no plans going back, but found a great deal for a long weekend at the Stardust for $500 with air for the both of us, and just couldn't pass it up. We purchased a Southwest Airlines vacation package for the Stardust which guarenteed a tower room and not a villa. We chose the Stardust mainly because we wanted to just hang around the pool this time and felt their hotel/pool area wouldn't be crowded even at this time of the year. I was so right.

    Stardust

    Check in was easy. No lines. Just walked right up to the desk. We were given a standard king room in the Paradise Tower on the 20th floor. Nice room, though not completely remodeled, but clean. The bathroom looked to have been replaced with brand new fixtures, tub and tile. However, the carpet, furniture and bedspread still looked a little dated. The room had an excellent view of the pools, whirlpools and Strip. After being in the pool area and seeing the outside of the East tower rooms with the balconies overlooking the pool area, we would have preferred one of those rooms instead. Though our room had a Strip view, there's not much on the Strip in that area to look at anyway. One drawback is the location. You'll need a car or ride the bus to get down the Strip. Their is a bus stop in front of the Stardust and at the Frontier, but the bus would never stop. We've never encountered problems with the bus service on prior trips, so this was quite disappointing. We ended up having to walk to get to Ballys and the Mirage, and took a cab to get to Mandalay Bay.

    The Pool

    The pool was excellent. A staff member will set up a chair for you where ever you like. The pool was heated and not crowded at all. The twin whirlpools were fantastic, and with nobody in them but us, it was even better. The larger pool by the villas was not even being used. We spent most of our day time at the pools. The only drawback is the bar connected to the pool area was closed our entire stay, so no drinks. I went inside once to another bar and got pina colodas, but at $12 only did this once.

    The Casino

    Really enjoyed the smallness of the casino. We played mostly keno. They also have Keno video machines, which I won $25. There was a lady 2 seats down from me that won $1,100. They also had video pokers machines that let you double up. I've not seen these before and won $50 just doing the double up feature. Also went to Sahara, Frontier, Ballys and NYNY and played keno there, but we really didn't much gambling this time.

    Dining

    Circus Circus Steakhouse - This is an excellent restaurant. We both had steak with baked potato, broccoli and a garden salad. They don't do the ala carte, it was all included, which makes it a better value. Everything was delicious. Wanted so bad to try their desserts, but was so stuffed we couldn't. The only negative, which is not the restaurant's fault, we were seated next to a table with 2 small, obnoxious, loud children and a screaming baby whose parents were completely ignoring all of them. Takes away from a fine meal when the atmosphere is off.

    Kokomos at the Mirage - The atmosphere and scenery is wonderful. We were seated at a table for two by the waterfall. Be aware that their food portions are huge as well as the price they put on them. DH and I easy shared the lobster bisque, which was excellent and the tomato and cheese salad. We ordered separate entrees which was a mistake. The portions were so big we could not finish all of it, plus it really wasn't up to par. DH had the top sirloin. He ordered it medium well and it came out scorched and had a burnt taste to it. I ordered the crab legs, which was good, but crab legs are only good as the butter sauce that accompanies it. I like garlic butter and they serve lemon butter. Crème brulee for dessert was very good. If they would cut their portions in half as well as the price, this would be a much better restaurant.

    Bally's Tequila Bar - We went at 4:00 for drinks and snacks before heading to the Mamma Mia show. It was happy hour and margaritas were 1/2 price any flavor and any beer was $2.50. The beer was served with a free tequila shot - their choice. I'm not sure what the tequila was. I don't much care for tequila, except Cabo Wabo, and DH ended up drinking all the shots. Also ordered nachos to share. It came with black beans instead of refried beans and multi-colored chips. Was very good. Also got 2 shots of Cabo Wabo at $9 a piece. We were feeling very good by the time we left.

    Red Square at Mandalay Bay - Had a late dinner after the Mamma Mia show. We have eaten there once before and really enjoyed the food, however, the service was awful. We've gone back on several occasions to just have drinks and dessert at the bar. Their raspberry martinis are The Best. Decided we would try eating there again and see if the service was just off that time we went before. No, the service still stinks! The waiter came by and took our drink order, and since we already new what we wanted, our dinner order and he never came back until it was time to give us the check. Somebody else came by and dropped off our drinks and about 20 minutes later, somebody else dropped off our entrees. Was never offered a drink refill and there was no salt or pepper on the table. I finally got up and went to the buffet in the corner and got the salt and pepper myself. I flagged down somebody with a water pitcher and asked for drink refills. The waiter finally came by and laid the check on our table and started to walk away without a word. I said "excuse me, but we would like drinks refills and dessert". Ordered crème brulee without the raspberry sauce. Came out with the raspberry sauce. I sent it back. Their crème brulee has always been excellent, but this was not. The crème had not jelled thoroughly and the brown sugar was scorched. The entrees were still quite good. Beef Stroganoff and Chicken Kiev. Also they were playing the loudest most obnoxious head-banger music I've ever heard. It was awful. There was no way we could hold a conversation without screaming at the top of our lungs to be heard over the music. Too bad the atmosphere and service screws up good food and drink. I have their recipe to make raspberry martinis, so probably won't be back anytime soon on future trips.

    Stardust Breakfast Buffet - Standard breakfast with standard food. Not much of a selection except their breakfast meats. No salsa for their eggs and the orange juice was that Sunny Delight stuff - yuck! I've decided I really hate buffets and will not be going to anymore on future trips.

    Stardust Coffee Shop for Breakfast - Much better than the buffet. Had a spanish omelet with plenty of salsa and it was good. DH had the eggs and bacon and it enjoyed it also.

    Peppermill Fireside Lounge and Restaurant - The breakfast was excellent. Had the skillet huevros rancheros. We went back later at 1:00am and had drinks in the Fireside Lounge and watched music videos and then went into the restaurant for a late night snack of sandwiches, which was good also. After eating here, I will not be going to anymore breakfast buffets. You can't be the quality, selection and price.

    Shows

    Jubilee at Bally's - The show was very good, but a little too long. We have seen Follies Bergere at the Tropicana on a prior trip and this show is just better. Better costumes, better dancers, better show. We had seats on the the left side of the theater, which weren't bad, but the dancers also go on the sides of the stage, so a little hard to see on the left side. Would had preferred seats in the middle section about mid-way. They should had ended the show with the sinking of the Titanic instead of extending it another 30 minutes. The theater was probably set at 50 degrees and the seats are old and uncomfortable. I was freezing to death and my lower back was killing me.

    Mamma Mia at Mandalay Bay - We enjoyed this show. My first impression after the first scene was "how corny. I paid how much for this?" But it got better and the story line was quite interesting. We are from the ABBA era and knew all the songs by heart. The actors were very good. We had seats to the right in row N. Again, would have preferred to be in the middle section about mid-way. There was a couple seated directly in front of us with 2 children about 7 and 9, who were bored out of their minds and talked and fidgeted the whole time. The show is 2 1/2 hours. They give you one 15 minute bathroom break. That many people can't go to the bathroom in that short of time. I immediately headed to the bathroom area by Red Square and made it back in time. Again, this theater was set at 50 degrees and I was freezing to death.


    Summary

    Lots of construction going on. The sidewalk in front of the Fashion Show Mall was closed. They made everyone cross the street to continue walking. The Le Reve hotel, Caesars, Something next to the Aladdin, Margaritaville at the Flamingo and Mandalay Bay were all under construction. We have no more plans of going again until maybe sometime next year. We have the Bahamas planned for September, Grand Cayman planned for November, and an Alaska cruise for August, 2004. We have pictures on our web-site with our new digital Sony Mavica camera at: http://community.webshots.com/user/kvrlvn
     
  2. Beef

    Beef Low-Roller

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2002
    Messages:
    198
    Location:
    Sacramento
    Cool report, thanks! I am staying at the Stardust Aug 4-7, I'll go for an East Tower room per your info. No meals at Sushi King? Was wondering how that place is as I am a sushi fanatic.
     
  3. PPtraderal

    PPtraderal Low-Roller

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2002
    Messages:
    337
    Location:
    Philadelphia Area
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    25
    Your review is very objective and I thank you for it. I'd like to ask you a couple of questions with regard to the Stardust. At the pool did you need to bring your own towels , or did the hotel provide towels? What was your opinion of the attitude reflected by the Stardust staff? We're planning on a six night stay there in September and I've read mixed reviews. Additionally an opinion on the cocktail service would be appreciated. I'd be very interested in hearing an opinion form any other board members who have stayed at the Stardust. Thank you in advance.
     
  4. veck101

    veck101 Tourist

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2003
    Messages:
    90
    I highly recommend Sushi King. The Casino is kind of dingy, but the restaurant is top notch. They have an all you can eat menu that can't be beat. For around $25 you sit at the sushi bar and order anything you want from a pretty extensive menu and it's all made to order. It's all you can eat rolls, but the catch is that there is a one order limit for the expensive stuff and the appetizer menu items. They give you a one hour time limit too. It's not Nobu, but I think it's better than the all you can eat buffet sushi and even Todai at the Dessert Passage by the Aladin.
     
  5. chef

    chef Resident Buffetologist

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2002
    Messages:
    4,984
    Location:
    Illinois
    I've stayed at Stardust two seperate occasions in past year and have enjoyed it.
    I agree that their pool area is quite pleasing. It doesn't get the same recognition as the more upscale joints, but it was a peaceful place to be. Whirphools are nice touch. I'm pretty sure they had towels on site.
    One drawback to Stardust is lack of enthusiam by dealers. When I've have been there, the casino doesn't have the buzz other places have. Often, the employees look like they're bored.
    I always get a kick out of their sportsbook. You want to see some character and character, check it out.
    Buffet was weak, but Sushi King outstanding.
     
  6. Jimbo338

    Jimbo338 VIP Whale

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2000
    Messages:
    5,497
    Location:
    Laconia, NH
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    20
    Nice Report!

    There have been so many ;mixed reviews about the Stardust; I guess you like it or you don't! glad you enjoyed Mamma Mia. I plan on seeing that next year with my son.

    Don't you hate to go into a fine restaruant to find a McDonald's couple ruining it with their bratty kids.....not the kids fault of course. Mine never acted up; their mom wouldn't stand for it....or we would have gone to McDonalds!

    Jimbo
     
  7. KVR

    KVR Newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2002
    Messages:
    206
    Location:
    Odessa, TX
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    9
    We don't do sushi, so didn't try it. Did walk by in the afternoon it was closed then but it looked nice.

    The pool does provide towels. We went to the booth by the main pool and signed in with our name and room number. They set up 2 chairs where we wanted them and placed 3 towels on each chair. The towels were kinda small, not like the bath towels you get in your room. We brought our own beach towels from home. When your done for the day, just tell them and they pick up the towels and the chairs.

    Sitting in the keno lounge I feel we get better cocktail service than sitting in front of a machine. Stardust was having a keno tournment when we went so the lounge was full. No problems getting served when there is a bunch of people. We don't play at the tables or slot machines, so can't comment. The keno machines and video poker machines that we used were right next to the keno lounge.

    Didn't have any problems with the staff. Everyone we encounted was friendly, but then we didn't really need to interact with them much. We called housekeeping for extra pillows and they were there within 3 minutes of me hanging up the phone.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.