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The Fitz, The Signature, Poker, and Prima 2/14 - 2/18

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by soxfan70, Feb 19, 2010.

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  1. soxfan70

    soxfan70 Tourist

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    My Trip Report

    My wife and I returned from our second Vegas trip late Thursday night. We learned a lot from other’s Trip reports here, so I’m hoping to pass some useful information on to others with this trip report – I hope you like it!
    Pre-trip backgound info: This trip included 1 night at Fitzgerald’s, and 3 nights at the Signature at MGM. I had booked the stay at the Signature prior to boking our flights, and was surprised to find the price of flights well over $600 each for a round trip flight from Hartford, CT. The only way to keep the price under $500 each was to fly out late on Sunday night – but I didn’t have the room booked until Monday!! The weekend rate at the Signature was more than I wanted to pay, so I chose not to add another night. My original plan was to just stay up all night once we got to Vegas, and check in to the Signature on Monday afternoon. After about a week of thinking, I came to my senses and decided that was a pretty dumb idea!! I started to look around at other hotels, and decided it would be cool to stay on Freemont St for one night. I booked the Fitz for $39 for the one night!
    Day one – February 14th: We flew out of Bradley International Airport in Hartford CT at 5:50 pm on Delta. After a plane change in Minneapolis, and 45 minutes on the tarmac which included a de-icing, we arrived at McCarron at 11:18 PM, exactly on schedule. I had booked a sedan through Presidential Limo for our trip to the Fitz, and my cell phone rang while we were on the tram to the baggage area. It was Mark, the driver from Presidential, letting me know that he was in the baggage claim area waiting for us. After we met Mark, it seemed like it took forever for our luggage to show up on the carousel. Once it did, Mark took the bag, and led us out to the car. Now mind you, I said I had booked a SEDAN with Presidential, when we got outside, there were no Sedans in site – only a full size stretch limo with the Presidential logo on it!! We were both impressed, and Mark drove us down to the Fitz in style! Once we were dropped off at the Fitz however, that’s where the style ended.
    We walked into the lobby of the hotel, and I immediately noticed a funny smell. It’s difficult to describe, but I know I didn’t like it. The check in process was smooth, although I was amused when the desk clerk told me they needed a credit card to put a $50 hold on for “incidentals†that we may use while in the hotel! From what I could see, there wasn’t anything worth $50 in the hotel!! We went up to the room to drop off our luggage, and while the room wasn’t awful, We were both glad we were only staying there one night! Peeling wallpaper, exposed rusty pipes in the bathroom, and a dripping tub faucet that couldn’t be stopped greeted us upon onening the door – I say to myself “ what do you want for $39?â€, and decide to just make the best of it until the next morning. We leave our gear in the room, and head back downstairs to start gambling. As soon as the elevator door opened in the casino area, that smell hit me again, and I decided that I wasn’t going to stay in their casino any longer than it took me to walk through it to get outside!
    Once out on fremont St. we decide to go into Binion’s first, as my primary game is poker, and I wanted to experience the history of the place. There was only one game going, and the table was full so we went back out to the casino floor. My wife plays slots, so she started to look for “the†machine, while I sat down at a blackjack table – for 2 hands. There was a table full of people that didn’t understand the game or basic strategy. After watching two guys hit on 15’s with the dealer showing a 4, I got up and walked around for a while. I played Let it Ride for about 20 minutes, just long enough to get a beer, and then got up to find my wife. From there, we went over to the Nugget, where I played video poker at the bar and got a couple beers, while my wife played slots. At this point it’s about 2:00 AM Vegas time, which is about 5:00 AM east coast time, and I needed some sleep. We walked around Freemont St for a little while, and decided to call it a night. We walked back through the Fitz quickly, and headed up to the room.
    Day 2, Febraury 15th: I had the alarm set for 8:00 am, but was awake at 7:00, not impressed with the bed, pillows, or the dripping tub. We had already decided to try the breakfast buffet at Main street Station, based on suggestions I received here, so we got up and got ready to head over there. Not knowing exactly where it was, it took us a little while to find it, but we eventually did. The breakfast buffet was only $7, and wasn’t bad for the money! I would definetly recommend it if you’re looking to save a couple bucks. After breakfast, I played single deck blackjack, while my wife played slots. The blackjack dealer and pit boss were quite friendly, and I enjoyed my time there. I had booked another sedan with Presidential to take us up to the Signature for 10 am, so we headed back the Fitz, and the phone rang on the walk back- it was a different driver, telling me that he was there waiting for us. We went to the room to grab the gear, and headed back downstairs. It was another pleasant surprise when the sedan that I booked again turned out to be a stretch limo!!
    I know that everyone’s Vegas trip is different, and people like different types of casinos and hotels. Having said that, Freemont St./dowtown isn’t for me. I don’t begrudge anyone that enjoys that type of vegas experience, but for my vacation, I want something different. And different is definetly what I found at The Signature.
    We arrived around 10:15, and were happy to see the front desk clerks waiting to help us. I waled up tp the counter with the $20 sandwich clearly visible. The desk clerk asked if I would be interested in upgrading to the one bedroom suite for an exta $50 a night. After I said no, she glanced at the $20, and asked if I had another requests before she assigned us a room. I told her that we would like a suite with a balcony, and on the highest floor possible. She began to look, and told me that nothing was available for us to get in to now, but a balcony room on the 30th floor (one of the penthouse levels) would be available shortly. She took my cell number and promised to call as soon as we could get into the room. She thanked me for tip, and we headed off to the player’s club booth at MGM.
    I’ve read several reviews of the Signature that talk about the walk to MGM being too long. We were in tower 3, the furthest tower from MGM, and didn’t feel that the walk was too much. It took about 6 minutes to get from tower 3 to the MGM, not the 10-15 minutes I’ve read about. While on that walk, the desk clerk from the signature called to say that our room was ready,(yes, 6 minutes after she said it wasn’t ready, it suddenly was ready!) I’m not sure how much credit to give to the $20 trick, but I was definelty happy with the outcome!!:nworthy:
    The player’s club line was long and slow, but we eventually got our cards, and I registered for the poker tournament just prior to the 11 am start time. About 4 hours later, I was one of the last 4 in the tourney, and we worked out a deal that netted me $500. Not bad for a $65 entry fee. I located my wife at a slot machine, and we headed back to the Signature. We picked up the keys, and headed up to the suite. We opened the door, and were immediately impressed. Very clean suite with incredible ammenieties, Full size jacuzzi tub, beautiful separate shower, double sinks, and a separate room with the toilet; A complete kitchen, seating area with a couch, chairs, desk, 32inch LCD TV, and a baloncy 30 stories up facing the strip! You couldn’t ask for anything more!
    We went to Nobhill for dinner, and while I was impressed with the Lobster pot pie, my wife’s chicken was dry, but she absolutely loved the dumplings and vegetable combination. Our server was a bit stand-offish, which could have made for a bad experince if we had let it. For those of you thinking about going here, make sure you ask for a booth if you want to be able to have a conversation during dinner. I took that suggestion from others here, and was happy I did. The other part of the restaurant where there wer e only tables was very, very loud.
    Day 3 – February 16th – I had booked a “rock scramble†throough Red Rock canyon with a company called “Hike This.†You can find out more about them on Trip Advisor. This excurion was an incredible experience, as just me and my wife were led on a 3 ½ hour hike that included climbing up, down, around and over several peeks in Red Rock. If you’re looking for a break from the craziness of the Strip, you can’t find a better option. It was $185 for the two of us, and includedround trip transportation to and from the hotel, snacks, lunch(if you want), and everything else you need for the hike. The owner and guide, Neil Sobelson, provides you with an incredible experience that will be a part of every Vegas trip we go on from this point forward.
    After the hike, we had booked massages at the Spa at MGM. Neither of us had ever had one before, and I don’t think we’ll do it again. It’s not that it was a bad experience, it just wasn’t what I expected. We also had full use of the other spa amenites, which we both loved, and will utilize again.
    After the spa, we decided to go out on the stip, as we hadn’t been outside MGM since we arrived except for the hike. We walked up the strip and stopped at Planet Holloywood, my wife again played slots, while I sat down at a Let it Ride table, getting dealt 3 of a kind, but not catching the 4th 7. I ended that session up $200, and we headed back to the Signatur to get ready to go see KA. My wife loved it, I enjoyed the parts I stayed awake for. It wasn’t that I wasn’t impressed with the show, I was just incredibly tired after a pretty full day – a day that included almost no gambling!!
    Day 4 – February 17th – There is a 9 am poker tournament at Ceaser’s, so we head there for breakfast, leaving MGM at about 7:15. It was comfortable out, so we decided to walk. It took us about 35-40 minutes to get to Ceaser’s. Once there we had breakfast at their buffet, and felt that it was over priced at $19 a piece. The buffet was ok, but so was the buffet at Main Street Station for $7!! The poker tourney didn’t go well, as I think I raked two pots, and was eliminated early. There was nothing else going on in the Poker room, so I found my wife, and we started walking out, eventually deciding on heading to the Venitian for another poker tournament. Once we got there, I discovered the regualrly scheduled $150 tourney had been cancelled. In its place, they were holding one of their “Deep Stack Extravaganza†tournaments for $350. I wasn’t going to play, but my wife actually talked me into it. There were 423 entrants in this tournament, and I was eliminated in 29th place at 1:30AM on the 18th! Play was scheduled to stop at 2 am, with the remaining players having to come back the following day, so all in all, things worked out OK, as we were leaving the following day.
    Day 5 – February 18th – 12:30 flight, so we had booked the MGM limo to take us to the airport for 10:30. We headed to breakfast at the MGM buffett, planning on stopping at the players club booth before hand to see if we could get anything comped. The line was 14 people deep, so we walked past and went to breakfast first. We were both impressed with the quality and selection at the MGM buffet, and will definetly eat there again on future trips. We stopped at the players club booth on the way back, and were told that they couldn’t comp anything, as MGM doesn’t own the Signature. I was a little upset about this, but there wasn’t much we could do about it. We were told that they could have given us free passes to the buffet, but it was a little late for that.
    We headed back to the room and tallied up our winnings/losses for the trip. I ended the trip up $700, and my wife was down $650, so we ended up leaving with more than we came with!! I would have been happy leaving with any cash, so I was extremely happy with the results.:thumbsup:
    Conclusion: We weren’t impressed with the downtown accomadations or casinos. I doubt we’ll return there on future trips. Presidential Limo exceeded expectations on both trips, I would highly recommend them.We did utilize the PRIMA package offered at MGM, and thought it was beneficial. The two for one entrees on dinner, and two for one drinks at the MGM Grand bars make it worth it. The Red RockCanyon rock scramble with “Hike This†was one of the highlights of the trip.
    I appologize for the length of this trip report, but wanted to get the feel of the whole trip across! Please feel free to ask questions, I’ll try to fill in the blanks!! :licklips: Starting to plan the next trip already!
     
  2. texas_aggie_girl_93

    texas_aggie_girl_93 VIP Whale

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    Great trip report! Thanks for sharing.
     
  3. VegasDiva

    VegasDiva VIP Whale

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    Sounds like a fun filled trip TY for sharing!
     
  4. sam_marques

    sam_marques High-Roller

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    Thank you, I really enjoyed your TR!!
     
    Mommys Solo Trips
  5. GrtWitHntr

    GrtWitHntr Low-Roller

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    Neve mind
     
  6. Jeannie

    Jeannie Tourist

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    Thanks for posting your trip report - I really enjoyed reading it. Must admit though, I'm begining to worry about the two nights we've got booked for Fitzgeralds in April.
     
  7. shobi

    shobi Low-Roller

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    Enjoyed your TR, sounds like you really had a great time. We're BIG fans of Signature too, but also enjoy downtown. We've only stayed on Fremont St. once, stayed in a gold club room at Golden Nugget - very nice, give it a try, sure you'll love it

    :beer:
     
  8. zerofan

    zerofan VIP Whale

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    Great report..... but instead of the crappy $39 room at The Fitz that you said was awful....you could have stayed at MSS for that one night for $31 if your a club card member or $36 if you are not!
     
  9. soxfan70

    soxfan70 Tourist

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    Wish I had known!!! I liked MSS!!
     
  10. BigRoss71

    BigRoss71 Low-Roller

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    I enjoyed reading that report. It was nicely detailed. Glad you had a good time.
     
  11. Viva Las Vegas

    Viva Las Vegas Ramblin' Gamblin' Man

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    I enjoyed your trip report - thanks for posting.

    Sorry Downtown wasn't very enjoyable for you. I would possibly consider a second chance at Golden Nugget which has great rooms at incredible prices. Glad you collectively came out winners. I really enjoyed Red Rock as well (we explored tour free but the rock climbing excursion w/ transportation sounds like fun).

    MGM Signature has great rooms and is one of my favorite places to stay on the strip (the only one where I would consider paying for a resort fee).
     
  12. Lorraine

    Lorraine Tourist

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    Great detailed report. Thanks for posting.
     
  13. Dogma

    Dogma Tourist

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    Thanks for sharing the TR. We also live in CT but generally fly from Newark. It started as a convenience thing for us and now we find the better rates and direct flight preferable.
    Sorry you weren't impressed by downtown. We stay at the Four Queens and like it a lot. I think we ate at the buffet in the Fitz one time and it turned us off the place on a whole. Like most things it's different strokes for different folks.
    Presidential is just awesome. We always get the airport limo service when we are in Vegas. It's not really all that expensive and it saves having to wait for a taxi or shuttle service. With only going to Vegas once a year we can afford to splurge on some extras.
     
  14. soxfan70

    soxfan70 Tourist

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    Couldn't agree more about Presidential Limo. Everything with them was perfect. Not sure if flying out of Boston is an option for you (it may not be if you're driving to Newark), but i just found a four day trip through Funjet Vacations in May, staying at the signature for $440 a peice, including air!! That's what I paid for the airfare alone on this trip!! Almost time to start another countdown!
     
  15. DanO

    DanO Tourist

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    Just wondering do you know how many places were paid in the Venetian tournament with 432 players...you had to feel good about making it as far as you did.
     
  16. soxfan70

    soxfan70 Tourist

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    They paid 45 total. I felt really good about making it to 29th, although i would have loved to have had to come back the next day and finish it up. I would have had to change our flight home, but at that point I would have been in to some REAL money and it would have been worth it!
     
  17. Liztoybiz

    Liztoybiz Tourist

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    Great trip report! You guys sound like the kind of couple that decide they're going to have fun and not let all the little annoyances both them. I'm glad you had fun, did well in the tourney and enjoyed MGM. Hope you get to go back soon. 16 days and counting...:beer:

    Liz
     
  18. breanna61

    breanna61 Super Moderator

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    Sounds like you had a great trip and I like your attitude of not letting your room at the Fitz get you down and just rolling with it for the night. I agree that Presidential Limo has great service and is worth the money spent.
     
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