On this, our 16th trip to Las Vegas and the 10th year since the first trip my wife and I took together, I debated whether or not to post a trip report. It is tough, because I stay pretty busy, but I like a) passing information along and b) being able to return a few years later and remember the experience. So here it is! THURSDAY Our flight was Delta, which is unusual. We usually do Southwest, but I had some credit card points to cash in so Delta it was. I’ve had some bad experiences with Delta in the past, but things went pretty smooth this time around. We had a layover in Salt Lake City, and I was happy to find that this airport had my bank’s ATM’s handy, so I extracted a little more “safety cash” without paying a fee. We arrived and took the rental car shuttle to pick up our car from Dollar Express. We like the freedom a rental car provides, and we can usually get them pretty cheap. I cannot think of an easier way to rent and pick up your car. We walked in, down the escalator, to the garage, looked at the screen to see which stall was marked for us, walked to that stall and plopped into our rental. Then through the shack where we were verified and we were done. A five minute process. We got a Kia; not very sexy, but it works. Took the drive up the Strip toward our hotel. We wanted to try something new, so we decided to book Linq on a CET comp. We’ve stayed at most of their other properties with a few exceptions, so we thought we’d give the new one a try. It is always great to see the city’s neon greet you as you drive north toward your destination. Upon our arrival, we had to guess a bit how to get to our hotel. The parking garage was a bit confusing; not clearly marked. We guessed access was through Harrah’s, and we were right, but the signs were difficult to follow and they had the self-parking access blocked off. We eventually took the valet entrance and this worked. True to CET properties, the parking garage elevator was pretty dirty, and once out of the garage you pass two sketchy alleys to get to the hotel entrance. The wife grabs us a couple of drinks from the bar by check in as I wait in line. *After a little wait I greet the receptionist, who tells me that they don’t have a king room available. I told her that I had a reservation for such, and she advises that reservations are “requests,” and can’t be guaranteed. Oh boy. *We get a room with two doubles. We’re told we can come back tomorrow to see if the room we requested is available. Not a good start. Oh well, let’s roll with it. Gotta have fun. Next, the elevators. Here’s how they work. You have to swipe your room card (actually a proximity reader) to get to your floor. A nice security feature for sure, but it sounds better than it is. Here is how it really goes: pack 12 people in, then it is a mix of bodies and confusion as each tries to swipe their card across the single reader to access their floor. Terrible design. I appreciate the security but it doesn’t work; at a minimum another card reader is needed on the opposite panel (providing two). This is all worsened by the slowness of the elevators; a real problem. One guest on an elevator ride commented that she would not stay here again simply because of this flaw. But hey, we get there. It is a neat room, but with some quirks. It isn’t very big; the same old IP room size. *CET had to try to make it work; it is tough to do much with the size of the room. The room is more about looks than function, though. There is an interesting shelf/desk along one wall. Also a cool mirror that I noted was identical to one used in Cromwell from photos. An exposed “closet” and safe. The safe did work well and stows a 15” laptop. Some things intended to be cute are not necessarily practical. For example, there is a pocket sliding door to the bathroom. It is a little heavy and noisy; your standard door would have been just fine. The desk/wall shelf also doesn’t seem that useful. The beds were fairly comfortable, and I guess I had one all to myself! The curtains do little to block out the light in the morning, so I was up at 7am each day. The worst thing, though, was the positioning of the wall unit air conditioner. You had to have it; this is the desert after all. *I’m from the Midwest so I prefer a bit of coolness to sleep at night. But here, take your pick: either hot or in your face cold. The unit is positioned just a couple feet away from one of the beds. It has no adjustable vents to reposition air flow. It has a powerful motor and it works well, but blows directly in your face at night (or your feet if you flip flop). I tried to put a Linq bag over it, and a towel, but eventually both fall off. The thing works great, but is also a hindrance because it works great. We had a nice view of the High Roller, but if you have that view, you don’t have much else to look at. Time to gamble. The standard CET poor VP pay tables and 6:5 blackjack (yes, 3:2 is available if you want to bet $25 a hand, but I don’t), but we didn’t feel like leaving. The casino is nice and fresh, everything works. A bit small, though. O’Shea’s sounds tend to bleed over, but the band was fun so I didn’t mind. This casino definitely skews toward a 20 to early 30 something demographic. We're in Vegas, so we're having fun! We dumped all of our money for the evening and headed up to get some interrupted sleep. Friday was to include Elton John.