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Vegas Reunion with 3 buddies - 5/26-6/1- Semi Live

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by VegasSchemer, May 24, 2016.

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  1. VegasSchemer

    VegasSchemer Low-Roller

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    My Trip Report

    I've never done a trip report and will try to update this one as I go. I know I won't finish the report unless I get a jump start, so here is my gameplan.

    The backstory: The four of us were sent to Phoenix/Vegas for work back in 2012. We all spent at least two years living in Sin City since then and had a blast being tourists on the weekends.

    Two of us have now moved away (and one will be heading off to CA soon), so we're trying to get in a solid stay before the price of a trip goes up because we all have to fly into town. Having a car available is also clutch.

    One guy is also getting married, so its ostensibly the Bachelor's party, although we're doing another trip in LA for that later in the year.

    The gameplan:

    A) Accommodations-

    1 night @ Excalibur (myVegas)
    3 nights @ Luxor (room offer)
    2 nights @ Cosmo (room offer)

    We're building up to the good stuff ;)

    B) Dining-

    We're going to be maximizing our coupons, resort credit and myvegas rewards. Also, we'll be taking in a meal at some of our favorite local spots.

    On-strip restaurants- Tender Steakhouse @ Luxor
    Buffets- Excalibur, Bellagio, Cosmo, Mirage, Palms, Rampart
    Off-strip restaurants- Yama Sushi, Aloha Kitchen and Capo's

    The MGM property food courts and snacks from the VIP lounges will cover us for breakfast most days. Eating 1-2 buffets a day means we don't always need a solid third meal.

    C) Non-gaming fun-
    Go Karts using myVegas rewards
    Batting Cages @ SportsCenter Las Vegas
    Golf @ that course next door (forgetting the name right now)
    Cabana @ Sunset Station (may regret that part but its free)
    Bowling @ Sunset Station

    Some of these will be dropped based on timing, hangovers, etc.

    D) Gaming-

    We'll make Luxor and Cosmo the focus of our slot/table games play.

    I like playing at Luxor because I tend to like just playing with my friends and the HL room is often empty.

    I also hear there is a european wheel in the HL area of Cosmo, so I'm looking forward to that.

    Also, we're going to be jumping all over downtown using gaming coupons from LVA/ACG.

    As you can tell, we'll be running all over. My aim is get a free trip but there's enough promos around town (like IRS refund and ATM withdrawal bonuses) that should shore up the effort! Will let you know how it all goes!
     
  2. VegasSchemer

    VegasSchemer Low-Roller

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    Oh yeah and I went with the Big Seat on a Spirit flight hoping that'll make it bearable. Haven't gone cross country on one of those bargain airlines yet.
     
  3. bshowell

    bshowell VIP Whale

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    Looking forward to reading this
     
  4. VegasSchemer

    VegasSchemer Low-Roller

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    "Yes, I'm grounded, I got my wings clipped, I'm surrounded by all this pavement..."

    Flight delayed. F'ing spirit air. Never again. I give them one shot because they were cheapest and got me an extra vacation day. I'm back an hour and a half and will miss the first dinner of the trip. Shoot.

    My buddy was excited to show us Capo's which is apparently a speakeasy/old Vegas Italian joint. Maybe for this part of my report someone who has been there can review it! Ha!

    Gonna go hard at the BJ tables at the D and golden gate when I hit the ground.
     
  5. VegasSchemer

    VegasSchemer Low-Roller

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    First night at the tables was a hit by our standards. Jumped around from The D, Golden Gate and Cal (which looks pretty good after the remodel) and all made between $200 and $300. Enjoy both Derek Stevens joints because $25 hands give you a spot alone in the high roller area.
     
  6. tringlomane

    tringlomane STP Addicted Beer Snob

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    90 min delay? That's almost on time for spirit, no? Lol

    Good start on the tables! Good luck tonight!
     
  7. TimLion

    TimLion Low-Roller

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    Knock 'em dead!

    Santé,
    TL
     
  8. breanna61

    breanna61 Super Moderator

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    Another live report bites the dust :) I commend those who can keep them up.
     
  9. Sheil813

    Sheil813 Low-Roller

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    I was thinking the same thing... I love reading trip reports. Bummed when they aren't continuous.
     
    Spring Fling! May 11 - 15th
  10. VegasSchemer

    VegasSchemer Low-Roller

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    Sorry folks. I guess it's just not my first (or fifth) inkling while playing to send updates haha. I'll do a post trip update.

    Group has killed it. All still up between $200 and $900.
     
  11. queentata

    queentata High-Roller

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    Glad to hear you all are up. Looking forward to the report.
     
  12. Sheil813

    Sheil813 Low-Roller

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    You did say "semi-live". Have a great trip and I look forward o reading about it later!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
    Spring Fling! May 11 - 15th
  13. VegasSchemer

    VegasSchemer Low-Roller

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    Sitting on my flight back home. It was a great run for us in Vegas. The final outcome was a ~$4,000 win for the 4 of us. Spent six nights in total on the Strip, eating at 3 buffets, and taking in a show and spa trip. I'll give "the rest of the story" in the next couple days.
     
  14. casinokid68

    casinokid68 Low-Roller

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    Great outcome!! Can't wait for the details.
     
  15. VegasSchemer

    VegasSchemer Low-Roller

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    To briefly review the backstory, the 4 of us used to live in Vegas for 1-3 years and soon only one will still be based there so we decided to get one more visit done while we don’t all need flights.

    Night 1: My flight gets delayed by almost 2 hours (Dammit, Spirit! You had one job!), so the boys visited an Italian joint west of the Strip named Capos without me for dinner. Apparently it’s a Vegas throwback, mob-inspired little number. Secret password at the door, live entertainment, the whole thing. Sad I missed out. It’s already 11PM so we start making moves.

    We started out as strictly couponers when we came to Vegas and realized we loved playing blackjack and craps.

    If I can digress actually, it was a wildly lucky start to playing slots that got us to play. Back in 2012, a players club rep at the Wynn stopped us to try to get us to join the players club. Must have been starving for play back then.

    Agent: You’ll get $10 freeplay!

    Me: What the hell is that?

    Agent: Basically $10 to gamble without any risk!

    Me: Yeah, sure, what’s the catch?

    …..

    30 minutes later (because I couldn’t figure out for the life of me how to download the credit from the machine), I make $41 on my $10 in slot play. Man, that’s a free dinner, I’m thinking. Who else has freeplay? I learn about the ACG/LVA and the rest, as they say, is history.

    Alright, so I just wanted to set it all up with that so you can understand my slide into degeneracy. J

    Night 1 (continued):

    We run over to the El Cortez to pick up $10 in freeplay. I also have $6 in points that I use as FP and end up making $22 on the whole pile. Up: $22.

    Then we run down to the Cal for a play $50 get $25 in freeplay offer we found. I pick up $23 on that and we’ve got a nice little start to the action. The Cal has done a little remodeling and I like what they’re doing.

    Another coupon nets $10 at the Downtown Grand. That place makes me sad. Completely empty and probably the second nicest property downtown, in my opinion. It’s like the SLS of downtown- nice new thing that just feels like it’s not sure what’s doing and it’s already kinda in the wrong spot.

    And now, it’s the big stop to end the night: We’ve scrabbled together 11 $25 matchplays for both the D and the Golden Gate.

    One of my boys steps up to play the matchplays at the Golden Gate high limit room and he can’t lose. Kid wins all but one hand, including two double downs, and we walk out of there up like $550. We have some more good luck at The D’s high limit room and we all pick up $200 each from the whole operation. I dink around with some $10 hands and lose a bit but what a start! No one has put their own money at real risk and I’m sitting at up $250.

    We then go check into the Excalibur. It was the only MGM property I hadn’t stayed at and we could get it comped through myVegas. Their VIP lounge actually has good snacks out if you’re ever traveling to Luxor or MB. Expecting death, I was pleasantly surprised by the rooms.
     
  16. VegasSchemer

    VegasSchemer Low-Roller

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    Night 2:

    The next day, we do a little promo chip collection using the “WIN CARDS” at MB, NYNY, and Luxor. At each of these joints, you get $30 in chips for $20. You just have to play them and win real chips before you can cash out. I made about $40 on them in total.

    We check in at the Luxor. As my platinum status will end in September and I’ll just be gold after that, it’ll be a little sad lose the perks we do have from it. We’re spending three nights here without resort fees and I’ve got $100 freeplay and $150 resort credit.

    We then go play golf at the little 3 par golf course up in North Las Vegas. We all like to golf but play once or twice a year and suck, so we match the course, if you will. My friend starts off with 5 strikes on two holes, and I’m at 11 after two but the script flips from there as I catch him on the 8th hole and hold the lead on the 9th. Fun little place but if you want something special you better head elsewhere.

    From there, we drive down the road to the Cannery Casino. We’ve procured 24 matchplays for the place and it actually goes horribly. Whenever we get a batch of matchplays, we share risk and the outcome of playing 6 matchplays each is a $5 loss per person. So basically, we lost about 2/3s of the hands. Then we realize we only lost $5 and we shouldn’t complain.

    We go back to Luxy and head over to the Tender Steakhouse there for dinner before the show we scored some free tickets for (feel free to DM me for the details or just head over to the page here for frugal gamblers).

    We use a myVegas reward for $75 off of $150 and cover the rest with resort credit. Solid meal. I’ve always liked that steakhouse.

    We then head up to the show: Blue Man Group. We could get four free tickets to KA, LOVE, Cris Angel or BMG and we’d all seen the first two and didn’t want to see Cris (Kris? Christine?) Angel, so we went with the Blue Man. Pretty bad call. Lots of people there seemed to love it but I was really not impressed. I thought it’d be creative percussion. They had two bits that were fairly creative (drumming with paint, and creating art by throwing stuff all over) but the rest was garbage, IMO. Way too long for very little bang. And then they just throw paper everywhere while flashing lights. I hope it’s some kind of ironic concept art or something but I was not into it. If I had paid, I’d be pretty depressed.

    That’s pretty much it for that day. I play some $25 double deck on the floor after the show but don’t have any notes on how that went.
     
  17. VegasSchemer

    VegasSchemer Low-Roller

    Joined:
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    Night 3 (second night at Luxor):

    I get up early to play blackjack and made about $400 on the $25 table. Coupons + luck = a great little trip. Beyond a meal at the food court and a few random purchases, it’s been a free ride.

    Then we do a quick run among the near strip properties with coupons in the ACG/LVA. Win a little at Hooters and get some wings. The pool scene was fun as it usually is when we’re there. Also, they’ve got a great videoblackjack machine. $3 minimums for a 3:2 game and allowing surrender. I’m a big fan and make about $20 on it.

    Then we hit up Ellis Island. Always a good time. We each get $20 to $40 in freeplay and use up 10 matchplays. Pretty good run and I’m up about $40 there.

    We get second lunch at the Exalibur buffet using myVegas coupons and the rest as resort credits. Not a bad stop. Now I’ve done all the MGM rooms and buffets. Overall, I was pleasantly surprised by Excalibur. I expected Motel 6 and Golden Corral. It was better on both counts.

    That night we stop at one friend’s house to watch the Thunder/Warriors basketball game. We also play a board game (Settlers of Catan for any players out there) and then hit up casinos in that part of town. We visit Sam’s Town, Eastside Cannery, and Longhorn (good lord, I’m still coughing). I made about $25 but I’m not sure it’s worth it. One of the friends wants to use every damn coupon. He doesn’t understand the “cost of free” as they call it.
     
  18. VegasSchemer

    VegasSchemer Low-Roller

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    Night 4 (third night at Luxor):

    We hit up the Rampart over near Summerlin and the Red Rock casino buffet. Also use a $10 myVegas matchplay at Red Rock. All good stuff. From our pile of matchplays, we got $20 each plus whatever we won off of $10 in freeplay (which we always use on videoblackjack). If you’re thinking, how many matchplays did you have?! The answer is 50. In addition to what comes in the LVA/ACG coupon books, I traded for 50 extra matchplays for about 6 different casinos. Thanks to everyone for their help on that end!

    We then go back to the strip and grab lunch at In n Out (it’s good but some of the CA folks really overstate the quality of that place- it’s a great $3 burger but that’s all). We then run over to Circus Circus for their promo chip deal ($30 for $45 in chips). It goes well once the asshole of a dealer we start with leaves. His name is Steve. He’s a large, bald guy and I’d never tip him no matter how well things were going. I never get the ones who not only seem like they hate their job (hey, I get it, we all do sometimes) but then criticize the moves players make.

    From there, we get a good hour of swim-up blackjack and cornhole at the Tropicana. I’ve always like that place. Swim-up was lots of fun. Each time someone got a blackjack, they had to take a drink and dive into the pool. It was a $15 loss for me but really a great time. They do have terrible rules though, if you insist on always playing 3:2.

    We finish playing $25 double deck at Luxor and I get real lucky. It’s up and down but mostly down, so I just get frustrated (that’s never good) and make one $150 bet. 11 with the dealer showing 7. I’ve got to double that. Dealer has 22. Booom. Play a bit more and end up winning $400 total. Great stop.

    I also got the promo chips there a second time on the trip. It’s hit and miss but Luxor and Circus Circus are two joints that don’t always hold you to the 6 month redemption rules.

    I then cash out the $160 in freeplay I have for the Luxor ($100 on the offer and $60 from myVegas) and it goes pretty poorly (in theory) but that still meant I made $120, so I’m not complaining.
     
  19. VegasSchemer

    VegasSchemer Low-Roller

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    Night 5 (first night at Cosmo):

    We start out by getting breakfast at the pyramid café because I’ve got about $20 left in resort credit and run up a $55 bill for the three of us. My friend is inspired to go to the players club and see if he can get a comp to eat on and scores $40 which covers the whole bill. Later, I check out his mLife action at Luxor during our stay and he played through $20, no lie. He did play a bit at the tables with me, but we’re talking $10 hands for less than 2 hours total. Makes no sense but I’m not complaining. Anyone else have an experience at the lower end MGM properties like this? Will they just give out a meal comp to anyone or did he have a lucky draw on the players club agent?

    I play one last time and make about $300, so I’m up $1,200ish just at Luxor.

    We then head down to the batting cages at SportsCenter Las Vegas. Fun little place. If you like baseball, you’re hitting into a giant stadium, so you get to watch the balls fly and try to hit a home run. Much more rewarding than just hitting at a net that’s 100 feet in front of you.

    After that, we go over to Pole Position by the Palms to use some myVegas coupons for free races. Very fun and I recommend it if you play myVegas. BOGO is worth it there but that’s all. I don’t think I’d want to spend $30 on it. You’re flying at 45 MPH on this little track, so it feels like 70. If you’re fine with spending a little on your trips, then I’d suggest you give it a go. It’s a block past the Palms.

    Speaking of Palms, we head there next with a stack of matchplays. We each make $30 (sharing the risk) and do the buffet. It’s not as good as I remember. We also stop by Gold Coast across the street, where the coupon books provide $10 freeplay and a $10 matchplay. After making a little more there, we head back to the Strip to do a little night time stroll before checking in at the Cosmo for two nights. See the fountains and conservatory at Bellagio.

    Finally at Cosmo (it’s been a climb from the swamp to the stars), and check into our 2 queen rooms with the terrace. $75 freeplay, $100 resort credit and no resort fees for the two nights. All in all, we spent $1.21 per person per night. We had to share queen beds at each stop but we prefer that to buying a second room.

    We head over to a place called Yama Sushi (it’s in a little shopping center about 10 minutes east of the Strip). It’s amazing. $28 for AYCE and it never disappoints. We put down about 20 rolls as a group (some of those come as 4-5 pieces, so that might sound like more food than we ate but we are 4 20-something year old guys).

    Playing on the floor that night ($50, 8 deck, 3:2, surrender, H Soft 17) and meet a real cute girl from Dallas. She’s a tattoo artist who came to town for her 21st birthday. Came alone and looking for fun. Kinda sad shit but definitely prime pickings. Bought in for $25...at a $25 table. She’s impressed by my chip stack (it’s $800, so she must not have spent much time playing at Cosmo! haha) and hangs around for a drink I call for her. We chatted in the lounge over where the sports book used to be and then head on over to her room at Planet Hollywood. I roll back to my room at 3AM (get it done and get out). I also cashed out $1350 at Cosmo (kept getting lucky at BJ, although I dumped most of that back on slots) and didn’t really trust some random kid in Vegas with me and my money). My boys are asleep when I return to the room, so I throw the couch cushions out on the terrace and sleep out there just for the experience (and my mate appreciates the extra room). It’s nice until the sun wakes me up at 6AM and I have to crawl back inside.
     
  20. VegasSchemer

    VegasSchemer Low-Roller

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    Night 6 (second night at Cosmo):

    In the morning, we head downtown to use a bunch of push on 22 and 2:1 blackjack payout coupons at the D/Golden Gate, along with all of the freeplay coupons in the ACG/LVA books for downtown. We had secured a few extra $25 matchplays for the Plaza as well and it goes pretty poorly. $25 split 4 ways in the end. We get pancakes at Dupar’s using a “earn 25 points, get a stack of pancakes free” coupon. I’m playing video blackjack and make $18 along the way to the point requirements (it’s $200 coin-in). Beyond two beatings at the slot machine at Cosmo that took probably $500 or so, it’s been a great run filled with wins all over.

    We then stop over at mermaids and eat a bunch of their deep fried stuff since they’re going to disappear soon. It was okay.

    Then we stop over at Binions and do that picture with a $1 million gimmick since we realized none of us have ever done it. We do their mother lode promo (play through $40 and get a spin at the kiosk) and we all get free drinks or bogo items at the café except for one lucky friend who gets the $10 freeplay.

    Those little play for a spin promos always draw me in.

    Using the Push on 22 coupons, we make a great run at the D. Up about $500 to be shared by me and a friend ($25 hands), we dump quite a bit back at the Golden Gate trying to use those 2:1 blackjack. In the end, we make $150 each.

    We also stop over at Westgate (the former LVH) and all make about $20 from the coupons. We then decide to try out a little joint called Mardi Gras. Good lord, save yourself the headache and don’t go there. Just sad picture of Vegas and humanity. I walk in the desk agent for the hotel (which is a dingy motel) is crying. Then the security guy is running some shady looking characters off who are refusing to show ID and the players club is a real mess. Every cash out has to be paid in person, too. Even $10. Not going back. What a shit show.

    Things get back on track when we return to the Cosmo for Wicked Spoon. That buffet is always on its game and regularly rolls out new dishes, so there’s a reason to keep coming back. Eat until I can’t move and head back to the Cosmo floor.

    We’ve got an early morning (flight at 12) so I finish up by pumping a little more through the machine at Luxor and Cosmo to try to keep the offers coming and end up making $400 combined at the two joints for the effort.

    Morning before the flight:

    The two friends that still live in Vegas head off for work. The last buddy and I, looking to clean up before the trip ends, go to spa and get a day pass. Always a good call in my book. Walk out feeling clean. We finish by using our platinum experience letter to ride the rollercoaster at NYNY and take a cab from there to the airport.

    There’s some play here and there not included in the story, but in the end I made $2,500, another friend made $700, then $500 and $400. And this was all off of my memory a few days after, so there may be some errors in the order of events.

    Wildly lucky trip that attempted to maximize all offers we knew about. Great time for everyone since we all covered costs and won some.

    In the end, I spent about $100 on food, $100 on “activities”, $7 on rooms, $400 on the flight and came home with a great profit. Perfect length of stay too. 3 nights always feels too short. 4-5 gets the job done and 6 gave us time to do almost everything we could think of and then head home. Another night would’ve been too long for me.

    I did finish the trip firmly in gold but a long way from Platinum, so it’ll be sad to lose my status because it’s had some nice perks (namely, getting a hotel room and a spot at the valet on nights where the guy told me it was sold out/full and then able to flash the card). Same with the taxi cab lines although I hear if you just keep an old one, they won’t check beyond a possible ID check, which would match.

    Not sure when the next trip is, probably November-January when the rates are cheap so the offer will be good. If you got this far, thanks for reading.
     
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