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Vegas Trip VI - Stratosphere 2/16-2/21 - Live Updates

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by Vladimir, Feb 15, 2013.

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  1. Vladimir

    Vladimir Low-Roller

    Joined:
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    My Trip Report

    Now only a few hours away from Vegas Trip VI.

    Vegas trip V proved hugely unsuccessful and I thought it could be my last for a while. However, I had been plotting with a work friend since Christmas '11 to go with her husband for his birthday. So fourteen months of planning later - here we are. We will be joined by another friend who has accompanied me on my last two trips.

    Last trip (June 2012) I had just one single winning session for the whole trip, which was in the form of a $50 win ($25 profit) at the Golden Nugget. Not only did I never seem to colour anything up, I could count on one hand the number of times I was even ahead at a table. Need to think positive!

    In terms of accomodation - I am comped three nights in a Star Suite at the Stratosphere . This will be my third time in said suite (once for a week - once for two nights). It's actually pretty impressive whilst, I'm sure, being nowhere near the standard of the suites in other places in Vegas. The other two nights I'm recieving at a heavily discounted rate. I personally think the Stratosphere is great, whilst also understanding others concerns. I've made friends of some staff there and it feels like a home from home now.

    In terms of games - Daytimes I generally play Texas Hold'em with massively varying levels of success. I play strictly for recreation (having had a couple of shots at playing pro - and not enjoying it!) but I am ahead in the long term. There have been some pretty wild swings though. I also play a lot of blackjack, some craps and occasionaly (often/all the time) drunk slots/roulette. There is one particular gentleman who hasn't moved from his holdem seat in the four years I have been going to Vegas. I'm actually fairly certain they just put a tarp over him at night. It will be fun to see him again (he sends me on tilt in an instant and has probably taken 4 figures off me over time).

    In terms of bankroll - 5 nights with $400 per night. Any winnings (where applicable) are split equally between the following night and the final night. I'd very much like to have a major blowout for a grand on the last night, so we'll see how that goes! The bets are usually $100 buy in on cash game, $5 per hand (progressive) on Blackjack. Anything up to $5 per spin on drunk slots/VP. Craps $5 with partial odds. I have no idea what I bet on drunk roulette as the only thing I ever remember about it is being yelled at by the dealer for collecting my winners to fast. A also have a princely $50 in promo chips which I intend to parlay into a Bentley.

    In terms of food/beverage - The only firm plan is the traditional first night meal at Fellini's Ristorante, which has been a fixture since my second trip back in Nov '09. I also plan to try the new McColls steakhouse and will almost certainly try the new buffet at Caesars. I source all of my drinks at the tables or, when I'm feeling dangerously sober/degenerate, the VP bars. I drink corona and lime. I'm Irish so not averse to the odd beer (or thirty).

    New stuff - This may be the time I eventually try baccarat, which has been on the list for over a year now. I would also like to pay a visit to the Rio/Palms side of town.

    So, I'm off for a couple of hours sleep before heading to the airport later today and enduring 17 hours of planes, lines and waiting. I nearly bought an iPad so I could take some movies with me - but realised this would eat into the BR.

    In case you can't tell - I tend to ramble and when I get this fully typed up it could easily turn into the Chronicles of Narnia - Vegas style (hopefully without the fawn - Snow Queens welcome). Don't say I didn't warn you...

    I'm planning to post some live updates on here daily (apologies in advance for any drunk updates), and may share my twitter name with those who would like to PM (won't post it for general public consumption!).
     
  2. rooster42000

    rooster42000 Low-Roller

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    the buffet at Caesars is a must that is, unbelievable , try it
     
  3. Vladimir

    Vladimir Low-Roller

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    Just in PHL, couple of beers down- 6 hours till touchdown in Vegas.
     
  4. Vladimir

    Vladimir Low-Roller

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    Checked in - got a suite on the 7th floor. Great view of an external wall.

    Never mind- I didn't come to Vegas to stare out the window (unless it overlooks the pool)!!

    Would recommend lucky limousine for transport from the airport- cheap and efficient.

    Next up - dinner at fellinis and possibly some (hugely degenerate!) gambling and drinking.
     
  5. broncobilly

    broncobilly Tourist

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    vancouver canada
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    Thx for the strat update. :)
     
  6. blackjacker2

    blackjacker2 Low-Roller

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    it's all gone quiet. How's it going?
     
  7. Vladimir

    Vladimir Low-Roller

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    Sorry for lack of updates - got sick on the morning of day 2 (I even knew the salmon didn't look right!!). Was back in action this morning and day 1 report is coming soon.

    Day 2 and 3 reports will be fairly brief unless you like hearing about south route vomit!!
     
  8. Vladimir

    Vladimir Low-Roller

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    Day 1 2/16

    Went to dinner at fellinis for the usual- which was excellent as always.

    The casino was extremely crowded for presidents day, so there was a great atmosphere.

    Went to the party pit for some blackjack, dropped a hundred in about ten minutes, drink service was pretty slow so went to high limit slots - dropped another C Note in no time. Drink service was non existent so I went to the VP bar.

    Three coronas later and I was holding my own, maybe up 20 dollars. Cashed out and went to the main blackjack pit. Lost another hundred plus 50 promo chips, after having been up a hundred or more at one point.

    Tried some roulette. I bet the 11 with neighbours and a couple of other numbers. Looked up and 11 had hit three times in 6 spins. It hit first time for me, about a $250 payout. Gave all but a hundred back, so not too bad overall.

    Craps was up next - burned through a hundred in one pass, rebought and the next guy was hot. Started with 5 on the pass and 5x odds, 10-12 on the 5,6,8,9. pressed one unit for each hit. Ended up with 30 on the 6 by the time he sevened out. Next shooter was one roll no butter so I ended up colouring $200.

    Met up with friend who was still in the party pit - we ended up having a great time with some other guys at the table. By this time I am a good 20 beers in and we start getting loud.

    Im announcing the total of everyone's hand as if I'm commentating on golf or something. Every time someone bet $15 or more I was screaming checks play at the dealer.

    At one point one of the guys we met (who was hilarious) won a $200 hand (i deemed that worthy of three checks play!) and started doing laps of the pit. Security came over and we were told to quieten down ('gentlemen could you please calm down' I believe was the exact phrase). I think they also decided (wisely) to cut the table off from CW service.

    We stayed until they closed the pit and I was down $100 and $200 that friend insisted I borrowed from him.

    Went back up to the room to get more funds and pay him back. Took another 200 and went to high limit.

    Managed to pull off a reasonable hit and ended up cashing out just under $200 from 1 in. I think we could probably be heard from the other side of the casino.

    At this point for some reason we decided to go to roxys (haven't been here since trip 1) I have no idea what I ordered but I do remember the waitress was really nice.

    Apparently I was pretty insistent on going to the Bellagio (no idea why) at one point but this didn't happen.

    Definately did some stuff after that (not quite sure what exactly) and I coloured up $200 from blackjack. Friend colours up $300 and drops it on red. Of course black hits and we leave feeling dejected.

    How we weren't bounced by security i don't know. By 5am I had proposed to every woman in Nevada, deafened three or four blackjack dealers screaming checks play (occasionally 'splitting eights'). Hassled a pit boss for a room comp for my 3x checks play friend, insulted the guy filling the rack and kept asking for a marker despite not having a CL/FM.

    Head back up to my room to do a stock take. Of my $400 budget I managed to lose $800. Considered going to the airport.

    I decided that I needed to make a phone call. No idea who I rang or why I was ringing them but I'm sure they enjoyed my reciting lines from the movie 21.

    Friend has no idea what his room number is and was thinking of staying at mine but ended up going. It wasn't until the following morning I found out he had been back to the casino to lose more.

    I, however did the sensible thing and passed out next to the night stand around 7am.

    Highlights:
    Blew through 2x my daily bankroll limit
    Got cut off from CW service for the first time
    Friend gets lost

    Next update:
    I may have lost nearly a grand - but Vegas was about to get much, much worse.......
     
  9. The Great One

    The Great One MIA

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    Cant look away now.
     

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  10. sabrina

    sabrina Low-Roller

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    excellent so far!
    (Didn't you save money the days you were sick?)
     
  11. LaRae

    LaRae Low-Roller

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    Still hurling? How did all this end?? I know...JAIL! You are in jail!!!
     
  12. Vladimir

    Vladimir Low-Roller

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    Day 2 - 2/17

    It was certainly a case of the morning after - I felt as though a horse had slept on my head as I woke up at around 11am (4 hours sleep). At some point I must have migrated from the floor to the bed - which was a much better choice of sleeping surface.

    I call the others (only one answered - the other had lost $1300 on roulette the previous night) and we went downstairs. There was a free slot tournament on in the daytime so I entered that and failed to do well. For another 200 points you could re-enter so I figured I would play some VP to earn another ticket. I did this and barely increased my score the second time. I noticed that I had another go remaining (obviously that trip to high limit last night paid off), and I scored well.

    The previous night was starting to catch up with me so I went back up to the suite for a lie down - this time made it to the bed before passing out.

    Next thing there is somebody baging the door 'Hotel Security, Vladimir Stupnitzky (name changed), are you in there?', I immediately start crapping it. What did we do last night? Are we being kicked out? As I run round trying to locate some pants (why is it there is always a lack of pants when you are about to be thrown out on the street???) the security guy knocks again and again.

    Shaking, I open the door and find friend standing there with him. 'Is this guy staying in this room?' asks the security officer. 'No, his room is xxxxx,' I reply. Security guy turns to friend 'Sir, the problem is you have been trying to get into a room four floors lower than the one you were staying in'. He thanks me for my time and they wander off to the correct room.

    I give it a couple of minutes and call the correct room. Turns out he went back to the room and found the maid cleaning, so he waited outside and then tried to get in using the key card, which didn't work. He asked the maid what the problem was and she thought someone had deadlocked the room from the inside. Security was called and apparantly he drew his gun and started shouting at whoever was inside to come out with his hands up. They enter the room, and nobody is inside. Friend thinks he has been robbed - the room is completely empty. The security guy says 'Sir, if they have robbed you then they have stayed to make the beds. I think we're in the wrong room.'

    So they radio someone downstairs who directs them to my room as I have booked both. If he had been shouting to come out with my hands up I probably would have had a stroke right there - but fortunately friend had recognised it was actually my room.

    Still shaking, I decide to get a jacuzzi before heading back downstairs. I ended up making the final of the slot tournament but finished second last. I could have used the $400 dollars to make up for the heavy losses of last night.

    I now think I can stomach some food and head to El Nopal for tacos. It's pretty good and less than $10 and I'm now feeling like getting some gambling done.

    I play a little blackjack in the party pit - finish $50 to the good for a first table win of the trip.

    Head to the 1/2 cash game, some pretty cool players. I was tired and in no mood to bluff, so I am playing super tight. Think I only see about five flops in two hours and might as well be playing with my cards face up. Still doesn't stop me from doubling up and I quit more than $100 ahead.

    About 10pm and I'm done. Exhausted and hungover.

    Highlights:
    Made the final of a slot tournament
    Didn't eat until dinner
    Haven't been outside since I arrived

    Still to come:
    I eat some very memorable smoked salmon
    I actually go outside
     
  13. mikeinctown

    mikeinctown Low-Roller

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    LMAO That's great!
     
  14. Vladimir

    Vladimir Low-Roller

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    Day 3 – 2/18
    Woke up feeling slightly more human following yesterday’s horse-head-sleeping-hangover. Still feeling like we had just arrived, this was actually the halfway point in our trip.
    We began by paying a visit to the buffet. This particular decision impacted the trip in a way none of us could have imagined. I have (had?) a particular fondness for smoked salmon, and despite this morning’s offering looking past its prime, I decided to endorse.
    Decided to play the 11am tournament, donked out sometime after the first break, receiving no hands of note. Played the cash game for an hour or so following that, for a solid $5 profit.
    We had decided we wanted to play in the WSOPC tournament at 5pm that evening (a non-ring event), I decided that the likely prize pool would be in the region of £5k. We took a cab to Fashion Show Mall for a quick look at the suits in Macys and an icecream at DQ.
    A quick walk over to the Palazzo and I get an urge. Not a gambling urge. An urge associated with eating three-day-old-smoked-salmon.
    Not wanting to let this impact our trip, I decided to persevere and we headed to Caesars. Had a quick look round at the poker room, the TV cameras were all over as the WSOPC main event final table was about to get started. What I wouldn’t give to be playing on that table, a $250k top prize.
    I think the combination of TV Cameras and pro players walking around scared the other two and they decided not to play and went for something to eat at the chicken restaurant next to the poker room. I can’t review this as I didn’t endorse (nor would I eat anything for the remainder of the day), but one enjoyed it, the other did not. Also one of them got a cocktail that looked like chicken vomit – which, from his report, also tasted like chicken vomit.
    I get down to the last 30 in the tournament (again with no hands of note). Everything was going well and I was fairly confident of cashing when an all-in-put-Vladimir-on-tilt-donk joined the table. He was dressed like Phil Hellmouth’s wardrobe had eaten three-day-old-smoked-salmon and he had got caught in the crossfire – this guy was ridonkulous. Then the most infuriating series of hands took place. I am seat 9, uber donk is in seat 7. First hand this guy goes all in against my A-5 suited. Of course I fold, and see the flop would have given me the nut flush with a draw for the straight flush. Next hand uber-donk is all in, I have 5,5. Fold. Flop. 5-T-T. Next hand uber-donk is all in. I have JQs. I figure he is just going to shove every hand – and there is only one way to beat this. Call. He flips A-3o, and I am only about 4% behind him. The result is an A on the turn and a cab back to the Strat for me.
    I find one friend at a BJ table and my face must have said it all. Was greeted with ‘you look terrible’ and ‘I guess it was a bad beat’. Well, not exactly, but I am on tilt and feel like I have hired the most disease ridden hooker in Vegas (which may have actually happened on day one – I just wouldn’t remember). I buy in for my remaining $60. Loose it in about 5 minutes. Stand up. Find $25 in my pocket and think it must be a sign. I head to high limit – one pull. Double Diamond. Bar-Bar-Blank. The double diamond symbol is just above the payline. That would have been a nice $500.
    It is only about 10pm, but I can’t bring myself to do any more. Head to bed.

    Recap:
    Eat funny looking smoked salmon
    Go on tilt after a poker tournament
    First foray into $25 slots

    Still to come:
    Lion’s share
    Consider going to the ER
     
  15. Royal Flusher

    Royal Flusher Savvy Gambler

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    Entertaining in a train-wreck kind of way.

    So you had a visit from Sam and Ella?...
     
  16. Vladimir

    Vladimir Low-Roller

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    Day 4 2/19
    I awake at around 5.30am and decide I’m not going to bother going back to sleep. One of my aims is to play the Cosmo’s $100 free-but-not-quite-free-thing. Takes me only about 40 minutes to walk there from the strat, heading through a couple of other casinos on the way. I arrive a little too early for the slot club to be open so a very nice slot host offers to set me up with a card. I get the $5 freeplay and set about trying to lose my $100. The problem is, I manage to grind up my $5 freeplay up to about $40. Winning has been an unusual feeling this trip, so I decide to cash out and run for the hills. Well… Bally’s.
    One of the others texts me to say he is eating at the IHOP for breakfast. Its been 2 years since I experienced the delights there so I text and say I’ll be there in 10 minutes. The problem is, the cab line at Bally’s is a mile long. I think about making my own Seven Stars card in order to skip the line but a combination of a lack of player’s card shaped plastic, printer and other vital components mean I find it easier to take the monorail.
    After an inexplicable 15 minute stop at the Convention Center, I arrive at Sahara and hobo-dodge my way to the IHOP. I think mine was called something like smokehouse special, two link sausages with hashbrowns, pancakes and three eggs over easy. I always find IHOP a great place for a proper American breakfast and of course today was no exception.
    On the way out a nice hobo gentleman approaches us to ask if he could possibly borrow a few moments of our time. We pretend not to speak English (I had no particular desire to be stabbed – friend who by this point is down $2k is thinking it might not be such a bad way to go) to which he responds ‘oh-f*-you-assholes’. It’s OK though – we don’t speak English so it didn’t offend us.
    We again play in the 11am tournament and achieve nothing of note.
    We decide today will be the day where we head to the top of the tower. It’s closing for a private party so we head up there at about 3.00. Have a jagerbomb. Go back down.
    I had only noticed it this trip, but the Strat has a great area near the poker room filled with classic slots. It includes a nickel double diamond haywire machine. I love the double diamond games, and always wanted to play haywire. I’ve only seen one machine (at the Mirage) previously and this was a quarter machine. So I’ve stayed at the stratosphere six times, and only just noticed this was right under my nose the whole time.
    If anyone from the Strat happens to be reading this, KEEP THIS SLOT BANK. I think we had more fun playing for 90 minutes in this area than we had in drunk-high-limit on the first night, cocktail service is also swift so we down another couple of jagers. Best hit was for friend who hit 7-Double-Double on a nickel DD machine.
    I decide to get a spa bath and suit change before heading to the strip for Lion’s share. Meanwhile the others decide to get into a cash game. I return and they persuade me to buy in for a hundred. I do this but the effects of the jagerbombs and the inability of my set of 7s to hold up means I lose it quickly.
    We head to the monorail at Sahara and head down towards the MGM. We decide to get off at Ballys and have a bit of a look at the strip. I’ve never been to Paris before, so we have a walk through there. Fantastic decor, much better than the actual City. Go from there through the Aria to Cosmo, where there is a great live band. Stay there for a while and move on.
    It’s then on to something I have wanted to do for a long time, and was top of the list for this trip. The Lion’s share. Manage to negotiate our way through the works on the pavement. Hear what sounds suspiciously like a gunshot (but haven’t been able to find a story online – this is two days before the cab incident). We get into the MGM and head towards high-limit. I can’t believe it. There it is, halo and all, just poking slightly higher than all of the other slots as the prophets (VMB) foretold.
    I put in my MLife card and a 20 and pull. Second pull yields a lion on the first reel. My heart stops for more than a couple of seconds. Sadly, he isn’t joined by his friends and before I know it I’m down and out. Whilst I go to the change machine one of the others slips in a 20 and continues to play (on my card – huzzah!). He loses more quickly than me and before I can say 2.3 million dollars I’m back in the frame. Slip in another 20 and work it down quickly to my last two dollars. Not being the kind of guy to not bet max credits on such a revered machine (nor being the type of guy to request a handpay for $2), I find a single and drop it in. I manage to work that $3 up to $140, before dropping back to $100 and receiving my first ever handpay. Some other guys arrive at the machine shortly after I hit cashout and begin to play after us. A few minutes later one of them hits two lions, but not on the payline. These guys say they have been playing the machine for years and have contributed $2.2m of the $2.3 available. We have a good craic with them and head to the rainforest café for dinner.
    We all order burgers. They are great, but the three-day-old salmon came back with a vengeance and I could only make it through half of it. Earlier in the day I had started to develop a rash and at this point I felt so ill, a trip to the ER was on the cards.
    Instead, I decide to go to the Paradise General Hospital instead (aka the Tropicana) to see if my play there last year yielded any comps/freeplay this year. It did not. This place is really freaking out one of the others as it is so bright (unlike any other casino in Vegas). We head to the front – get a cab and haul back to the Strat.
    Despite my feeling close to death, I sit down at a Blackjack table with IMHO one of the best dealers in Las Vegas. I’ve never seen banter like it, particularly with the ladies! I take note of this guy as I’m fairly sure I’d like to be at his table again. He also pays off my $25+ wins in green, which is great and stops me losing too much! I walk up about $50.
    Back in the room, I am feeling no better, and decide that if I wake up in the morning and if I feel no better, I will go to the hospital.
    Highlights:
    Win the Lions Share (just not all of it)
    Still sick
    Decide I like the Paris
    Still to come:
    Decide whether I’m alive...
    Downtown for our last day
    Man vs. Food
     
  17. maineguy

    maineguy Low-Roller

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    this is like watching "breaking bad" and having netflix not carry the last episode ................soooo........downtown?????
     
  18. LV_Bound

    LV_Bound VIP Whale

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    I can relate. Usually on the flight home we are planning our next trip, but not this time as we both took a beating.


    Impressed that you are getting comped a suite on the bankroll you mentioned above.
    If they are comping you a suite you should also ask them to do the limo as well.
     
  19. LV_Bound

    LV_Bound VIP Whale

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    Just finished reading the thread.
    Hurry and post the remainder. :beer:
     
  20. Vladimir

    Vladimir Low-Roller

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    I know. Unfortunately, I've come upon the problem that I have to make a living in order to afford Vegas Trip VII :evillaugh, but I'll have the final day up hopefully in the next couple of days.

    R.e. the Suite/bankroll thing, I'm pretty pleased with the amount of comps I get - I figure this time I got $500 value from the room, $50 free play and $50 f&b soft-100(not to mention the many, many beers), so say a value of $800 on a $1900 bankroll. One of the reasons I keep going to the Stratosphere - and I guess they will take anything they can get! (this is emphasised in the final chapter!)

    I think my theo is much higher than this though because I tend to bet 2 units to begin and press when the pit boss is watching, drop down when he isn't, and take a lot of bathroom breaks (more than usual this time round :wink2:!)
     
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