Thanks for the advice I received from several of you prior to my recent trip -- the numbers you gave were in the ballpark.
With 30 hours of logged play I received very close to 300,000 tier credits while being rated at about $450/hand playing BJ.
I went via an MGM corporate host for 7 nights @ Bellagio,
where the room was covered up front (non-suite) as well as two sets of tickets (1 show, 1 concert). The express comp system seems a little fuzzy, but I suppose that is where they grab from to comp food/beverage. I earned close to $1,000 in those comps but a majority were used behind the scenes for non-retail and non-tip expenses. Eating at the cafe only 3 times, room service breakfast most mornings, perhaps $300-400 in bar/champagne, and no "fine" dining sucked away most of my comps. We ate ZERO "nice" meals - instead opting for burgers and comfort food - often at non-MGM spots. I am still amazed that one can order a fruit plate, coffee, OJ, and cereal for breakfast (room service) and not escape for under $50 !!! OH WELL... it's VEGAS.. and they are bringing it to you!
Perhaps it's just me, but I would have thought with that level of play that they would have simply left my express comps in place to use at my discretion... but I suppose it all works out in the end. I asked an onsite host there if it would benefit me to go through him in the future, or stay with the person who set me up on this trip - and he seemed to think it did not really matter. Besides, the person I have been dealing with is easy to get in touch with and has helped with plans on several trips.
Losing a little more than $10,000 (understandably) does not really get their attention. He said if I had lost something like $40-50G that it would then come into play.
We had a nice lakeview room, one of the (just) remodeled floors. After seeing the condition of the carpet and wall coverings in the halls of non-remodeled floors, I can say that it was sorely needed! The "new" room was nicely appointed - much fresher than our rooms there in the past. I will note a couple of shortcomings: Even with the air set to 65, there were times at night when we slept without sheets. They claim that the new rooms are more energy efficient (with "better air flow"), but I have to wonder it there is not some master control of the room climate system which alters the function in the wee hours - it was nice and cool during the day and evening! Also, the wireless internet was the most unstable and slow I have come across. I had to restart it SEVERAL times a day. Granted, it is now "free", whereas in the past it was something like $15/day.
At least next time, I hit the ground running at Platinum - and should earn those express comps a bit quicker. Anything else that being Platinum is REALLY good for?