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complete trip report - 10 days, 8 hotels, no joke.

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by jenaphir, May 27, 2004.

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  1. jenaphir

    jenaphir Low-Roller

    Mar 24, 2004

    My Trip Report

    okay, here we go.

    if you like short trip reports, back out NOW because this is far from short.

    this was our annual mother-daughter trip to vegas. we stayed ten nights and we stayed at the following hotels:

    gold spike
    main street station
    Bellagio (penthouse suite)
    barbary coast
    wild wild west (for an hour)
    imperial palace

    my mother has metastatic breast cancer and we have worked out a deal that every year she sticks around, she gets an all-expenses-paid trip to vegas. this is our third trip so clearly, the deal is working.

    when i bring my mother to vegas, we have to follow a strict napping/sleeping regiment. no all-nighters. i also cant leave her in the room by herself and go down and play late at night because she gets scared that something will happen to her and she wont know where to find me. so this trip was very tame.

    and with that, lets begin.

    saturday, may 15, 2004 - day one

    we are up early because after 100+ days of counting down, we are finally going to vegas! our flight leaves at 12:20, our cab arrives at 10:45. a very painful ride, the driver had no problem spending the entire trip informing us of his racist views on america.

    the flight also sucked, stereotypical screaming baby the entire way. the flight was 5.5 hours. of screaming baby. boooooooooooo.

    get there, grab our luggage and head off to the gold spike. we have a 1-bedroom suite here. check in was simple and we are given room #703. its an okay room, we liked that the living room was separated by a wall, so we could have privacy from each other. the balcony was pretty large too, it went around the corner, which we thought was great, until we realized we could end up at the balcony door of the people next to us, and they could end up at our balcony door. the balcony also pretty much overlooked nothing exciting to look at. and of course, this was the hottest day of our trip so standing on it burned our retinas. but still.....

    the room had a refrigerator, which we love. it was a bit worn, and there were cigarette burns on the tub. it had two televisions and two air conditioners. we got coupons for three free breakfasts (they expire 48 hours later). the people who work here are VERY nice. it was clean and comfortable and $36 a night for a suite, it was a total bargain.

    time to head out and play! first stop four queens. played some penny phone tag and head off to binions to see what the deal is with the binions coffee shop burgers. this has always been our favorite meal in vegas and we arent too sure what harrahs may have done to it. well they did it all right. the menu is the first indication that its no longer the same. they used to have a cheeseburger on it, now they have different kinds of burgers. my mother got the hamburger in hopes that it was the same, i got the bacon cheeseburger. its not the same burger at all, its not the same fries either. i guess it was good, but since it wasnt the coveted binions burger, we were disappointed.

    we take a walk past neonopolis so i can buy the vegas luggage i saw on my last trip. i can only get the carry on this trip - i cant lug around three full sized suitcases (mine, plus my mothers, plus the new one) so i look lovingly at it and tell it ill be back in December for it.

    we go back to the gold spike, drop off my new carry on and head to lady luck to do the $50 for $5 coupon. we each get a t-shirt and killed some time. played some nickel slots here and lost.

    back to the four queens, lose. over to binions where my mother signs up for a new binions card. if she puts 50 points on it, she gets a coupon for a two-for-one rio buffet. $10 later, she gets the 50 points, goes and gets her coupon and we head over to the golden nugget.

    at the golden nugget, i win $75 on a wild taxi, my mother wins $70 between a that girl and a phone tag. as im carrying her nickels up to the cashier, i cant help but wonder when the hell the golden nugget will start using tickets.

    we go outside and the fremont street experience is going. half of it is closed, they are completing it. the new light show is super trippy. if you have taken acid ever in your life, you may have a flashback. if you have never taken acid, this show will make you seriously consider trying it.

    we go to the plaza and play penny slots there. lose and lose and lose and then on the way out, we lose some more.

    stop at the upper deck for a late night dinner, using a two-for-one coupon. i had the new york steak, my mother had the prime rib. i have never seen a larger slice of prime rib in my life. it was ENORMOUS.

    after dinner, we head back to the hotel for some well-needed sleep. i try to shower and there is no hot water, but im really too tired to care.
  2. jenaphir

    jenaphir Low-Roller

    Mar 24, 2004
    sunday, may 16, 2004 - day two

    i am awake at 5:30 am. i try to make noise, which was made easy since i was having an allergy attack and kept sneezing, but nothing would wake my mother up. finally i fall back asleep and am up with the alarm at 8:30. we go downstairs to the gold spike diner to get our free breakfast. our thinking is that if it sucks, its free, so we can go elsewhere. it doesnt suck though, it was good. we got eggs, bacon, potatoes and toast.

    my mother plays penny turkey shoot, i play penny salmon run. i never get the bonus on this thing and i keep playing it because i want that stupid bonus. i don’t get it. my mother gets her bonus and turns her lousy $2 into $35. my mother is the queen of putting $1 or $2 into a penny machine and cashing out over $25. the gold spike doesnt have tickets so she gets a hand pay.

    we go up to the room where we discover my mother has lost her license. we are sure she left it at binions while collecting her free rio buffet. im proud of her not freaking out, but she was really starting to there. all i could do was conjure up images of the rest of our trip being spent with her freaking out about losing it. i tried to calm her down telling her that people lose stuff all the time and we have NEVER heard of someone having to permanently move to where they lost their license. duh, we will get you back on the plane. they arent going to make you stay in vegas forever.

    we check out of the gold spike, where i discover the leg of my suitcase has fallen off and it wont stand up. YAY! MY LUGGAGE IS BROKEN!!! now i have every reason to go and buy the las vegas super large suitcase i wanted so bad!

    we store our luggage and go to binions, we are directed to security. they don’t have her license. my mother refuses to walk away from the security guard. he checks again, oh look, we DO have your license, i just didnt see it the first time. whew!

    we head over to the luggage place and its closed. NOOOOOO! my luggage! i want it!!! we decide to come back the next day as we’ll still be downtown. we stop at the el cortez and play penny and nickel slots. for pennies we played ghost island, used cars and benny big game. for nickels we tried rodney dangerfield no respect and dilbert wheel bert. i won $50 on rodney dangerfield.

    we leave and head to the golden nugget for brunch. long line as always. worth it as always.

    after we eat, i play a nickel wild taxi and cash out $50. we head back to the gold spike to collect our luggage and grab a cab to main street station. the security guard at the gold spike was kind enough to volunteer to help bring our bags over to lady luck to get a cab. i was so grateful for that. as much as i try to act like its no big deal having to help my mother with her luggage, it can sometimes be a big pain in the ass. god bless hotels with bellmen.

    the cab is $4 and the driver is visibly annoyed with us. sorry dude.

    main street station - our second hotel of this trip. we are here on a two-for-one coupon from the las vegas advisor. the lobby is nice and they have big benches where i could leave my mother while i checked in. good thing as there was only one person in front of me and i was on line for half an hour.

    we get room 513 - very nice. this is a very nice hotel. bright and clean and comfortable. there is a safe in the room. we can see the plaza and the Stratosphere from our window. there is a HUGE mirror on the wall that my mother tried to walk through multiple times. i guess she got used to the second room at the gold spike and was confused.

    we nap and are up at 6:30. we call for a hair dryer and despite all the warnings that you have an hour to keep it, they told us to keep it overnight. same with the ironing board. we get dressed and head over to the plaza. we have dinner reservations at 8:30 for center stage.

    we stop and play some penny slots and i won a whopping $10 on wild taxi. aw yeah! we go up to eat. the waiter was awesome. the food was great. the view of the fremont street experience would have been incredible if the side by the plaza was working. we could still see it though, but i imagine it must be excellent to have it run right outside the window.

    we each had filet mignon and loved it. we had the las vegas advisor coupon for ½ off up to $50. our bill came to $66 and he took off $33.

    went to the golden gate to play quarter monopoly, and discovered they no longer have it. went to the las vegas club and took $100 out of a penny phone tag. YAY!

    we were in bed by midnight.
  3. jenaphir

    jenaphir Low-Roller

    Mar 24, 2004
    monday, may 17, 2004 - day three

    up at 7:00, out the door to main street station’s buffet. two-for-one coupon from the las vegas advisor. we’ve had breakfast here before, and its still good. played penny slots and lost and lost and lost and lost and lost. we decided we do not like the penny slots here.

    up to the room to nap at 10:00 am - back down at 1:30.

    stop at las vegas club where i revisit my $100 penny phone tag machine. it must not have realized it was me because it kept all my money.

    we ate at magnolias for lunch - two-for-one coupon from american casino guide. i had the four queens dip (french dip) and my mother had the malffenta (no idea if i am spelling that right). we both thought our food was great.

    went to go get my luggage - now im a happy camper. i now have a huge vegas suitcase AND a vegas carry on bag. what could be better? oh yeah, winning.

    drop my luggage off at the room and get a cab to the stratosphere to go up in the tower. of course we stop to play and i lose.

    we go buy our tickets and go up in the tower. we are looking out the window and all of a sudden, out of nowhere, that x-scream ride pops down into the window. it scared the crap out of me and i almost screamed. that ride looks AWFUL. its not bad enough you are suspended into the air, but they keep you there for a few seconds and then they suddenly drop you. i couldnt stop staring at it, but im petrified of it. it makes the high roller look like a walk in the park.

    we took lots of pictures and just looked lovingly at vegas, and then cabbed back downtown.

    dinner is at main street station’s brew pub. i had a filet mignon sandwich, my mother had ribs. both were great. i finally brought myself to try the deep fried cheesecake. it seems to be battered in a cinnamon crust - id prefer regular cheesecake.

    we go and watch the fremont street experience so i can take pictures. then we go to the las vegas club where someone is on MY phone tag. MINE MINE MINE MINE MINE. we leave and go to the plaza. lose and lose and lose and lose and lose.

    we are asleep by midnight.
  4. jenaphir

    jenaphir Low-Roller

    Mar 24, 2004
    tuesday, may 18, 2004 - day four

    up at 7:00. fremont breakfast buffet - two-for-one coupon from the las vegas advisor. we did not like this buffet. everything was cold and undercooked. they did have great orange juice though.

    head to the golden nugget and play nickel slots. i won a whopping $20.

    head back to the room at 9:00 am to finish packing and to sit a while before check out.

    check out at 11:00 and store our bags. head to the el cortez for some more of their penny slots. played monster mansion, used cars and wild taxi. win $30, after putting in about $50 (of course).

    we stopped at walgreens where my mother bought me a “welcome to las vegas’ doormat. i love it.

    lunch is the golden gate diner (two for one coupon). the service was awful. 45 minutes to get our food and when we get it, its ice cold. we imagine it was ready to be served to us about 25 minutes earlier. my mother sent hers back. she had the open turkey sandwich, when it came back, she said it was good. i had a french dip. kind of cold, but i was starving so i really didnt care.

    head back to main street station to move. one bellman, eleventy billion people. no help with our luggage. i drag out both big suitcases and my mother takes the nearly empty carry on. i am angry. we wait forever for a cab (the bellman who wouldnt help me with my luggage also would not hail us a cab.) and off to the bellagio we go.

    i got a penthouse suite for my mother as a birthday present. we had vip check in. she gorged on chocolate covered strawberries while i checked in. we got room 36012 - top floor. the room is very, very nice. of course, im not too into nice, frilly things, but my mother is and she LOVED it. i did like that we had separate bathrooms and the view was incredible. i took pictures for close to an hour.

    the room has a living room, a dining room, a wet bar (with a refrigerator), a guest bathroom, a men’s bathroom and a woman’s bathroom. it also has a “do not disturb†switch which lights up outside the door. if it is turned on, the doorbell wont ring.

    the men’s bathroom had the shower, which was also a steam shower. the woman’s bathroom had a HUGE jacuzzi with a television and a bidet. toiletries included a razor, shaving lotion, a toothbrush, hairspray, cotton balls and assorted other goodies.

    the ceilings were very high, we took a picture of my mother standing on the bed to show how high they are. even with standing on the bed, she only made it about half way to the ceiling.

    i paid an extra $100 for fountain view. guess what wasnt running due to high winds? thats right, the fountains. but the floor to ceiling windows, and the view of the strip, made it all worth it.

    we stopped at vip services every time we left the room, and every time we came back up, to stock up on free diet coke and water. can you tell we really don’t belong in penthouse suites?

    right after checking in, i got a bouquet of roses delivered to me from a casino host welcoming me to the bellagio and asking me to contact her should i need anything. yes, i need you to point me to the winning penny machines......

    we went downstairs and played a bit before coming back up in time to shower before the gilmore girls. yes - i broke my own rule and watched television in vegas. not only that, i planned it - it was on my itinerary. no way was i going to miss rory losing her virginity to a married man, or lorelai finally kissing luke!

    once the show was over, we went to the cheesecake factory for dinner. as we were leaving, we noticed a sign on our door that we missed turndown service (we had the do not disturb light on) and to call if we wanted them to come back. no thanks, we are fine.

    getting into/out of caesars is horrible. it seems to get worse every time i go there. then once you make it outside, after you are done kissing the ground because you are so happy to have found outside, you have no idea how to walk from the door down to the sidewalk. awful. i hope that a vast majority of this new construction is being done to construct entrances and exits.

    i won $90 between a bowser penny slot, a 2-cent wild taxi and a quarter monopoly. bellagio still has a bunch of quarter monopoly machines and for that, i love the bellagio. that is by far my favorite slot machine ever, and im so sad to see it going away.
  5. jenaphir

    jenaphir Low-Roller

    Mar 24, 2004
    wednesday, may 19, 2004 - day five

    up at 8:00 and we head to the bellagio buffet. we eat here on every trip and we love their breakfast buffet. we don’t binge at buffets, and we ate even lighter at this one to leave room for lunch at olives.

    play and lose a bit - then head to the quarter monopoly where i win $100 and my mother wins $100 next to me on the price is right. aw yeah!

    we go up to the room to pack. we call a bellman to have our luggage stored. and off we go!

    stop and play $5 each and lose and then head to olives. we sat outside and the fountains were going off. we were getting sprayed with water and it felt good. we are on vacation!

    i had the burger, my mother had the gnocci (no idea if i am spelling this right) and both were very good.

    played monopoly again after lunch and this time i won $150. awesome!

    we cash out, get our bags and cab to the venetian. and it begins.....

    we are there at 2:35 - the room isnt guaranteed until 3:00. fine. we kill 25 minutes by playing (and losing). we go back to the desk at 3:05 - room still isnt ready. it wont be for an hour and a half. are you freaking kidding me? no, the people before us just checked out at 3:05 and it takes 90 minutes to clean the room. okay, perhaps you didnt hear me the first time, are you freaking kidding me? i watch the travel channel you know. i saw the show on the venetian where housekeeping say they have a very short amount of time to clean each room...

    she offers us a choice - we can either wait 90 minutes for our room (a terrazo suite) and $100 food credit, or we can have a concierge suite right now, and no food credit. shouldnt that have been the other way around? we choose our suite and the food credit. its only good at grand lux and room service, which is great because thats all we want to use it for.

    we have 90 minutes to kill so we head over to the mirage and lose our money. we stop for a drink at ava (non-alcoholic for my mother) and head back. the registration clerk tells us “your room was ready half an hour after you left†well screw you for telling us 90 minutes and then gloating that it was done earlier, really now. next time we’ll be sure to keep checking back every ten minutes just to annoy you. the check-in clerk supposedly called the belldesk for our luggage. oh look, half an hour later when we call the belldesk ourselves, they tell us she never did.

    we get room number 1-511 and already im disappointed. first floor? what about the room overlooking the garden and pool? how can it OVER look something its not over?

    we get to the room and im still disappointed. the terrace underlooks the garden and pool area. there is a small concrete wall and then bushes blocking the “view†of the garden and pool area. i didnt pay extra to look at a bush. i have forever wanted to stay at the venetian and now that i have, i just feel so let down. i had visions of OVER looking the garden and pool, i thought we’d be high up. i didnt know we’d be on ground level with our view blocked by a bush. and ALL terrazo suites are on the ground floor. all of them. what a waste.

    the rest of the room was nice, but dark. the bathroom was huge and had a separate shower and tub, separate room for the toilet, two sinks and a make up desk. the shower was great. the room also had a mini-bar which of course we didnt touch, and two televisions.

    they offer turn down service, but we again we didnt take it, probably because we were already napping when they came to the door.

    this night we napped until 9:00. we get dressed and head to grand lux. i have a burger, my mother has the braised short ribs. we both order cheesecake and coffee, and its all comped.

    we walk through the casino, see quarter monopoly and refrain. everyone knows you don’t win at the venetian.

    we go next door to casino royale to play penny slots. there is an open phone tag. thats my game. there is a woman on the left of my phone tag, leaning over onto my phone tag, to talk to the man on the right of my phone tag. i say “excuse me†and sit down at my phone tag. she is annoyed and keeps talking through me. i find her annoying, and clearly so did her husband, jim. the more she would yell to poor jim as he was playing, the more annoying he seemed to find her. finally she got off her machine and pulled up a chair next to jim, where they proceeded to fight. i noted he never once looked up from the machine to look at her while talking to her. she was just that annoying.

    after jim and his annoying wife leave, i move to ghost island, i should have done that while she was screaming to jim through my head, but i guess im dumb. i win $60. we go back to the venetian where my mother informs me that my aunt gave her $100 for her to go out to a nice dinner for her birthday. since neither of us want to eat a $100 meal, we are going to split the money and play penny slots. yes!
  6. jenaphir

    jenaphir Low-Roller

    Mar 24, 2004
    thursday, may 20, 2004 - day six - my mothers birthday

    happy birthday ca! we wake up at 8:00 am and over room service. we order a continental breakfast and the $10 iced coffee (remember our free food credit? we are going to use it) and they bring us the wrong breakfast, but we didnt mind. we now have paninis instead of danish.

    i ran out to buy disks for my camera (did you see how many pictures i took?) and lost some money on the way.

    today we are supposed to go to the las vegas advisor meet, but my mother starts pulling a guilt trip about how she wants today to be special and just me and her. she asks for so little that she always gets whatever she wants. so we skip the meet. one day i will make it to my first meet.

    we check out at 11:00, store our bags and head to treasure island. they have the new nickel wheel of fortune here. the bonus came up once, but when it did, it was a good one. i won $50. and then lost it on the way to the tram when i got sidetracked by a price is right machine.

    once off the tram, we make it out of mirage without playing and head to harrahs. lose on phone tag (how is that possible?) and hit casino royale. lost and won and lost and lost and won again.

    head to venetian to get our stuff and move to the rio. we get room 19024 in the masquerade tower. nothing too special, but we have a refrigerator and a nice view. the lights in the bathroom are WAY too bright and hurt our eyes.

    we eat a late lunch at the buffet, the rio buffet is my mother’s favorite meal in vegas. its redone but the only difference i noticed is that we now got lost looking for our table.

    went back out and won $100 on nickel wild taxi and $55 on penny phone tag.

    by 5:00 we were napping, but 6:30 we were right back out.

    we watched the parade in the sky, its nice to see but when you are playing, its too loud and annoying.

    we take a cab to the hard rock, where i once won on my birthday, in hopes that my mother will win on hers. i get my $10 lva free play and win $50 on a penny turkey shoot. then we hit penny twilight zone and stayed there for hours on $5 each. hours and hours and hours. it was great. at one point i was on my third beer, playing the machine, with ozzy blasting over the radio and i was just having the time of my life. every day should be like this, and it will be should i ever hit the damn megabucks.

    once we are done, we cash out and head back to the Rio - in bed by 11:30. go us with our bedtime discipline!
  7. jenaphir

    jenaphir Low-Roller

    Mar 24, 2004
    friday, may 21, 2004 – day seven

    woken up by the phone at 7:00 – my sister calling. we take a cab from the rio to the palms for breakfast. the cab driver is NOT happy. i never know what to do in this situation. my mother can not possibly make it across the street in the time the light says “walk†so we have to take a cab. but because she doesnt LOOK sick, the cab drivers usually get so annoyed and you know they want to scream “WALK IT YOU LAZY PEOPLE†but anyway...

    use a two-for-one coupon for the buffet. its decent, but not a huge selection.

    afterwards, we hit the penny slots. win $20 on the new beverly hillbillies (bubblin crude) and then head to phone tag. win $40 on that.

    cab back to the rio (see above cab rant, same thing) and play nickel ghost island, win $30. play nickel wild taxi, win $75.

    check out of the rio, store our luggage and shuttle over to harrahs for mac king. we have a free admission with $7 drinks coupon. his show is great. its absolutely hysterical. i highly recommend going to see him.

    shuttle back to the rio to get our stuff. the bellman brings it out, i tell him we need a cab, he points towards the direction of the cab stand – which is all the way around the corner. i tell him i need help (remember, mothers suitcase and all) and he gets SO huffy and puffy with me. i want to scream at this man “we are not lazy, she has metastatic breast cancer and cant handle her own luggage†but i know if i do, she will get embarrassed and try to wheel her own suitcase. seriously, if it is your JOB to drive people in a cab, or to assist people with their luggage, and they are paying/tipping you to do so, what is the problem?

    we head to the barbary coast for check in – the simplest check in of the entire trip. we go to the room, our luggage comes with us via the bellman. we got room 244 – i wasnt sure if we’d have a view of the fountains that far back, but we did. typical barbary coast room, every room must be EXACTLY alike. the three we’ve had have been.

    we freshen up, my mother starts her “bang her head on the light above the table at the barbary coast repeatedly†schtick and head over to paris for lunch at le creperie. we had the st louis crepe – which is ham and cheese, and the chocolate. SO VERY GOOD.

    we walked back through ballys and stopped at some penny slots, i got $50 from a wild taxi.

    head back to the barbary coast to watch big elvis. while we were waiting, we found PENNY MONOPOLY machines – talk about the great find! we played forever on them.

    big elvis may have been more enjoyable if my mother didnt keep talking about how he is going to die...

    after big elvis, we nap and get up and head to the peppermill for dinner. i loved this place. i had a “concorde†which was roast beef with cheddar, bacon, peppers and onions. my mother had a burger. both were great. my mother LOVED that they had colored sugar for her coffee.

    after eating, we made a pit-stop at walgreens where they now sell neon lights – they have a neon flamingo, a neon slot machine, neon dice, etc. i want them and i want them NOW. of course i couldnt buy them on this trip (i couldnt possibly lug around MORE stuff), but i don’t want to wait for my next trip (can anyone PLEASE tell me when my next trip is because i have no clue and its driving me nuts?) i looked for them on ebay when i got home and there are plenty of them, for $38.88. um, they were $19.99 at walgreens. so i either have to look further than ebay, or i have to wait until i go back to vegas, which is.........???

    we headed to the riviera. we tried the newest nickel monopoly – grand hotel. we loved it. my mother cashed out at $35. they don’t have tickets. $35 in nickels came out. do you know how long that took? a long while. while her nickels were falling, i was still playing so i thought she was sitting there waiting for me. all of a sudden she starts freaking out “where is my ticket!??!†um, you got paid in nickels. “what?!?!†um, didnt you hear/see them fall? “noâ€. okay...

    we went to slots of fun – they had monopoly chairman of the board, another dying breed of a great slot machine, but they were taken. so we went to the ho and lost on a wild taxi.

    then the walk to the stardust. oh man – there were about 15 teenagers screaming at each other on the way. we couldnt figure out if they were friends or not. one was threatening to kick the other’s ass. this went on for a while – they were sort of walking with us. then something happened, im not sure what, and a bottle was thrown, a purse was thrown, a bunch of threats were screamed, one dude ran across the strip, almost got hit by several cars, several more dudes ran after him – causing a huge ruckus in traffic. the first dude jumped the fence at desert inn/wynn las vegas and a few more went after him. the cops came with sirens on, and by then we had made it to the door at the stardust and left it all behind us.

    stardust – we found a brand new game – beetle bailey. penny! got $35 from it. on the way out we passed penny spam, and resisted.

    inside the frontier – CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARD! i played and lost. how upsetting. especially since i know i may never see this game ever again.

    i moved to a penny uncle sam and got $40.

    cab back to barbary – won $105 on penny phone tag (this is MY game!) and $25 on penny twilight zone. we were up until 2:00 am – way past our scheduled bedtime.

    i annoyed myself by accidentally knocking my brand new JUST OPENED THAT MORNING contacts into the sink – while the water was running, and watched them as they went down the drain. sigh.
  8. jenaphir

    jenaphir Low-Roller

    Mar 24, 2004
    saturday, may 22, 2004 - day eight

    we slept in a bit this morning - until 9:00. we went to paris for the breakfast buffet. i think this is the last time we’ll do that. its REALLY great, but the line is so long and we have had it so many times, it may have lost its appeal. or maybe im just bitter because i had kids smashing the line ropes into my leg, grabbing my bag, and touching me the entire time i was on the line, while their parents stood there oblivious to it all.

    on the way back to the barbary coast, of course i stopped for penny phone tag. and i LOST. played the new wheel of fortune and LOST. then tried quarter millions and got $75.

    went to seattles best for a diet coke, they don’t have diet coke. went to the flamingo for a diet pepsi, she gave me a regular pepsi. go figure.

    went back up to the room to nap at 1:30.

    up and out by 4:45. we hit the aladdin - my favorite strip casino. used a showbiz magazine coupon for free play and played penny phone tag (on the exact machine i won $300 on in march - not even on max credits) and won $20.

    then we did the tournament. oh man. the high score was 9965. my mother was so close to beating it, i kept cheering her on. and then it happens - she gets three “no risk†symbols and slides into first place! how exciting! she gets $50, they announce her win over the mic. we start fantasizing about getting a pull on every dollar slot machine - this is so great!!!

    they tell us to call back at 11:30 and see if she won. we will!

    we went to margaritaville for dinner, but the line was 45 minutes and we didnt want to wait that long. so we go to lindys and end up waiting over that long for the waitress to take our order. UGH.

    played and lost and played and lost and played some more and lost some more.

    finally 11:30 comes and we bolt to the phone to call the aladdin. sigh - someone passed my mother’s score. the only bright side to this is that we don’t have to get up at 6:00 am to get to the aladdin by 7:00 am to do the free pulls on every dollar machine.
  9. jenaphir

    jenaphir Low-Roller

    Mar 24, 2004
    sunday, may 23, 2004 - day nine - last full day

    woke up and went to the aladdin for the buffet. we stopped at the kiosk near the casino entrance of desert passage to get “prizesâ€. you can get as many “prizes†as you want, but can only use one. so we got eleventy billion until we each had a free slot play “prizeâ€. we go to get our free play and i ask the slot club guy about what will happen to my points once they become Planet Hollywood. he told me “im sure they wont take your points away, they are going to have a hard enough time getting people to come here as it is, without taking your points awayâ€. interesting.

    i played a horoscope nickel machine and won $25. then phone tag - again - $25.

    went and took pictures of the bellagio and did not play the slots - yay me.

    went to check out of the barbary coast and stored our luggage. played a bit, wound up even and then it began.

    last year, we stayed at the barbary coast. when we were leaving, the bellman got us a cab. we switched hotels and then came back to the barbary to play. when we came back, the bellman said “welcome home!†my mother loves that story.

    this year, i guess he remembered us because as he was putting out suitcases into the cab he joked “ill see you tomorrow!â€

    and there was our jinx.

    we were headed to the wild wild west, and had plans to spend the last day and a half at the south strip casinos, we were not coming back near the barbary coast.

    or so we thought.

    we get to the wild wild west. they don’t have bellmen here. i leave my mother outside on a bench with our luggage while i check in. an HOUR to check in. the line never moves, and its hot.

    i finally get the keys and i go to fetch my mother. she is very upset, she is scared, she doesnt want to stay here. i ask her why, and she tells me she saw a lot of dirty people, scary people, and she saw someone get taken out in handcuffs.

    okay. lets act like this isnt happening and move on. people can get arrested ANYWHERE in the world, that doesnt make it a bad place. and as far as the “dirty and scary†people, well, i just ignored that. my mother is one of “those†who likes to judge people by how they look and sometimes she will be so judgmental that when i ask things like “what does dirty and scary meanâ€, all she will do is aggravate me with the answer. for all i knew, it could have been a person with tattoos that scared her. so i just kept walking to the room, with her in tow.

    we get to the room - room #909 - it is FAR. VERY VERY FAR. especially when you are lugging two suitcases by yourself. we get there. it is on the second floor. guess what? there are no elevators. what? so i have to bring both suitcases up a rickety staircase by myself. that really sucked.

    we get into the room. the door touches the dresser when you open it. the dresser is about two feet from the beds. both beds are touching walls. there is NOWHERE for me to put the luggage, except for on the beds, between the beds (cutting off all space between the two beds), or in front of the beds (cutting off all space between the beds and the dresser). where am i supposed to put the stupid luggage in this stupid room?? answer = nowhere if you want to walk in the room, or get to the bathroom.


    then my mother starts with “i cant stay here, i cant stand the smellâ€. personally, i didnt think it smelled, and i think she may be one of “those†who say typical things you expect to say about bad hotels. but who i am to argue? this room does suck, whether or not she is warranted in being petrified of the hotel, she is petrified. so when she offers to pay for us to move, i say “sure thingâ€.

    i take out my las vegas advisor to call hotels to see who has rooms. i pick up the phone and the receiver is sticky and stuck to the phone. gross.

    we go outside, i call around, sold out, sold out, sold out, sold out, sold out, sold out, sold out.

    we go to the internet kiosk and i try various websites, sold out, sold out, sold out - hey look - this site has rooms at the wild wild west! my mother didnt find that funny.

    so we end up having to choose between key largo and the imperial palace. god help me, i almost chose key largo, because it was half the price and I’ve never stayed there and wanted to. but at this point, i cant take any chances. so the imperial palace it is. kill ME, it was $141 a night for a “deluxe†room.

    just in case you didnt catch that, we paid $141 a night, for the IMPERIAL PALACE.

    now its time to check out of the wild wild west, this took an hour. an hour. an hour of the line not moving. whats amusing is that the dude who checked us out asked “you just checked in?†and i said “yes†and he didnt seem to think it was odd. nor did the second dude, who the first dude had to call over to try and help him figure out how to cancel the energy charge for the second night. the second dude says “you just checked in right?†and i say “yesâ€. and he just goes on about the computer and never asks me why im checking right back out. this whole process took so long i flipped out and said “keep the energy charge, just give me my $50 deposit back†and he did, and we called a cab.

    which never came.

    we call again.

    it never comes.

    thankfully a cab just happened to be there and offered to give us a ride.

    we wasted FOUR HOURS of our LAST DAY there. four hours. one hour to check in. one hour to find a new hotel. one hour to check out. one hour to get a cab.

    i do understand the concept of “you get what you pay for†but i have paid less for rooms downtown and less for a room at terribles, and i have never been this disappointed. i expected it to be very low class, i didnt expect it to be hell on earth.

    so off to the imperial palace we go. check in line was long, but moved quick. we got room 14105. it was recently renovated and half as big as the unrenovated one i had in November, and it also didnt have the separate sink area. but who cares? it’s a nice room and its not the wild wild west.

    the room was done really nicely. it had fake velvet on the headboards that we carved our names into (a simple brush of the hand wipes it away). our balcony overlooked the pool.

    once we see the room, we go to harrahs to eat a buffet for dinner. by this point we are starving. we had planned to eat lunch at wild wild west but never got to.

    after eating, we lost and lost and lost and lost and lost. all we did was lose money. lost at harrahs, lost at casino royale, lost at imperial palace. we did the $50 free slot play at casino royale and lost. finally we declare this day a loser and we quit and go to bed.
  10. jenaphir

    jenaphir Low-Roller

    Mar 24, 2004
    monday, may 24, 2004 - day ten - last day

    we are up at 8:00, out at 9:00 and to harrahs for a buffet breakfast. good as always.

    we play phone tag and lose. we play a new game - nurses foilles. i wish it were penny instead of nickel because it had 30 lines. i get a couple of bonuses and cash out even.

    stopped at osheas for some penny slots, broke even.

    we head to the bellagio to see the conservatory, which wasnt done when we were there earlier in the week. it’s the same as last year.

    go to aladdin - forget to bring/use any free slot play coupons (duh) and lose some money on phone tag.

    then we hit the barbary coast where i remember the bellman telling us yesterday “ill see you tomorrow†and thats when i figured out we were jinxed.

    we lose money and go for lunch at lindys at the Flamingo - ONLY because i have a bunch of comp dollars here. we get burgers, its okay.

    stop outside and take pictures of the flamingoes and the penguins. so cute.

    we head back to the room for a couple of minutes and then to casino royale for penny slots. we play for a while. i win $20.

    head over to harrahs to catch the shuttle to the rio for their dinner buffet. its our favorite buffet. we eat and play some slots and then go back to get ready to go home.

    once we are packed and ready to cry because our trip is over, we check out of the imperial palace and get a cab to the airport. once we get to the airport, we send our luggage off with the sky cap and stand there and smoke. my mother then goes back to tip the sky cap and THEN he tells us that our flight is delayed at LEAST two hours.


    why didnt we call the airline before leaving the room? more importantly, hello - WE HAD A ROOM. we could be IN THE ROOM waiting, not at the airport. we had a room. i could not stop saying it over and over and over. WE HAD A ROOM! why didnt we call the airport?

    so we go inside to kill time and then go through the gate and into the smoking room. its there that i realize i don’t have a lot of cigarettes on me. i tell my mother this and tell her that i didnt think to bring a new pack because i didnt plan on being here 4 hours, and the packs are in my suitcase, which has long been checked.

    a very nice man overhears this, offers to buy me cigarettes and i decline. he then offers to switch packs with me - he takes my almost-gone pack and i get his only-one-missing pack. i accept.

    he then offers to buy us drinks, i accept this too. we go to cheers and him and i drink for a bit, he offered me valium, i decline, but this sets my mother off into a fit of paranoia. i try to explain to her that if i WANTED drugs, that would mean that i DO drugs, and if i DID drugs, i would have had my own drugs on me. duh.

    this whole situation is made more uncomfortable by the fact that mr. nice man is right next to me and i just feel so awkward that this is going on. honestly, i don’t think anyone offering valium before a flight is something to be that freaked out about. but keep in mind that my mother also didnt allow me to drink in our apartment when i was 21 because i didnt have id yet and she was scared she’d be arrested for having a ‘minor’ drink in her apartment, when i couldnt prove i was 21. (insane much?)

    after about half an hour, mr. nice man leaves because his plane is boarding. he pays for the drinks and then one extra for me for after he leaves. he was just a nice man doing something nice because as he said “why not? its vegasâ€.

    once he’s gone, i lecture my mother on how NOT to act when people are being nice.

    we have a few more hours before the flight, we kill them by smoking, eating and playing (and losing on) slots.

    finally our plane arrives and the people start getting off. one of them was kevin dubrow from quiet riot. this made me laugh. for those of you who know who he is, you’ll be pleased to know he even WALKS cocky.

    our plane comes, we get on, we pass out, 4 hours and 8 minutes later, we are in nyc.

    we get our respective shuttles home.

    and our trip is officially over.

    the end.
  11. Mia4071

    Mia4071 Tourist

    Jul 28, 2002
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    jenaphir - Thanks for the trip report!!

    I couldn't stop laughing about your story when you said your mom wouldn't let you drink with out the ID when you were already 21 @ home. So funny -I think our mom's might be related!

    You said " No one ever win's @ the Venetian". Funny thing is while there for my sister wedding reception ( At the grand lux cafe) my grandfather won $1700.00 playing those slots right in front of the cafe. And my mothers friend won $1500.00 while also waiting that very same day! What fun!

    I wish I could see the suite @ the Bellagio - It looked great from the pic's!

    Thanks again for sharing your wonderful trip with us, I can't wait to get there, I been counting down since Feb!
  12. ncgirl

    ncgirl Guest

    What a great trip report. Goodness you are thorough. I hope your mom had a good time and I hope her health continues. You seem like a great daughter and love her very much. You rock with those penny,nickel slots girl!!!!
    Yah VEGAS baby [​IMG]
  13. jenaphir

    jenaphir Low-Roller

    Mar 24, 2004
    landa - my mother drove me nuts when i lived with her! how many times have you ever heard of the police randomly knocking on doors of peoples homes to see if there were minors drinking inside?

    wow - your grandfather and mother's friend REALLY won at the venetian! at least half of that was my money - id appreciate you telling them to give it back! [​IMG]

    thanks for the comments, i appreciate them.
  14. Mia4071

    Mia4071 Tourist

    Jul 28, 2002
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    jenaphir - I will let them know that you want your money back! HA HA!

    If you don't mind me asking ...

    How much did that suite @ the Bellagio cost? That would be a great place to celebrate our 10yr anniversary.
  15. cruiser

    cruiser High-Roller

    Feb 5, 2002
    Great trip report! Thanks for sharing. I was getting dizzy from all the checking in/out you did from casino to casino. I can't wait to get back to Las Vegas. It's been 5.5 months since our last trip and the next one is still 19 days away. Thanks again for sharing your trip experience with the rest of us Vegas junkies. [​IMG]
  16. jenaphir

    jenaphir Low-Roller

    Mar 24, 2004
    landa - it was $675, and an additional $100 for strip view. im sure it can be had for cheaper, even regular rooms were expensive that week - $349.

    i actually think it was worth it though. for the rest of our trip, just having my mother point to the bellagio and tell me "we stayed there, that was our window!!!" made it worth it.
  17. Mia4071

    Mia4071 Tourist

    Jul 28, 2002
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    Thanks for all the info Jen - [​IMG] I will be sure to be on the look out for good prices [​IMG]
  18. boxcars

    boxcars High-Roller

    May 19, 2004
    North Dakota
    Hey Jen,

    Wow! I feel like I just went to Vegas reading your report! You must have kept a diary remembering all those details. Sorry to hear about your troubles with the hotel and cabs.

    I have a question. Will you do it next time the same way by spending many nights in different hotels, or would you limit to maybe one or two? ...curious for a trip we're planning for next year. Not sure if we want to move around or stay put.

    Heading out for a few days in June, but staying in one place.
  19. milehiman

    milehiman VIP Whale

    Sep 21, 2002
    Scottsdale, AZ
    Wow, what an amazing trip report. I don't know if I could move around that much - checking in and out on a daily basis.

    You're definitely a penny slot queen! You're also a great daughter.
  20. jenaphir

    jenaphir Low-Roller

    Mar 24, 2004
    boxcars - i definitely kept a diary. its funny because when i get home and go through it, i find all this stuff i forgot about.

    my next trip will be solo and i will be moving all over again! i only have 7 more strip hotels and 5 more downtown hotels to go before i am done with the strip and downtown, im excited to finally do that.

    i never get tired of moving. i look at it like something to do every day.

    once i finish every hotel, i will probably still move. but only two or three times a trip. its something ive just grown so used to and i love it.
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