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Extra Cautious at Aria & Cosmo - 9/9 to 9/14

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by HHFan, Sep 8, 2020.

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  1. Flowers

    Flowers VIP Whale

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    Fantastic report! Thank you!
     
  2. eliza

    eliza VIP Whale

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    Amazing report! Sorry the gambling didn't go your way entirely, but it was so much fun to follow along. And now I really want to check out Lago on my next trip - that pizza looked phenomenal.
     
  3. win4me

    win4me High-Roller

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    Thank you for the detailed TR & great photos. I thoroughly enjoyed following along!
     
  4. HHFan

    HHFan High-Roller

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    First of a likely series of wrap up posts...

    I’ll start with the biggest question, did we feel safe?

    -I’m putting a lot of faith in the effectiveness of the kn95s we wore anytime we were inside public spaces. If they work as intended, then I’m not too concerned by the overall disappointing compliance by others as it relates to my safety. I’m still concerned about the health of the employees/Vegas/world as a whole, but those aren’t things I can control. In the casino I’d put full compliance at 60-70%, lots of uncovered noses or folks clutching drinks/cigs and not wearing anything at all. Did not notice it being any better at Caesars/NYNY/MGM on the weekend.

    -Airport/Airplane/rental shuttle were not good and are where I felt the worst because I had to put up with it. Once I got to the rental car I knew I could remove myself from situations, but until then I was absolutely stuck with whatever happened around me. Flights were full minus middle seats and rental car shuttle filled all seats.

    -We never started on a machine if the folks around us were smoking or not wearing their masks correctly. We also didn’t board an elevator with more than 2 people in it, although we had a few rides with guests that weren’t wearing their masks. We tried to avoid the riskiest folks going into things but didn’t necessarily move if a problem guest approached us.

    -Social distancing was non-existent after 12pm every day at Cosmo. We pretty much had the place to ourselves in the morning though, with NFL Sunday being the only time there was noticeable activity early. The floor and walkways at Cosmo are just too tight for distancing with the business levels they’re at once everyone wakes up.

    -Cosmo definitely tries to enforce the rules. Slot attendants, cocktail servers, and security all corrected folks as they walked the floor. In the afternoon/evenings they also had employees stationed on the walkways and escalator landings enforcing mask compliance. There’s just no way of effectively getting people to behave unless you staff up and start tossing people immediately for non-compliance, which I don’t think any casino is doing (Planet13 on the other hand was pretty close to that, those security guys weren’t putting up with shit). Guests would be chastised, put their mask on for 15 seconds, then pull it off as soon as the employee had moved. Or worse, they argued about how they had just stopped or we’re about to start smoking/drinking, or had a health issue and should stopped being hassled, before finally relenting. I truly do not understand the mindset of traveling somewhere knowing you are not going to follow the rules they’ve outlined.

    -I felt OK at every dining experience but Milos. I left a comment on their guest survey letting them know how frustrating it was to have everyone else sat on top of us and honestly we probably should have left once it started. If you want to eat inside and mitigate risk, it was definitely possible by eating at the right times on the right days. Block 16 was bad most days, so I definitely feel we made the right decision bringing that food back up to the room each time.

    -Witnessed some “spirited discussions” and heard we’d missed a takedown arrest outside Blue Ribbon while at dinner, but did not really feel any more “unsafe” then I would have on a normal Vegas trip as it relates to crime/violence.

    if you have any specific questions let me know. I’ve probably got other things I should be sharing on the Covid/safety front, but they aren’t coming to mind.
     
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  5. golfer1903

    golfer1903 MIA

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    Did you have pot smell in hallways and room and balcony 24 /7 at Cosmo?
     
  6. HHFan

    HHFan High-Roller

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    Pretty much yes. It hit like a ton of bricks off the elevator, but it was understandable given that there was almost never a time where both of the rooms on either side of us we’re not actively smoking on their balcony. I honestly do not know how those folks were able to walk with how much smoking they were doing. The 530-630am time was our only chance to sit on the terrace without it being real strong. The other weird thing was the bathroom would reek of pot if we turned the exhaust fan off. Definitely had me concerned that if the pot smoke was drifting in through the vent than lots of other stuff probably could too. We just left it on all day, so only problem was when housekeeping turned it off after cleaning.

    To be fair to Cosmo, it also smelled like pot in the hall at Aria. I just don’t think there’s anywhere to avoid it at this point, it seems clear that ship has sailed for Vegas. I saw a guest plop her Pisos bag on the counter at one of the sundry shops in Cosmo, so people really aren’t trying to hide it anymore.
     
  7. HHFan

    HHFan High-Roller

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    Aria
    -Room was nice and modern, lots of storage space in the entryway
    -Covid measures were very visible, minus the lack of the door seal. Nice amenity kit, letter explaining their steps, remote sleeved, etc
    -Lots of empty floor space. I don’t understand the design of these Vegas rooms with lots of sq ft but not much in the room. I had the same problem with Wynn’s standard room.
    -I liked the electronic controls and the fact that their tablet actually served a purpose as opposed to Cosmo’s, which is basically just a way to view their website’s info.
    -Lots of natural light from the windows, but it still felt claustrophobic without a terrace.
    -Security always stationed at the elevator and room key had to be scanned on the elevator to access your floor.
    -No lines at Front Desk late on Wednesday or mid morning Thursday, had to get our temp taken before checking in.
    -Overall, didn’t get to experience much of the resort so hard to know if we’d want to return for a more full stay.
     
  8. chinlover

    chinlover Tourist

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    Wow sounds yummy! Thanks for the reply.
     
  9. HHFan

    HHFan High-Roller

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    Cracked open our chocolates we grabbed at the airport on the way out. Love Ethel M, although disappointed that they got rid of our favorite last year. Also going to try out the scent sticks my wife bought with her resort credit tonight. Tough to test in a mask, but it seemed to match.

    3AFA4E4F-E477-4DA6-9B5F-94F17F84201D.jpeg 3825A9C2-50B4-4669-A886-16658CAE0FA4.jpeg
     
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  10. HHFan

    HHFan High-Roller

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    F&B Summary

    I wouldn’t know it looking back through all the food photos I posted, but this was the least we’ve eaten on a trip. Dining is generally the main event, as we hopped from restaurant to restaurant in the evening having a few dishes at each. Drinking was curtailed by the masks on the floor and by a general desire to take things easy to avoid feeling like shit. I’ve never felt better by the end of a trip and we lost no time to feeling sick, so we might stick with this speed going forward.

    Best overall dining experience
    1. Momofuku
    2. Lago
    3. Blue Ribbon Grill

    Best Dish
    1. 32oz Tomahawk Ribeye at BRG
    2. Honey Walnut Shrimp at Momofuku
    3. Pho’rench Dip and Lardo Fries at Lardo
    4. Salmon at Milos
    5. Margherita Pizza at Lago

    Best Drink
    1. Tequila Mockingbird at Blvd Pool
    2. In the Know at Milos
    3. Watermelon Bourbon at Momofuku
    4. Cucumber Mist at Lago
    5. Vietnamese Iced Coffee at District Donuts

    Biggest dissapointments
    1. Milos seating arrangement
    2. Coconut margarita at China Poblano (didn’t see it was mezcal based before ordering)
    3. Salmon at Lago (tiny portions that dried out a bit as a result)
    4. Chicken skewers at Milos (dry and bland)
    5. Breakfast burrito at District Donuts (spicier than anticipated)

    Drink service on the casino floor was pretty good, although it seemed like the servers were practically running through the floor. You had to really pay attention to stop some of them before they moved on. We did most of our drinking in High Limit, as the server there had our order memorized for the weekend after the first drink, which made us feel good. And the raspberry lemon drops for my wife from there were always made well and presented in the proper glassware, something that did not always happen on the regular floor.
     
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  11. Count de Monet

    Count de Monet High-Roller

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    Your observation is one that I really had not given much consideration but is very true. Because of the property's long and narrow footprint everyone has to walk through the center corridor or zigzag through the machines and tables as the only alternative on the main floor. Other strip casinos have multiple pedestrian thoroughfares which help reduce congestion.

    Cosmo's design is highly unfriendly to social distancing and staff really cannot do much about it except to keep people moving along.
     
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  12. HHFan

    HHFan High-Roller

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    It really became obvious that was the case when I was walking through MGM and NYNY and noticed it was just as many people but it didn’t feel nearly as uncomfortable. The small footprint is great in normal times because it cuts down on walking and helps create energy/buzz, but now it would feel better to play in a hangar like Mandalay.
     
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  13. Sparky4

    Sparky4 VIP Whale

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    Love love Ethel M at the airport! The girls at work wait for my Vegas trips so I can bring them the 3 for $10 candy bars. I loved the dark chocolate raspberry one but they changed it to dark chocolate lemon last year.
     
    Hubby’s birthday and anniversary trip.
    Are you really going 10 days after your February trip?
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  14. Merrymeet

    Merrymeet Tourist

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    Thanks for taking us along with your adventures! I don’t quite have the courage to tempt the COVID nasties to visit this year - but enjoyed all the ways you enjoyed your great trip while staying safe!
     
  15. Nittany1

    Nittany1 VIP Whale

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    Really enjoyed your TR and pics.
    Have a much better feel for how things have changed since my last trip in Jan.
     
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  16. Flowers

    Flowers VIP Whale

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    This is all very helpful. Thank you.
     
  17. Flowers

    Flowers VIP Whale

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    Love that photo of the chocolates. I'm looking forward to visiting Ethel M and the Cactus Garden for the very first time in a couple of weeks!
     
  18. Flowers

    Flowers VIP Whale

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    Your cocktail experience in the high limit room sounds like it was perfect. I hope to have a similar experience starting in a few days at Wynncore!
     
  19. Necrochaos

    Necrochaos High-Roller

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    @HHFan - what did you think of Cosmo? I've seen a lot of mudslinging at the Cosmo. I've never been there so I don't have any skin in the game.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 17, 2020
  20. HHFan

    HHFan High-Roller

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    Cosmo absolutely seemed to take things less seriously than others at reopening, and are still not doing some of the things others are doing as a sign of taking Covid seriously (handwashing stations, mask stands, temp checks, non-smoking areas, machines off vs chairs removed etc). They were trying just as hard, if not harder, as any other property I visited to enforce mask compliance, which is probably the biggest thing any of these places can really do.

    I wouldn’t discourage anyone that has decided they feel safe going to Vegas from staying at Cosmo, but if you asked if it was at the top of the list of places to stay right now if your super concerned about Covid, then I’d say no. It’s too popular a resort and the layout just exacerbates the issue.

    The worst I actually felt on a casino floor was walking into the mess at Caesars. There didn’t seem to be any organization and people were packed in super tight. I was much more uncomfortable there than I was at any point at Cosmo, so if health is the main concern I’d say stick with weekdays and avoid the big properties mid-strip.
     
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