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First Trip to Vegas, Monte Carlo, Elton John

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by Forest, Apr 3, 2004.

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  1. Hubby and I, mid to late 40's, flew out of Toronto on Air Canada. Left at 11 a.m. arriving in Vegas at 12:30 p.m. This time we used the extra Aeroplan points to fly first class. I LOVED it. For flights over three hours, it's worth it. More room, comfy seats and free booze. I actually slept for over an hour which is unusual for me cuz I really hate flying.

    After the brutal winter we've had, I have to say that just walking out of the airport into that glorious warm sunshine made me absolutely giddy. I've been looking forward to this trip since last September and after a very stressful, cold, snowy winter, I just felt instant relief! All I kept saying was, "Oh my gawd...we're in VEGAS!"

    Taxi to our Saturday night stay at Tuscany Hotel and Casino. I wasn't expecting much but I want to say that it was very nice although a little noisey at night with the constant barage of sirens from police and ambulance. I used Aeroplan to pay for this to save paying the high price of Saturday night on the strip. We were so exhausted after a 3 a.m. start to the day that we didn't care where we were anyway. We only managed a walk down to the strip for our first view of the strip. WOW! The lights, the people! Very busy corner at Flamingo and Las Vegas Blvd. on Saturday night. We went into Paris and had a drink. I wanted to eat at Mon Ami but the line-up to sit out on the terrace was just so long and we were beat so we went to the Flamingo, had a quick dinner and then died.

    I was up at 4:30 the next morning, still on the old time and WAY too excited to sleep anymore. Gave hubby another hour to sleep while I got coffee and checked out the casino. Had breakfast at the coffee shop and called Monte Carlo at 8 to see if we could check in early. They said to come over and they would do their best so we got a taxi and over we went.

    I read on this board alot about the Monte Carlo and I one of the comments often made was about the nice smell of the place. It's so true. It just hits you the minute you walk in the lobby. No line up for check in at 8:30 a.m. I had booked this place back in September for $79.00 a night for the four nights. The nice gal checking us in asked us if we wanted to upgrade to the VIP top floor, view of Belagio, use of VIP lounge with continental breakfast, snacks all day and free beverages, for $35.00 more per night. I was just so overwhelmed by being there, I never even thought about trying the $20 trick. I looked at hubby, thinking he would turn the offer down but he jumped at it before I could say anything. Sounded good to me and like the young lady said, "I don't know about you two, but I can drink $35 worth of booze!" No kidding, especially in Vegas we came to find out.

    They had our room ready by 10:30. It was very nice. Not over-the-top nice or any bigger than most hotel rooms but the bathroom was lovely and the view was excellent. The king bed was really comfortable too. Happy with our home for the next four days we ventured out. We walked down the strip for a few hours with jaws dropped and eyes wide open. Back to Monte Carlo to relax at the pool for a few hours and soak up some of that sun. The pool at Monte Carlo is very nice but terribly crowded and alot of kids. Back up to the room to shower, change and get dressed up for dinner at P.F. Changs at Alladin. First we took advantage of the VIP lounge and met new friends...Jack and Ginger. Normally we are red wine drinkers but no wine being served at the lounge we decided to give JACK Daniels and GINGER ale a try. Very nice and relaxing with a view of MGM and New York New York. P.F. Changs was excellent, good food at reasonable prices. Sat on the terrace and caught my firt glimps of the Bellagio fountains. I was hooked. After dinner we went over and watched FIVE performances of the fountains. Poor hubby...he loved them too but after three he was ready to move on but I just couldn't get enough of watching them. This was my favourite part of Las Vegas. There is just something so relaxing about standing there watching the people and waiting with anticipation for the next fountain show. LOVED IT!

    On Monday morning I ordered tickets for the Rat Pack Tribute dinner/show at Greek Isles. Then we set off walking down the strip, in and out of Belagio, Caesars, Harrahs, Venetian and we ended up walking all the way to the Hilton to do the Star Trek Adventure. Yah...we were a little exhausted to say the least. Star Trek was fun but a long line up and after the marathon walking, 45 minutes standing in line was brutal. Taxi back to Monte Carlo, showered and changed, got reaquainted with our new friends Jack and Ginger, then taxi down to Greek Isles. The show was good but we should have passed on the dinner. Tough steak and a salad that had been sitting on the table long before our arrival....soggy.

    Tuesday morning we checked out MGM, New York New York, Luxor and Mandalay, and in the afternoon we just hung out at the pool relaxing for a big night out...ELTON JOHN. We got dressed up, in our finest, went to Caesars and had drinks at Bertollini's in the Forum Shops area. We each had two drinks at their bar...the bill was $60.00. We decided that we were not giving them another dime so I found the Cafe Lago restaurant in Ceasars. We had a wonderful meal and a fantastic waitress who has been working at Caesars for 34 years. She shared stories with us about how Vegas used to be and the problems they are having now with the huge growth of the city. Then off to see Elton. What can I say. We both absolutely loved his show. He sounds as good or better than ever. Great band with him too. We are both long time fans, growing up with his music. Hubby saw him in Toronto back in the early 70's. I cried when it was over and wanted to go again the next night...it was such a thrill. Walked back to the Monte Carlo, catching a few more Bellagio fountain performances. That's when I got the idea for our last night in Vegas. Dinner at Olive's. Got reservations the next day for dinner at 7.

    Wednesday, our last day was spent with a bus ride down to Fremont. Would have liked to have seen the light show at night but I still had some serious shopping to do back at the Forum shops at Caesars and dinner at Olives. I got off the bus on the trip back at Caesars and hubby continued on back to the Monte Carlo. He isn't a shopper and I do much better without his help in this department. You know how it is girls...they stand outside the store looking in at you, looking at their watches, asking "so...are we done?" I picked up some gifts for everyone on my list and walked back to the Monte Carlo stopping at the fountains but the wind was too high so they were a no show. I hoped that the wind would die down for our evening.

    We went to the Bellagio at 6p.m. to get on the list for the terrace dining as it is on a first come first serve basis. The earliest we could get in was 8:15. That was fine so we walked down a bit too Fontana Lounge. I had read about it on these boards. What a lovely room. There was a gal singing with a three piece band backing her up. I didn't catch her name but she wasn't the usual entertainer they have but she was fantastic. We enjoyed two glasses of wine each...two fountain shows and this lovely entertainer all for $30. We went back to Olives about 7:45 and we were seated right away. The food was good and reasonably priced but the fountains didn't go due to the wind. I was soooooooo sad. We left Olives at about five minutes to 9 and as soon as we did guess what...the fountains went. GRRRRRRRR. Oh well. It was a lovely evening and great trip where everything went smoothly and all was well back home.

    After our first Vegas experience there are some things we would do next time and things we would do differently.
    Things to do differently: I would recommend the Monte Carlo to anyone, expecially first timers because it is beautiful, not too big, good location and very friendly staff. Can't say enough nice things about it. We aren't gamblers, so my only comment about the casino is that it is pretty and not too smokey.
    HOWEVER...after touring around to many other places I have to say that Caesars was my favourite. Don't know why...just liked the feel of the place. The pools look nice and maybe not as crowded.
    We would like to get out to the canyon. Next time we would spend a night out there.
    Would like to check out the Rio and Peppermill lounge.
    Since we aren't gamblers, we would spend more time lounging by day to rest up for the evening since that is when all the excitement happens. We found ourselves too exhausted at night to stay up late after walking through all the hotels in the day so next time we'll lay low during the day and enjoy that gorgeous weather.
    Would do more shows and go back to Fontana and watch those gorgeous fountains. Just loved that place.
    Thanks to all for the advice over the last six months. It really helped prepare us for a great stay in Vegas.
  2. Scott R

    Scott R Low-Roller

    May 13, 2003
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    Glad you had a good trip, thanks for sharing it with us.
  3. doctor_al

    doctor_al VIP Whale

    Nov 25, 2002
    Twin Cities
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    Very nice write up. Sounds like a great trip, proof that you don't have to gamble to have fun in this town.
  4. bigdogmom

    bigdogmom VIP Whale

    Mar 9, 2002
    Prescott Valley, AZ
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    Nice trip report; thanks! :cool:
  5. judy

    judy High-Roller

    Aug 12, 2002
    sunny florida
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    I am so glad you liked the Monte Carlo.
    I liked it so much when we went there 2 years ago. You got a great deal on the room!!! They have an awesome spa there and the Market Cafe is excellent. Thanks for the advice about resting more during the day, I need to remember that!
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