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Memorial Day Weekend

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by Little Bob, May 31, 2004.

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  1. Little Bob

    Little Bob Low-Roller

    Aug 18, 2002
    Trips to Las Vegas:

    My Trip Report

    We just got home from spending Memorial Day wwekend in Las Vegas to celebrate our 28th wedding anniversary. We flew Allegiant from Wichita, Kansas, on a direct flight. Allegiant is based in Las Vegas catering to the leisure traveler from cities that are not major airport hubs. A direct flight at a good rate really makes the travel portion of a Vegas trip go well.
    Regular readers of my posts know that we like the Imperial Palace. Our casino host is kind to gamblers at our level while the top tier hotels on the strip would probably not even know we exist. To each his own, but I like IP. The rooms are clean--Holiday Inn type. I really like the IP casino. If you are wanting to gamble on a budget, you can always find a $5 blackjack table. The drink service is pretty good. They now serve Corona in a bottle which they did not when we stayed and gambled there last October. IP has a couple of party pits including one where the dealers are dressed up like famous entertainers (Michael Jackson, Cher, Rod Stewart, Ricky Martin, etc) and they get on a little stage and above the pit and perform periodically. It really is a lot of fun.
    Friday night was dinner and drinks at Jimmy Buffett's Margaritaville followed by Jay Leno at Mirage. The restaurant is in the Flamingo and was a lot of fun. I had a Cheeseburger in Paradise. My wife had jerk chicken. We both enjoyed a Top Shelf margarita and I had a second large one in a souvenior glass. The atmosphere and music were great and so was the food and drinks.
    Some ex-minor league baseball player turned country singer opened for Jay. He was OK, but not what we paid $85/person for. Jay came out and basically did an hour long monologue. We are big Tonight Show fans. It was great to see Jay in person. We had second row seats so we could really see the facial expressions.
    The gambling was ugly Friday night. We mostly play blackjack. We seemed to have OK cards but the dealers did not break very often. We ended up down $350 Friday night.
    Saturday brought the Paris breakfast buffet. It really is special. The made to order crepes are wonderful. We got there about 9 AM and had to wait only a few minutes. We usually eat only two meals a day in Vegas. Saturday night was P. F. Changs at Alladin. It was really quite good. It was a little spicier than I thought it would be. I usually do not eat Asian food, but I would definitely try another location for this chain.
    Saturday gambling was just the opposite of Friday. We made a little almost every session including one nice $200 win playing blackjack at $15/hand. I made that money in about 30 minutes including hitting double downs on three straight hands. We basically won back on Saturday what we lost on Friday. Saturday included some spa time for my wife as a gift from our children. The problem was that since the credit card the services were reserved on was not presented, the spa ended up being charged to my room and ended up on my credit card. Nice thought kids, but Dad is still the one financing the operation.
    Sunday was our anniversary. We started with the breakfast buffet at Alladin. It is still wonderful. The kids had chocolate dipped strawberries and wine delivered to our room which we enjoyed Sunday afternoon. Apparently, you can charge that to your card because it never showed up on my bill. Thanks, kids!!
    We went to the 5 PM performance of Mamma Mia at Mandalay Bay. It is a musical set on a Greek Island loosely based on the pop music of the 80s of the group ABBA. The play was great. I really recommend it if you are looking for a show. Tickets were about $85/person.
    We had dinner at Joey's Bistro about two blocks off the strip on the 9th floor of the Carriage House. We both had the seared halibut with a bottle of Joey's private label chardonnay followed by dessert and coffee. We had a great view of the strip. It was an anniversary dinner to remember.
    Sunday gambling had been pretty choppy with a small win at Luxor that put us up for the trip. We were flying out early Monday morning and headed back to IP for one more round of blackjack. BIG MISTAKE!!!! Wow! I never saw dealers hit so many 14s and turn them into 20s. We should have changed tables---but I was bullheaded. Twice earlier in the weekend I insisted we stay at tables when my wife wanted to leave and after digging into my wallet the cards turned to breakeven or a small profit. NOT THIS TIME!! When we were down $370, I finally gave up----and moved to another table. BIG MISTAKE!!! In about 30 minutes we lost another $150. I can lose a couple of thousand dollars on a stock or business investment, and it really doesn't bother me. Drop $500+++ in less than two hours playing blackjack, and I feel like crap. I usually hit the tables for one last round in the morning while my wife packs, but not this time. IP, thanks for the courtesies, but I more than paid for my comps this trip. We will be back this fall for my wife's 50th birthday. IP, I want some of my money back.
    Seriously, even losing money gambling, I believe my wife and I could celebrate our anniversary in style in Las Vegas for less money than if we had gone to a nice golf resort or to a different major city to be entertained with top live entertainment, great food, plenty of liquor, etc. I will take Vegas anytime.
    Thanks for reading my post.
  2. DavidB

    DavidB Tourist

    Sep 19, 2000
    Henderson, NV USA
    Very nice report, Bob, timely and informative. Thanks so much for sharing it.

    You close with a very important point that visitors should keep in mind: No matter how much prices of the obvious things such as shows, buffets, rooms, etc., may increase over time, Las Vegas is still a definite bargain compared to most other forms of vacation that require travel to get to them. All you need do to assure a great bang-for-your-buck experience is to stay within your budget.

    [ May 31, 2004, 09:53 PM: Message edited by: DavidB ]
  3. Mia4071

    Mia4071 Tourist

    Jul 28, 2002
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    Yummy - Paris buffet - Had it last time and I plan on having it when we are there next weekend~!
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