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Plaza -> Luxor | Six Night Solo trip | 7/28 - 8/3

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by RobotRock, Aug 16, 2021.

  1. RobotRock

    RobotRock Tourist

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    My Trip Report

    Finally deciding to do my first trip report ever. Sorry for the delay, but better late than never!

    Going to do this in two parts. 3 nights at the Plaza, 3 nights at the Luxor.

    THE PLAZA - DOWNTOWN

    - Touched down in Vegas on a Wednesday night around 6:30pm. Saw this PSA on the train at the airport. Cover your poker face. GET IT!?

    [​IMG]


    - Checked in to The Plaza, and decided not to do the $20 bill trick (the clerk lady started off the interaction with "that's not a line!" Because i apparently was standing in the wrong place). She didn't seem accommodating, but i did ask for a south tower room if available. She said that's where she had me anyway.

    - I had a lovely view of the other Plaza tower as well as Circa and Stadium Swim. Fremont Street Experience live music was still kinda loud at night though despite being in the south tower.

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    - First meal was at Evel Pie. An awesome pizza place with an Evel Knievel theme. Would highly recommend. Good pizza and beer, and it was really cheap too. Slice of cheese and a beer for eight bucks.

    - Circa is massive and beautiful at night. I stepped out and was greeted by this sight going on my first night out of the trip. This hotel is really classing downtown up. Some may say that's a bad thing (higher table limits, and doesn't look very "old school vegas"), but my word what a view. This is the future of Vegas in my opinion.

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    - Played some 100.64% joker poker at the Plaza and then went to get snacks for the room from the ABC store.

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    - Day 2, I had Hash House A Go-Go for breakfast and it was just as amazing as I remember it. I had some sort of Bacon and Swiss scramble (sorry no pic, I was too intoxicated by breakfast bliss).

    - I was dumb and didnt withdraw my gambling money before leaving ($1,000 bankroll), and I refuse to pay ATM fees, so I walked down to Chase, withdrew my cash, and also bought some gummies from Cannastarz for the trip. Also briefly saw the Pawnstars pawn shop.

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    - Played lots of the video poker machines I'd been scouting out for months. Double bonus at QQQQ, more joker poker at Plaza.

    - Took advantage of the happy hour at Oscar's Steakhouse. Really good steak fries and a couple meatballs for pretty cheap.

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    - Put down a sports bet at Circa for the over on Canada vs Mexico gold cup soccer. +2.5 goals. I sat and played 99.54% jacks or better video poker at the bar and watched the match. Mexico made it 2-1 right at the end, so Circa owes me some MONEY!

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    - Briefly checked out poker at the Golden Nugget. Only played about a half hour and the table didn't seem very juicy, so I cashed out dead even

    - Sure was a weird time when it hit 12:01am on Thursday night when the mask mandate was back in order. Casino staff was very good about making sure people were wearing masks right away. They were NOT messing around. Caught a pic of them switching the sign. Masks from ENCOURAGED to MANDATORY

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    - Day 3, grabbed a quick breakfast of coffee and a fruit & yogurt parfait at Coffee Bar before grinding that Joker Poker machine some more.

    - Walked over to Circa to cash in my sports bet ticket, and aimlessly wandered up to Golden Nugget as my edible took hold.

    - Ended up having a couple happy hour drinks at this aquarium bar and watched the fish and sipped. Very pleasant.

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    - Played some more 100.17% double bonus video poker at QQQQ. Playing max bet quarters and hit four aces for $200. Feels good!

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    - Then it was time to check out Pizza Rock as all of you VMBers seem to love it. Wow, meal of the trip. I got the Cal Italia personal pizza during happy hour and two gin and tonics, and my bill was something like $20 after tip. You people sure know what good food is.

    - Ventured out for a long walk to Frank's Tiki Room and hit up Esther's Kitchen in the arts district first for some italian food. Very nice bartender took good care of me. Had some awesome wine and carbonara.

    - Hoofed it to Frank's Tiki Room. The place was very cool, although a bit small. It was very dark and the tiki decor made for a great atmosphere. I had one of the signature tiki cocktails. Delicious! Got pretty toasted there and didn't take pics. It was so dark, they probably wouldn't have been any good!

    - Didn't feel like walking all the way back to the Plaza, so I got an uber and rounded out the night with some more joker poker. Took a hit this time. Lost $80 or so.

    - Day 4, and it's checkout time. Took one last shot at joker poker and lost another $60 or so. Still up $100 or so overall on this machine, but my early run of luck couldn't last forever.

    [​IMG]

    - Now, time to bid adieu to downtown, and uber on down to Luxor and spend the rest of my time on the strip. I really enjoyed staying downtown, as there are much more forgiving games as far as house edge. I could see myself foregoing the strip for downtown in the future, especially if i generate some points at a property like the Four Queens and get some comped nights.

    TUNE IN FOR THE NEXT EPISODE...

    THE STRIP
     
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  2. smerrian

    smerrian View from Bally's

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    Nice write-up, loved the pics. Where was the bar with the $.25 JoB vp?
     
    PHX >> LAS
    PHX >> LAS
  3. RobotRock

    RobotRock Tourist

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    Thanks!

    The one with the soccer game on TV in the background? That was at the long wrap-around casino bar at the Plaza.
     
  4. tringlomane

    tringlomane STP Addicted Beer Snob

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    Plaza has 9/6 JoB at the Sportsbook and Omaha bars.

    Good start @RobotRock!
     
    • Like Like x 1
  5. RobotRock

    RobotRock Tourist

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    Thanks!

    That's right, it's called Omaha Bar! I saw vpfree2 refer to it as such. It took me a while to find because there was no signage calling it Omaha Bar. Unless an "omaha bar" is a style of bar?
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
  6. Rob6 8

    Rob6 8 Low-Roller

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    I’m ready for part deaux
     
  7. VegasLover8

    VegasLover8 High-Roller

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    Plaza actually has a lot of full pay machines and more importantly on a variety of games at the bars. Not sure why the Plaza doesn’t get much love. I would stay there. But it’s hard to walk away from the comped rooms at the D and the Vue bar with my go to game with progressives.
     
  8. RobotRock

    RobotRock Tourist

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    I didn't see much interest, but just because you said that, I will work on posting part 2 tonight!
     
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  9. smerrian

    smerrian View from Bally's

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    I just took it for granted part II was coming.:wiggle:
     
    PHX >> LAS
    PHX >> LAS
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  10. gr8whitenorth

    gr8whitenorth VIP Whale

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    Great write up, not to put any pressure or anything, but any TR with Lux in it always get my attention. It is our home base on most trips.
     
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  11. CaptCanada

    CaptCanada Low-Roller

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    Great write-up so far.
    Looking forward to the Lux portion, as we are 1 month out from our stay in that neck of the woods.
    Hope you tallied some W's.
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
  12. Renaldow

    Renaldow Low-Roller

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    Great write-up! I need to play more at Plaza.
     
  13. carolineno

    carolineno VIP Whale

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    Excellent report so far. I’m curious about the walk to Frankies. What was your route? Did you feel safe? I’m a pretty experienced urban walker but I don’t like to get too industrial zone in an unfamiliar place.

    Looking forward to part 2!
     
    A low strip trip? Could be….
    Using up comps walkabout! Fingers crossed!
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  14. RobotRock

    RobotRock Tourist

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    The walk to Frankies was quite long, and although I didn't encounter many people, I didn't really feel safe. Especially as a female, I wouldn't recommend it. I'm just cheap and didn't wanna pay for an uber both ways, and I scoped out a great Italian restaurant in the arts district on the way (I'll go into detail in part 2 of the trip report).
     
  15. RobotRock

    RobotRock Tourist

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    Ladies and gentlemen...

    PART 2

    THE STRIP

    - I step out of the uber from the Plaza and roll my case around the casino floor and take in the vibe. I fucking love these Egyptian vibes!

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    - I still have a little over an hour to kill until check-in, and the Seattle Sounders kick off at 2pm so I can't help but put a hundo on them for a win, as I don't see this slump lasting for them.

    - I putter around the casino floor a bit and it's almost check-in time at the Luxor, and I'm in line right at 3pm which is the start of the check-in window. I turn down checking in on the ipad I was offered, as I was looking to try my luck at getting an upgrade this time.

    THE $20 BILL TRICK
    - A friendly looking asian woman named Lucia helped me. She asks for my ID and credit card for my reservation, and i already have the $20 bill folded in between the two cards. I say the line "if there are any complimentary upgrades available, that'd be much appreciated". Lucia says she'll see what she can do and starts typing away. She offers a tower room as an upgrade, which i hear are nicer overall, but I politely decline because I would like to stay in the pyramid unless something really special is offered. She says she isn't seeing any high floors in the pyramid. Then boom, she says they're doing a flash sale on 1-bedroom tower suites, but it wouldn't be complimentary. I say I'm interested, so she walks into a back room to speak with her manager. She quotes me the suite at $40 more a night and I decline, but Lucia wants this $20 tip (even though I'm letting her have it regardless). She tells me she's gonna see what she can do and check with her manager again (did she really talk to anybody? maybe maybe not lol). She comes back and offers $25 more a night for the one bedroom tower suite. I can't turn down staying in something of a baller room for a lowroller like myself, so I accept. Lucia sets me up on the 22nd (out of 23!) floor, and I thank her as I tell her the $20 is hers and go up to my room.

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    - As I'm getting settled in my room, I scan the channels for the Sounders match to hopefully catch the last 30 minutes or so. I'm disappointed to find out it's only on Amazon prime, so I'm updating the score on my phone like a degenerate. The lowly San Jose Earthquakes are up 1-0, and make it 2-0 late in the game. Boooo.

    - I go to leave my room, and notice this entrance to a baller suite across the hall. I wonder what kind of high rollers stay in this type of room!

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    - I've heard great things about Ellis Island, so I make the long trek from Luxor. I need to walk some of this treats-every-day diet off anyway. Get a look at Tropicana on the way. I realize in my many Vegas trips, I have never stepped foot in the Trop. I'll have to see what it's all about some day.

    - During my walk, I see a pool party-goer having been loaded into an ambulance with the paramedics talking to his friends. Then later on in the walk I see a sunburnt bro in swim trunks opposite me who is laying in some bushes with his feet sticking out into the street. Some pedestrians are trying to help him out and get him upright mostly. "I CAN'T STAND UP!" says Brody or Tanner or AJ - take your pick. To quote a friend of mine, "Some people just can't go to Vegas without ending up in the hospital".

    - Drunk pool partiers aside - I step into Ellis Island. I'm initially underwhelmed by how small it is, but I soon learn what makes this place great. An on-site brewery, $5 craps(!), a karaoke bar, and a 24-hour restaurant right off the casino floor (I've since learned their food is quite good, I unfortunately never stopped in for a meal).

    - Dinner is steak and garlic mash with mixed veggies at The Front Yard and I have the Ellis Island IPA and their amber with my meal. Both tasty, but I'm more a fan of their amber. I remember someone on VMB mentioning you can order Ellis Island beer at the tables. Mental note: when you hear the cocktail waitress, just order "the amber".

    - I watch the UFC fight while I eat my only steak dinner of the trip (pretty darn good). It's Hall vs Strickland. I did a little research and gathered Strickland was definitely supposed to win this fight. I had seen earlier Circa had +200ish on Strickland winning by KO and +200ish on Strickland by decision. Had a hunch it would be Strickland by decision, but didn't pull the trigger. Whattaya know, it's Strickland by decision. Oh well.

    - My belly full and nicely buzzed from the pair of beers, I stroll onto the casino floor. The $5 craps table has a vacant spot and the table is lively. I wait for the next seven out and i throw a $100 bill onto the table. Let's get weird.

    - I meet a craps newbie who bellies up beside me from Washington DC who is here specifically for the $5 craps. We end up being table buddies throughout the session.

    - This ends up being my most thrilling gambling experience of the trip. The $5 craps table is joyous, loud and there are some hilarious characters. I even had a great run as the shooter, winning everyone plenty of money (stakes considered). Nothing like rolling yet ANOTHER point and high-fiving all my table mates.

    - A cocktail waitress pops by and I order "an amber" and she brings me another one of thos delicious Ellis Island ambers. I love this place.

    - I end up winning $160 or so, and feeling nice and loose from the gin and tonics and ambers from the craps table, I pay a visit to the karaoke bar. A few more drinks in there and I sing one of my specialties, "When You Were Young" by The Killers. Pandering a little by singing a Vegas-born band, but I think I sang it well enough.

    - I make the (long) walk back to Luxor via Bally's and take in the hilarious scene that is the strip around 2am. So many girls walking around barefoot holding their heels. Pack some flats in your purses, ladies! Taco Bell Cantina is surprisingly the place to be after hours.

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    - I wake up on Sunday and it's matchday. I haven't mentioned this, but most of the reason I'm in Vegas in the first place is to attend the CONCACAF Gold Cup final at Allegiant Stadium. I bought tickets over a month ago hoping USA would make the final, and it's a dream scenario. The final is USA-Mexico and this is a bitter rivalry. I was able to sell the pair of tickets I bought right when they were available for a nice $200 profit. I snag a single ticket nice and close using my profit to help pay for this one.

    [​IMG]

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    - This is a vegas board and not a soccer board, so I won't go to deep into this, but USA beat mexico in extra time. I was beside myself that USA got such a big win, and things look very bright for our chances of going deep in the next two world cups.

    [​IMG]

    - On my way out of Allegiant Stadium, I notice that Pizza Rock is one of the stadium food vendors! They have a walk up restaurant inside the Modelo lounge area. Glad to see such a great local Vegas spot will be represented to so many NFL fans in the future.

    - Now to celebrate the USA win. My obnoxious 1994 denim n' stars USA jersey upon my back, I walk through the sea of sad Mexican fans in oversized sombreros back out onto the strip towards Ocean One at the Miracle Mile shops. I plan to take advantage of their ridiculously cheap food menu and their three cocktails for $10.

    [​IMG]

    - I have the $7.99 sirloin burger and fries and three gin & tonics. I was STARVING after the match and the long walk.

    - I go out into the Planet Hollywood casino floor and see some $15 craps tables. With no good video poker paytables to be had, I think "Ellis Island is only a short walk away!" So off I go.

    - I stop off at the ever-so-shady Stage Door Casino on the way and order a $2 bud light. Speaking of bad pay tables, this video poker bar top doesn't look too forgiving, but I don't wanna loiter at a joint like this. I put in a $100 bill and slowly play some hands at Jacks or better. I end up hitting some full houses and flushes and quickly finish my bud light and cash out. This place feels really seedy and I need to get my ass to Ellis Island!

    - I arrive at Ellis Island and see they've upped craps to $10. Everyone else is betting $5 and apparently they're grandfathered in to $5 craps heaven. I play some $10 rolls and lose a bit. I end up cashing out and making the long walk back to Luxor again (I should've ubered. That walk took way too much time away from the tables). I did pick up some snacks/gatorade from the Excalibur 24/7 shop for the following morning when I was surely going to be hung over.

    - I wake up at 11am with a splitting headache. Good call on the gatorade and snacks. I have a breakfast of thinly sliced salami, asiago cheese on top of pretzel crisps with some fruit punch gatorade and a green machine Naked juice to wash it down. Just what the doctor ordered.

    - My quest for the day is to hit Yardhouse at the Linq for their happy hour and also just to check out the northish end of the strip, as I've not been up there in many years.

    - I grab my Lagunitas tall boy from the fridge and set off on my journey. Before I leave my Egyptian dwelling, I decide to bet on a game I know will be taking place while I'm at Yardhouse. Give me something to do while I eat and drink myself into oblivion. Passive gambling. I bet on the Nationals to beat the Phillies (lol) based off of some sports betting site predicting Nats will win 5-4.

    - The walk is very hot, folks. I have to take several breaks popping into a casino just to cool off during my northward walk.

    - Yardhouse advises a 20 minute wait, I'm assuming it's busy during their happy hour, but within 10 minutes I'm seated. I'm pleased to learn they have cheese curds on the menu (I have a rule that I order cheese curds whenever they're on the menu - I'm on a mission to find the best fried cheese curds in the world and the best I've found is in my home city of Seattle, the beer-battered cheese curds at Lost Lake Cafe & Lounge). The honey hot sauce dipping sauce is excellent, but the curds themselves aren't the best. 6/10. I follow those up with the boneless wings and a Dragon's Milk bourbon barrel-aged stout (after many other beers). I watch the Nationals blow their one-run lead in the 9th inning, and my sports bet ticket has turned from as good as a bank note into a stinking piece of litter.

    - I leave Yardhouse quite drunk, and I wander over to Flamingo to play some poker (I took my Dragon's Milk to go!). The 1-2 no-limit hold'em game is just okay. Some players who are clearly there because they know the Flamingo 1-2 game can be soft, along with some players who love limping in and playing some pretty bad poker. The biggest donkey at the table promptly busts out after being an asshole over supposedly having a four-of-a-kind for a high hand bonus. He was complaining to the dealer that she should have explained the promotion to him, but my drunken self along with a few other players let him know he was being an asshole and he needed to let it go. He was clearly lying about having four of a kind just to try to gain some sort of compensation for it, and the table was not having it. Didn't even get any good starting hands to begin with, I lose about $100 at poker and decide to cash out and wander north. But first, FLAMINGO SANCTUARY!

    [​IMG]

    - I end up at the Venetian somehow drunker and sign myself up for some poker. The Venetian was my poker stomping grounds back in the early 2010's, and there's a lot of nostalgia there, but I feel like the game has changed so much. Has everyone gotten that much better, or has the style of play for the average player just changed? I don't get any premium starting hands here either and lost a couple hundred before cutting my losses and cashing out. Only really noticed one player that was playing poorly, but everyone else was super serious and playing very competitively. Maybe just a bad table.

    - I decide to play some baccarat as I recently learned the house edge is very low. It was a setup that I'm hearing is the future of casino gaming. There was a dealer, but they were dealing on a live video feed to about 40 single kiosks with touch screen betting displays. I bet on the banker over and over as I read that is the lowest house edge bet in the game, and I win about $80.

    - Then I walk around the Venetian a bit - craps is $25 min bet. I find some bubble craps and play for maybe 15 minutes. I find it's a good way to bet the no pass-line with no social stigma as no one can see your bet. I still play a variety of bets, but it's a nice fallback option. I win about $60 here and cash out with the quickness.

    - I pay homage to the sacred Noodle Asia at Venetian. Years ago, my friends and I ate an epic drunk meal that we talk about to this day - the Nightmarket Fried Rice. I order it for old time's sake, even though I'm still quite full from Yardhouse. It's tasty as hell, but I just can't finish.

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    - I make the long walk back to Luxor. Sobering up, I chuckle at the fact that the one game I really got my ass kicked at was the game that I used to make a living at for a couple years. Poker kicked my ass. I'm sure it was just a shitty run of cards, but I really do think I've lost touch with the current meta of what the game has become. I could study my ass off and catch up to today's players, but I'm content in finding enjoyment at games like craps and 99.64% video poker, giving up 1% or so to the house in exchange for the enjoyment of gambling. I enjoy hunting down edges where I can (the 100.64% and 100.17% video poker at Plaza and the Four Queens), but playing 10 hours a day of poker just seems so mentally exhausting. You make one bad decision and it could cost you hundreds.

    - I awake in my Luxor 1-bedroom and have a couple hours before checkout. I enjoy sleeping in a bit before packing my bags, chomping and edible and leaving with all my luggage and my last Lagunitas tall boy in hand.

    - I leave my bags with the bell hop at Luxor, and figure I have about three hours to kill before I should take an uber to the airport. My edible comes on strong and I sit at a slot machine and drink my Lagunitas quickly. I am properly cross-faded in a giant pyramid in the desert. Feeling very Hunter S. Thompson, I float through the casino not sure where I'm headed.

    - The edibles guide me toward the Krispy Kreme in the Excalibur food court and I order a couple original glazed and a mocha frappucino. I notice I'm staring at the kid behind the counter making my drink, and I look away. He has prepared two mocha frappucinos with whipped cream, and sets them both on the counter. There are a few people waiting for their orders, so I figure someone else ordered the same thing. While I'm sitting down eating, the employees call me over and realize there was a mistake. The cashier thought I had ordered two drinks. They get their manager to issue me a refund, but I just want to be out of any sort of social spotlight as quickly as possible. Talk about an encounter that you never wish to have when on edibles!

    - I'm back in the casino at Luxor and debating whether to just wait idly somewhere to call my uber, or have one last go at gambling. I'm down about $440 on the trip and I figure what the hell, let's wring out the last bit of Vegas degen behavior and throw a hundred dollar bill into a bubble craps "money in" slot as if I was purchasing a Kit-Kat at a vending machine.

    - An Indian fellow and I are in it together at bubble craps and he goes on a hell of a roll. I'm changing up my bets and hitting some numbers. I try out a "seven out next roll" bet that pays off for me. I play a little more and start betting the no pass-line and win some good money off of it. I cash out +$170 putting me about -$270 for my six-night trip. Feels like a win after being almost -$500 for the trip. Funny how that works out.

    - I remember that my roommate had venmoed me $50 and asked to put it on black for him. I throw $50 on a Luxor roulette table and ask for a couple green chips. I slide them on black and watch the ball spin round and round. The ball bounces and clacks home into the 35 black spot. Boom! Just like that my roommate is $50 richer. I venmo him back $100 with the message "thanks for playing sir" and text him the below photo:

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    - I uber to the airport and catch my flight back to Seattle. A mix of blissfully stoned and high off of that $170 bubble craps win to round off the trip.

    - Takeaways from the trip: Downtown = Pizza Rock/Evel Pie/video poker, Strip = Seeing some sights/strip vibes/gambling at Ellis Island. Everything else didn't work out so well. I think I may just stay at QQQQ next trip and grind lots of full pay video poker and maybe some $10 craps and try out Chicago Brewing and some other dope places to eat. Might be becoming a downtown guy after all, and I'm okay with that!

    Thanks for reading, folks! The trip and this report have been super fun. Good luck and best wishes to all of you!
     
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  16. Rob6 8

    Rob6 8 Low-Roller

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    Thanks for part 2 enjoyed following along
     
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2021
  17. fwtxbevo

    fwtxbevo Tourist

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    Enjoyed your trip report! I love the vibe at Luxor, but don't like that their video poker machines seem to be in a side area off the main floor.
     
  18. Sam Clemens

    Sam Clemens Tourist

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    Great report Bro! my kind of Vegas trip, just really hanging loose and trying new spots. People watching is always great as well. Thanks for sharing. P.S. I recently discovered the Dragons milk beer and it is amazing. only need one or maybe two at a time, but yummy for sure.
     
  19. Johnny Bollocks

    Johnny Bollocks Never mind the Bollocks...

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    Great TR. I'm glad you didn't post a photo from the Krispy Kreme at Excalibur so I didn't feel obligated to again mention that I was the first person to ever buy a donut from that location.

    Wait.............DAMN IT.
     
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  20. nancyf

    nancyf High-Roller

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    enjoyed your report -- I was happy to see pictures of inside your room at Luxor - I stayed there many years ago and never in the tower - I always liked their casino with the Egyptian theme...
     
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