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St. Paddy's Day, March Madness plus Spring Break with pics

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by Matty Ice, Apr 5, 2015.

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  1. Matty Ice

    Matty Ice High-Roller

    Dec 5, 2011
    Columbus, OH
    Trips to Las Vegas:

    My Trip Report

    I'm combining my Vegas March Madness Trip report with my Spring Break trip because they were only separated by 3 days of work.

    St. Paddys Day in Vegas
    Arrived Tuesday 3/17 (St. Paddy's Day) morning and left the following Monday evening 3/23.

    St. Paddy's Day was crazy! I spent time on the strip and Downtown and thought the atmosphere downtown was way better than the strip that day. The Bagpipes were awesome! They had all kinds of fun things happening on Fremont Street including basketball hoops at 20, 25, and 30 feet that you could shoot at, a U2 cover band that was kind of cheesy, and The D was electric with lots of Leprechauns.

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    Sports Betting
    I lost my very first bet of the tournament with Notre Dame not covering that included a straight bet, first half, second half, and a 6 team parlay. It didn't get any better. I ended up losing 18 of 23 bets, and I thought I knew something about college basketball.

    Casinos visited
    7 full days really allowed me to explore off strip, downtown, and strip properties. I had The ACG and LVA that I used for a coupon run. Here are the casinos I visited; Off Strip: Ellis Island, Tuscany, Gold Coast, Palms, Orleans, and Westgate. Downtown: El Cortez, Downtown Grand, Main Street Station, California. The D, Golden Gate, Binions, Four Queens, and Golden Nugget (still haven't made it to The Plaza yet). Strip: Mandalay Bay, Luxor, Excalibur, Tropicana, MGM, NYNY, Monte Carlo, Aria, Cosmo, Cromwell, Flamingo, Linq, Mirage, Wynn, & Riviera (collected a $1 chip, but boy was it dead and nasty).

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    3 nights at Aria (my previous favorite resort) 3 nights at Delano (my new favorite resort). Big suite with a huge soaking tub and a separate living area to hang out. Ate at Javier's (Awesome!), Aria Buffett, Five50 (3 times), Border Grill, Slice of Vegas, & Hussong's Cantina. Spent time at The Mandalay Bay pool. Played a lot of DDB VP at Monte Carlo and hit several premium quads to help make it a winning trip. Won on video roulette at Aria, lost on everything at MB. Had a VMB slot pull at MGM on Cleopatra II that was exciting for a minute, nice meeting the VMBers. Watched basketball games at Westgate, The D, Tag Sports bar, Aria Sportsbook, Mandalay Sportsbook, and our suite at Delano. Went to Vegas Bull which is a country bar in Town Square. Wow! I'm not a huge fan of country music, but I am a fan of beautiful women in sundresses and cowboy boots which there were plenty of. It was ladies night on Thursday and they had bikini bull riding at midnight, which I highly recommend sticking around for. My buddy was supposed to leave Monday morning, but ended up getting a flight home Saturday night for $500. Some guys just can't handle Vegas. I've been to Vegas several times before, but this was my first March Madness trip. I got lots of great advice from Barry and the MMILV Facebook group, but OMG was it crowded. I was glad that we didn't pay for a viewing party. I really enjoyed walking around and the freedom it allowed. I also heard lots of negative reviews of many of the viewing parties. I had three days solo, and to be honest, those were my favorite days. I don't think the guys I was with even saw the sun. 7 days in Vegas is a LONG time. It took me 4 days to recover.

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    Future Vegas Trips
    Trying to get a mid April trip for a Slot Tournament at NYNY that I received an invite to, and a June trip for a Video Poker tournament at Rio. I'll be back in October as the host of my triplet cousins' 21st birthdays. That should be interesting. I'm more worried about my uncle than my cousins.

    Spring Break
    Booked 4 nights at a Holiday Inn Express through Priceline for less than $400 during spring break in Gulf Shores Alabama. It said "close to the beach", but was significantly less expensive than other hotels. I guess 2 miles is technically close to the beach, but it got really annoying to drive the 2 miles with all the spring break crowds. We ended up driving about 15 minutes further down to Orange Beach. We really enjoyed that, but after a couple days of that we decided we needed to do something else.


    New Orleans & Biloxi
    We decided to spend one night in New Orleans, and then two nights in Biloxi MS. I used a MyVegas reward for Friday night at Beau Rivage (249,000 LPs) and booked Thursday night through Orbitz at The Beau for $80. I was going to book a room through Priceline for New Orleans, but remembered that there was a Harrahs in New Orleans and maybe I could get a discount through Total Rewards. I was extremely happy/surprised to see I could get a comped room at Harrahs Wednesday night through Total Rewards, so I booked that! We checked out of The Holiday Inn Express a day early and drove the three hours to New Orleans.

    New Orleans
    This August marks the ten year anniversary since Hurricane Katrina hit, and I'm happy to report that New Orleans is as filthy and smelly as it ever was. We have young children, and I've always been against bringing children to Vegas, but I would take them to Vegas before ever taking them to New Orleans again. I would prefer to deal with the porn slappers and "characters" over the bums, smoke, filth, and smell of Bourbon Street. At one point my daughter said "can we go back to the hotel now, it stinks here." We did actually enjoy our walk to The French Market.

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    We went back to the room and I decided I should give the casino a little action since they did give me a comped room. I played a little VP and won a little, then sat down at a $15, 3/2 Blackjack table. It was a hot shoe until they brought in the "cooler". He went 20, Blackjack, 20, 21. I walked away at that point up $150. :thumbsup:

    We had beignets at the Historic Cafe Du Monde which were amazing. I had "gator on a stick" which looked and tasted like a big hot dog at The French Market along with a Hurricane.
    We ordered room service for dinner. Two grilled cheese sandwiches, a cup of Gumbo, and a scoop of ice cream, plus tip came to just under $50.

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    The Harrahs in New Orleans was very nice! Two very comfortable queen beds, a nice soaking tub, nice bathroom, and the service was great! Valet parking was $38 per night, but I was only charged $22, maybe a Total Rewards discount. If you have to go to New Orleans, I would recommend Harrahs.


    Beau Rivage
    Thursday morning we drove just over an hour from New Orleans to The Beau Rivage in Biloxi Mississippi. My first impression of The Beau was that it looked like a smaller Bellagio. Turns out that the name of Beau Rivage was originally meant for the Bellagio however, Steve Wynn changed Beau Rivage into Bellagio, and reserved the name Beau Rivage for his new waterfront casino in Biloxi. It really is a beautiful resort, with nice restaurants, and a beautiful pool. I will say that I actually liked the room at Harrahs in New Orleans better though. The room at Harrahs had two queen beds as opposed to two double beds at Beau Rivage.

    We spent a few hours at the pool on Thursday and purchased a VIP pool chair pack on Friday that included two padded chairs, an umbrella, water, pillows, and towels. Definitely worth the $50. We ordered drinks at the pool. $11 each for a weak piƱa colada in a small plastic cup. :thumbsdown:

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    We used a MyVegas BOGO buffet reward Thursday night for the Prime Rib buffet. They won't let you charge the paid buffet to the room, so we paid $27 for our two buffets. I did what I always do at a buffet and stuffed myself to the point where I get sick. When will I learn? We had lunch at the pool two days, I would summarize it as pricey yet average. We had dinner at Coast on Friday night which is their sports bar. I had the steak nachos, which were fantastic, and my wife and daughters shared a wood fired cheese pizza which was also excellent. Total bill came to $55 plus tip which I paid cash for with my winnings. We also took the kids for their first meal at Waffle House and they loved it!


    I played several hours of $0.25 8/5 DDB progressive VP. It seemed like the entire bank of machines was hot! I hit several premium quads! No royals for me, but while I was playing two ladies on each side of me each hit the royal within a matter of ten minutes. Unfortunately the one lady was only playing 2 coins when she hit her royal. At one point I was up over $500. I gave some of it back, but still ended up enough to pay cash for all of our room charges plus meals on the way home.

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    There are several other casino resorts in Biloxi including Hard Rock, Harrah's, Golden Nugget, & IP, but Beau Rivage, at least appears, to be way nicer than the other resorts. You would think you were in a Las Vegas casino resort. It's very nice and the service is excellent! It caters to an older crowd generally, but Friday night was hopping with a much younger, club going crowd. The lobby is comparable to one of the nicer resorts in Vegas, but I was not overly impressed with the rooms. I would compare their rooms to a three star property in Vegas. MGM is building a minor league baseball park across the street that looks like it'll be nice.


    Attached Files:

  2. parti_73

    parti_73 Low-Roller

    May 19, 2014
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    nice TR. Great pictures!
  3. KellyLovesVegas

    KellyLovesVegas Earthling/retired space nerd

    Feb 19, 2012
    San Antonio, TX area
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    Nice TR - we probably crossed paths at some point during the weekend, as hubby and I stayed at Delano for our MM trip this year (Tues 3/17 through Mon 3/23) and watched the games in the sportsbook at Mandalay Bay. Depending on the day I would have been wearing either one of Barry's MMILV t-shirts, a Wichita State or KU t-shirt.
  4. tringlomane

    tringlomane STP Addicted Beer Snob

    Jan 21, 2013
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    Nice report! And good to see that Beau Rivage progressive moves! Almost a $150 straight flush... Might be the best game they have from the reports I've heard of the place.
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