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TR: 12/16-12/19 LV For the Cheap at Heart - Part 1 (prolog, day 1)

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by goofygrin, Dec 21, 2004.

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  1. goofygrin

    goofygrin Tourist

    Dec 20, 2004
    Frisco, TX

    My Trip Report

    Long time lurker, first time poster =) Thought I would share my trip this weekend.

    Was me (LV Virgin), my wife (been LV back when she was too young to remember much), my buddy and his wife (they've been to LV multiple times).

    Day -2 (Tues):
    A day or two before the trip, the weather turned funky here and both my wife and I got a case of the crud (sore throat, congestion, etc.). We got on the plane anyway =)

    Day -1 (Wed):
    Feeling cruddy I told my buddy that I didn't think I was going to bring my golf clubs... he talked me into it. I went down to Academy and got me a $60 hard case (more on this later). I called up Wolf Creek in Mesquite and made a tee time for Friday ($50, normally $75, but I'm on their email list; more on this later).

    Day 1 (Thursday):
    Our flight leaves at 3pm, but we both get up at 8. We get packed and go get a new digital camera for Christmas (Sony P150, I wanted something small and fast). We hop into the car about noon and start our way to the airport. After a quick bite at Whataburger we hit a huge traffic jam. I know a back road, so I go down an onramp and start making my way over. I call my buddy to warn him, but he was already in the jam, at the front. Seems that construction had stopped two freeways in both directions... fun.

    We make it to the airport and land in super cheap and far away parking. We wheel our stuff up to the bus and my buddy and his wife were on the bus already (not quite sure how the beat us there) so we were all there and ready to go.

    Make it to the "Funjet" counter. Didn't I tell you we were cheap? Our flights were $120 R/T each (after $20 of taxes). We would find out why. We check in and head over to "security."

    The line is a mile long. One of the workers said that there is another entrance a few gates down... we zip over there and there is no line! Turns out that this entrance has two xrays and two sets of searchers whereas the other has only one. My buddy's wife get's a NO ID on her boarding pass and gets the nice TSA feel up because her ID expired two weeks ago (on her birthday). After putting my (rubber, no metal) shoes back on, we head back to our gate (at the far other end of the terminal, lower rent I am sure).

    Funjet had given us a couple booklets with coupons so we read through those to get us in the right frame of mind. Hmm... $50 free slot play at Casino Royale? (more on this later). We were joking around about this buddy of mine that always get stuck by the bathroom on a plane, in the seat on the wall that doesn't recline (he's a bathroom-a-phobe and will drive home to do anything other than #1). Guess what? The wife and I get stuck on that row. Even worse? My chair is like a rocking chair and just flops back and forth [​IMG] . Those 3" that American gave to the traveller? This airline is where they got them from.

    The flight left the ground promptly... and the people on the plane and the flight attendants were nice. Free drink and pretzels. Hey it's not bad for $99. It was pretty bumpy though, but after watching Lost, everything seems smooth...

    So we land in Vegas (after gawking at lake Mead and the Grand Canyon out the window) and head to the baggage claim to get our bags. Remember my golf club case? It was the first thing off the plane and it had had the duct tape mod done to it... it seems the TSA had broken off the four locks and opened the case (without leaving any paper in the case to tell me as such) and then duct taped the case back together. The lady there filed the paperwork no problem and told me to leave the case at the bell and that they would contact me to get it replaced. Hey, I'm in Vegas. No drama here!

    We head out to get the Dollar shuttle to get our car (fastlane, CTI wouldn't work, fullsize $20/day). The shuttle doesn't come for 30 minutes! I call up dollar and tell them to come get us. As I'm hanging up, the bus arrives (doh!). We get to the lot and head over to Full Size. Remember, we've got two hard side club cases + 2 suitcases + 4 adults. We ain't fitting in a Taurass. I ask nicely "Is the dodge magnum a full size?" Her: "No" Me: "How about the Jeep here?" Her: "What about a minivan?" Me: "Is it the same price as a fullsize?" Her: "It is today!" SCORE! We pile our crap into the minivan and head out. It wasn't until we were off the lot that I realized I should have tipped her (Doh! #2).

    We head over to the Orleans ($20 a night for 3 nights (I booked before I got my LVA free stardust night)). I figured how bad could it be? Drive through the strip (gawk at NY/NY). The whole time my buddy is moaning something about "sooooo hungreeee" and calling out all the food deals he sees ("ooo $6.95 steak dinner" "$1.89 hamburger"). We pass by In-And-Out burger (more on that later) and finally creep up to the Orleans.

    After scouring the parking lot for a while we find a parking spot (hey we are cheap and the valet is for people with money right?!). We wheel all our crap into the hotel and get to the check in desk. We get out rooms (I had booked a 2 queen and he had a 1 king but he wanted 2 queen and I wanted 1 king). They got all confused and finally just gave us what we booked. Rooms 901 (1K) and 908 (2Q).

    We find the elevators and head up to the rooms. In case you are wondering, 901 is about as far away from the elevator (which is where the ice is) as you can get without going outside. 908 isn't much better. We swap rooms to get the bedding we wanted. I get the mountain view (which I prefer, but it came with the garage and the "beep" "beep" "beep" of trucks backing up) and he got the strip view. Either way, the room was pretty good (I have nothing to compare it to Vegas wise).

    Remember we are "sooooo hungreeeee." But we can't decide what to eat. My buddy wants steak (visions of $7 steak dinners in his head). I suggest Ellis Island since they are raved about on here (for the steak, not the ambiance). He was all about a CHEAP steak dinner so it was a deal. We find it on our map, go wait for a shuttle and make our way to the Barbary Coast. We get our bearings and head quickly to Ellis.

    I don't think we ever felt not safe there... However there was some construction and we ended up going in some back entrance near the bbq joint. Having never been there, we got a ticket for there vs. the restaurant. While we are waited for our number, I decided to use my match play.

    Single deck black jack (good), 1:1 pay on blackjack (bad, more on this later), good dealer (good obviously). I cash in $20. My first Vegas hand baby!.... and I win with my matchplay! and after about 20 minutes I've lost all my chips. It was fun though. During that time, we realized that we had a ticket to the wrong place, so my wife went and got us a ticket for the restaurant. My buddy's wife got bored and went to play a WoF hoover, errr slot machine.

    I was watching her when our number was called. Her $20 had turned into $5. He couldn't hear me, so I went over to tell him that it was food time. I looked at his stack and cards. He was up a bit (from his $20 buy in) and was showing AdKd with a $15 bet. The dealer came to him and paid him $30. We figured out that 21 Diamonds pays 2:1 (funny table rules). He colored up $110 for his $20 buyin... not too bad for 45 minutes.

    We get into the restaurant and order (3 $4.95 dinners and 1 meatball sandwich). By this time the crud my wife had was really getting to her and she had lost her voice (fun!). When the salads arrived those were gone pretty much instantly. Then the meals arrived. That has to be the best $5 steak that I have ever eaten. The beans were great. Real mashed taters.... My buddy's was great too. His wifes (she asked for it to be charcoaled) was not (surprise surprise). My wifes meatball sub was good too. I asked about my B1G1 LVA coupon and was told I needed to get a players card. I go to the booth, get my card and return to the table. $25 with tip later we're outta here.

    We hoof it back to the Barbary Coast to get the shuttle back to Orleans, catch it and head back to the hotel. My wife and I need to go to Walmart for medicine and some OJ. My buddy and his wife go to gamble (he ended up about $30 for that session, she down another $20 from a hoover machine). We make it to WallyWorld on Charleston in no time, get our crap and head back to the hotel. Drink a 1/2 gallon of OJ, took some nyquil and went to sleep dreaming of craps.

    Edit: My wife will kill me for forgetting this:
    While we were waiting for the shuttle back to the O from BC, we stopped in the BC for our free cocktails (coupon book) and to use the facilities. A guy at work had asked me to bet $1 on 32 for him on a roulette table. On the board for one of the roulette tables 23 had hit 5 out of the last 10 times! (23, not 32) so I decided to not bet it there. We go over to the slots and my wife decides to play a penny slot for fun. The rules make no sense and it some funny game... some funny game that after 5 minutes she hits for 200 pennies! She cashes out $2 to end up $1 up (woohoo!). While waiting for her to cash her TITO out, we look at this lady at a roulette table. She had at least 10 stacks of greenies. And not the low rolled stack, the house size stack. We were in awe looking at someone sitting there with $10k just like it was nothing.

    When we got back to the O on the way back to the elevator to get the car keys, I decide to put the $1 on 32 for the guy at work. The ball spins around... bounces... drops in... bounces... drops into 32... bounces out and ends up two squares away. So much for his buck =)

    [ December 21, 2004, 11:38 AM: Message edited by: goofygrin ]
  2. milehiman

    milehiman VIP Whale

    Sep 21, 2002
    Scottsdale, AZ
    so far so good...

    I like trip reports with lots of detail. Can't wait to hear about your further adventures.
  3. bshowell

    bshowell VIP Whale

    Oct 3, 2004
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    Interesting reading. I like this, now let me continue on.
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