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Venetian, Monte Carlo, Palazzo-3/17-3/26 Old Favorites & New Discoveries

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by VegasGirl80, Mar 31, 2009.

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  1. VegasGirl80

    VegasGirl80 Tourist

    Dec 30, 2006
    Trips to Las Vegas:

    My Trip Report

    The Venetian and Palazzo know exactly what they are doing with their almost daily slot tournament and room offers that fill our mailbox. MGM Mirage properties have made their presence known as well and so they are included in me damning them all to hell for making it impossible to ignore them and their cunning ways of luring these two Vegas Nuts Veterans back to our favorite city. The daily internet rotations of Vegas message boards, travel sites including airlines and car rentals, players accounts, and show information became the job at hand. It has become somewhat of a quest for me to see (solely for my pre-trip entertainment) just how cost efficient our Vegas trip can come in at. I had to find a way to justify (only to myself) another nine day trip to the desert. I met and mastered my mission and It-Was-On!

    Continental decided to screw with the available departure times and we had no choice but to go with a 5:05 pm departure vs. our favored 5:30 am departure time. Uneventful flights resulted in our arrival at McCarran’s Gate D20 a few minutes shy of 10:00 pm local time. The arrival routine complete with baggage retrieval and car rental shuttle put us smoothly in the full size lane at Dollar where we selected a Ford Edge- $187.15. The traffic was light for the entire drive down Las Vegas Blvd. until we rolled passed Flamingo Drive. It was a full on St. Patrick’s Day throwdown in progress on the sidewalk in front of O’Sheas. We slowed to gawk and comment in unison “Gotta love Vegas†as my foot and my brain got into their own unison to get us to our first destination, The Venetian.

    The Venetian proved once again to be our favorite hotel on the strip. I have been very fortunate over the years to meet and have as friends a few of my own “Vegas Fairy Godmothers.†The wand was waved on this trip and we found our Piazza Suite 30-336 waiting for our arrival. It makes it so hard to leave a beautiful room like this. We appreciated all it had to offer for our first three nights of the nine night trip. Getting to town, checked in, having a light snack at Grand Lux, and losing my a$$ had me falling into the bed right around 4:00 am. It took me all of the first two full days in town to get my act together and to realize I would much rather get to town early morning and have the entire day in front of you. I can’t afford to give up one precious moment of Vegas time.

    I love the first morning waking up to what Vegas is, was, will, and might possibly be. Each trip to Vegas writes its own chapter. I look forward to opening the drapes with a cup of coffee in hand and a world of possibility in front of me. My DH arrived back to the suite with croissants and a few extra $$$ from a slot hit or two that morning. We planned on seeing Carrot Top that evening but he had cancelled his performance. We took our time and left the suite around 2:00 pm to drive over to the Palm at the Forum for lunch. Our lunch was great and we were on to one of my favorite ways to spend an afternoon – gambling at Caesars. We both started out playing VP at the bar that fronts the sportsbook. DH hit a few 3 OAK and I could not get anything going. I moved to a .25 Game King multi game machine choosing Bonus Poker. I played max coin and cashed out a few hours later up $230.00. My eyes were crossed, bugged, and I swear I had an ailment that became known this trip as “video poker shoulder.†Good times, baby! It hurt so good and I wish I was there right now as I type. I made a quick purchase at Estee Lauder for myself and my Vegas friend and I suggested we head back home to the Venetian. I enjoyed the jetted tub and we ordered our favorites from room service- French onion and chicken noodle soup. The room service attendant arrived in a black tux and made a beautiful production of setting the table, complete with five white roses (my favorite) in a lovely vase for the centerpiece. I felt like a princess and I sat for what seemed an eternity looking out over my neon kingdom after our late night comfort supper. I was one happy camper.

    My phone rang early with the scheduled and much anticipated answer I was looking for from DH’s errand to Tix 4 Tonight. He was coming back with two tickets for LOVE for the early performance that evening- section 200, row K, seats 18-19. The total costs with fees were $214.00. Ellis Island was the plan for late lunch and a little pre-show VP. I played Bonus Aces Poker at the quarter level with max coin and cashed out with a $330.00 profit. DH lost at blackjack and VP. LOVE has changed in a few places just since we saw it last August. Something, Octopus’s Garden, and Here Comes the Sun have been changed and we liked the changes. The show was great and third time was the charm for me hitting my “I think we will give LOVE a rest†level. We caught a new and improved volcano show/eruption while waiting in valet and we give it two thumbs up. The streets were crowded and the pedestrians are mighty brave souls stepping out in front of vehicles. It kept me on my toes as the designated driver the entire trip. We both played once we got back to the Venetian with no wins for either of us. I really wanted to unwind in our beautiful suite as this was our last night and DH did not put up much of a fight. I called it a night early and felt like a wuss.

    Coffee and croissants, throwing clothes into suitcases, and the getting ready morning routine was fast and swift. I had a few phone calls come to the room that made me run late getting out of the room. The bellman was a great young guy who we really hit it off with. He helped me get it all together and my phone rang right as we were heading out. I walked in to the bedroom and on the bedside table was my diamond line bracelet. My head was up my, well, you know where it was. I can’t be distracted when I am in the groove of getting out of a hotel room or playing VP. DH learned this for sure this trip. I met the guys downstairs and we visited long after the car came. I have read negative reports concerning poor customer service at the Venetian but we have never had anything but positive experiences and I still hold firm that the Venetian offers a great experience. We turned left onto LVB heading for new digs for the next three nights and a property we would be first timers at- Monte Carlo.

    We walked right into the fragrant smell of Orchids and Lilies and a very welcoming front desk staff. The Invited Guest line was full so I was checked in by a super nice guy, Lionel. He upgraded us to a Monaco Suite for our three night stay for an additional $40.00 per night. Our offer was three nights comped with $100.00 Monte Carlo Bonus Bucks. Lionel instructed me to simply apply them to the room upon check out. He offered the 24th floor or the 13th floor. “You all have a 13th floor?†to which he replied, “You’re not superstitious, are you?†I informed him if I was superstitious I would not be staying at Monte Carlo at all since I am deathly afraid of fire. I went with 13-203 or maybe it was 13-202. I can never remember the stupid room number only how to get to it. I have way too many other things to keep up with like how much money I have left! The room was nice and the half bath worked great for us or should I say for DH. The room would not be ready until after 3:00 pm so we stored the luggage and headed the Edge in the direction of Ellis Island. The steak special was as good as ever- the VP was not. Defeated but determined, we drove back to Monte Carlo. The casino was hopping and the music mix was Oh, Hell Yeah good. I had a winning session playing .25 Double Bonus Poker cashing out up $200.00. DH= loser. It was the theme of his trip. I gave him $50.00 to lose- I mean play in a machine. The give and take, take and give wore thin after an hour or two and Ellis Island was sometime ago so we decided we needed some comforting that only a Belgian Waffle and Strawberry Shortcake could offer. We enjoyed every bite, each other’s war stories, and we liked the Café. I opted for a relaxing Jacuzzi and damn if I did not fall sound asleep in the tub. Vegas was taking more of my money than giving and beating the crap out of my stamina at this point. In the words of Dido, there will be no white flag above my door. Onward and upward-

    Saturday was the double M day- Menopause the Musical & Manilow. I wanted to see MTM at least once before it closes next month and we had seen Barry Manilow twice but with his show being revamped we both were game for a third time. I made reservations at Benihana for dinner between the shows. We got to the LVHilton around 3:15 pm to pick up the tickets at the box office and try our pre show VP luck. I cashed out even and we were quickly being seated at MTM. The show was cute and one I am glad we saw. The performers parody songs from the 60’s and 70’s and the one I laughed the hardest at was to the tune of “Puff, the Magic Dragon†to which the performer sang “Puff, My God, I’m Dragginâ€. DH did not even begin to touch that subject matter with a ten foot pole. A great show celebrating women and an even better cause- curing Ovarian cancer. I salute the effort and the cause.

    Our dinner at Benihana was big fun. We met three other couples and the conversation and delicious food was a fitting combo for a Vegas Saturday evening. I braved dollar VP playing Double Bonus Poker and finished up $200.00 covering the meal and MTM. I was looking forward to getting my Copa on and when I handed our tickets to the showroom usher I was informed Mr. Manilow had cancelled this evening’s performance due to throat complications. Disappointment spread across my face. It remained there as I was beat to the seat of the 12X .25 machine I wanted to play and watched as the girl hit green 7, 12X, 12X for upwards of $3600.00. I regrouped and suggested an evening of local fun at the Gold Coast. It added to the disappointment. Did I mention that I can be a very sore loser? DH is still mentioning it.

    Sunday morning gourmet breakfast of Egg McMuffins and hashbrowns can cure what ails you almost everytime. The weather was rainy, cloudy, and blowing a fierce wind making indoor activities a must. My bankroll and shoulder needed a break and I suggested a little retail therapy and dinner at Maggiano’s at the Fashion Show Mall. DH had to register at 4:00 pm at the Venetian for the slot tournament he would be playing in Monday and Tuesday. I became a Coach bag convert this trip and worked through my guilt and splurged for it. I picked up a few other goodies for me, DH, the parents, and my brother. I gained brownie points all around. We got to the valet at the Venetian right on time and DH went to register for the slot tournament and I felt a little .25 Double Bonus was in order. I lost $60.00 and as most gamblers say, “But I had fun playing.†You know what? That statement is utter bulls**t. :haha: DH was scheduled to play on Monday at 9:00 am and again at 2:00 pm. He finished up the signing in process and we were off to have dinner at Maggiano’s. The place was packed and we sat at the bar for almost an hour and just relaxed and I got to people watch. We were seated at 7:45 pm at a table by the window providing a perfect view of LVB, Wynn, and Encore. We split a half order of stuffed mushrooms, a half order of spaghetti with one meatball, shared a slice of cheesecake, two teas, two coffees, and two St. Pauli Girls. Even splitting orders it is still too much very, very good food. We left the restaurant around 10:00 pm and took our time driving the strip back to Monte Carlo. I played DB VP for an hour or so with the result being a tito for the same amount of money I put in the machine. I really wanted to pack up our suite so I would not be rushed the next morning. We watched a movie that made no lasting impression and called it a night right around 1:00 am.

    DH left early for the Venetian and came back to get me and the luggage so we could get checked in for our last three nights at Palazzo. He finished his first round of play with over 8000 points. The check out process at Monte Carlo was a breeze. I suggested we ride out to Freed’s Bakery on Eastern for a couple of goodies for lunch-hey, we are on vacation- and for a midnight snack (or two). I took Koval for a quick zoom zoom in the back way to get the slot player to his date with destiny. I had a date with a .25 WOF slot machine and a $20 in came back out with $180 of its closest friends. DH was on machine #32 with a mission. A couple from California and their two teenage kids were standing by me and became our own cheering section. DH hit the Blazing 7’s seven times and finished second for this round with 10,780 points. The highest score for this session was 11,690. DH felt good about his score and I introduced him to his California cheering section. A quick visit and we parted company. We walked over to Palazzo to check in and got the hard sell at Invited Guest to upgrade. The harder he pushed the more it put me off. We were more than happy to have a regular suite and thanked him for his assistance. We played a few .25 slots and I was offered on my third try $75. X2 X2 on a Double Top Dollar machine. We grabbed a quick snack at Grand Lux and picked up our tickets for the much anticipated Jersey Boys performance. I made the mistake of going with the balcony seats and we hated our choice- Section 10, Row B-B, Seats 44-45. I had inquired about upgrading when I picked up the tickets and the box office informed me the performance was sold out. That was not so and we moved to the middle of the balcony since there was only four people in the whole balcony with us being two of the four. It worked out and all I can say is that this is now our tried and true Vegas must do favorite. We both were in Mama Mia withdrawal but quickly found our fix. I highly recommend this show. This show is worth every penny it cost to get to Vegas to see it. Did I mention that we loved this show? Oh, What A Night indeed!

    The Tuesday morning blues coming down hit hard. It hits me harder and harder each trip when it gets closer to time of departure. DH did not do too well on his last round of play in the slot tournament- a little over 6000- but still hoped the score from Monday’s play would at least put a few slot credits in his account. I quickly got my focus off of the inevitable and suggested we have lunch again at the Palm at 1:00 pm. The Business lunch menu changes were in effect and the dessert choice of NY Cheesecake or Key Lime Pie are included with the meal for the new price of $22.00. It is still a good deal, and here comes the but, the twin filet entrée is now smothered in Rosemary brown gravy with smothered onions and mushrooms. In a word - no. I do not want the gravy on the plate or even on the side next visit. The service was perfect and the crowds both at the restaurant and the Forum were light. I noticed one thing that was almost absent this trip and that was the cigarette smell. My hair smelled more from the pumped in fragrance at the Venetian than cigarette smoke/smell. A welcomed change for sure. I threw my best Christopher Walken SNL parody at DH explaining, “I’ve got a fever, and the only prescription… is more Caesars!â€
    A $20 in for Double Bonus VP and a few 4OAK , 3OAK, a straight, and a couple of full houses and me not cashing out sooner still gave me a win in the neighborhood of $117.00. We had comped tickets to Fab Four Live at 5:30 pm and we had a friend give us a voucher for George Wallace at the Flamingo. I tried to get tickets for Donny & Marie for the middle show but the show was sold out. Fab Four Live still is a winner in our book and the few changes make the show even tighter. It was sold out and the crowd got into the performance. We stayed after the show to visit with the producer and John, Paul, George, and Ringo. It is still a fun seventy minutes at the right time of day for other shows to be fit in. We valet parked at the Flamingo and went to the coffee shop for a little Keno, soup, toast, and a shared vanilla malt. It was an old time Vegas coffee shop feeling paired with the comfort food we thoroughly enjoyed. I love walking out to the grounds to see the Flamingos and the breeze was very cool, the neon just right, and it was a nice Vegas moment. Donny & Marie ran late letting out so we did not get seated until almost 10:20 pm for George Wallace. DH was none too thrilled to be at the show but within all of five minutes after GW took the stage he laughed his butt off for the 90+ minute show. After all of our trips we could not believe we had not seen this show. Mr. Wallace is a witty individual with a spot on perspective of the world we live in today. There was a gentleman in the first few rows who continually spoke out and tried to get GW’s attention. We assumed this guy was a heckler at best and finally after many tries GW let him speak. He started out by saying he was a local cab driver there in Vegas and he and his mother had come to the show three years ago. At that show George Wallace had given his mother a $700.00 handbag and she was thrilled. He went on to explain that she was now in the worst stages of Alzheimer’s and the only three people she remembered now was he, his brother, and George Wallace. I completely lost it as did most of the showroom. George Wallace handled the gentleman and the subject matter with style and grace, tying it all together with the strong message and the good that laughter provides. He is now one of our favorite Vegas entertainers and may I suggest his show. Hey, he even gives away prizes. He gave a young couple round trip airline tickets to anywhere in the Continental U.S., a $500.00 gas card, manis and pedis from the salon at the Flamingo, Ethel M candy, and he is giving away a mini Mercedes in the future.

    I was up early for my scheduled in-room massage. This was a decadent and wonderful indulgence that left me relaxed and pampered. I took my sweet/suite time getting my act together and had coffee, watched a little television and a few planes take off and land at McCarran. I dressed eventually and we drove out to the Arco on Spring Mountain to fill up the Edge- $2.01 per gallon. We came by Diamond Bakery in the Chinatown Plaza for goodies to bring back home and decided on Maggiano’s once again for an early dinner. We arrived promptly at 4:00 pm and had a no hurry dinner. Our view was perfect and watching LVB turning from day to night with the neon coming alive is always priceless. I was extremely quiet during our dinner but I wanted to take in the sights of the strip and let my mind wonder around the good times and memories from trips gone by and the memories in progress of this trip. DH came in 160th out of 340 slot players and was awarded $50 on his Club Grazie card. He gave me the card and mumbled something about Sparky, get our money back. No wins whatsoever on the $1.00 VP machine I selected. I put the gambling part of the trip to bed and I soon followed.

    The bellman knocked on the door around 10:15 am and we were checking our bags curbside at Continental around 11:30 am. DH left his Dr.’s bag in the rental car and hauled his butt back on a shuttle to retrieve it. He topped the escalator at 12:10 pm leaving us just enough time to get through security and to Gate 20. We got to the gate and had just a few minutes before boarding so as one who has eternal hope I stuck a $20 in a quarter WOF machine. I was playing max-3 coin- and got down to only two coins. I hit the button and Triple Diamond, triple bar, triple bar came up for a $60.00 payout. I handed the tito to the attendant and put those three 20’s in my wallet. We were in row 39 making us first to board. We got settled in for our 1:00 pm departure and just about the time the main cabin door shut the pilot came on and said we would be delayed due to the bad weather in Houston. IAH had completely shut down to incoming and outgoing aircraft. He informed the passengers that he would let us know something else at 2:15 pm- it was now 1:05 pm. He announced we could deplane but the flight attendants strongly urged none of us to exit the plane. We were told to take all of our personal items and carry on baggage if we decided to get off and she assured us they would leave in a moments notice without us. I promptly sat back down and cranked up the MP3 player. The pilot comes on at 2:15 pm and informs us we will not be leaving anytime soon and the crew needed all of the passengers to exit the plane and they would be re-checking us back in around 3:25 pm. People were going nuts and quite a few stayed over. DH and I knew the weather for Texas and Louisiana was forecasted in complete red for not only Thursday but for Friday. We would have the same problem the next day if we stayed over and we quickly agreed it was best for us to continue with this flight. I called home and confirmed that indeed the weather was not good. I shot up a prayer or two and rolled with the punches. The winds in Las Vegas were registering 50 mile an hour gusts and when we reloaded the plane it shook and swayed from left to right. We took to the skies at 4:16 pm local time rockin’ and rollin’ almost the entire way to IAH. We got home no worse for the ride and our luggage got home two days later wet and a few wheels missing but at least it got a trip to Vegas out of it. I’m not complaining and I haven’t heard one word from the luggage. :haha:

    Our gambling budget was much lower this trip and we were able to stay in the game with a few meager wins. DH busted out entirely and I managed to bring home $400.00 to the good. We ate good, loved the shows we went to, and stayed in some mighty fine digs. We found a few things we liked so much we did them twice. I did notice the crowds- big numbers and good attitudes for the week of March Madness and becoming smaller in number the second week. I swear the customer service everywhere we went was some of the best we have ever experienced. To sum it al up I will quote Frankie & his Four Seasons, “I keep working my way back to you.†Two different slot tournament offers from the Venetian came today. Guess what I’m thinking?
  2. Joe Strummer

    Joe Strummer VIP Whale

    Apr 4, 2006
    Nice report !
    I thought I was the ONLY ONE who got "VP SHOULDER" !
    I had it so bad one trip.....I had a Physical Therapist work magic
    on it when I came home from Vegas.
    I think I sat wrong on my 5 hr + flight -- that contributed
    to the VP Shoulder.
    I have become much more aware of standing + stretching
    when I hunker down for a serious VP session.
    I was wondering about the Fab Four Show -
    any more thoughts or seating tips on it ?
    I enjoy my Vegas Hotel room - unless it's a solo/budget trip.
    A beautiful room + view make the whole experience even
    more enjoyable for me.
    Venetian is a beautiful property !
    I'll have to get back on their radar and give them some play,again.
    T -15:wave:
  3. Jinx

    Jinx VIP Whale

    Aug 7, 2007
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    Count me in as having VP shoulder before too, luckily haven't had it for the last two trips, must have changed something in my sessions. Great report though, thanks for sharing.
  4. gotavegasjones

    gotavegasjones VIP Whale

    Jan 16, 2004
    South Texas
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    Good read. Thanks for posting.

    later, GVJ
  5. blackjacknut

    blackjacknut VIP Whale

    Nov 26, 2008
    Northeast Ohio
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    Nice report..thanks for posting.
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