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Some Trip Highlights July 24-29

Last edit: wpsteel66 on Monday, 30th July 2012 5:18 pm
Last response by sandyastrogl1de 31st July 5:04pm

Below are some highlights from our most recent Vegas trip. I had to attend a conference July 25-27 held at the Venetian; we arrived Tuesday night and left Sunday morning.

Hotel: Aria… our 3rd stay here….the wife and I really enjoy this place and all the offerings… will not hesitate to stay here again… the only complaint was our housekeeper, but we did not rate our stay on just one person.

Show: I took up Aria on their summer promotion and accepted the two free tickets to Elvis… we had VIP seating in nice big comfortable chairs down close to the stage and almost mid-center… after the show we both said this show was better than “O”, but not as good as Mystere… I thought best three parts of the show were the live band (the percussionist really got into his playing), the trampoline artists, and the guy acrobatics at the end (being flipping onto and over the shoulders of another person or two)… this show made you appreciate the performing artists’ talents and capabilities… yes, there were two slower parts of the show, but overall were we entertained and glad we saw this production… I can see why they are closing the show since only about 40% of the theater seats on the lower section were filled for the 7pm Friday show… balcony was closed off.

Restaurants: Sensi (Bellagio) was the best overall dinner (food quality, service, presentation, atmosphere)... the pre-meal bread and spreads were awesome… Border Grill (Mandalay Bay) did a great job of combining foods and ‘flavors’ … the food presentation was almost too good to destroy by eating… Sirio CAFÉ (Aria) outside of the main dinning room is a must do-again (way better experience than when we ate in the Sirio dining room)… can not say enough good things about how our waiter David took care of us… Bellagio Café was a nice place for a great down-to-earth, basic meal… mushroom tacos were a different appetizer to try… I had lunch at Imperial Palace lunch buffet just because I had to try for myself and compare to others’ who rated this buffet as not-too-good… the décor/furnishings of this place appear to have never changed since the place opened... pretty limited food options… so if you wanted to try many different and unique foods, avoid this place … the two things I did like was the dessert bar and self-service drinks… the least favorite meal we had was Café Vettro (Aria)…we arrived late Tuesday night and she did not want to go out to eat so I went to the café and placed a take-out order (had to be seated and gave order to the waiter)… food was okay, but the price we paid for a pizza and chicken wrap sandwich (neither came with a side) was expensive for what we received… taste was okay and nothing exceptional.

Casino: Since I was in Vegas for business, I did not have time to visit many casinos and played only about 2-3 hours per day ... as I have stated before in my reports, 99% of my casino play is craps… Aria did not have a table less than $15 the entire time of this trip… the dealers did say that a $10 table may open about 3am until 7am or when business is slow, but pretty much $15 is the minimum now… interesting that the Bellagio had most all of their tables at $10 the two times I was in this casino (Wed & Sat nights)… Mandalay Bay, Monte Carlo, and Venetian also had $10 tables… I stopped by the Mirage for lunch on Thursday and they had $5 and $10 tables… ended up playing instead of having lunch... find out that the boxman and one of the dealers were from the same part of Ohio as I grew up... we live in a small world… Besides Mirage, I played only at Aria and Monte Carlo… I did not make an attempt to visit NYNY (one of my favorite places to play craps)... this was the first trip that some of the Aria and Monte Carlo dealers were not pleasant… some had the attitude of ‘just being here doing my job because I have to work’… I played the Iron Cross (place 5, 6, 8 plus field) during a few sessions … really good outcome at the Mirage and once at Monte Carlo, but a bad result another time at Monte Carlo… did not try Iron Cross but instead played my normal game all times at Aria… we walked through Cosmo Wednesday night and not much going on in this place, pretty quite.

Red Rock Canyon: If you have not visited this park, you should add this to your next trip agenda... the wife and I always wanted to visit Red Rock and do some hiking… even though temps in the 100’s, we took the rental car out to the park to at least drive the 13 mile loop… many great picture opportunities and views in the park… the welcome center has some interesting things to read… we did do some small amount of hiking… we came prepared with sufficient quantities of water… the ‘being-outdoors’ conditions were not too bad due to a nice breeze in the park to cool you off.

Agenda for next trip: During each Vegas trip, we gather info to plan our next Vegas trip… some items we plan on for next trip are: stay at Vdara… visit Valley of Fire… have dinner at Circo (Bellagio), Brand Steakhouse (Monte Carlo), Nob Hill Tavern (MGM, was closed during this trip), and Lupo (MB)… see Terry Fator show (Mirage)…

Airport: Our flight left at 8am on Sunday so we left the hotel at 5:30am to gas up the rental car and return… a lot of traffic going into the airport and many people flying out of town… took about 45 minutes to check bags, get thru security and walk to gate… started boarding the plane 30 mins prior to take-off, which did not leave but 15 mins of waiting in the terminal.

Observation: Something that stood out more this trip compared to prior Vegas trips was many more foreign visitors in Vegas but this could be so since I usually do not visit Vegas in the summer months…the crowds were pretty healthy…LVCC says visitation numbers are steadily increasing and I agree with this…and yes, baby strollers were a common site no matter where you were.

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 apollo28 responded on Tuesday, 31st July 2012

How can anyone say Viva Elvis is better than O?

 sandyastrogl1de responded on Tuesday, 31st July 2012

Valley of Fire does not disappoint!! Absolutely gorgeous!