The High Roller

The VegasTripping Review 2014

Posted by MikeE

It's Thursday evening and I've just checked into my room at Bellagio. The fountains are firing, but my eyes are fixated on the High Roller as its lights blare above Flamingo. It doesn't seem like it's moving despite rumblings of test runs and the like just before heading to town.

Who cares? Cocktails are more important at this hour.

It's now Friday morning as my groggy body makes its way to the window of my room. Secret pizza and whiskey breath steams my view as I try to get another look at the High Roller. Again, no movement. I instead center my eyes on the roof of the future Cromwell. Still, one of the giant wheel's pods is in my line of sight as it seemingly sits atop Flamingo's roof. Only with this visual cue in the foreground am I able to see that the pod is sinking behind Flamingo at a snail's pace. It's definitely moving. In fact, it had been moving all the other times I was looking, too.

I'm still hearing conflicting stories - it's just testing, it's not open, it's not moving and you've gone mad, it's only open to Caesars employees - but with a personal obligation to see LINQ, time to kill, and what I thought would be a relatively short walk, I make my way to the enormous wheel an hour or so before sunset.

As anyone who has walked any moderate distance in Vegas knows, proximity can be deceiving. As a frame of reference, I could have made it to Venetian, perhaps even Palazzo in the amount of time it took to get to the entrance of the High Roller. At least LINQ itself is a moderate distraction and remarkably clean for a corridor that originates from the shit stain that is the frontage of Flamingo and The Quad.

High Roller Wheel

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Comments & Discussion

Great review. I share the same sentiments with MikeE, while it's a nice diversion, I just don't see this as being a game-changer like the Mirage volcano or the Bellagio fountains.

Maybe if each pod had a different theme to suit different clientele...
Bottle Service Pod?
Sushi Pod?
Nudity Pod?

It's something that most folks will do only once, which is probably true in regards to the tower at Stratosphere (In the 10 years of going to Vegas, I went up my first trip and haven't been up since, although with the changes on the Strip since 2004, it's probably worth doing again.).

I'm expecting them to come up with some sort of package deal that includes the Eiffel Tower Experience and maybe the Auto Collections at The Quad (Both were included at one point with the All Stage Pass that was offered up until last June.).

I'm planning on riding it in a few weeks when I'm out there and it will likely be the only time I do it unless I'm with some people that haven't ridden it and want to ride it.

I'm fine with the view from the plane coming into Vegas. Not sure what this really adds other than lightening my wallet. Money that could have been lost instead at 6:5 Blackjack!

When I pressed play on the video I was so hoping to an April wine soundtrack!

I will try this just for the experience and if friends go at the same time I do then I will try it again. The price isn't that bad and the views alone are worth it. I have done the Eiffel Tower three times and Stratosphere twice so this is on my list for my next visit.

Did this on opening night and I have to agree. It's ok to do once but there's not much desire for me to repeat the experience. (Although I will as I'm travelling with another companion in a few months and they'll want to do it).

I was with 2 others with nobody else in line (on opening night) waiting for the pods and they refused to let us on until some other people showed up so several pods went by empty in the meantime.

Oh and the emcee in the pod (or whatever you want to call him) has got to go... now.

I will be in town next weekend with (gasp!) my teenage children in tow, so I was thinking of adding this to our to-do list, even though $35 a head seems awfully pricey. I suspect that by the 20 minute mark, we will all be wishing we were someplace else.

Is this something I would have done on my own? Highly doubtful.

Is there no music in the pods? The way the voices were carrying in the video it sounds awful. They should add some music akin to the Bellagio fountains to try to create some sort of atmosphere. It looked like everyone in the pod was bored 13 minutes into the ride. Ouch.

@DuLac55 There were screens in the pod so the potential for music is certainly there, but they were off during my ride.

Great overview, MikeE! Noticed those LCD screens in your panorama shot. Any indication what those will be used for?

40 to a pod, though... that would be one hell of an uncomfortable, and long, elevator ride. And never mind flatulence, they're going to have bathrooming (and puking) issues sooner or later. (What little tyke hasn't "had to" go 5 min after "last chance"?) Those things look big enough to accommodate a bus/airplane style shitter. Though that would present problems (and opportunities) of its own....

Great review Mike, and while the view maybe interesting and has me tempted, I think your review hit on the part that would bug me. The trip down, or more specifically the amount of time on the wheel. Even when I visited the Eiffel tower and the fountains were running, I still had the feeling of oh look a view, that's nice, let's move on. The more I think about it, the more I realize that sitting in a pod with no real way out for something that isn't vastly different then other views I've experienced is not something I want to do.

Perhaps if a group of friends wanted to try it and it was a reasonable assumption that we'd be the majority in the pod, but otherwise I think I'll have to skip it for now.

testing testing...?
Can't post comment....

I'm going to reserve a cabin for a bachelor party, great time to catch up with everyone while getting a great view of vegas.

Have to agree with DuLac..why the hell don't people just shut up?

Its why I always have an iPod, and iPhone, and headphones...I can live in my own little world and I like it there...

I seem to remember there were going to be docks for iPods inside the Pods themselves...any evidence of that? Blasting some Metallica would be a great way to really annoy people :)

Just wondering if the Flamingo has a top optional pool..could get some nice shots during the day :) Just the way my mind works sometimes...

When I went on the Roller i shared it with four other people. It starts out with having to jump into it and while the computer generated guide is cheesy he is entertaining. They are pushing hard to get people to ride and it seems to be working.

I think the high roller normal prices are too much BUT I think the happy hour is well worth the cost especially the day time rate because it goes till 6pm so you can get a good sunset ride. We got in about 4-5 drinks each and could have had more if we could have handled the booze. Our first drinks were good and we tipped $1 the second drink we didn't tip (because we were going to tip $5 at the end) so our drinks were shitty, we tip on the 3rd drink with the $5 and got HEAVY pours.

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