Viva Las Vegas!

For the period 3/13/13 to 3/16/13, I was in Las Vegas, Nevada, for the 360Vegas Vacation. The notes below serve as my official trip report. 

WEDNESDAY

  • Left at 6:30 and drove to Detroit to catch an 11:20 a.m. flight on Spirit Airlines. Stopped for gas/food/ATM in Gaines Township.
  • At DTW, my checked bag was slightly overweight, but the counter clerk let it go. The TSA doesn’t understand that a Microsoft Surface Pro is NOT a laptop; I was subjected to a secondary screening because I didn’t remove it from my carry-on. The flight attendants were hilarious and highly professional. Uneventful flight.
  • Had a local cab driver ferry me from McCarran. He advised that many unionized cab drivers were on strike. Their “picket line” was a line of cars with roof signs and continuously blaring horns, driving up and down the strip. Annoying.
  • Put my bags in Tony’s room at Harrah’s, then we explored The Quad (looks like Red Rock on the Strip) then enjoyed keno and drinks at Bally’s. The guard there “schooled” Tony on betting based on a frequency card.
  • Stumbled across a Davidoff store at Paris Las Vegas. Bought cigars, then walked through Paris and then off to Planet Hollywood. We enjoyed Davidoff 5000s.
  • I hit $122 on one bonus round on Cash Spin at PH.
  • Jason and Tony ate at PH Spice Market Buffet … good, 4 of 5 stars. Tony made me buy because of my bonus hit. Even though he had a 2-for-1 coupon in his room.
  • Went to KGB Burger for drinks (the White Russian was fabulous).
  • Took the Las Vegas Monorail to LVH and walked thorough. I won $50. LVH looks like a property desperately awaiting its inevitable implosion.
  • I went to get my bags from Tony and check in to the hotel (they were at 99.6 percent occupancy). Didn’t attempt a $20 upgrade. Did some work before retiring. We stayed at Harrah’s for the first time, because everyone else was either at Harrah’s or Monte Carlo. All things being equal, I still prefer Wynn/Encore or Caesar’s Palace, but Harrah’s wasn’t bad. The room was in very good shape, albeit small, and the housekeeping service was efficient and unobtrusive and my housekeeper made a point, when she saw me, of thanking me for the tips I left her.
  • Tony went back to Bally’s and lost $300 in video poker.

Thursday

  • We were propositioned by hookers on the floor of Caesar’s Palace, on our way to breakfast. They were pretty hot, too. Tony’s response to the sultry question, “So what are you guys doing today?” was: “I’m headed to breakfast!” and kept walking without slowing down.
  • Enjoyed breakfast at Bacchanal Buffet at Caesar’s Place. Very well done; definite influence of Wicked Spoon on the serving methodology. Tony loved the Eggs Benedict.
  • Tony won $65 on MooLala and $30 on Cheers, while playing slots at Caesars.
  • Met up with Stephen and his wife (Denton, Dallas & Beyond podcast) for some gambling. We played the Magic Lamp machines at Caesar’s; the three of us, except Tony, kept hitting bonus rounds. Tony got mad — it was funny.
  • The four of us transitioned to Bally’s for video poker at the bar. Jason won a royal flush for $1,000. Stephen and his wife departed after an hour or so. Steve (the bartender) was awesome.
  • Celebrated the royal with a pair of Davidoff Year of the Snake cigars, while Diane the cocktail waitress served us stiff drinks. There are few things as enjoyable as sitting in the Bally’s video poker pit with a fine cigar and prompt cocktail service from Diane.
  • When Diane’s shift ended, we went back to the bar. Jason hit $200 on quad aces. Tony: “You’re the luckiest mother[expletive deleted] I know!”
  • Intended to hit PBR Rockbar for drinks and dinner for the opening of 360Vegas Vacation. Instead of going to the Miracle Mile shops, we went to Monte Carlo. We both knew better but neither of us grasped that went to the wrong casino.
  • Ate dinner at Aria buffet. Nothing special. Reminiscent of the buffet at Mirage.
  • Went to Paris for the 360Vegas bus, but couldn’t find it. Communications snafu. Missed out on Ted. Received hostile tweets from Keren, which is a sign she misses you. (She’s like PPQ, except from Illinois). I was disappointed by this because I really wanted to meet up with Ted of AccessVegas.com; not only has he been a good friend, but there were some ideas I wanted to pitch his way.
  • Retired for the evening after touring Margaritaville. Wholly uninspiring little casino.

Friday

  • Took a cab to El Cortez. Did a little gambling there, then Four Queens. Did breakfast buffet at The Fremont (not bad, but a bit scary — did the breakfast staples well, though). Bought souvenirs at FSE and Mob Museum.
  • Dropped off our stuff at my room, then went to Caesar’s Palace for drinks and cigars with Stephen at Casa Fuente. Jason enjoyed a Fuente Fuente OpusX, plus an Old Cuban and a Casa Mojito. The three of us talked a fair amount of shop, which was fun.
  • Tony went to Serendipity3 for drinks and gambling with the 360Vegas gang; Jason and Stephen gambled at Caesar’s. Went back to the Magic Lamp machines, then to Michael Jackson. I won $280 on a bonus spin at Michael Jackson.
  • Stephen, his wife and I went to Bacchanal Buffet for lunch. Lunch was just as good as breakfast.
  • Tony joined us at Harrah’s after lunch, whereupon we went to my room to record E-110.
  • After the show, we went to Monte Carlo for dinner with the 360Vegas gang at The Pub. Dinner was mediocre and the service was slow, but the beer flights were tasty.
  • Monte Carlo reserved a craps table for 360Vegas. We played $5 craps for several hours with excellent service from the Monte Carlo team. Cashed out, up $85. A good time.
  • Cab ride back to Harrah’s. Packed.

Saturday

  • Took airport shuttle to McCarran.
  • Bag was over-weight; assessed $25 penalty. Screw you, Spirit Airlines. I’ll pay extra for Delta Air Lines from now on.
  • Uneventful flight home.
  • Landed in Detroit around 7 p.m. EDT. Drive back was odd; traffic was both heavy and filled with dangerous drivers from I-275 to I-96 past Lansing. I was tailgated doing 95 on I-275 at one point.
  • Home at 10 p.m. Cats were alive and well and did no damage. Unpacked, then went to bed.

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