Tag Archives: Las Vegas Trip Report

Las Vegas Trip Report: Is That a Rat?

Good morning from the Bellagio hotel!  When we last left off, I was having an issue with redeeming my free play reward from MyVegas.  I figured I could go try again this morning.

I stopped for some photos of the Bellagio conservatory.  One poor bear was getting brain surgery.

bellagio las vegas conservatory christmas brain surgery bear

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Bellagio Las Vegas Christmas conservatory bellagio las vegas christmas conservatory north pole bellagio conservatory christmas las vegas Bellagio Las Vegas conservatory Christmas Bellagio Las Vegas conservatory Christmas bears

When I finally make it to the Player’s Club booth, the same woman who denied me last night, was behind the counter again!  How is this even possible?  So I kind of stood off to the side, playing with my phone, until someone else was free.  I was able to get the free play and two buffets loaded.  With the holiday black outs, today is the only day of my entire trip the Bellagio buffet reward is available to  use.

I then head over to the buffet.  There is a woman on line behind me, who wants to be on line in front of me.  Nope.  We had both paid and were waiting to be seated.  She then walked a couple of feet into the buffet and began screaming to someone in Chinese.  That person then came over, took this woman’s water bottle, got it filled from inside the buffet and brought it back out to her.  What the hell.  You can’t do that.  And no one is stopping her.

I am next in line to be seated.  This woman is just dying to be next in line. Her entire life is now focused on the one goal of being next in line at the Bellagio buffet.  She is trying many methods, most of which involve physically pushing me out of her way.  Not today, lady.  I will be the victor.
I am then called to be seated.  Oh hey, look!  I am seated next to the woman who gave the filled bottle of water to the woman who…wait a second, what is going on here?  WHY IS THIS WOMAN SITTING WITH ME.  That’s right.  The woman who was behind me, who wanted nothing more in life to be in front of me, is now sitting across from me at my table.  What the fucking fuck is this?  I didn’t even have time to think before my mouth acted on it’s own “NO. NO NO NO NO NO.  NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO.” I also realized I was wagging my finger at her.  The server seemed completely confused as to how this woman got there.  “She is not with me.”   The life’s goal woman acts as if  this is not happening.  She runs away to get food as the server and I just stand there absolutely dumbfounded.  I tell  the server I will happily move to a new table, as this one is next to this woman’s friends and I don’t want to be anywhere near these people.  She tells me no, it is okay, she will move them.

As this drama kept unfolding, I become convinced that this woman did not pay.  Her and her buddies are now appearing at different tables in the buffet.  I am pretty much an “in and out” type of buffet diner so I was done before most people were getting started.  As I am on my way out, a man came to get a server to say “They are over there now.” I watch the server as she bolts towards a table so far away, where this party has now taken up residency.  I don’t know what the outcome was because I left.

I want to use my $25 free play on Cleopatra Keno.  Bellagio for whatever reason (probably a mistake) has the second highest paytable for Cleopatra Keno that I have seen in Vegas.  (First is Rainbow casino in Henderson.)   I love this game, I love this machine.  And there is someone on it.  I have to play on the other side of the bank, which I am fine with.  For some reason THIS machine plays a brief trumpeting fan fare intro when you hit the bonus and I love that.

I played for-EVER here.  I kept doing that thing where you have to get up and cash out because every $20 bill in your wallet has been doubled and you are out of cash.  In some cases they were tripled and twice I had cashed out at $100.

On my last cash out before I had to go get more cash, the paper ran out or jammed or something.  The machines starts beeping and calling for an attendant.  I cash out and come back, still not fixed.  I am not playing any machine other than this one so I wait. When the attendant comes over, he asks me how much he owes me.  No, it paid me…er no wait, it didn’t and you owe me $3000.  I am sure I made his day with this hilarious joke that I am sure he has never heard before!

Next thing you know, my full cigarette pack is empty.  I look at my phone and I have been sitting at this machine for six hours.  Oops?

I go to the room and shower, because I didn’t earlier because I had not been planning to be out that long.  On my way to my room, I pass a door that has placed this sign on their doorknob.  Bellagio guests are fancy ya know.

eat a dick

After showering, I go back to the Bellagio buffet for dinner.  This time the line is insane. It is 7:00 and I need to be out of here by 8:30 to go see Mystere at Treasure Island.  After half an hour I begin to realize that I am not going to get inside before 8:30.  i stick it out though because today is the only day I can use this MyVegas reward as it is blacked out for the holiday starting tomorrow.

Luckily, someone comes and pulls anyone off the line who is willing to be seated at the bar.  That would be me!

There is a slight issue with paying for the meal.  The bartender first mistakes that I am with the people next to me and charges them for me.  Then he does not know how to run a MyVegas reward.  He goes up to the register and I wait for him to come back.  If anything goes wrong, you can be damned sure I am not paying money for this buffet.  It costs $39.99 with tax.  Only when he is back do I go and get food.

I am in a rush because I have to leave so I do not gorge.  I hurry up, get out and begin walking to Treasure Island.

I wish I could show you fabulous photos of the Strip from my walk.  But I did not bring my camera on this trip.   A good blogger would have.  But after spending a month in Nepal/India with this thing wrapped around my neck, choking me, only to then discover there is a crack on the (insert terminology for that thingy across from the mirror on the inside) that made a mark on all my photos, I am over it.  I hate my camera.  It will be awhile before I can stand to look at it again.

I do have a couple though.  You can barely tell Casino Royale exists any longer.

white castle las vegas strip treasure island las vegas treasure island las vegas pirate ship

As I am walking, I spot movement on a ledge near the fountains outside Caesars Forum Shops.  Oh fucking FUCK it is a rat.  That is a rat.  MOTHER FUCKER THAT IS A RAT.  I try to take a photo of it, which is difficult as I am shaking with fear.  I move (not really) closer to it.  Between me and the rat is maybe five feet.  Behind me is about 879423746237 feet of open space.  So everyone walking by has to ignore that wide open space, to wedge themselves between me and my rat.  This scares him and he bolts into the bushes.

(Insert Rat Pack jokes here.)

I do find it amusing that this rat was hanging out at Caesars.  If you are familiar with social media accounts that are aimed at Las Vegas addicts, you have no doubt seen the vast amount of people who love to cut down others who do not have as much money as them and tend to take trips that are more bargain friendly.  It disgusts me that this is socially acceptable.  That cutting down people about this is totally fine, but calling someone an asshole for cutting people down will get you yelled at.  Well guess what?  This is my blog so I can tell you:  If you cut people down for staying at any hotel that you feel you are too good for, you are an asshole.

There are hotels in Vegas that are absolutely fine, but are not five star hotels.  People love referring to these places as “dumps” and going on about how the rooms are filled with mythical roaches and rats.  I know they think it makes them look like a better person because MONEY.  But to me, it just makes me sad to see someone who puts so much value on money.

A three star hotel in Las Vegas is not a dump.  This hotel in Tibet is a dump:

Dege China disgusting bathroomI would not trade all the crappy, filthy hostels I have stayed at in the world if it came with giving up my life experience.  Including the experience of seeing this bathroom, saying “nope” and high tailing it to a new hotel.

So the next time someone tells you that your perfectly fine hotel in Vegas is a shit hole and “if you cannot afford a better hotel, you should rethink going to Las Vegas”, feel free to let them know that their precious Caesars is housing rats out front.

<end rant>

I got to Treasure Island just in time to get on the line that I could not get on because it never ended. It literally did not end.  It was snaked all through the casino.  I kept trying to find the end, but the end kept growing before I could get there.  I would see it, walk towards it, more people would enter it, and I would have to keep walking.   Finally when I get on it, we move.  Then someone tries to cut the woman in front of me.  She turns to me, makes a face and motions to them.  Don’t worry, I’ll take care of this.  “YOU KNOW THERE IS A LINE RIGHT?” as the offenders skulk off without even pretending that they didn’t notice that the 23894732847 people lined up were doing so because LINE.

If you have seen Mystere, you know to get there on time.  If you have not, just trust me on this.   My section is in the furthest section on the left if you are facing the stage.  My seat is the first seat on the left in the row.  I am as far to the left as I can possibly be.  The rest of the section seems to have been ticketed on the right side of the section.  So I am all alone over here, surrounded by so many empty seats.  An soon as the show starts, an usher beings yelling to me that I can move if I want to.  Given that I am so obviously isolated from the rest of the audience, and the fact that the usher is yelling during the show, makes me first think I am unknowingly about to be made a part of the show.  So I stay put for a few minutes before moving.  All clear, whew.

Mystere is by far my favorite Cirque du Soleil show.  I love this show so much.  I love the choreography and the baby!  Oh how I love the baby.  I was laughing so hard I had tears pouring down my face.

After the show, I played a bit of Cleopatra Keno at Treasure Island.  I had a lot of fun, but had no big wins.  Eventually I got up and left, stopping at CVS for water, paying in all change.  Yet I still have fifty pounds worth of change left.

Back to the room and in bed by 2:00 am.

Gambling Day: + $260
Gambling Trip: + $490
Miscellaneous: (tips, water): $11
Comps used: Nope
Coupons: Nope
Freebies: $65-ish? on two Bellagio buffets. I am not sure of the cost after tax on breakfast, $25 free play at Bellagio.  These were all MyVegas rewards.

My itinerary that gambling got in the way of:

Monday, December 19, 2016
Breakfast: Bellagio, 7-11 MyVegas
Palace Station t-shirt MyVegas/Stations 10 slots/6x VP
Lucky Dragon
Lunch:
Dinner:
Bellagio, 3-10 MyVegas
Mystere 9:30
El Cortez 10x Buffalo 10-midnight

Las Vegas Trip Report: I’m Moving to the Bellagio!

Good morning from the wonderful Orleans hotel and casino, located in fabulous Las Vegas.  If you are just joining us, you may want to start at the beginning of this report, which you can find here.

I slept with the bathroom door closed, which meant the bathroom window did not wake me up by screaming “LOOK AT ME!  THE SUN IS OUT!”

I had intended to get up early, go use a MyVegas reward for breakfast, and then come back and check out.  Instead, I gambled.

I stopped at Java Vegas, where the line was so very long.  GIVE. ME. MY. COFFEE. PLEASE.

I gambled around Orleans and did not win anything because only winners win and I am a loser.  I said a last goodbye to all my favorite machines and went upstairs to grab my stuff.

I looked at my bill on the television and I owed $1.87.  I went and counted out $1.87 in change to pay at the front desk.  That is a thing I have noticed while in Vegas, the accumulation of change.   Once I started getting comped everywhere, I stopped using cash daily.   So all that change you collect when you play slots and cash out with change, just grows and grows.  I used to use it to pay change on bills at restaurants, gift shops, etc.  Now I just use my slot card and watch as my wallet grows fatter in the wrong compartment.

As I get ready to hand over my $1.87, the guy at the front desk asks if I want to use my points to pay for the charge.  YES.  Oops.  I guess I will use this change to pay for the bus.

I go outside and walk to the bus stop.  You walk the entire parking lot, which is ginormous.  Then you cross Arville, which is easy peasy.  Then you cross Tropicana, which takes forever.  And of course, during the time you are waiting for the light to say “walk” your bus comes and leaves while you just stand there on the wrong side of the street, watching it pull away without you.

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And the bus, OH THE BUS.  Last year, my “act like it isn’t happening” meter broke and I just about snapped about the bus system in Las Vegas.  I got so tired of the bus being “right across the street” and having to walk one mile to get there.  The most infuriating example I can give of this is the bus stop outside Longhorn.  The bus going towards downtown is right across the street.  But the street is Boulder Highway.  And once you get across this, which can take about ten minutes depending on how long you have to wait for the light, the stop is then nowhere near the corner. And I promise you, as you are talking this insanely long walk from the corner where you crossed, to the actual stop, a bus will pass and you will curse up a storm.  Why is the bus stop nowhere near the corner!??

But today, Las Vegas has outdone itself in public transit mishaps.  Oh yes, yes you did.

I take the bus to the Strip. I am going to Excalibur.  The bus does not stop on this side of the Strip, it stops on the opposite side.  Why not stop at both?  Because HATE.

I get off the bus at Tropicana, nowhere near the corner.  I then attempt to take the pedestrian bridge across the Strip to get back to Excalibur.  Except it is closed off.  I do not mean the escalator was not running.  I mean the walkway to the pedestrian bridge from Tropicana was completely fenced off.  I could see guys working on the bridge, but for the life of me, I could not figure out any way to possibly get there.  I decided maybe they got onto it from the Excalibur side.

So now for me to get “right across the street” from where I am, I have to: Take an elevator up a different pedestrian bridge.  Walk around the side of MGM to their pedestrian bridge.  See the escalator there is out of order, because of course.  Wait for the elevator for a few minutes before a guy in a Spiderman costume comes and tells me that it is not working.  Then I carry my luggage (because oh yeah, I had checked out of Orleans and had luggage with me) up the steps.  Cross the pedestrian bridge.  Walk into New York, New York.  Veer all around idiot tourists who love to just suddenly stop walking without any concern that people may be behind them.  Say “excuse me” about seven times to people who are so engrossed in their phones that they do not realize they are blocking the entire walkway.  I make it outside, cross another pedestrian bridge.  Then once I hit Excalibur’s property line, I am on another bridge, and a very long hallway, and then finally, I am at my destination.  I don’t know exactly how long this all took.  It had to take at least twenty minutes.  To get to where was literally right across the street from where I started.  YAY.

I also noted that Excalbur removed the banner advertisement for Dick’s Last Resort in the window that used to belong to the wizard.  I hope they bring the wizard back!

excalibur-las-vegas

I check my bag with the bell desk, get my MyVegas buffet reward added to my card and play a bit before eating.

excalibur-vegas-four-of-a-kind-sixes

Then I get to the buffet.  There are zero people on the line, which is weird.  The buffet normally comes to $21.78. but for me, it is free because I am using a MyVegas reward.  Score.

The Excalibur buffet has self serve drinks and they have the holy grail of drinks, Sobe Lifewater.  They also have red velvet pancakes.  This place has certainly improved since the last time I was here fifteen years ago.

On my way out, I spotted this store.  I exhibited self control by not purchasing anything but promised to be back later in my trip to purchase everything.  This is an excellent way to control your spending in Vegas.  Every time you want something, do not buy it that second.  Instead, tell yourself you will come back.  You will never come back.  Everything that is “right there” in Vegas takes a minimum of eleventy billion years to walk to.  You will never, ever come back.

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On my way back out, I play some more and win some more.  I always have to play the machines with the annoying glare.  I don’t know why.

excalibur-las-vegas-fourf-of-a-kind-jacks excalibur-las-vegas-four-of-a-kind-eights

Now it is time to make our way to Bellagio.  I walk because I am from New York and in New York, we walk.  I only took a couple of photos.  I didn’t bring my camera on this trip.  I have grown to hate my camera.  I hate carrying it, it is so heavy.  I hate that I will never find the most perfect bag to carry it in.  And as I discovered after taking 2389438924 photos in Nepal and India, it has a tiny crack in the mirror so all photos have a scratch mark on them.  So I decided to do phone only for this trip.  And I loved it.

new-york-new-york-hersheys-las-vegas

While walking, I pass this.  What is this?  It is where New York, New York ends. What used to be there?  How is it possible that this is taking up so much space on the Strip and I have no clue what used to be there?

las-vegas-strip

One thing I learned on my walk is that Cosmopolitan now has a Starbucks.  Upgrade!

I get to Bellagio and check in.  I am here on a two night reward from playing MyVegas.  The cost of this room had I paid for it, would be $139/night + tax = $155.68 per night.  So for two nights, my pre-resort fee cost would be $331.36. Most people would put this amount in the list of money they saved by playing the game.  I do not as I would not be paying $311.36 to stay here at all ever.  If anything, this reward is costing me $71.68 because if not for the reward, I would not be paying the resort fee.  If I sound like I am being negative about this, I really don’t intend to.  Of course I am willing to pay $71.68 to stay at the Bellagio.  I just don’t consider it a savings if I am not actually saving anything.  A really cool freebie, yes. A savings, nope.

While I was checking in, I fantasized about beating the life out of these two horrible bitches who were screaming at a manager.  It seems their room was not ready when they tried to check in.  So they did the check in process, and were told they would receive a text when they could come back and pick up their keys.  They had gotten the text, but their names were not on the room.  One of the two women’s  husband had made the reservation.  He had done the check in, given his wife’s number for the text.  But he neglected to put his wife on the actual room.  So she could not pick up the keys.  Instead of being mad at him for being an asshole, they just kept screaming at the manager.  As I was walking away with my keys, the husband showed up and now the women were demanding compensation for their horrible experience and now ruined trip.  That manager deserves a medal for not calling the police and having them escorted out.

I am put in a room at the top of the spa tower.  My view was pretty much only the sun glaring into the window.  The spa tower is a million miles away from the casino, but I am also right near the tram to Aria.  This is a good thing because I can go there to smoke without having to go to the casino.  Bellagio only has one floor for smokers and there was no room for me there.

The Bellagio may be the most famous hotel in all of Las Vegas.   I just don’t get it. Maybe if I had a fountain view or something, but there really wasn’t anything special about my room.  It was just a room.  A very nice room, yes.  But just a room.

bellagio-las-vegas-spa-room-tower bellagio-las-vegas-spa-tower-room bellagio-las-vegas-spa-tower-room-soaking-tub bellagio-las-vegas-spa-tower-shower

bellagio-las-vegasI did laundry in the sink because obviously this is the first thing I would do in a five star hotel.  Then I went out.  I went “right across the street”, meaning I left the spa tower, walked a million miles to the casino, then through the enormous casino, out the casino and down another very long hallway, to a pedestrian bridge, down an escalator and bam!   I am now right across the street!

I stopped at the new Starbucks at Ballys.  This place is enormous so only two people were working.  One at the register, one making drinks.

I then went to Cromwell to visit the Ultimate X video poker machine that was so nice to me last year.  Of course, they moved the machines around.  I think the one that was my machine, is now occupied by some guy who is playing ten play quarters.  If someone has to be playing my baby, I am consoled by knowing he is at least treating her well.

I sit down to play at a nickel SuperTimes Pay machine.  I realize I do not have my player’s card with me.  I get up and go get a new one.  Sit back down.  Now I realize I did not grab a pack of cigarettes before I left and my pack only has three cigarettes in it.  I am not going to buy cigarettes.  I am still smoking cigarettes I bought at the duty free shop in the Delhi airport on the way back from India.

So I play and lose $40 and decide to go back “home” to the Bellagio.  I stop there and go to the player’s club to get my $25 free play reward from MyVegas loaded on my card. I am told I cannot do this as I am there on a MyVegas room reward.  Yes I can.  I am told the rules have changed and you can no longer do this.  I ask when the rules changed and she tells em “Months ago.”  Nope.  But arguing is not going to get me anywhere.   I go online and verify that the rule has not changed, my free play is indeed good.  I agree to go back and try when this person is not there.  Except she is always there.  I guess I’ll try again tomorrow.

So I end up playing with cash.  My cash.  Which was only mine temporarily until the Bellagio Cleopatra Keno informed me it was her cash.  So I gave it to her and slumped away defeated.

I was in my room and in bed by 11:00.

Daily totals:

Gambling Day: – 200
Gambling Trip: + $230
Miscellaneous: (tips, coffee, bus, trip to CVS): $19.11
Comps used: $1.87 for the room charge at Orleans
Coupons: Nope

Freebies: $353.23 for my two night stay at Bellagio, and my brunch buffet at Excalibur.  These were MyVegas rewards

My itinerary is hilarious:

Sunday, December 18, 2016
Breakfast: Excalibur 7-3 MyVegas
Check into Bellagio
Bellagio $25 free play MyVegas
Lunch:
Dinner:
Sunset Station 4-9 MyVegas / Sam’s Town 200 points ACG
Sam’s Town 15X Buffalo, 11x reels or 7x VP
115 bus to Longhorn play $10 get $5 ACG
Ellis Island play $5 free shirt ACG
Tuscany earn 300 $10 free play ACG
El Cortez 10x buffalo 10-midnight
SLS 10x points

Las Vegas Trip Report: Spending a Day at Orleans Hotel and Casino

If you are just joining us, this is a Las Vegas trip report for my annual Christmas trip to Las Vegas.  You can find part one here.

Despite going to bed at 3:00, I am up and wide awake at 6:15.  Nope, not because I am in Vegas.  Not because of the time change.  And not because the machines are screaming my name.  But because of the bathroom window.

See, Orleans has windows in their showers.  That means that while you are showering, you can have this pretty view.

orleans-las-vegas-bathroom-window

Although I wouldn’t suggest maybe viewing it WHILE you are showering.  If you can see these car windows, then the drivers can see you.  Or maybe you are a voyeur.  In which case, get thee to Orleans NOW!

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The door for the bathroom is a pocket door.  This means it opens side to side, and when open, the door is concealed behind the wall.  They are also really, really, really thick.  So I didn’t close the door before going to bed because (a) I am not accustomed to having to and (b) I fear getting up to pee in the middle of the night and slamming right into the pocket door and dying.

As I am awoken by the insanely bright sunlight flooding my room from the window in the shower in the bathroom, I flash back to this happening to me every time I stay here.  Maybe one year I will arrive in daylight and prevent this from happening.  I sure cannot count on my brain operating it’s memory function.

I count my money and at first get confused as to how I am short $100.  This always happens in Las Vegas.  A quick check at my notes explains this.  Yesterday, I spent:

$20 on scratch off lottery ticket (I always leave a big one behind so that when I return home, I have one last chance to become a millionaire)
$3 on breakfast at work
$3 for water at the airport
$24 for a cab to Orleans
$2.25 on a Diet Pepsi at Orleans
$8 on dinner

I also have $13 in little bills.  So I am really just missing $27.  I rack my brain and then realize where at least $20 of it went.  It went into the video poker game I took $200 out of.  Isn’t that funny. After all these years, I still do “I WON $200!”  But in reality, I had a $200 win and lost $20 so I really only won $180.

I will never know where the $7 went.  Maybe it evaporated in the desert air.

My plan this morning is slightly different than my normal plans, and yet at the same time, exactly the same. It involves shoving money into machines.  BUT I decided I was going to put $100 in a dollar video poker machine and play until I either hit four of a kind or zero.  At $5/hand, this is so far out of my comfort zone.  I decide to warm up by putting $20 into a slot machine.  I cashed out with $20.04.  Okay this is a good sign.  Must be from that lucky quarter I have stashed in my bra.

I stop to fuel.  My room offer comes with $10 dining credit.   I ate breakfast at the Courtyard Cafe, which is temporarily located over by the buffet as they renovate O.G. Courtyard Cafe.

While waiting for my food, I started making notes, and as always, went to pull out my phone to note the time.  My phone isn’t in my bag.  It must be in the room.  HEY.   Remember the last time I was at Orleans and left my phone in the room and could not take a photo of my $940 win on nickel Keno?  Maybe that will happen again!

There was some high school sportsball thingy going on at Orleans this weekend.  There were so many high school kids in sportsball uniforms, traveling in packs.  I had one of these packs in front of me when I went to pay for my breakfast.  One kid was trying to pay for his pack’s breakfast with his mom’s credit card. She had given him her credit card AND her ID!  He thought he should be able to use that, while also showing his own ID, to show the same last name.  Nope.  This took quite some time.

Finally I was free and I am going to do it.  I am going to lose play $100 in dollar video poker.  Well I played lost $100 in dollar video poker.  DAMMIT.

I go up to my room to grab my phone.  My phone is not in my room.  It is in my bag.  I just didn’t see it when I was looking for it.  That was a wasted trip that spanned the entire circumference of the never ending Orleans casino, and losing ten minutes of my life waiting for an elevator behind 238947 packs of sportsball kids.  At least I can grab my 10% off coupon for that saves me $0.33 cents on an iced coffee at Java Vegas.

Iced coffee run complete, I then head to the player’s club booth.  My offer came with $10 free slot play, that I need to have loaded.  I also have the 2017 American Casino Guide, which has a coupon for $5 free play when you play $10.  (American Casino Guide coupons are good as soon as the book is printed, so you can use them for a couple of months in the preceding year.)

I was not sure if I would be able to use the ACG coupon as you are only allowed one per calendar year, and I already used one in January.  HOWEVER.  The coupon for 2017 has been reduced.  The one I used in January was for $10 free play.  This one is for $5.  Different coupon. So I ask if I can use this even though I used a different one in 2016.  I get lectured, but not with the lecture I was expecting.  I get told that since this is a 2017 coupon, I can use it now BUT I cannot use it again in 2017.  Which is fine with me.

I get the $15 loaded and lose that AND a $20 on the Double Double Bonus video poker machine that was kind to me last year.

I then go back to the room and take a nap, this time with the bathroom door closed.

When I wake up, I look at my itinerary. I am supposed to go to the Excalibur to use a MyVegas reward for dinner.  I don’t want to do this.  Despite never having been outside today, I am convinced it is freezing out there.  Maybe it is the whoooooooooossssshhhhhhhhhing sound that is coming from my doorway that convinces me of this.  So I check the weather on my phone.  Oh  hell yeah it is freezing out there.  I don’t want to walk across the parking lot and then across Tropicana to wait for the bus.  This sounds like such an easy thing to do, but you forget I am in Las Vegas.  Where parking lots are miles long, streets are six lanes wide, and buses do not drop you off anywhere near the places their stops are named after.

So I decide to just gamble here.  And gamble I do!  I found a bank of new Cleopatra Keno machines.  That have four card Cleopatra Keno, YAY!  That are formatted incorrectly, BOO.  Just like the ones at Downtown Grand, these machines are set to maximum bet of four coins.  Per game, not per card.  So if you want to play four cards, you can only play one coin per card.  This is frustrating.  I stick to single game, even though the degenerate in me is having a conniption fit knowing that there is FOUR CARD CLEOPATRA KENO on here and I cannot play it.

I start with nickels and parlay up to playing quarters.  I had two big bonuses and leave here with $220.

I then go back to my Double Double Bonus video poker machine from last year and hit Aces, no kicker.

orleans-vegas-double-double-bonus-aces

A couple of other hits:
orleans-las-vegas-kings orleans-las-vegas-four-of-a-kind-twos

Surely now I should break the degenerate cycle brewing inside of me and GO OUTSIDE and head to Excalibur?  Or maybe I could grab dinner to go and head to the room and read a book?  I look at my phone and it is somehow 9:00 PM.  How did this happen?  It is legit too late to go to Excalibur if my only purpose is to eat dinner at their buffet.  So dinner to go and my room it is.

Some people stay up all night in Vegas, drinking and gambling.  I however, stick to a schedule that allows me to be up and out early AM.  There is nothing I love more than having a casino to myself before the sun rises.

Daily totals:

Gambling Day: + $250
Gambling Trip: + $430
Miscellaneous: (tips, coffee and dinner): $14.29
Comps used: Orleans hotel stay, $10 dining credit and $10 free slot play
Coupons: $5 free slot play from American Casino Guide

My planned itinerary for the day:

Saturday, December 17, 2016
Breakfast: Orleans $10 comp offer
Lunch:
Dinner:
Excalibur 4-10 MyVegas
LVA: Palms $25 free play 1,250 slots, or 5,000 vp
ACG: Palms $10 free 400 slots or 3000 vp
ACG: Palms $50 free 2000 slots 15000 vp

Gold Coast play $10 get $5 free ACG

Las Vegas Christmas 2016 Trip Report Starts Now!

If you are a regular here, you know that every year I vow I am done going to Las Vegas.  The more I travel the world, the more I want to keep traveling the world.  Las Vegas takes away from that.   Not even just in time off, but in budget.  If you are a believer that “Las Vegas is the cheapest destination in the world!”, you may want to fact check that.  I am not at all trying to talk anyone else out of not going to Las Vegas.  I would never do that.  But for me personally, having traveled outside of America, I realize that all the times I proudly stated “Las Vegas is the cheapest place on Earth to visit!”, I was mistaken.  It is a cheaper destination in the United States.  And yes, you can win enough to cover your meager costs.  AND YES OF COURSE, if you want to go to Las Vegas ten times a year, then by all means, you should do exactly that.  I however, do not wish to do that.

So why am I going again?  Fate is making me go.

Last January I was supposed to fly to Chicago.  That flight got cancelled because of a blizzard.  I used the flight credit to book a flight to Niagara Falls over the summer.  That flight got cancelled because of a thunderstorm.  I was left with JetBlue credit that needed to be used by the date of the first cancelled flight back in January.  I did not want to take a long trip in January.   Or any trip at all in January.  Why would anyone want to use up their vacation time so early in the year?

But I am a cheap fuck and I could not let that flight credit go.

I already had the week of Christmas off from work.  Now I have a “free” plane ticket.  Then MyVegas* went and put out two night rewards at MGM properties.  Here is my chance to spend two nights at Bellagio for free.  FINE.  I’LL GO.  BUT I WON’T LIKE IT.

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Except I will!

*Note to self:  Can you please use your “I am going to be a good blogger!” energy towards making a static page about MyVegas so that you do not have to explain it every time?   No?  Fine, I’ll explain it again.

For those of you who randomly stumbled on this blog, MyVegas is a game on Facebook where you play slot games and earn a thing called Loyalty Points. You then can exchange those Loyalty Points for things like free food, free shows and free hotel stays.  You can also play on mobile, but since I have a Windows phone, I am not going to be very helpful with that.  Actually, I am not going to be helpful at all with anything ever because I am going to stop typing about this and go back to my trip report.

So here we are, getting ready to leave for a surprise trip.  I booked the Bellagio nights.  I booked two comped nights at Orleans.  I booked two nights at Four Queens, using Hotwire credit from last year when I stayed at a hotel that advertised having a casino, but the casino was closed.  Then I booked a three night comp at California.   And of course, I ended up redoing everything and added in one MyVegas night at Red Rock, and one MyVegas night at Green Valley Ranch.

I am all ready to go!  My packing skills have improved like crazy.  The big Las Vegas themed bag in the back is what I used to use for two week trips to Las Vegas.  The pink one on the left in the front is what I currently use for month long trips overseas.  The teeny tiny purple one?  That is what I used on this ten night trip.  I also managed to fit my winter coat in there.  Aren’t I queen of packing light?
las-vegas-luggage-top-view

And then it starts.

The weather.

The mother fucking weather.

JetBlue starts announcing that they are allowing people who are scheduled to fly in and out of JFK on Wednesday and Thursday, the opportunity to change their flights for free, due to possible weather related interruptions in service.  I am leaving on Friday. I decide that if Friday is added to this, I will leave a day early.  I let my job know, I book a “comped” night at Ballys (paying the resort fee, fuck you) and sit back and watch.

Nothing.

Until.

On Thursday night, JetBlue adds Friday to the dates you can change your flight for free.

Reminder: I am booked on a flight to Las Vegas only because two previous flights were cancelled for weather.  To say I am a bit rattled about the possibility that this will happen a third time, is an understatement.

Thursday night after the last flight to Las Vegas has left NYC, JetBlue adds Friday as an option to rebook your flight for free.  If this had happened a few hours sooner, I would be on a Thursday night flight.  But no, it happens after the last flight on Thursday leaves.

I consider changing my flight for Friday night to Friday morning.  This would mean missing work (YAY) but I cannot do that because I left some stuff behind that I would need to take care of. I didn’t do this before leaving because I thought I was in the clear if they weren’t doing voluntary changes when I left on Thursday afternoon.  So I leave everything as is, and head to work with my fingers crossed so tightly I think I may have lost circulation.

I leave work on Friday to catch my flight.  I get off the subway and onto the AirTrain and check my email.  There is an email from JetBlue.  “Important information regarding your flight.”  My heart drops.

I try bargaining with fate.  “If you let me get to Vegas, I will not gamble tonight.”  Then I start reasoning with fate “Okay I am going to gamble, but only $20.” to “You know what?  Fucking fuck you Fate, I am going to Las Vegas TO gamble.  Who the fuck are you to fucking tell me what I can and cannot do?  Go eat a fucking dick.” And back to “I am sorry Fate, I am just really anxious because if my flight is cancelled, I will just DIE.  And I do not want to die.”

Then I read the email.  WOO!  My flight is only delayed, not cancelled!

We landed at least two hours late.  As I am exiting my row and I see a quarter on the aisle dude’s now vacant seat.  Score! I haven’t even gotten off the plane and I am up $.25!

We arrived so late that all the shuttle companies are closed.  The last WAX bus is long gone.  The 108 is probably done for the night.   The 109 is running, but then I have to wait for the 109 AND for the 201.  God dammit, I don’t want to.

My only choice to get to my hotel is a cab.  My credit card on Uber is expired and I really don’t feel like fixing that right now.  Lyft, forget it.  They do not have an app compatible with Windows phones.  So cab it is.  I do not remember the last time I afforded myself the luxury of a cab.  $24 later, I am checked into the Orleans.

I get a room at the end of the hallway.  It is also one of those weirdo rooms that you sometimes get in hotels with many floors.  Where for whatever reason, when  you close the room door, it creates a whooshing noise.  Open the door, silence.  Close the door, whooooooooosssshhhhhhhhhh.   If there is an engineer reading this, who would like to explain this to me, please do so.

I drop my stuff and get ready to go downstairs and gamble.

There is a short cut to get from the hotel to the food court.  You walk outside instead of going through the casino. Tonight I actually took it for the first time ever.  Holy shit, why have I  been walking all the way through the entire casino for all these years!??

I sit down and put a $20 into a machine.   And I get this:

orleans-threes-with-kicker

$200 win.  Almost immediately.  What a great way to start off.  I decide to play down to $200 and go to bed with my winnings.  It is REALLY late, and I have plenty of time left to lose it.  After all, I just arrived and still have nine more full days!

One thing I should probably mention…the quarter I found on the plane?  Well when I was getting ready to go gamble, I found it in my pocket. I took a couple of seconds to question whether or not I was going to do this, before I did.  I put it in my bra for good luck.  Why did I do this?  Because I read this trip report shortly before leaving where the author put her lucky change in her bra and she won. So obviously, I must do this too.  And that is how I ended up winning $200.  And that is also how I ended up carrying this quarter around in my bra for the next nine days.  Sigh.

Las Vegas Trip Report: My Last Day in Sin City

My last day in Las Vegas starts at the Four Queens hotel.   My handwriting is horrible so it appears as if I either started the day off by going to Petco, or Petra.  I most certainly did not travel to a pet store, nor did I travel to the country of Jordan.  If anyone has any ideas where I actually was, feel free to let me know!

I had breakfast at Magnolias at Four Queens, to use up my comps here.  I wanted to play live Keno, but it was not open this early.  Is this even possible?  Why am I having such a horrible time playing live Keno in Las Vegas?  The house odds are very high, why would you not want me to give you my money?

I walked over to Fremont for Dunkin Donuts iced coffee and my last time visiting my favorite SuperTimes Pay machines here.  I was  hoping for a parting gift here.   These have been my favorite STP machines for as long as I have been playing video poker. I visit them on every trip.  You would think that would count for something, but my babies felt that they were the ones who deserved the parting gift, and happily accepted it in cash form.

I played some Ultimate X.  I did:

$35 – $60
$25 – $60
$20 – $70
$20 – $0
$20 – $0
$20 – $40
$20 – $0

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I was here quite some time.

On my way back to my room (no no no no nooooooooooo) I stopped and played the Buffalo slot machine that was nice to me last night.  I turned $60 into $150.

Then it was time to leave.  Sigh.  One last view of Las Vegas outside of my hotel room window:
four queens las vegas strip viewOnce at the airport, I killed some time trying to figure out who has the WiFi name “I Will Shank  You Hard.”

shank

And here is where we wound up today:

Gambling Day: + $0
Gambling Trip: + $990
Miscellaneous: (tip, coffee, Diet Pepsi at the airport):  $10.23
Comps used: Four Queens breakfast
Freebies:  nada

If I had not hit that one Royal Flush, I would have been down $10 gambling.

The grand total of non-gaming money I spent in Las Vegas was $616.77, the bulk of that was made up of cigarettes and resort fees.  In addition, I also paid for airfare, a few hotel nights and my bus pass before I left.

I have had a bunch of people let me know they are sad to see the Las Vegas trip reports end.  I appreciate the kind words.  I truly do.   But it is time for me to move on.   Although I ended up in the black with gambling, I had a bunch of days where I had zero fun because all I did was lose.   Life is not about the end game for me.  It is about living today.

Even when having a bad day in a foreign country, there are still multiple exciting things going on.  Oh look at that sign in broken English!  Oh look at this local custom I am experiencing for the first time!  Look at that view of a place on Earth I had only seen in pictures before.  And so on.  I just really have grown tired of “Oh hey, look at the Dunkin Donuts sign behind my favorite SuperTimes Pay machines at the Fremont casino!”

If you are still itching for some more fun Las Vegas trip reports, make sure to check out my buddy Royal Flusher.  He is hilarious and also, a degenerate gambler.  We love degenerate gamblers.

Las Vegas Trip Report: Visiting My Beloved Riviera

I am at California hotel in Downtown Las Vegas.  I didn’t sleep all that well because I am on a party floor.  There are several rooms with what appears to be a very large, extended family, who are celebrating their “Most Important People on Earth” win and being the most important people on Earth, they have no reason to consider that anyone else may be trying to sleep.  Must be nice!

Today I am headed to the Strip.  I want to eat breakfast at Planet Hollywood and visit my beloved Riviera.   Breakfast is $10 off with the Las Vegas Advisor coupon.  I had some comps as well and it ended up costing me $1.07.

There is only one other table near me with people at it.   Either my server was invisible or I was, because I only saw her one time.  That’s okay though because this buffet has smoothies.

After eating, I got an iced coffee from Starbucks and walked across the street to Bellagio.  I wanted to play in Cosmopolitan, but I had only been inside one time during this trip and lost money.  I love Cosmopolitan too much to risk losing a second time and killing my extreme love for this place forever.

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I attempted to get photos of the Bellagio Conservatory, but of course, it is closed as they do the change over from Christmas to Chinese New Year.

bellagio conservatory las vegas changeover to chinese new year bellagio conservatory las vegas closed bellagio conservatory las vegas construction bellagio las vegas conservatory construction

Of course, I took these two photos, as I do on every trip and probably did earlier in this trip:

paris las vegaslas vegas strip from bellagio people mover

Bellagio interior walkway:

bellagio walkway las vegas bellagio walkway las vegas chinese new yearBellagio reception and Chihuly ceiling:

bellagio las vegas receptionchihuly ceiling bellagio las vegas

I played $20 in Cleopatra and cashed out when my iced coffee was empty, which also nicely coincided with my $20 now being $40.

Across the street to Cromwell to my Ultimate X machine!   This machine was so nice to me this entire trip and continued loving me today!  I have been fantasizing about this machine since coming home.

two x 3 ultimate xkings x 4 ultimate x

I left here up $220.

I walked over to Ellis Island, stopping in Westin for Starbucks.  Here is a view of the High Roller from this way.

high roller las vegasInside Starbucks, there was a man on line behind me who was on the phone, talking about how he lost his wallet and could only eat at Starbucks for the rest of his trip, because they would let him charge it to his room.  Not sure how he was going to do that without ID but not my problem.

I went to put some half and half in my coffee and discovered that some asshole had unscrewed the top so it spilled all over.

At Ellis Island, I have free play coupons from both American Casino Guide and Las Vegas Advisor.  I get $10 from one and $20 from the other (You get to pick a chip for your free play and the $20 was just me being lucky.)  I was hoping to have a great free play day like I did last week.   I was almost at zero with it when I had a $30 win on four card nickel Keno.  I cashed out and ran.

I tried taking the 202 to the 108 to get to Mardi Gras casino to use my free play coupon in Las Vegas Advisor but I don’t think the 108 stops there on the way downtown because I didn’t see it.  My bus driver also did not stop at Westgate, even though I rang the bell.  I had to walk back from the Sahara monorail station.

westgate las vegasI had $10 free play here from Las Vegas Advisor.  I tried finding the player’s club, looking in the spot it was in the last time I was here.  A woman asks me if I need help. I tell her I am looking for the player’s club.  She asks me “Did you get your free play and show tickets?”  Oh you are a time share person.  I say “I just need to find the player’s club.”  “What do you do for a living?”  I answered “nothing.”   She says it must be nice, I say it is.  I don’t have any idea why I am lying to her, other than I do not want to talk to  her.

The player’s club is now merged with the cashier.  This means the line is twice as long and with only one person working it, three times as slow.

I get my free play and lose it.  Then I went degenerate on a Buffalo slot machine.   I haven’t really gone degenerate in days.  As much as I enjoy shoving all my cash into a machine and having zero wins, I left here angry at myself.

I crossed the street to walk past my beloved Riviera.

riviera las vegas signriviera las vegas convention center closed riviera las vegas convention center expansion riviera las vegas food court sign riviera las vegas neon museum sign riviera las vegas sidewalk

riviera las vegas riviera las vegas zone change sign

WAH.

I walked over to Encore, intending to take Strip photos.  I got a few of Encore, which is better than I did last time.

wynn butterfliesencore las vegas butteryfly sculpture

encore las vegas

I broke even on Cleopatra Keno.

I wanted to keep going and perhaps end up at Cromwell again, for my beloved Ultimate X machine, but the sun was killing me.  So I took the Deuce back Downtown from Wynn.   It was 2:31 when I boarded the bus.

I took a nap and then went to El Cortez to visit Happy Feet massage.  $20 for an hour long foot massage, yes please!

You walk up the spiral staircase near reception.  When I got up there, I was offered free water or tea.  Then I was taken to the room.   There are a whole lot of massage beds in there, no privacy.  But you aren’t getting undressed so who cares?  I was the only person in there at this time (7:00 pm.)   There is a hook behind your bed to hang your stuff.  This is easily the best bargain in all of Las Vegas.  I tipped $20 so even for $40 total, seriously best bargain.

Afterwards, I played some Cleopatra Keno.  I cannot win.  I just cannot.  I  used to spend hoursssssss at these machines at El Cortez.  Now?  Nope.

I did a final desperate try at four card Keno and it laughed in my face as it took my money.

I stopped at Binions of course.  I love this casino.  Always have, always will.   I won no money, but did win another deck of cards.  No, thank you.

On my way back to the room, I bought McDonalds because 24 hour breakfast.  Suck it.

Gambling Day: + $30
Gambling Trip: + $690
Miscellaneous: (breakfast, tips, coffee, water, soda, massage and McDonalds):  $61.32
Comps used: California room
Freebies:  nope.

Saturday, January 9, 2016
Breakfast: Red Rock buffet 8-11 free MyVegas
Lunch:
Dinner:
California prime rib points
The D up to $100 free play ACG

Las Vegas Trip Report: Do I Win a Million Dollars?

This morning I woke up at Longhorn casino.  I am up and out by 9:00.   I go down to the casino and play.   I am playing quarter Double Double Bonus video poker.  I want to be playing four card Cleopatra Keno.  There is only one of those open and I instinctively know that if I sit there, between two people, at least one of them is going to ask me for a cigarette.  Turns out I didn’t even  have to sit there as one came over to me to ask me for one.   I hate that so much.  I don’t know what it is about casinos that make complete strangers feel like it is okay to ask  you to give them something you paid for with your own cash.

I  gave him a cigarette and then said fuck it, I  guess I can now sit at Cleopatra Keno.  As I am playing, the cigarette grubber gets a phone call.  He asks me where he is at, so he can tell the caller where he is. “Longhorn.” “What?!?”  “LONGHORN.”   He leaves, putting out the grubbed cigarette directly on the machine.  Not in any of the billions of ashtrays sitting around.  Longhorn literally  has a clean ashtray on EVERY machine at all times, every single machine, every single time.

I am playing and I am doing pretty well.  No HUGE wins, but I doubled a few $20 bills.  I thought I had $70 in wins.  When I got back to the room, I only had $50 in wins.  I am pretty sure I dropped money somewhere.  The TITO machine was spitting my money out so that it did not land in the tray and I caught a loose $20 falling to the ground.  I think I may have missed another one.  I sure as all hell hope it was found by someone other than that jerk who put his cigarette out on the machine.

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Time to check out and head downtown, where I am checking back into the California hotel for a second stay here this trip.  I take the bus there.  The hotel is a mess.  They are redoing everything and I guess now they are working on the reception desk.  It has temporarily been moved to the casino, to the right of Keno.  The line is sooooooooooo long, one person working.  It takes forever.  Finally I am next.

However.

The woman in front of me said she paid for three nights through (some discounter) but the woman at the desk was showing only two nights were pre-paid and so she owed for her third.  This went on for a while.   I mean a WHILE.

Finally it is my turn.  “Oh checking in?  Step to the side please so I can check people out.”

There are no bell men anywhere.  As a matter of fact, in the half an hour or so I have been on this line, a man is trying to get a bell man to help him.  He has asked the lone worker at reception three times if there are any bell men working today.

I am trapped here.

Finally I get a room yay!   I am in room 1113.  Just a couple of doors down from where I was a couple of weeks ago.  When I had a lot more money.

I dropped my stuff off and headed to Binions.  I was smoking while playing and some man came up and asked me for a “couple of cigarettes.”  Yeah, no.

I played in Binions for a couple of hours and only lost $20.   This is how days should go.  If I do not win, then at least let me play!

I went back to California for a nap and then back to Binions for dinner.  I had a Binions burger, which somehow was the first one I had this trip.  This is my favorite meal in Vegas.

From here, I took the bus to Boulder Station.   I have never been here before.  I always fantasized that I would win a million dollars here.  So I may as well get that out of the way before it is time to leave.

The bus stop for Boulder Station is one of those ones that grates on my nerves.  It stops between two traffic lights, which are pretty far from each other and both are far from the bus stop.  I chose to walk in the direction of one and as I am walking, I begin to realize just how far it is before I can cross.  I will no longer be anywhere near the casino.  So I opted to dart across six lanes of traffic on Boulder Highway.   Good news guys, I did not get killed!  Going back to Downtown, the bus is right outside the casino.

I was so surprised to see how packed this casino was, which seems to be a typical thing for me at Station casinos.  I should be used to it by now, but nope.

I got Starbucks and played around, including $5 free play I had earned.  I got nothing.   Except cheap cigarettes.

I headed back to Binions and I cannot play my preferred Cleopatra Keno machine because someone is on it.  Not only is he is my machine, he is a guy who recently won $2500 on the Binions free pull, which I know because I recognized him from the photo Binions posted.  Now he has $2500 and he has my machine. What a jerk!

I lost  the rest of today’s budget, did the promotional spin, threw out my receipt for the free deck of cards, collected a free t-shirt, and went to bed.

Gambling Day: – $200
Gambling Trip: + $660
Miscellaneous: (tips, cigarettes, coffee):  $78.56
Comps used: California room, Binions burger
Freebies:  $5 slot play at Boulder Station, free t-shirt at Binions

Why do I bother making itineraries?

Friday, January 8, 2016
Breakfast: Longhorn
East Side Cannery 9-9 300 points = $500 cash or slot play
Check into California
Lunch: 
North Las Vegas
Dinner:
Texas Station $10 for $5 ACG
Plaza 10x slots
Four Queens double points ACG
Binions double points ACG
Binions $10 free LVA
Plaza $10 free LVA
Downtown Grand $10 free play LVA

El Cortez – pick envelope LVA
Four Queens $10 free play LVA

Las Vegas Trip Report: One Boring Day and One Exciting Day

This morning I wake up at Longhorn with ear pain left over from yesterday.  It has now grown and I can feel it all the way in my jaw.

I get up and get dressed and go downstairs to…you thought I was going to say “gamble”, right?  Well WRONG. I went to fucking Walmart.  That’s right, I am crushing the American Dream.  I am not sorry.  Oh man.  Walmart.  This place was like a total tourist attraction for me. I live in New York City.  We do not have Walmart. This place is insanely huge.  I probably could have spent a day in here just marveling at everything.  But I am on a mission to get ear drops so I can numb the knife that is stabbing me through my ear drum.  It was so tempting to not go completely insane in here and buy everything.

I came back to the room and decided that today is laundry day.  Okay I didn’t decide this, my lack of clean clothes did.  Longhorn hotel has a laundry center, two washers and two dryers.  I put my clothes in the washer and went to the casino.

I used two coupons I got at check in. One is for 2400 free points.  I noticed the sign behind the counter with the food specials for points.  I could get an entire meal with these points and still have some left over.  This is a great deal.  I also used a “play $5 get $10 free” coupon.  That one works by handing a cashier the coupon and $5 and she hands you a TITO ticket for $10.

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I put my TITO into a nickel Double Double bonus video poker game and then realized it is 10 coins per line.  I hate this.  Dude, if I wanted to play fifty cents a hand, I would play dimes, you dumbass.

So I play and am dealt four fives for $30.  Okay maybe I am not so mad. I didn’t have my phone with me, which is a shame because even a $30 win seems like a notable win these days.

I cashed out and put $5 into Cleopatra Keno and lost that.  Then it was time to move my laundry from the washer to the dryer.  I wish my laundromat at home had a casino attached to it.  It would make doing laundry so much less hate.

Once my laundry is done, I go back to bed with my ear drops in my ear (where else would they be?) and sleep for a couple of hours.

When I wake up, I laugh at myself for ever having thought I was going to go to the Strip tonight to use a MyVegas buffet reward.  Hahahah!  I am not going anywhere.  Well except across the street to Sam’s Town. They have Dunkin Donuts and I have a play $10 and get $10 free coupon in my new Las Vegas Advisor book.

I am playing Cleopatra Keno when a man in the same row as me turns and says “Look!  I got this twice tonight!” and I look and see him with quarter Aces with a kicker in front of him.  Nice.  Now go away, I am jealous.

I came back to the room with take out from Denny’s.  Because Walmart and Denny’s.  Oh I am living it up in Las Vegas.

The next morning, I woke up and wanted to go to Green Valley Ranch to use a MyVegas buffet voucher.  But I didn’t want to go because I wanted to go do a loop of free play around the Strip.  As soon as my bus passed the transfer point for the bus to GVR, I instantly regretted not getting on it.  I told myself that now I was going to lose all my money for not sticking to the plan.

I got off by Hooters.  You know how all change in Las Vegas sucks?  Well I finally found a change that rules!  LOOKIT!  Do you see?

hooters las vegas cross walkNo?  You have no idea what  you are looking at?  Well then you have never taken the bus from Hooters back to the Strip.   While the bus stops right outside Hooters coming away from the Strip, it stops nowhere near going back.  You have to walk far to the corner, and then cross, and then walk far back on the other side of Tropicana to get the bus.  But no more!  This is construction for a cross walk at Hooters.  I was so insanely excited over this.  I am not sure why since this is the last time I will ever be here.

I had $10 free play from American Casino Guide and $10 from Las Vegas Advisor.  I have used these two coupons every year they have been available and they are normally kinda okay to me.  This time though, nope.  I lose both and then continued to lose another $50 of my own on Supertimes Pay and then another $40 on Family Guy.

Leaving Hooters, I walked across the new cross walk (!!!) and went to MGM Grand to use a MyVegas buffet voucher for breakfast.  When I got it loaded on my card, I was told I have seven days to use it.   Pretty good deal.

I also stopped in the rest room and saw a MyVegas ad on the TV screen above the sink!

myvegas ad mgm grand las vegas

My breakfast was easily the worst meal I had the entire twenty days I was in Las Vegas.  I had to ask someone working at one of the station if the bacon was meatless because it looked more like plastic than bacon.  This confused the man I asked, which in turn confused me because LOOK AT IT.  It doesn’t even look like bacon.  The scrambled eggs were more liquid than solid.  Stuff like that is so gross.  Hello, have a serving of salmonella poisoning!

I didn’t play a dime in here.  I figured they have enough of my money from last year to last them for a while.

I crossed over to New York New York and did not go into the casino.

new york new york las vegasexcalibur las vegasI headed straight for the bus to Orleans.  Well to Terrible’s gas station for an enormous peach Mello Yello fountain drink.  Last year, my trip report was approximately 2389472384732894723894723894723894723894732 words.  One guy seemingly read all those 2389472384732894723894723894723894723894732 words and his only comment was to point out that I must have consumed so many calories by drinking soda.  So that guy, this information is for you:  diet soda has zero calories.

I went into Orleans.  I hate using free play here.  Well no I don’t, I hate redeeming it here.  You have to go up to the player’s club each time for each coupon.  They cannot load more than one at a time.   When the line is long, it is worse.  When you are staying there and have a third voucher that comes with your offer, it is the worstest (I invented a word here.)

I used my free play on the quarter Double Double Bonus video poker machine that was kind to me earlier on this trip.  She was kind to me again.

straight flush orleans las vegas

Then I played a bunch on the Keno machine that I won $942 on last year.  I am that machine’s version of MGM Grand because she decided I already have enough of her money and she did not give me anymore.

From here I took the shuttle to Gold Coast.  It passes the Gold Coast, goes to Caesars and then comes back and stops at Gold Coast.   This takes a while as the shuttle takes a very roundabout way to the new stop at Caesars.

I get to Gold Coast, get my free play loaded, and go back to the machine that gave me Aces twice earlier this trip.  There is no way to adjust the speed on this machine and it is set on super freakout.   Just like when I was playing the last time, it drives me insane that the cards are dealt this fast.  But it is my lucky machine so I have to do it.

I didn’t realize how freaked out I was until holy fuck, is that a fucking ROYAL ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME.  I held the cards and instantly pushed “Draw” and then “Max Bet” because for some reason, I was scared.  I didn’t get a photo.  This is not the first time I have done  this.  Hell, this isn’t even the first time I have done this at Gold Coast.  My very first royal was here, on nickels.  I got so scared and had to get it off my screen before anyone saw it.  I once read someone’s trip report where they had the same illogical reaction to getting a royal.   So guys, I GOT A FUCKING QUARTER ROYAL AND I DON’T HAVE A FUCKING PHOTO OF IT.

ARGH.

I cashed out immediately and got the hell out of here.  I was supposed to do other things, like play at Palms and stop at Ellis Island to do free play there.  Nope.  I will go degenerate.  I know I will.  This is the first time in many days I have had a big win.  I must get the fuck out of here.

I got on the bus and went straight back to my room and stayed there for hours.  I wanted to go downstairs, or go anywhere.  Just let me go gamble please.  NOPE.  NOT ALLOWED UNTIL YOU CALM DOWN YOU DEGENERATE.

I did leave my room later on to get Denny’s for dinner.  I could not trust myself to enter a casino.  The internet gets SO MAD when people eat Denny’s in Las Vegas.  In this one installment, I have eaten it twice.  Suck it, internet.  I have a thousand dollars and you don’t.

Gambling Day: + $870
Gambling Trip: + $860
Miscellaneous: (trip to Walmart, dinner for two nights, cigarettes, soda, coffee, laundry and tips):  $89.13
Comps used: nada
Freebies:  MGM Grand breakfast, free via MyVegas

Wednesday, January 6, 2016
Breakfast: Green Valley Ranch 8-10:45 MyVegas free
Lunch:
Dinner:
Longhorn

Thursday, January 7, 2016
Breakfast: Sam’s Town 7-10  200 points = free ACG
Sam’s Town $10 free play LVA
Lunch:
Orleans play $10 get $10 ACG + 10 LVA
Hooters $10 free ACG + $10 LVA
Westgate $10 free play LVA
Mardi Gras $10 free play LVA
Ellis Island $10 free play LVA
Dinner: Orleans half off LVA 4-9 $17.99

Las Vegas Trip Report: The Boring, Rainy Day Where I Check into Longhorn

My alarm went off this morning at the Mirage hotel and instantly, there was pain shooting through the side of my face, pouring out of my ear.  My throat is swollen.  I don’t want to get up.  Not now, not ever.

I am supposed to be eating breakfast at Bellagio this morning.  I have to do this today as the only way I can redeem my MyVegas reward is if I am staying at an MLife property, and this is the one and only time I will be doing that on this trip.  But I don’t want to get up.  You can’t make me.  So I went back to bed.  Now that I am home, I hate myself so much.  I have 1.5 million points to use on MyVegas that I will never be able to use.  And I really should have done this.

I also again missed my opportunity to take photos of the Bellagio conservatory.  I really suck.

I showered and got dressed and ate at the Mirage buffet, free via MyVegas.  I was so surprised the buffet was empty.  There were a million people at the elevators.  CES starts today.  My personal hell on earth.

I get seated and am told drinks are self service.  I like this because it means I am not reliant on a server to bring me more coffee.  I don’t like this because it confuses the tipping.  Who am I tipping and for what?  The woman who asked me if I wanted hot sauce?   Does she get the same tip as someone who serves me beverages?  Do I tip myself for serving me beverages?  I have no idea.

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This buffet isn’t really good.   It is extremely spread out.  I guess when it is not empty it seems normal.  It just seemed to me that there was a lot of walking and not a lot of decent choices for food.  But the coffee was the best I have had so far this trip, and that includes my many trips to Dunkin Donuts.  Good job, Mirage!

Love theater at Mirage:

mirage love theater las vegas

I decided in advance that I would not be gambling today because I need to stop having losing days.  That said, it is raining outside and I always win when it rains.  So I try $10 in Keno and lose.  Sigh.

I go upstairs, pack and try and check out on the television.  I keep getting an error message telling me to call the front desk.  No.  I will not.  I will simply leave without checking out.

I walk over to Flamingo and catch the 202 to my spa appointment.  When we stopped at Gold Coast, the world’s most annoying man got on the bus.  I hate this person so much.  It seemed that he wanted to eat the Gold Coast buffet, but they would not let him pay for his daughter’s buffet with whatever option of payment he was trying to use, because she is under 21.  (She was with him, and appeared to be about ten.)   I have no idea if he was trying to use a coupon or voucher or what.  I just know that he was not happy about  this and would not shut the fuck up about it.  On and on about how the customer is always right, how the daughter needs to stay in school so she doesn’t end up doing an idiot job like buffet cashier.  At some point, a teen aged guy came down the bus stairs and recognized this guy, asks him “You go to (whatever)  park, right?” The guy confirms yes, he does.  The teenager says “I work there, I see you a lot” and says hello and good bye.  When the teenager gets off the bus, the man goes into a rant to his daughter about how only stupid people work at parks.  If this guy wasn’t so lazy, he could go to college and get a real job.   How do you fucking know this guy is not going to college while working?  GOD SHUT UP.  But nope, this teenager must be lazy and according to this man, he is going to end up working at the Gold Coast buffet one day.   I must have been on this bus for eleven hours because that is how long  these life’s lessons went on.  Every time the topic of conversation changed, it would go right back to the Gold Coast buffet.  So. Painful.  He even made his daughter rip up a business card from the Gold Coast manager.  How dare they not allow him to have whatever he wants, despite there being rules.  Do they not know who he is?  He will never play there again and he is excited to see the day they inevitably go out of business over this huge faux pas on their part.  OH GOD SHUT THE FUCK UP ALREADY.  You are riding a bus in Las Vegas.  You are not the high societal man you think you are.  Buddy.

I am having a microdermabrasion and pumpkin peel.  I believe this took just over half an hour and left my skin feeling nice and soft.  The aesthetician asked me where I was going after this (I had my bag with me) and I lied and said Sam’s Town because I didn’t feel like explaining that no, I know what Longhorn is like, no I don’t care, yes I am going to be fine.  Well it turns out she was going near there after this, and do I want a ride.  What an extremely nice gesture.  But I have errands to run / don’t like accepting favors from strangers, so I politely declined.

From here, I took the bus to the Las Vegas Advisor office to pick up my coupon book for 2016.    It is now pouring out and walking in the rain with my bag would have seemed like death, except the walk takes you past a homeless village with people living under tarps and tents, so really….I was the most fortunate person heading down that street in this rain.

las vegas advisor

I continued on from here to Boulder Highway and switched buses to get to Longhorn.  This whole trip took a very long time.  I get that people who drive everywhere in their normal lives view a fifteen minute bus ride as the end of the world and a waste of their WHOLE ENTIRE DAY OH MY GOD.  But the way they picture that fifteen minute bus ride to be, was exactly how this whole entire ordeal was really for me.

Longhorn hotel.  Loved it!  I would stay here again forever and ever.  It is not a fancy five star hotel, so no one should be expecting that.  I paid $40/night during CES. Have you ever checked prices for Las Vegas hotel rooms during CES?  Please do not do so if you are faint at heart.  Places like Circus Circus manor rooms were over $200, as were El Cortez pavillion rooms.  Even the Hostel Cat was sold out of private rooms!

Plus, there is no resort fee, you get free coffee in the lobby in the mornings, and you get a coupon book when you check in.   I got $5 free play, there was a match play in there, and slot club points that got me a free meal (and then some) just with those points, before I even played.  I cannot say enough about this place.  They also have self service laundry.  I needed that at this point in the trip.

longhorn hotel las vegas longhorn hotel room las vegas longhorn las vegas hotel room

longhorn hotel bathroom las vegas

I was also given a peep show outside my window.   Down below, there is a pool and a hot tub.  Three women were in the hot tub (why I do not know, it is FREEZING and pouring outside) and then they decided to go in the pool (see aforementioned WHY.)   Two make it in, one slips and falls and lands flat on the ground, sans her bathing suit bottom, which is somehow around her ankles.  Yeesh.

Now that I had my Las Vegas Advisor coupon book, I was itching to go downtown and gamble.  So I did.

I took the bus and walked through Four Queens, stopping to use my $10 free play on Cleopatra Keno.  I won $15.  This is off to a good start!  I got some Dunkin Donuts and then continued, with the Plaza as my next stop, where my free play vanished lightning quick.

Up next, Binions.  I got to play for a while but never really hit a cash out point.   I did get enough points to do a daily swipe at their promotions booth and won a deck of cards.  If I had collected the decks of cards every time I have won one, I could build a life sized mansion out of them.

it is still pouring outside.  I love how the neon reflects on Fremont Street in the rain.

fremont street las vegas rain reflecting neon

Next stop is The D where I had $5 from a mailer…until I had nothing from a mailer.  That $5 was gone in seconds.

I walked over to Downtown Grand.  I really do not like this place.  And it does not like me.  Free play, shmee play.  Gave me nothing.

Last stop on my free play run is the El Cortez.  Surely I am going to win big here.  I mean, I have had more than my share of bad luck on this run so destiny owes it to me to win.  Right?  Wrong.  I lost the free play.  Then I converted all my points into free play and lost that too.  I was playing Cleopatra Keno, $5 at a time on nickels.   I never once even got it converted to $5 cash, let alone doubling the $5, which is my preferred cash out point.  Sigh.

I took the bus back to Longhorn and called it a very unsuccessful night.  You know, because it was.

Gambling Day: – $10
Gambling Trip: – $10
Miscellaneous: (tips, water and Diet Pepsi):  $34
Comps used: nada
Freebies:  Mirage breakfast, free via MyVegas

Itinerary:
Tuesday, January 5, 2015

Breakfast: Bellagio buffet 7-11 free MyVegas
Eiffel Tower half off $14 LVA 10-5
Check into Longhorn
$10 for $5 ACG
$10 for $5 hotel
2400 points hotel
Lunch:
Dinner:
Boulder Station half off LVA 4-9 $9.99
Plaza 10x slots

Las Vegas Trip Report: I Love “Love” And the Mirage

My alarm went off at 6:00 am this morning, on purpose.  My brilliant logic was that since I am at Cromwell, I can simply walk across the street at an insanely early hour and get pictures of the Bellagio conservatory before everyone else wakes up.  But when I woke up, I laughed at myself and went back to sleep.  Now I am kind of annoyed because I am doing that thing where I have 20 days in Las Vegas and am somehow still not doing all the things I wanted to do.  Like walk across the street and take pictures.  Sigh.

I went downstairs for some coffee.  I ended up drinking seventeen cups total during my stay here at Cromwell.  That makes the resort fee kinda sorta almost not really fair.

Every gambler knows about the $200 cup of coffee.  You go downstairs in the morning, you order a cup of coffee from the cocktail waitress.  You lose $200 before she comes back with your coffee.  Since Cromwell has free coffee, I am trading out the $200 cup of coffee for the $100 cigarette.   The hotel is non smoking, so I can only smoke down here or outside.  I am not going to go outside when there are video poker machines inside so…

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I went back upstairs and I had two text messages. One confirming my facial appointment for tomorrow, one from my landlord’s daughter, letting me know they are raising my rent.  Ah 2016 and your technology.

I packed and checked out and walked over to the Mirage, taking some photos along the way.

venetian palazzo las vegas venetian canal las vegas palazzo venetian las vegas las vegas strip casino royale caesars las vegas forum shops

I am spending one night at Mirage courtesy of a MyVegas reward.   I have only stayed here one time before, and that was when Wagerworks existed.   On that first trip, two things happened.  One, I took a bus trip to Laughlin, and two, on the bus, they showed “Vegas Vacation” which was the first time I saw that movie somehow.  I remember thinking “This is the fucking coolest thing ever!  That is MY HOTEL in the movie!!!”  The second thing was that:  I used to be completely obsessed with having room photos of every hotel room I stayed at in Las Vegas.  On this trip, I used a disposable camera (that shows how long ago this was) and none of them came out.  So bummed!   So I always wanted to stay here again and fifteen years later, here I am!

I tried to check in. The woman at the desk told me it would be $30 for early check in and I told her she could suck it.  Okay I didn’t really, but I also did not pay for early check in.  I stashed my bags with the Bell Desk and headed to Red Rock to use a MyVegas buffet reward.

I took the Deuce bus to the Sahara Express bus.  This latter was a weird bus ride.   I got on the bus on the East Side of Sahara.  This is good to note since most people think you have to cross over and catch it on the West Side, outside the Bonanza gift shop.  You don’t, it stops on both sides.  Or at least it is supposed to.  My driver didn’t stop at the stop outside the gift shop and some man went ballistic on him and cursed him out.  Lots of other people joined in, asking why the driver did not stop in very violent ways.

From here, the driver kept making stops but telling people to go through the back door and not pay.  I am really not sure what this guy’s deal was.  But he got me to Red Rock, so who cares.

The buffet line here was insanely long.  It took well over half an hour to get seated.  It was like this when I was here one day for lunch last year as well.

There was a woman with a Boston Terrier service dog.   He made my day.  So adorable.

After eating, as well as before eating, I played some Cleopatra Keno.  I could not hit for shit.  I said screw it and went for broke and soon enough, broke I was.  I saved $5 to try some live Keno later tonight.  Because it is always a good idea to keep moving to games with more of a house edge as you are losing.

I took the bus back to the Mirage.  There were two LOUD women sitting behind me.  The one who was slightly less loud than the other one, kept sucking on her teeth.  This was painful.  Then a woman gets on the bus with what appears to be two babies that she is snuggling.  But she has no stroller and…wait, those aren’t babies, they are dolls.  She is now the center of attention with people asking her a million questions about her babies.   One is hers, the other is adopted.  This is why they look different. Oh.

We passed my beloved Riviera and I got all sad.  I love this place so much and her being gone really was the final straw for me in the downfall of Las Vegas’s appeal.  I let you take the Stardust and Westward Ho, I draw the line at my beloved Riviera.  I need to go and get some photos of her before they demolish her.  Bastards.

I got room number 20102.  This room is really nice.  This is a hotel where I get it that people love it.

mirage hotel las vegas bed

mirage hotel las vegas bathroommirage hotel las vegas roomI spent some time working on my blog and then before I knew it, it was time to go see Love.

I had picked up my tickets a few days ago at the box office at Bellagio.  Then I got a voicemail telling me I was given the wrong tickets.  So I had to stop at the Love box office to exchange them.  I am now in the very last row.  This wasn’t so bad as that whole “there are no bad seats in the entire theater” thing is true.  The man next to me LOVED Love.  He knew every word to every song, and alternated between playing the air drums and air guitar.  I love this show too, despite not liking The Beatles.  It is very busy and I think you would probably have to watch it fifty times to see everything that is going on.

After the show, I tried my hardest to play live Keno but either the Mirage does not have live Keno, or else I could not find live Keno.  Do casinos really not have live Keno?  This is the second time on this trip that this happened to me.

I was happy to settle for video Keno though.  And it was happy to take my money and not give me anything in return.

Gambling Day: – $200
Gambling Trip: + $0
Miscellaneous: (tips):  $8.00
Comps used: nada
Freebies:  Two cups of fancy schmancy coffee from Cromwell, Mirage room (MyVegas), Love ticket (MyVegas) and Red Rock buffet (MyVegas)

My itinerary for today?  Well no.  I only checked into Mirage and saw Love.  Oops?

Monday, January 4, 2016
Breakfast: Jackson’s Tavern $20 free play LVA 6020 Flamingo 202 @ Duneville
Check into Mirage 
Lunch:
Gold Coast $10 free play LVA
High Roller $10 off LVA
Dinner:
Bellagio buffet 3-10 free MyVegas
Love 9:30