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Only a hour flight away from Las Vegas we visit frequently, sometimes once a month. I'll be sharing our trip reports, tips on making the most of your stay in Vegas, reviews of restaurants and shows we have seen, along with my thoughts related to our favorite place to get away from it all.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

A TALE OF TWO TRIP REPORTS-DIANA'S TRIP-PART TWO OF TWO!

During my birthday party last July Teresa mentioned she wanted all of us to join her in Las Vegas in mid March to celebrate her niece Ashlea visiting Vegas after turning 21! This trip would be the first time after my birthday that Gwen, Teresa, Liz and I would be in Las Vegas together again! Part one is Gwen's trip report and this is part two which is mine. If you missed Gwen's trip report read it here:


My morning flight out of San Jose airport was on time so I made it to Caesar's Palace to check in around 1:30pm.
I went directly to the Diamond Lounge to check in where a lady greeted me and took me in the office below. Since I had a Laurel Collection room with a view booked in the Augustus Tower she gave me one on a high floor with a view of the Bellagio fountains.
This was my first time using the Diamond Lounge at Caesar's to check in. Last year I got confused when I stayed two nights at Caesar's and used the regular registration desk.
Gwen and Teresa were staying at Encore this trip and then later at Bellagio, while Liz and John were staying only three nights at Encore so for some bright idea (not) I decided to stay all five nights of my trip at Caesars Palace. Why? My reasoning at the time went that they were giving me a five night comp in a nice room and since I wasn't worried about what my next offer would be from them I could relax and just gamble less in their casino and gamble more off property something I usually don't do on trips. However the best laid plans sometimes don't pan out, more on this later.
My room at Caesar's was very nice though I found out later that the electrical outlets in my bathroom did not work (upon close inspection it was obvious they were burned out) so I had to use the hairdryer the next day in the bedroom which was a bit inconvenient.
I did have a lovely view of the Bellagio fountains though to make up for the electrical outlet issue! I took a video of my room and it's at this link if you would like to see it.
https://youtu.be/VQdvmdRprrU

After checking out my room and unpacking I started my walk to Aria to meet my friends for a early dinner at Javier's. Okay first I stopped at a few slots in the CP casino but couldn't win on anything so decided now I would start my walk to Aria! As I was walking through Bellagio I played a few games like Lightning Link and lost at them all, hmmm, not a great start today.

I left Bellagio and took the tram to Aria where I also found Lightning Link and lost to it. Darn it, so lucky on these games the previous two trips and what a fail on my first day! I also played some quarter Irving the Viking in the hopes of getting a bonus but that didn't happen so I went over to low roll on Gold Fish Deluxe at $1.50 a bet. I did have quite a few bonuses with the result that I broke even, which at the moment felt almost like a win, LOL!

As I was playing Buffalo Grand at Aria, fans of my blog and youtube videos came up and said hi! Martin, Kara, Dan and Eddy, was great to meet you, you're a fun group and I hope we see each other in Vegas again soon.
They must have given me a bit of luck as I had a bonus after they left!
After this win I met up with Teresa, Gwen, Liz and her husband John for dinner. Originally we were suppose to have a later dinner but all were hungry and Javier's was able to take us early.
The Fabulous Four back together again with John taking our photo! Gwen and Liz standing behind Teresa and me.
Teresa ordered this yummy Guacamole for the table, it was great!
My spicy jalapeƱo Margarita, loved it!
Gwen and Teresa had the Granada Margarita, a blend of Silver Tequila, agave nectar, freshly squeezed lime juice and cucumbers! John and Liz had a Bud Light and a beer called 90 minute!
I ordered the Cabo Azul that I have had before and liked, someone else had it too but I forget who, LOL! Lobster, crab and a shrimp taco (not pictured), what's not to like?
Gwen's tacos!
Enchilada with Taco!
Someone had Fajitas and this is part of it.
I'm going to guess and say this was the Taco Combo Crisp.
After our delicious dinner we caught a taxi from Aria to Wynn where everyone was staying but me. Gwen sat in the back which turned out to be a mistake as when we arrived at Wynn she was feeling nauseous and had to retire to her room for the rest of the evening.

Saturday, April 16, 2016

A TALE OF TWO TRIP REPORTS-GWEN'S TRIP-PART ONE OF TWO!

During my birthday party last July Teresa mentioned she wanted all of us to join her in Las Vegas in mid March to celebrate her niece Ashlea visiting Vegas after turning 21! This trip would be the first time after my birthday that Gwen, Teresa, Liz and I would be in Las Vegas again together!  Part one is Gwen's trip report and part two will be mine. Since I'm always the slacker part two will be posted a couple days after Gwen's. Enjoy!

Day 1 -
by Gwen (yourstarla)
VEGAS! I was up and at 'em early, and I took the crack of dawn Southwest flight to Vegas! Teresa was flying in from Ohio so I scheduled my flight to correspond with her arrival time. We both flew on Southwest, both landed early, and both into the B gates. Hugs and happiness! I booked Bell Limo to pick us up, and the driver who arrived was Ray, who had coincidentally driven me twice before. We picked up Teresa's baggage and we were off! We made a quick stop at the CVS on Paradise and then pulled up to the Encore, which would be our home for four nights. 
Neither of us wanted to mess with the front desk, since it was so early in the morning, so we took our happy selves to a video poker bar and inserted money to get the party started right. Neither of us hit anything during this first session, but I don't think either of us cared at that point! 
We ended up gambling around the Encore for a while, eventually both getting our rooms. My Encore room was very nice, perfectly clean, with a great view of Circus Circus and Ross Dress for Less. At my request. I was hoping to actually sleep this trip, something I'm not particularly known for, and I knew a room on the other side of the building would be filled with the ruckus of club noise.
View from my room.
Liz and John arrived later that afternoon, after a long drive from LA, and Teresa and I went up and checked out their room in the Encore Tower Suites. It was nice, but it is exactly like a regular room, with just a few more perks. 
We gambled most of the afternoon, with none of us really hitting anything, until it was time to jump in a cab and go to Aria to meet Diana! The Fabulous Four reunited (with John along as our photographer...)!
The original plan was to gamble for a while, but we were all starving so we asked if Javier's could seat us an hour and a half before our reservation. Not a problem! Yum! We shared chips and guacamole, had delicious drinks - mine being a pomegranate margarita, and fun conversation. Oh, and tacos. Yummy yummy tacos.
Feeling great, we all hopped in a cab to Encore, with me taking the very back seat, where there was no circulating air. This was a mistake. Our cab driver won't get any awards soon for his stealth, and by the time we got back to Encore I knew I was in trouble. Not someone who has been motion sick since she was a kid, I was pretty surprised at the feeling of death that had come over me, but I guess the combination of food, a margarita, and a death ride with no fresh air got the better of me. So I excused myself the moment we walked in the door at Encore.
And went upstairs and puked my guts out and went to bed. 
Don't worry, I was in Vegas for a week. It only goes up from the puke and the 8 pm bedtime. 
Day 2
Well that's what the crack of dawn looks like. Okay, dawn was nowhere around. It was more like the middle of the night. But I was wide awake so I got myself up and about and wandered downstairs to find a cocktail waitress with coffee on her tray. I played slots, found that lovely cocktail coffee lady, and watched a really young guy hit a handpay on Buffalo Grand. He was SO excited. He kept asking me if it was real. So funny.
Eventually Teresa and Liz and John got up and wanted breakfast so we all headed over to the new Jardin, where Botero used to be. It's a very bright, open room, and the perfect spot for a nice breakfast.
Liz had eggs benedict, John had pancakes and eggs, I had eggs and toast, and Teresa enjoyed a veggie frittata.
Watermelon juice.
It was a first time dining experience for everyone at this restaurant, and everyone enjoyed their food. In fact, the three of them actually went there again for lunch that day.
We also took a field trip to North Las Vegas so Teresa could go to the Navy Federal Credit Union. Want to do something fun? Have Liz and John drive you to North Las Vegas in their Porsche Macan Turbo. It's a great way to watch steam blow out of John's ears like a cartoon character.
I skipped lunch that day and gambled instead. That afternoon I hit a handpay for a little over $1200 on Ultimate X video poker, so that helped keep the bank roll flowing. I hadn't been doing poorly but I hadn't really been winning, so that was a nice jolt to the wallet. 
At 3 pm that day Teresa, Liz and I wandered over to Canyon Ranch salon at Palazzo for pedicures. The spa pedicure there is a fabulous service, and one of my favorite splurges. A full hour of foot bliss in a comfy chair, it's the best $85 I spend in a trip. Plus you get to keep the bottle of polish for touch ups. I don't get pedicures anywhere else now. And I'm slowly getting all my friends hooked.
After the pedicures Teresa and I grabbed a cab and went to Cosmopolitan to meet Diana, who was excited to get the first crack on the new Austin Powers machine, as Cosmo had just opened it. Teresa and I were able to play as well, and it was a fun game, but I didn't win on it. Teresa cashed out quite a few hundred up though and her machine was on a roll! I'd try it again. It seemed to bonus in streaks though. Once mine stopped - it reeeeeeally stopped. Ha. 
We didn't have a lot of time to play though, since we had to go to Encore to meet Liz and John. We had a pick up scheduled. Casa di Amore was our dining spot for the evening, and they offer complimentary rides (please tip the driver!), so I had them pick us up and schlep us over to one of my favorite places. Plus it was Monday - half price wine night!
All bottles are half price. We have a long history with half price wine night, and that history involves many nights of Diana and Teresa drinking out of the bottle. I wanted to join them, but after my pomegranate puke the night before I decided to pass. Instead I happily shared antipasto salad and bruschetta with my friends, and listened to the band play Sinatra songs, and waited for my delicious bowl of fettucini alfredo.
What was left after I attacked my Fettuccine at Casa!
It was another fun night at Casa, and I got to enjoy something that doesn't get enough play here on Las Vegas Daze - Tipsy Diana. I love sober Diana. She's one of my best friends and one of the best people I know, but Tipsy Diana is a riot. We were chatting about pot and she mentioned that she knew someone who used to grow it and then said that it "grew like a weed." We lost it. She managed to somehow inadvertently say grass, weed and herbs within a five minute period and I was seriously in jeopardy of losing bladder control from laughing so hard. 
Eventually we rolled our well fed selves out of our booth and our ride took us back to Encore. We ended up gambling for a while, before we all rambled back to our respective places. I went to bed pretty early that night, since I had been up so early, but it didn't do me much good. My three hours of sleep the first night would only be topped with a short five the second night, but I was in Vegas. I can sleep when I'm dead.

Monday, February 29, 2016

Aussie Hunks, Rock Vault, Hand Pays, and more with the VegasChic's!

Last year on a couple of my trips I met up in Vegas for a few hours with VegasChic, VegasChic Sister and Vegaschick's BFF and we hit it off as all of us do Vegas in a similar style! For 2016 we were determined to connect our trips when staying at Palazzo and we were able to make the end of February work for all of us.
While they were coming from Canadian and myself from California our planes arrived in Vegas within 5 minutes of each other but at different terminals.  The limo driver was waiting for me at baggage claim and my first win of the trip was when my luggage was first out, is it a sign I'll be a winner this trip?  Once on the road to Palazzo my limo driver who was in touch with VegasChic's driver insisted we would be at Palazzo before them, okay didn't know we were racing but it's on!  However when I arrived and entered the VIP room to check in they were already there so it was hugs all around, it's time for the fun to start!

Usually our rooms are ready and waiting for us but a huge convention had been in town and had just started to return home so some of us had to wait a couple hours for our rooms. No problem for me I'll just check my luggage and start using my free play!  We made plans to meet up in a bit in the casino as they had one room ready and were going to store their luggage and get organized. I headed off to the Venetian high limit room!
Gambling started out promising when I hit a bonus on $5 Pinball fairly quickly and had a nice bonus of $400.00!
Then remembering that my friend Clemi had hit 5k bonus a week ago in Kansas City on $1 Sun and Moon I decided to play it at Venetian. Sadly my bonus was only $127.00.
Played some dollar Diamond Queen which was a fail, so I went over to dollar Quick Hit the version that only has 9 lines and surprise hit a bonus fairly quickly for $329.00! It was a surprise because I picked poorly in the bonus and ended up with 7 spins plus the 5 with the wild. Moved on to $5 dollar Top Dollar and a couple other $5 slots that were fails, so I decided it was time to venture out of the HL room and try a couple dollar slots like Elvis Shake Rattling Reels. Unfortunately Elvis didn't want to shake loose of any money!
Walked around to see what was new on the floor and discovered the new Flintstones Reel Slot that plays a lot like Lord of the Rings Reels, Wizard of Oz Reels, etc...
Had a couple cute bonuses but the pays were so low, I moved on to Top Gun and the original Wizard  of Oz games but couldn't get a bonus on those.
Getting a bit discouraged I walked back over to Palazzo to meet up with VegasChic, Sis and Bff, when I started to text with my friend Julie. Julie was also staying at Palazzo and had arrived the day before to play in a slot tournament. All of us decided to meet in the Palazzo HL room and have a little HL pull together. We had a blast playing tons of games like Dangerous Beauty, $5 Pink Diamonds, Shadow Diamond and other games but our best win was on a $1 Quick Hit bonus for over $400.00, so after a hour or so our pooled money was just a fond memory!
Here's our Quick Hit Bonus if you would like to see our live play and fun with Quick Hit, here's the video!
 After our High Limit pull I noticed a text saying my luggage had been delivered to my room ( I had left a tip with the VIP registration clerk and she had handled valet picking up my luggage and taking it to the room when it was ready) and that I could pick up my room keys, so after collecting my keys I went to my room to change for dinner and found a snack of cheese, crackers, fruit and some candy waiting for me from my host.
My room was 42918 and had my favorite view looking out toward the high roller wheel, Mirage and toward Mandalay Bay!
It was time to meet the ladies for dinner, here's VegasChicBff, Sis, me and VegasChic.
Our dinner reservation was an early one as we had a the Aussie Hunk show to see tonight!