...was pretty awesome. Once again, after last year and this year, we feel that four nights is one night too long...but how can you argue with the price that we got? We had a lot of fun, even when we felt like we didn't have anything to do.
So the trip started out pretty interestingly. Cathy ran over a squirrel about 3 minutes from the house. At the airport after check in I used the bathroom and when I was going to set my bag down I dropped it, and it landed right on the corner of my laptop. Then, on the flight out there, my nice Skull Candy headphones broke. Luckily, Cathy had brought two sets of headphones so I was still able to watch my shows on the iPod...but either way, those were three really unlucky things that happened on the way to Vegas. Fortunately, the rest of the trip didn't go the same way!!
We arrived in Vegas at about 6:00 PM and grabbed a cab to the hotel. Of course the cabbie took the long way around, and the ride cost us nearly $30...but that's just part of going to Vegas I guess. We learned later that we need to tell the driver to go down Tropicana instead of down the highway...live and learn, right?
We got checked into the hotel quickly and easily and then made our way up to our room...on the 36th floor!! We were so high up that when you were using the elevator, your ears would feel funny because of the pressure changes!!
The room itself was awesome. We didn't know that PH did this, but each room has a movie theme. Our theme was "Dragnet," and we had pictures and props from the movie "Dragnet" all over the room.
After checking out the room we headed out for some food. We went to the buffet which had been voted #1 in Vegas this year, and we could see why. The food was great!! We then did a little bit of wandering around the mall in our hotel, the casino, and a little bit of slot machines. We finished the night off by going to another restaurant in the hotel for a late, late dinner. Another great food choice!!!
We woke up on Tuesday without really anything planned. I wanted to go to MGM Grand to hit up the Houdini's Magic Shop there, and Cathy wanted to go to the Coke and M&M's Store that is on the way there. So we went to MGM Grand and ended up eating at the Rainforest Cafe that's inside that hotel. That was cool because I had wanted to get another light up Rainforest Cafe mug ever since mine got really scratched up from Niagara Falls. So we had dinner there and that was good, too. We got our mugs then hit the other stores we were looking at.
After wandering around those areas we dropped our packages off at the room and headed towards the Bellagio Fountain. We got a few pictures there and watched the fountain show, which was excellent, as usual.
We then hit the shops up at Caesar's Palace and Bellagio. We really wanted to go to the FAO Schwartz that is inside the Caesar's Forum Shops...but when we got there we were a bit disappointed because a third of the store was shut down for renovations. But it was still a fun time, because those two malls are amazing. There's something oddly unique about wandering a mall full of stores that you have no business looking in at all, yet the people are all still really friendly to you. This is the entrance to that FAO Schwartz store...a giant Trojan Horse!!!
After these shopping trips, we went back to our hotel to catch a show. We watched "Gregory Popovich's Comedy Pet Theater." It was a show by a Russian Circus performer that uses a bunch of trained house pets to do tricks. The show was fantastic. We had great seats. It was all better because all of the pets used in the show are shelter pets...meaning they are pets that were given a second chance at life, instead of animals chosen because they were bred to be performance animals.
After the Comedy Pet Theater, we headed down to the Treasure Island Hotel to catch the show we missed twice last year. That was the only part of the trip we wish we could have back. The show was cheesy and just plain bad. We made up for it a bit by hitting up the Venetian and going on a Gondola ride!! It was pretty cool, and our Gondolier was pretty good.
After the ride, it was back to the hotel for some hanging out. We played some slots and just hung out at the room. It was a nice day for us, but I think it may have been our most tiring day.
We woke up on Wednesday knowing that we had to go to the Blue Man Group show at the Venetian at 10pm. So we planned to be at the Venetian for a good part of the day. We started out by going to the mall in our hotel, which is where we found "Test America." It's a business that does demographic testing for all kinds of products. Cathy and I each got paid $10 to watch a TV show that isn't out yet and give our opinion on it. It was really fun!!! After that, we made our way over to Bellagio to check out the inside of the hotel's atrium and see what they had done. It was really cool this year...lots of really neat work with the flowers.
After Bellagio, we checked out some hotels that we didn't get to last year. The Pallazo and the Wynn. Both were nice hotels, but we didn't think they were any better than any of the other hotels. We made our way back to the Venetian and had the dinner of our trip. We ate at an upscale, hip, trendy Asian restaraunt called Tao. The food was awesome, the atmosphere was great, and it was a really awesome dinner. Both Cathy and I really enjoyed the food a lot. We spent a lot of money on that dinner, but it was worth it.
We then went to Blue Man Group...and let's just say there aren't a lot of words to describe it. You simply must see it, it was fantastic. After the show, we headed back to our room and the casino in the PH. It was another really good day.
On Thursday, we didn't really have much planned. We got up and hit the pool for a while. It was nice. About 98 degrees outside and in the direct sun, so we lathered up in sunscreen then hit the water. At first the water was a bit chilly, but it was really nice as soon as you got used to the temperature.
After that, we thought for a while about what to do. We ended up going to the Flamingo and checking out their wildlife habitat. It was really cool!!
They had flamingos, a lot of big fish, some other birds, and a few really nice looking water falls. After the Flamingo, we went to Bally's. Not a good idea. The hotel is old and not at all cool. It seems as if it was probably cool in 1980, but it hasn't changed at all since then. Stay away from that hotel unless you get a great deal on a room. Like free. We then finished that day by going up in the Eiffel Tower to get the shots of the Bellagio Fountain which I put in the last post on the blog.
Friday we woke up and packed to get ready for the flight home. We then wandered the mall a bit after having the breakfast buffet. We got a Build a Bear that was exclusive to Las Vegas. We had a pretzel. We headed for the airport. The flight home was uneventful, and we made it back to Jackson just after 2:00AM Saturday.
Overall, the trip was great. Again, maybe one less day would have been nice...but I have to admit, as I think more about it, Thursday with nothing to do was a lot of fun...and a bit relaxing. We gambled a bit too much...we spent about $300 each gambling...which I guess isn't that much, and I have to say we had fun while doing it, which is how I feel you should look at gambling.
The hotel was really awesome. I can honestly say I don't really think I've ever been in a more fun hotel. The atmospher was perfect. The room was nice. And what can I say, with the "The Drinks Are On Us" plan, the room was cheap. It started at about $65 each night, but then when you got a free $30 (minimum) bottle of alcohol every night, it made it like the room was less than $35 each night. For example, the first night we got a full sized bottle of Bacardi that was valued at $32...so the room was $33 that night. The second night we got a full bottle of Skyy Vodka, which was valued at $45...so the room was $20 that night. The third night we got a $32 bottle of Seagram's 7...another $33 night. The last night we got a $32 bottle of champagne...so another $33 night.
All of these things lead to Planet Hollywood being the best hotel I've ever been in...and we will be using it again. With all of this said, we feel like we've done everything Vegas has to offer for right now, so our next trip there will likely not come until the very end of 2010 or sometime in mid 2011. Maybe going 10 months after our last trip didn't give us enough time between trips...but it wasn't bad. We'll be back, probably sooner than later!!!
Viva, Las Vegas!!!