We go to Las Vegas about once a year. The primary purpose of this trip was to attend the WCC Basketball tournament at the Orleans to watch the Gonzaga Bulldogs. We flew out late in the afternoon on Friday, March 2nd on Southwest. Since it appeared like everyone from Spokane was going to the tournament, the flight was full. However, it was a direct flight and we landed in LV early after about a 2 ½ hour flight.
By the time we made our way to baggage claim, the luggage was already being unloaded and for once, our bags came out fairly early. So far, so good. The car rental went quick (Avis), but then things got a little discombobulated. The northbound onramp to the freeway was closed and the detour looked to be taking us further south, so we went over to Decatur and to that north a ways and then got back on the freeway. There was a big backup at Charleston which slowed things down, so we proceeded to the next downtown exit. Unfortunately, this took us north of the Golden Nugget. The Fremont Experience was going on so we couldn’t cross Fremont on Casino Center. After some U turns, we finally made it to the Nugget. Whew!!
We had a room in the North Tower which was nice and, most importantly, very convenient. We threw our bags in the room and headed to the Golden Gate for 99 cent shrimp cocktails. We didn’t know that the Gate was adding a hotel wing. Kudos to them for deciding to expand in this economy, but “Boo” to the disappearance of the deli and the 99 cent shrimp cocktail. The shrimp cocktails are now $2.99 and beers were $6.00!! What happened to the bargains downtown?? I think there was only one $5.00 BJ table at the Gate. We hightailed it over to check out the Plaza. It is a little nicer, but I guess I was expecting more. Since it had been over a year since we had been to Vegas, we then walked down Fremont checking out what else was new. Nothing really. We ended up at the Fremont. M played Texas Hold ‘Em Table game and I played Video Poker. I got a few 4Oks which helped extend my play, but eventually I put it all back. We then walked back to the Plaza and went to the Dueling Piano Bar. That was fun. I went back to the room about 11:30 and M stayed out until about 1:00. Apparently, he lost big at Texas Hold ‘Em.
Saturday, March 3
We had a lazy morning. Breakfast at the Carson Café. Service was kind of slow, but again, we weren’t in any hurry. My birthday was coming up, so we drove to Fashion Show and did a little shopping. We were back downtown by 1:30. M was pooped so he took a nap and I went down to the pool. At about 4:00, we went to Dona Marias (LV Blvd – close to downtown) for an early dinner. It was very good and great prices. We then drove to the Orleans. All Miller products were $2 (Hey – Downtown – take note) or you could order 5 beers for only $10. Anyhow, after a few beers, we went and watched the Zaps beat up on BYU. The game got over around 10:30 and there was a wreck on the Freeway (by Charleston again) and the freeway was a parking lot. I don’t think we got back to the room until after midnight. Needless to say, I went to bed. M went out for a while.
Sunday, March 4
We slept in a little. When we went to the Spa at the Golden Nugget. I have to say that this was kind of a bargain. It was $20 and they have a fairly nice weight room and separate room with treadmills, stationary bikes, etc. The women’s locker room was very nice with fruit, juice, coffee and granola. Worth every penny (for once). After that we again had breakfast at Carson Café. Slow service again. I overhead another table say it was the worse service they had seen in LV. M had some buddies coming in today for golfing (he is staying on the rest of the week to golf). He spent the afternoon shuttling guys from the airport. I went to the pool to read and relax. (Love the Nugget pool). We had reservations at Le Provencal at the Paris for my Bday dinner (M will still be in Vegas on my actual Bday.) We have eaten there a few times. I had a chicken penne dish. It did taste a little funny and a couple hours later I had what can only be described as a “poo flood”. My stomach hurt so bad. I am not a puker – which if I could have, I probably would have felt better. I slept like crap.
Monday, March 5
UGH. I feel a little better, but I couldn’t get back to sleep. M is golfing today with his buddies and we are planning to meet at the Orleans for the championship game at 6:00. I went to breakfast at Dupree’s at the Golden Gate and had a half bowl of oatmeal. I had some more shopping I wanted to do, so I took the bus out to the strip and headed back to the Fashion Show mall. At about 2:00, I was feeling a little better, but very tired. I walked from the Mall up to Monte Carlo. I sat at a bar there, playing Video Poker (no big wins) and drinking water. I had about another hour to kill before I went to the Orleans, so I played an “All That Glitters” machine. I actually had a little luck for a change and cashed out for about $130. I had a slice of pizza at the food court and caught a cab to the Orleans. I met up with M and 7 of his golfing buddies. We watched the Zags lose in overtime. Bummers. We went back downtown with no traffic snafus this time. I was so tired that I went to the room at 9:00 and went straight to bed. M went out and got back about midnight.
Tuesday, March 6
M was up and moving kind of early since he had a tee time to make (He was also moving to the Suncoast – where all the other golfers were). Even though my flight wasn’t until noon, I decided to get going as well. I had scoped out a semi-express bus to the airport – Westcliff Airport Express (WAC). It stops right by Binions and only costs $5.00 and takes about 30 minutes. I was kind of surprised how few people were on it. I cooled my heels at the airport. Got caught up on emails. Flight home was on SW and uneventful. Nice.
I have to say that I have been going to Vegas for over 30 years (yes, I am old!!) and I think finally that I might be “over” Vegas. I don’t really like to play machines, but being kind of cheap person, I don’t enjoy playing $5/$10 BJ. I love craps, but can’t pull the trigger to play at the table limits I see these days. Maybe the food poisoning has affected my overall experience of this trip. I haven’t really had a chance to talk to M about how he feels (he had loser stink the whole trip) since he justgot home last night from 5 days of golfing, gaming and drinking and is still in bed!!
J&M <> - Spokane WA