Hello From Las Vegas! – National Finals Rodeo ended this past weekend, and if you looked to book in early January and noticed sky-high rates, that is when the massive Consumer Electronics Show takes over most of the convention space in town from Jan. 7-10, 2020. Try some other dates (unless you gamble a TON and have a host who can still get you somewhere to crash)!
Why Las Vegas Will Need You More Than Ever – The pimple is finally popping (to put it bluntly) on Las Vegas’ attempt to draw high-spending jet-setters (who think nothing of a $300 per person meal) and convention visitors (who they think have deep pockets, but don’t realize that many attendees are on fairly tight budgets).
I’m not the only one who feels that this “bet everything on conventions” attitude might not fare so well. Tilman Fertitta (owner of a number of restaurant chains, Golden Nugget casinos, CNBC star) has indicated that he thinks Las Vegas is over-betting on conventions.
This is great news for you! When conventions don’t fill rooms, especially considering that well over 10,000 hotel rooms are coming into service in the next couple of years, those rooms will be priced to fill and/or comps for them will be much looser.
Do New Years Eve The Right Way! – Over the years, we’ve heard from people who had a simply amazing experience enjoying our New Years Eve celebration, and for others, not so much. As veterans of many New Years Eve celebrations on the Las Vegas Strip, here aresome tips:
The Wrong Way: Stay in our hotel until about 11:20 PM, and then try to actually get onto The Strip. Get crushed in a wall of people, get a so-so view of the fireworks, and then scurry back into your hotel (good luck with that, as everyone else will be doing the same) and wonder why on earth you paid a premium to come here for our celebration.
The Right Way: If possible (and it is probably too late to change for this year), stay on the South Strip. The most intense crowds are Center Strip. In fact, don’t shy way from the Motel 6, OYO (Hooters), Howard Johnson’s, Desert Rose or Travelodge that are just east of The Strip on Tropicana. Especially if the price works for you.
Hint: Pre-game in your room with beverages from Liquor World at Trop and Koval, or at the Red Dragon bar across the street past Koval.
The fireworks are set off from MGM Grand, Planet Hollywood, and Aria (plus more hotels to the north). AND… the same set of fireworks shoot off every single hotel hosting the display. There is absolutely NO reason to get to the center of The Strip and deal with the crowds when you can see the same fireworks all around you between Tropicana and Aria!
In fact, you can fine-tune your level of comfort. Want to be around more people and more partiers and larger groups? Keep heading north on The Strip (which is closed to traffic) until it gets crowded enough for you. Want elbow room, stay South Strip and that won’t be an issue. Farther south = more elbow room.
Keep in mind that the ONLY hotel which will let you in their doors is the hotel you are staying at. Scout out the porta-potties, remember that you can have beer and liquor BUT it must be in plastic, and you may even want to keep that in mind when you book a room. Making the trip back to your South Strip room when you are already South Strip (for the said elbow room) will let you get back to your room to pottie, refill your liquor, etc.
Me? I’ve been known to get the biggest big-gulp I can get from a convenience store, and pair that with a PLASTIC pint of vodka. Hit ABC or CVS stores the day before and keep all of that in mind. Happy New Years and here’s the fireworks from years gone by:
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Buffet Pecking Order – There is no question that you can get more bang-for-your-buck in buffets, even if you just barely get off The Strip. Station Casinos has been making waves with their A.Y.C.E. (All You Can Eat) buffet at The Palms, and with their remodeled and upgraded buffet at Palace.
However, all Station buffets are not created equal. Here is their own “pecking order””
– Red Rock, Green Valley Ranch, and Palms
– Palace Station
– Boulder, Texas, Sunset, Santa Fe
– Fiestas (Rancho and Henderson)
Our take? A.Y.C.E is worth hopping on the free Gold Coast shuttle and walking across the street. (Please make sure you stop in Gold Coast at at least put $5 in a machine and play a few hands, and $1 per person is a nice tip for the driver).
Both Palms and Palace are worth the reasonably short Uber ride from The Strip if you plan to both buffet and play (looser slots, lower limits).
For the truly frugal? The city bus runs along Flamingo from The Strip to Palms 24/7. You can take the monorail up to The Sahara and catch a similar-service bus along Sahara over to Palace. Or, if you feel good and the weather is nice, both are walk-able. Kind-of. Walking from The Sahara to Palace involves staying on the north side of Sahara and still playing a tiny bit of “frogger” at a couple intersections that don’t have stop lights!
Circus Circus Updates (Mandalay Bay North?) – New owner Phil Ruffin has made his plans clear. They involve: 1. A magic show in a new theatre he’ll be building in front of the property (probably in the lot next to Slots Of Fun). He’s saying that he’d like the popular (in other cities) Cirque show The Illusionists. However, even though he has a working arrangement with Cirque (Mystere is at his Treasure Island property), Cirque seemed kind of surprised by the “announcement”.
I still look for him to bring in some kind of magic show. Circus caters fairly heavily to Hispanics from Southern California, whose “spoken at home” language may still be Spanish. Magic is pretty universal. Even if you have little clue what the guy on stage is saying, you know how to go “Wow” when you see something jaw-dropping.
Additionally, he’s old school enough to get back to when a hotel cared less about how much a show cost, and a whole lot more about the fact that it gives him piles of good comps to hand out to players, tickets to package with rooms (a popular promotion at Treasure Island with Mystere) and similar. The guy is like 84 years old. He remembers “old Vegas”!
2. The shuttered RV park north of the property is looking to be turned into a Mandalay Bay (the hotel) style pool and beach area. Another good call, both because of the appeal to the drive-in visitors who want to party in the sun during the day, the families the property continues to attract, and this (if used properly) could be solid bait to get locals on the property. Circus sits (pretty much) across the street from the old Wet ‘n’ Wild. Which has a new incarnation, but is WAY out in the southwest corner of the valley.
89158 – Did you know that CityCenter, on the Las Vegas Strip, actually has its own zip code? (This also included T-Mobile arena, but does not seem to include Park MGM). We’re not sure how or why they pulled this off. Outside of some full-time residences at the “Leaning Tower Of Condos” (Veer Towers) and a handful of other condos on the property — which are most likely rental units — you don’t have much in the way of addresses to deliver to!
Sahara Waives Resort Fee Through April 17, 2020 – If you book a room at The “all new” (and very refurbished) Sahara before Christmas, 2019, and the stay is prior to April 17th, 2020, you will pay ZERO resort fee for your stay. HUGE savings.
And, don’t forget, the monorail makes The Sahara a quick, super-cheap, and easy ride from the rest of The Strip. Plus, a very short bus ride to Fremont Street.
Hope you are enjoying this issue!
Need an excuse to visit Las Vegas in 2020? Probably not, but just in case, Reba McEntire and Brooks & Dunn have extended their Sin City residency—Reba, Brooks & Dunn: Together in Vegas—with 24 new dates at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace in 2020.
- Kelly Clarkson’s ‘Invincible’ Las Vegas Residency Will Feature Her Biggest Hits – Click for Tickets
- Keith Urban Reveals 2020 Las Vegas Residency – Click for Tickets
- Believe It: Journey Brings It In New Las Vegas Residency – Click for Tickets
- Paula Abdul Dances – And Designs – In Return To Las Vegas Strip – Click for Tickets
It’s taken a minute, but Front Yard at Ellis Island is ready for its debut. The new restaurant and bar opens Dec. 6, 2019. Here’s a first look inside. Although, if you follow us on Twitter, it’s a second look inside, but let’s not get bogged down by details.
- The Biggest Restaurant And Bar Openings In Las Vegas This December
- 10th Annual Great Vegas Festival Of Beer By Motley Brews
- Lotus Of Siam To Re-Open Original Las Vegas Location
There isn’t a wrong or right way to celebrate this time of year — even if you go all out for Boxing Day. For some of you, there’s no place like a concert or a skating rink for the holidays, and that’s great.
A significant chunk of the economy around Mt. Charleston might be based on snow, but the arrival of a big storm on Thanksgiving eve is being greeted with mixed feelings. Mt. Charleston Lodge General Manager, Thomas Schneekloth says his employees have been working on serving Thanksgiving..
- Lee Canyon Las Vegas To Open Soon For Snow Ski 2019-20 Season
- New Museum On Las Vegas Strip Encourages Selfies
- Life-Size Gingerbread House On Las Vegas Strip
- Beyond The Strip: Top Five Day Trips From Las Vegas – Click for Tickets
My husband and I are coming out to Vegas again for my birthday, which always coincides with Thanksgiving weekend!
We want to book a nice restaurant for the 28th which will be our last night before returning home. We’ve been to any number of favourites in our 20+ years of visiting, but want somewhere smaller and more intimate, perhaps also less formal, on this occasion and are keen to experience a traditional thanksgiving dinner. Any suggestions?
We always book Sinatra’s and Charlie Palmer Steak for our formal dining experiences, which we really enjoy, but I’m keen to go somewhere the locals might go. We enjoy the Thai restaurant opposite El Cortez for lunch because it’s small and friendly. We haven’t explored further afield from the Strip or Freemont but a short Uber ride away is certainly a possibility. It’s about time we left the comfort zone of the Strip. We definitely don’t want a buffet. Hope this helps steer your answer.
Many thanks again.
I put out a number of feelers plus some of my own thoughts. Keep in mind I’m going for restaurants that are nice, but not bank-breaking, that locals enjoy, and have something unique going on. IE, not a cookie-cutter place
So, a few suggestions with the understanding that you should jump right online and look at Yelp or the restaurant website and even Google Maps to help see where it is.
IE, I can toss you some suggestions, but you need to really look at what you feel is a great fit for you:
– Lola’s Kitchen (Arts District, downtown, Cajun/Louisiana).
– Esther’s Kitchen (Arts District, downtown, Italian).
– Triple George (next to Downtown Grand, downtown, classic dining and cocktails).
– Lotus of Siam (two locations, each about 1.5 miles from The Strip, thai, legendary locals fave).
– Cathay House (1.5 miles from Strip in Chinatown, Chinese)
– Binion’s Ranch Steakhouse (Top of Binion’s, view for miles, traditional old-school Vegas steakhouse).
All of them are NOT at the top of the price range for the cuisine, but nice enough for a birthday dinner.
Are there any old school lounges left in Vegas? Somewhere we can get an Old Fashioned while listening to lounge music.
We used to suggest Le Cagaret Bar at Paris Las Vegas. However, it appears they have moved away from live music to having a DJ. Napoleon’s Lounge has entertainment every evening, usually in the form of dueling pianos. However, it is another spot to get a lounge atmosphere with great cocktails.
Stratosphere (aka STRAT) has live 80’s and 90’s music from 9pm-1am every Friday and Saturday night.
Mandalay Bay’s “Rhythm & Riffs Lounge” (I didn’t know it actually had a name!) features live music many nights, which varies. Friday nights are unplugged country nights, so keep that in mind. Rock is usually on Thursdays and Saturdays as I write, but it never hurts to call ahead (702-632-7777) since they don’t seem to feel the need to post a schedule.
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Email us at [email protected], and let us know, what YOU want to know!
A visitor from Hawaii turned her stay at Fremont Hotel and Casino into a $1,098,478 payday when she hit a jackpot on a Wheel of Fortune slot machine on Nov. 23. A $5 spin was parlayed into the jackpot.
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How about a tour? “…Those are all suites, private casinos, beautiful lounge at the top,” said Scott Sibella, pointing at his resort-under-construction. I met him on the top floor of what will be, in a couple of years, a busy parking deck.
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(Producers Notes) Celebrate the 25th anniversary of the beloved TV series, ‘Friends,’ as it comes to life on the Fountains of Bellagio.
(Producers Notes) Hope you enjoy our walk through of the Red Rock Casino, one of the premier casinos in Summerlin. This casino is beautiful inside and out with an outdoor shopping mall next door. Downtown Summerlin is a fun place to shop, have drinks and be entertained.
(Producers Notes) Buy a ticket to Flavortown at Guy Fieri’s restaurant and bar on the Las Vegas Strip.
(Producers Notes) The minute you enter Le Rêve – The Dream’s aquatic theater inside of Wynn Las Vegas, you’ll be instantly captivated by the sparkling pool and vibrant ceiling curtain.
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