What Happens in Vegas…

I have returned from my 2nd trip ever to Las Vegas, 15 years in between these 2 trips.  Needless to say, I barely recognized the city but my first visit had only been an overnight stay.  Excalibur, Treasure Island, MGM, Caesars and Luxor I definitely remember.  The rest all new to me.  Of course, all cannot be shared here but I will share that which is shareable 🙂

I went to LV this week for a wedding.  The wedding was held at the Wynn – a fantastic setting!  The wedding related events took me to the Hofbrauhaus, the 64th floor bar at THE Hotel (incredible view of the Strip from up there), the Gold Coast 70-lane (!) bowling alley and Maggiano‘s.  We all had a great time carrying on celebrating our friends’ marriage each of the 4 days we were there.  Even for my return flight (a “red eye” to Atlanta that lasted 3.5 hrs; shouldn’t red eyes be for a minimum of 5 hrs or something??) we had a portion of the wedding attendants flying together.

Wedding aside, I discovered why it is that people always go to Vegas.  To me it had seemed casinos were the main draw, perhaps the shows too.  But I had missed that many of the hotels are more set up as resorts and, in that way, Vegas is no different than many other places that offer resorts.  Now to me these resorts are different (the lack of a beach perhaps being the main reason why I think that).  However, I actually found Vegas a good destination to just lounge around, people-watch,dine, and play.

I stayed at Treasure Island.  Before the trip I wasn’t sure if that was a good selection but it was across the wedding hotel (and a few $100 cheaper!) and next to the wedding reception location (key in our planning as we knew what to expect of the party!) so we went for it.  After spending 4 nights there, I thought we got great value for the money.  The rooms’ decor was pleasant, the pool area quite well laid out, and good choices for food and snacks within its walls (Starbucks, Ben and Jerry’s, Pho Cafe, Coffee Shop, etc.).

Among the non-wedding-related highlights of the trip was going to see Cirque du Soleil’s O at the Bellagio.  It was my second Cirque show and I was expecting a lot of the types of acrobatics I had seen in my first one.  Those acrobatics were more of the kind of “how did they pull that off?!” in that first show.  O had that but more during the high dive which happened towards the end of the show so I had been waiting for most of the show for the impressive acrobatics.  I did find this show more artistic and the use of water as part of the show more original.  Regardless, it was money well spent (we found a 25% off offer on the website so we sat in row K).   By the way the fountain show at the Bellagio is certainly one of the key things to not miss.  At night, there is a different show every 10 or 15 minutes and they were all fascinating to watch.  My favorite:  the Pink Panther themed one.

Outside of wedding related events, we spent a lot of time walking around, seeing other hotels.  Paris, The Venetian – Palazzo, New York New York, Wynn – Encore, etc.   I think if money were no object, the Wynn may be it for me but The Venetian could be it too… I saw neither’s rooms so I base that opinion on just walking around the public areas.  At the Wynn, I enjoyed drinks at the Parasol Bar and dinner at the Daniel Boulud Brasserie.  At the former, I enjoyed some Lillet and, at the latter, a fantastic Caesar’s salad (had avocado) and a great NY DB burger stuffed with spare ribs!

So after the red eye back, I napped some more at home and now sit here typing still longing for a little more sleep.  Perhaps in a couple of hours another nap to recover from my fun 4 days in Vegas!

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