Travel slowly, staying in vacation rentals (villas, farms, cottages, apartments)
Report 1468: Las Vegas Getaway
By MsATravlin from Texas, Winter 2006
Trip Description: A birthday getaway for two to Las Vegas with lots of sightseeing and shows, and surprisingly, very little gambling.
Destinations: Countries - North America; Regions/Cities - Other North American region
Categories: Hotels/B&Bs; Sightseeing; Independent Travel; 2 People
Page 1 of 5: Winter Pamper & Posh
Double vanity w/marble counter in our bathroom, Bellagio Spa Tower
I planned this trip at the spur of the moment in November. I'd run across a package being offered through Vacation Outlet at what I thought was a good deal. It was to be a solo "birthday pamper & posh" trip for myself as my birthday is in January. The price of $1615 included four nights at the luxurious Bellagio, direct flight on Continental and shuttle to and from the airport. In actuality I'd paid the full price for the room. Next time, I will book directly with Bellagio when they have special offers at half price or more of their regular rates. Occasionally they offer rooms as low as $99 per night. The regular rates start at over $340.
As December was coming to an end, My spouse ("MS") decided he could take off from work after all and wanted to come. He had to pay double the amount I'd paid for my flight by purchasing in advance.
We left the Houston airport at 10:30am. The flight was an hour late. We arrived in Las Vegas ("LV") about 11:50 am, retrieved our bags and found the shuttle to the hotel, no problem. We finally reached Bellagio after running into major traffic on the strip and aggressive drivers like in New York.
Believe it or not I was apprehensive about staying at the Bellagio. I'd read so many mixed reviews of the place I didn't know what to expect but I booked anyway with a positive outlook. Check-in was easy without a long waiting period as I'd read from some consumer reviews. All my special requests were honored: high floor, king bed, Spa Tower, non-smoking room. I was even able to receive a so-called “partial lakeview” room for only $25 extra per night. Full lakeview is $50 extra. In actuality I had a full view of the lake and great view of the strip. The Spa Tower is the newest addition to Bellagio and the best rooms plus it's closer to the spa without walking through the main lobby.
It was a FABULOUS room: clean, spacious and elegant. There was a huge entertainment cabinet with 25" TV inside the cabinet, locked refrigerator with beverages (the code to access was available from the front desk), a mini-bar with M&Ms, nuts, chips, pretzels, water, Internet connection, and Bellagio brand chocolate candy. Nothing was under $4.50. There was also a desk with chair, two chairs and a table, remote-controlled drapes, the most comfortable bed I’ve had the pleasure to sleep in, two nightstands with lamps and a CD player/radio. The entry way had marble floors with a big shelved mirror on the wall. The closet had a safe and two full-length mirrors. The restroom was huge and completely done in marble with sunken tub, separate glass-enclosed shower, double sinks, makeup mirror, optional lighting, great water pressure, plenty of cabinet space and towels and a phone by the commode (total three phones in room). Five-star elegance in a nutshell.
We were in room 22634. We had to request robes/slippers but the concierge was efficient about bringing them to the room and when I asked if we could put water in the locked fridge he volunteered to bring in a separate one which we hooked up in the convenient space right in the hallway. We were able to keep water, juice, lunch meat, soda, etc. The CVS and Walgreen’s were right down the street.
After taking in our digs we had 45 minutes to make our Delmonico Reservations located in The Venetian hotel. This is Emeril's restaurant. When I made the 1:45 reservations a week before I assumed the Venetian was across the street. Boy was I wrong! I called Delmonico and was told it was about a 15 minute walk down the strip (the opposite way in which we came in). It was a pleasantly warm day so we took to the street walking past the Bellagio and around the corner where we saw Caesar’s Palace across the street. Didn’t know which way to go. I called the restaurant again and they told me they were by the Mirage. We could see the Mirage lurking over Caesar’s Palace and headed in that direction, albeit, the long way around through the various hotel properties which are pretty big. We wanted to stay on the sidewalk of the strip but they aren’t made like normal walkways. Once you get to some major streets you run into an enclosed gated area and have to walk around the corner to take the elevator/escalator up to the crosswalk to get to the other side. We didn’t realize this initially. In retrospect we should have taken the Deuce (double-decker bus) and made it to Venetian in record time. Instead, I made it there at 2:00. James got waylaid by one of the many adamant street hawkers offering free dinner and show for a timeshare presentation so I left him (at his suggestion) and schooled him later about what was going on and how to ignore them.
Late lunch was Pan Seared Pork Chop and Bacon Wrapped Shrimp with Bourbon Smashed Sweet Potatoes, wine & crème brulee’ with coffee (me). MS had same entree and homemade ice cream for dessert. We were not impressed with the food or the restaurant. The $81 bill was excessive for sub par food and the restaurant was very plain. I expected so much better from Emeril Lagasse.
We took our time walking back and browsed in The Venetian and the Grand Canal Shoppes with the beautifully painted ceilings. We exited the Venetian to a drastic change in temperature and rain (I’d left my coat/umbrella in the room). In the crosswalk leading from The Venetian we came across Madame Tussaud’s wax museum and photographed Michael Jordan and Whoopi figures posed outside the museum. James let me use his cap and we hurried back to the hotel.
There would be no fountain show today because of the inclement weather. We stayed in the hotel for the rest of the evening. James fell off to sleep early (6pm) and I relaxed, read and looked at TV and the strip view (simply beautiful). I ordered room service at 10pm: Sirloin burger, fries & sprite ($22 bucks).
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