it's long, 'cause we did a lot, but i'll try to keep it as brief as possible.
it's long, 'cause we did a lot, but i'll try to keep it as brief as possible.
Arrived early, around 6pm. Yey! Have a smoke and grab a cab to the flamingo… check in lady is a total riot.
Sooooo old school vegas. As my man said “was probably 60, trying to look 50, but ended up looking 80”. Awesome.
Our room is the GO Neapolitan Suite, which was amazing and well worth the money. Separate bedroom, two bathrooms, two couches and a chair. Fridge. 3 flat screen tvs. We approved. Cost $375 - $450 a night
Assembled the troops and did a little pre-drinking in our suite, then went off to Ellis Island. Probably took us about 10-15 minutes to walk there (it was a bout 2 blocks off the strip) this walk would have been much faster if there wasn’t such a large group, and we were not so intoxicated. Ellis Island was magic. Waited about 30 minutes for a table for 14, (ended up split in 3 tables, no biggie) i played some slots and FH played blackjack. He won $60, I lost $5. not bad.
FH had the $6.99 steak special, steak was good, salad was great and beans & potato were ice cold. Sent them back and got another portion, also ice cold. Gave up there. I had the grilled chicken sandwich with fries. A great deal at about $8 and delicious, but way way too big to even get halfway through. Beers brewed there were a delight (and only $1 a pint!) we had every kind, including the best root beer I’ve ever tasted (and we drink a lot of craft brewed root beer)
Went to get our marriage license at about 11:45 (they were open until midnight) the process was easy and fast, as we’d done our paperwork beforehand.
Back to the strip… more hotel room drinking, then went to carnival court for some more drinking. Things you may or may not want to do in your life – hand a bartender a $20 and ask them to make you their favourite drink. Got some great flair out of it, drink tasted okay… and was very strong. Cost me $16 (eek) plus tip. Drank up at carnival court until they closed (3am?) then moved to Rockhouse at Imperial Palace.
Free cover for ladies, $10 for the guys. Drank and danced there until about 4:30am. The music was… not what I expected. I thought it would be rock… but it was like bad 90s tunes like bobby brown.
It was weird, but fun ‘cause we were loaded. Retire to the hotel around 5am.
Breakfast at 10am at margaritaville… sat on the rooftop patio, was happy that you can still smoke there (as there’s no smoking inside the restaurant anymore). I only had a bagel and a side of fruit… and a margarita. Friends had heuvos rancheros – awesome, eggs benny – good and a classic breakfast (eggs, toast bacon etc) – good. Wouldn’t go out of my way to eat breakie there, but it was certainly not bad. Decent prices.
Off to the cabanas. Rented 2 cabanas side by side. Cost = $300 each and included a bottle of booze each and 2 pitchers of mix plus a fruit plate and juices and water.
Spent allllll day there, it was wonderful. Ended up ordering several buckets of beer and other drinks and ran up a $500 bar tab as well as the cabana charge. Ah well, it was fun.
We had a fantastic (and beautiful) server that tended to us all day… and kept us well lubricated. We also had some food in the cabanas – couple burgers and a plate of chicken strips. Chicken strips were excellent (I know, kinda random, right? But really. Delicious)
Love love love the flamingo pool. It was pretty crowded, looked hard to find a chair… so I’m really glad that our group got cabanas so we could all be together. Everyone got REAL sloppy. Sun + booze = a mess.
FH took the brunt of it. He was wrecked when we packed it up at about 5pm. I sent him to have a nap and ordered him some room service since he hadn’t eaten all day. And I got ready for the stag night.
Woke him up and force fed him, lol. Somehow he remainded upright. I had my doubts, but he’s a pro.
The ladies went to the Bellagio for the bachelorette package through the light group. They were very professional and excellent. I highly recommend them to anyone.
We had dinner at FIX, which was AMAMZING. The package indicated 3 different appies would be served family style, but we ended up with 5 different appies. All delicious. Personal favs were the kobe burger sliders and sashimi. Mains were good also, butalmost everyone was too full from all the appies to finish their plates. Then the warm doughnuts for dessert… *drool* Funny, but no one had any issues finishing those.
Then off to CARAMEL LOUNGE in the bellag. What a swanky place! We had bottle service prearranged. $200 for a bottle of SKY vodka and a bottle of champagne. Good deal considering it was about $16 a martini to order off the menu. The service was impeccable. To the point where it was a joke for our table… we’d move something slightly on the table or try to pour our own drink, only to have a server swoop down over us and take it out of our hands. Pretty awesome.
Then most of the ladies left, and 3 of us went on to THE BANK nightclub. I’m not really a nightclub gal, at all… but since it came with the package, I figured it would be worth checking out. Our host walked us right past the line, no problems. Inside, the club was stunning. Great décor and layout… lighting and everything was very cool… soap bubbles were falling from the ceiling. Really neat. But the music? Oh god the music… It was that “I’m going to play you 30 seconds of each song” DJ mentality… and while we were there we heard GnR, limp bizkit, green day, the offspring and papa roach. It was horrifying. So we left. We were in and out within 5 minutes.
Spent the rest of the night wandering the strip, sightseeing and such. Bed at 2am.
The wedding day.
FH was really hungover… the guys were pretty rough on him the night before. He stayed in bed while my hair and makeup got done.
Used Glamsquad… james and his assistant and another guy that just sat on the couch and chatted came right on time. They were fast and excellent. I felt kinda like a drag queen when I was done… it was way more makeup than I’m used to wearing, but it looked amazing in the pictures. My hair was perfect. I couldn’t have been happier. Paid him and tipped $30.
Todd Bentley was right on time to do our photos, and we LOVED him. He was professional, easy to work with and very affordable. A+ from everyone in our camp. We hit the flamingo gardens, flamingo casino, paris, the Bellagio, then in the limo to the vegas sign, Mandalay bay and the Venetian. I can not wait to see the photos. He said I’d receive them in 2-3 weeks.
Had an hour to wait in the hotel before the limo came to take the wedding party to the viva las vegas wedding chapel… and wow. What a hoot! We had the pink caddy wedding, meaning that elvis drives us into the chapel and up the isle in a pink caddy, then performs the ceremony. We had a brief rehearsal and then got down to things.
Everything was flawless, elvis was spectacular. Funny and engaging, but not cheesy and stupid. It was totally perfect for us. LOVED that there was a web cam. We had friends from around the world watching online, and I got a million texts after it was over. Very cool.
Got some photos outside the chapel, got our video and certificate, then it was off to Mandalay bay.
We were a bit early for the reception dinner, so we had some bevies in a lounge in the casino. Champagne for all! Yey!
Then off to Border Grill for our dinner. They had all 28 of us set us up on a “semi-private patio”, but it was pretty much totally private. Exactly what I wanted.
The food was outstanding as usual for them, and the service top notch. The second we arrived they had drinks ready on trays being passed out, and the drinks didn’t stop flowing the entire night. They even brought us (bride and groom) tequila shots throughout the night without being ordered (sneaky guys) i drank about 12 glasses of strawberry sangria. soooooo delicious.
We had family style appies (plantain empanadas) and a choice of 3 meals (grilled skirt steak, a yummy pulled pork thing or chille relanos) and then key lime cheesecake. Also included two hours of premium bar service, and a champagne toast. Came out to just under $130 per person including tax & tip. It was worth every penny. Simply outstanding. i could not have been happier.
After dinner, we all stumbled into cabs and went back to the flamingo, where we sat on the patio by the island bar and drank around the fireplace until about 4am.
It really was a perfect day.
Woke up Hungover with a capital H. but that just means it’s time to start again.
We had plans to go to paris for the buffet, but it was mother’s day, and busy, and no one was in any shape to walk far.
So we headed down to the flamingo buffet. I had heard mixed reviews about it, but this was a special mother’s day brunch. $25 and included champagne. There was a mountain of crab legs, crawfish and shrimp. Plus all the normal buffet goodies. We all really enjoyed it. Maybe they just upped the ante for mother’s day, but we thought it was quite good and worth the $25. I ate at least $50 in crab, so I thought it was worth it
Spent most of the day shopping and wandering around. spent way too much money at Sephora… went up the Eiffel tower to sightsee a bit and said goodbye to most of our friends. Packed up, said goodbye to the flamingo and moved hotels to Mandalay bay.
Wow. No, actually… WOW.
Our suite at Mandalay was called “the Island Suite” and I have no idea how my mom talked the guy into giving us this… but WOW.
It was on the top floor – 62. the penthouse suite… 1,610 square feet. Best view of the strip you can imagine… full kitchen, dining room, two bathrooms, sitting room, living room and the most amazing bathroom ever featuring a giant Jacuzzi tub, two showers and a steam room. My description does not do it justice. It was simply the best hotel room I’ve ever seen in my life. it was twice the size of my condo.
We had a couple people up to admire the view and suite and then reluctantly left to have a dinner at Shanghai Lily in Mandalay. Good food, but we were getting too tired to eat much. and were distracted with thoughts of our room.
Went back to the room to enjoy the shower and tub. We filled the tub super hot, ran the steam room and had both showers on cold and rotated between the tub and the showers. It was pretty awesome. Passed out in the bed, which was soft as can be.
Slept like a rock. best sleep of the trip.
Woke up, packed and reluctantly left our amazing suite. Cried a little on the inside.
Met up with our two remaining friends in vegas and had lunch at the house of blues in Mandalay. It was delicious. Their side order of mac and cheese blows my mind. I ate about 1/3 or it, it was so massive. Had a couple rum runners there, went to the gift shop to try on funny glasses and then parted ways.
Friends went to the shark reef (they loved it, as did we when we went there on our last trip) DH and I went to the beach pool. Holy crap. What a pool! Enjoyed the lazy river and the wave pool. The tubes were $20 a day to rent each, which we thought was a bit steep, and frankly we didn’t need them anyways. Lazed around, tanned and swam for a couple hours, then checked into our suite at THEhotel.
It was a one bedroom suite, very nice, but it paled in comparison to where we just check out of. And actually we liked the flamingo suite better too. I wouldn’t stay at THEhotel again. It was nice and all… but too boring for us. Didn’t have enough “vegas” happening.
Took a cab to the palms, signed up for the players card and gambled a bit. DH won about $300 on blackjack, I lost $40 in the slots.
Went upstairs to Alize for our big splurge romantic dinner. This was the best meal I’ve ever eaten in my life. We both had the chef’s 5 course tasting menu with the wine pairing. Outstanding from start to finish. We actually took home a copy of the menu so we can reminisce about it. It was that good. Courses included a lump crab stuffed pepper salad, duck on a toasted brioche with a quail egg on spinach salad, dover sole (our favourite), then a little scoop of passionfuit sorbet, then a veal with cripy sweetbreads (never in my life did I think I’d eat sweetbreads, but I did and they were awesome) and a dessert trio that included a cherry cheesecake, homemade candy bar and a banana bread with bavarian cream mousse.
The wines were excellent and matched very well. It was a once in a lifetime dinner and totally flawless.
The view from the top floor of the palms was beautiful and the restaurant very romantic.
I will remember that meal for the rest of my life. It was very special.
We went back down to the palms (and reality) and gambled a bit more before going back to THEhotel to get changed.
Took a cab back to the flamingo to meet up with our pals, gambled a bit there and at bills and then went to o’sheas for beer pong. Beer pong totally ruled my life. We played for 4 hours (and about 8 pitchers of beer for the 3 of us) and loved every second of it.
Much more fun that losing our money gambling. There was a jukebox there with great tunes, and we hung out there getting wasted until about 3am before hitching a cab back to THEhotel.
Slept in, packed up, checked out and went for lunch at the buffet at Mandalay bay.
It was $20 per person and pretty good. Service was mediocre – had to ask 3 times for a pepsi. But food was good, with a huge selection. Thought it was weird though, how the salad stuff and the fruit was in two totally different sections. Don’t most buffets group all the cold items together? Anyways, we ate there because I was being indecisive, not because we eat large portions, so I was happy with the selections.
Finished up and walked down the strip to the flamingo, shopping a little on the way. I got my cheesy blinking light vegas sign from the ABC gift store, and we got DH some goods from the flamingo gift shop including a really cool poster of the original building (going to get it mounted on canvas to hang in our living room) and then took a taxi back to THEhotel, got our bags and went to the airport.
Flight was a gong show… but I’m trying to block it out of my memory
So there it is. Our las vegas adventure with 28 of our nearest and dearest.
Highlights would have to be:
- the island suite at mandalay bay
- dinner at alize at the palms
- beer pong at o’sheas
- getting hitched at viva las vegas chapel
- reception dinner at border grill at mandalay bay
- cabana day at the flamingo pool
but in all honesty… it was all pretty amazing from start to finish.
And now I’m planning the reunion tour for May ‘09
Viva las vegas baby!
WOW! - That sounds like the most fun trip EVER - I want to party with you guys next time you're in town! :-)
P.S. My husband and I also got married at Viva Las Vegas with Elvis & the pink Cadillac - so "Vegas-y", right? lol
That was a great TR.
Thanks for taking the time to write this - I must be getting old as I don't think I could keep up with you all!!!
Congrats on the wedding xx
Holy cow! What a great TR! Congratulations on the wedding and that super duper suite!