We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

TR - A week for a Geek in Vegas

Which Las Vegas hotels are on sale?
dd/mm/yyyy dd/mm/yyyy
See hotels
Saskatoon, Canada
Level Contributor
742 posts
2 reviews
Save Topic
TR - A week for a Geek in Vegas

Sorry this is my first TR, and I am not an exciting gambler, but figured everyone else is writing one, so why don't I give it a try, from a low budget point of view

so cal
Level Contributor
1,258 posts
1 review
Save Reply
1. Re: TR - A week for a Geek in Vegas

Ready for your report, carry on...

Saskatoon, Canada
Level Contributor
742 posts
2 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: TR - A week for a Geek in Vegas

Got the approval from work. Woohoo!!! Found out I was heading to Vegas for InterOP 2011. Booked the flights and the rooms. And even under budget. Lol, Rooms in Vegas are sooo cheap compared to here, and the flight prices weren't that bad either, although we had to bounce around the countryside to get there. 3 flights each way. Doooh. I should have thought that one through before clicking the purchase button. But I was heading to Vegas, and the excitement got the best of me. Trip booked from May 7 - 14.

Got up at 4 am on May 7th. The things you do to get into Vegas early. Flights weren't to bad. Except for the dreaded last flight hop. Take off, and no more then 5 minutes after we leave the runway, the announcement from the captian. "Sorry folks, we have alot of turbulence ahead, so the stewardesses will be staying in their flight seats the entire trip. Sorry for the inconvienence." That lead to me thinking about the last time I came to Vegas just a year earlier. Same announcement, and that landing was anything but pretty. I think I almost got down and kissed the floor last time I came to Vegas. At least this time around that landing was fairly decent, considering the winds.

Picked up the luggage and headed straight out to grab a cab to the Excalibur. Last time I came, I stayed at MGM Grande. And found out that it really doesn't matter (to me anyways) what the room looks like in Vegas, as I only really plan on spending a few hours sleeping, and maybe 30 mins in the morning getting ready before heading back out onto the strip. Only 3 things are important to me. Is the room/hotel safe? Am I going to be eaten by bedbugs?, and lastly, the location. Since InterOP was located in Mandalay Bay, Excalibur got a check mark for all 3 things on the list.

Got to the Excalibur, and after walking in, noticed immediatley that the smokey blue grey hue over the casino floor was all but gone, and in the place of the stale smokey air was some heavily perfumed scent. A very welcome change in my eyes. Got to the Check in around 3 PM. Was suprised to see only 1 person ahead of me in the line. My lucky day. Probabaly had my room about 5-10 minutes after I arrived at the hotel.

For the price I paid, I was expecting to be kicking dead bodies out of the room. Or at the very least being right beside the loading dock on ground level. When I open the door. I was pleasently suprised. Room was nice and a decent size. Bed was really comfy, and last but not least, saw a decent sized (guessing about 44") Samsung LCD TV in the room. I didn't pay for the Widesceen TV upgrade, so this was a suprise. Don't know if this was the same in every room, or if the TV in my room died and I lucked out in getting it replaced with an LCD. Then I looked out the window. Lol, a great view of a wall. LMAO. Same view I had last year at MGM. Did the Bedbug check, no moving/dead bugs to be found. All was good. Time to head out and see the sights.

Saskatoon, Canada
Level Contributor
742 posts
2 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: TR - A week for a Geek in Vegas

Decided to do the big walk I always do (and regret lol) and headed out to NY NY. Everything looked the same as before. Went over to check out City Centre, since last year for some reason I never did walk in there. Very nice hotels in there, but I was feeling like finding some cheap beer for my walk, so kept on walking. Took the Tram from Vdara to Bellagio and then over to Ceasars, and across the street to the cheap beer. Grabbed a few beer and slowly walked through all the casinos until finally stopping at Treasure Island.

Signed up for a TI card, and got $10 freeplay. So far so good. Played until that ran out, didn't see a waitress the entire time I was there, so headed to the next casino to hopefully find a place with better service.

Went over to Bally's and signed up for a Total Rewards card. Got entered in some kind of slot machine tournament for signing, but didn't end up with enough points to win anything. Played for maybe an hour in there, and started feeling hungry so left to find something to eat. Had never been to IP so wandered in there, and a 3 taco for $5 sign caught my eye. Headed on up and tried them out. Not the best tacos I ever ate, but not the worst either.

Back on the strip an hit a few more places, grabbed a few $1 Michelobs for the walk back to Excalibur. Probably made it back to Excal around 1 AM. Great first night back in my fav city. Feet didn't like me the next day though. But when in Vegas... Expect blisters LOL

Hotlando, Fl
Level Contributor
9,198 posts
28 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: TR - A week for a Geek in Vegas

Wow, that's a lot of walking!

Saskatoon, Canada
Level Contributor
742 posts
2 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: TR - A week for a Geek in Vegas

Second day. Woke up, and already began thinking wow this trip is going WAY to quickly. Looked outside and saw it was cool and very windy. All the trees were swinging back and forth under the dark skies. Went down to McDonald's for breakfast. The selection was a bit different then what I was used to. Alot of Biscuits for breakfast sandwiches. No Bagels to be found. Finally stuck with the safe bet. The good old McMuffin and coffee. Time to start shopping for gifts for the wife and kids. I promised the wife some good things since I was leaving her home this trip. But will make it up to her shortly. Promised her a trip to Vegas with me of course this fall. Not to much of a hard sell on that one, as we both love it there. Headed on down to M&M World and the Coke store. Bought a few little things at M&M, then decided to check out the food court in the M&M building. Ate at Del Taco, since we don't have those back home. Not much to say about the place aside from the meal portions are quite large. I wasn't even able to finish the fries.

Dropped off the few gifts I bought, and headed back out onto the strip again. This time not quite as far, as the feet were a bit sore from the night before. Wandered around the Aria Casino floor, then on to Ceasars Palace Forum Shops and Belliagio. The over to the other side of the street again at Harrah's and Flamingo for a bit of hitting the slot machines and more beer. Ended the evening playing on the slot machines back at the Excalibur for a few hours. Ended down about $5. But had excellent service and probabaly got about 5-6 free drinks (minus the $1 tip per drink). Not to bad.

Calgary, Canada
Level Contributor
2,147 posts
5 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: TR - A week for a Geek in Vegas

But did you get tunneled?

Orange, California
Level Contributor
2,316 posts
43 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: TR - A week for a Geek in Vegas

Enjoying your TR, thanks for taking the time to post. Awaiting next installment.

Saskatoon, Canada
Level Contributor
742 posts
2 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: TR - A week for a Geek in Vegas

Day 3. The big shopping day.

Headed back to McD's for breakfast. Lol. I needed a coffee and I like McD's coffee more then Starbucks. That and looked at the Starbucks line-up and that definatley changed my mind. Lol. Decided to get the Breakfast Burrito, as I figured it would taste much like the ones back home. Nope, quite a bit different. Scrambled Eggs, a sausage patty that I think was cut in half wrapped in a soft tortilla shell. Not what I was expecting, but I got my coffee so all was good.

Today is the big shopping day, went down to the street and picked up a 24 hour Duece pass. Then caught the Duece down to Town Square. Had never been there before, but was a really cool place to see. Was basically a shopping mall, but all the stores were in small buildings, and the whole area reminded me of being in a small town. 1 big thing to hit was a pub (forgot the name at the moment) but it has about 150 types of beer on tap. When you walk into the pub, there is a huge window where you can see all the kegs sitting. Then above the bar, you see huge pipes where all the draft hoses are run through. Great selection. Grabbed a pint then headed back to the Duece to head on out to the Outlet Mall south. On the walk back, had to head inside for a bit. It rains 2 days a year in Vegas, and yep I was getting to see at least 1 of them. After the rain slowed down, ran back to the Duece pick up and headed on over to the Outlet Mall. Did some shopping, and picked up a majority of the gifts I needed to bring home, Then back to the Excalibur to drop off everything. After the drop off walked down to Planet Hollywood and hit the Miracle Mile mall to get the rest of the stuff I needed to buy. Felt releived after I got the gifts purchased. 1 less thing to worry about. Dropped everything off back at the Excalibur then headed back to the Duece to head down to see the Sahara before it closed.

Walked into the Sahara, and felt like I was at a funeral. The resteraunt was closed, 1-2 lounges I walked past were closed. A big sign above an ad saying the 6 lb Burrito is no longer available. Finally headed to the back where I saw 1-2 people working at a pub, and maybe 4-5 patrons having a drink. Then headed over to the casino. Maybe saw 40-50 people in the entire casino floor. Sat down and gave the Sahara a few dollars for a parting gift goodbye, then headed back out and walked to Stratosphere.

Went to the Stratosphere, and stayed about 15 mins at the casino. I don't know if that casino doesn't like me or if everyone else has the same problem there, but I put in $10, and every single spin I lost. Wasn't even able to get a few small $0.10 wins to keep me going a bit. After my 100 spin loosing streak I decided it was time to head to Fremont Street.

Hoped on the Duece and travelled to Fremont. Fremont hadn't changed much since last time I saw it. Only difference was this time it was pretty cold. I was looking at a Thermometer on a billboard outside a casino advertising the temp outside and the temp of the beer in the fridge. For a while there wasn't much difference. I think it got down to 56 degrees while I stood there watching the band. Even I was getting chili. Was beginning to wonder how everyone else was feeling, since I am used to the cold weather from the crappy winter we had.

Decided to stop at the Fremont Hotel for their Prime Rib buffet. Was suprised, as it was actually better then I was expecting. Prime Rib tasted good, as did everything else on the menu. After that, headed down to a new bar that opened 5 days earlier. They had old 1980's video games that you can play while drinking. Great concept. Didn't stay to long though. Wandered around a bit more then headed back to the strip to hit a few casinos before calling it an semi-early night. InterOP started the next day.

Saskatoon, Canada
Level Contributor
742 posts
2 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: TR - A week for a Geek in Vegas

Not quite sure where this so called tunnel is. Went the way I would drive it straight down Tropicana Ave. I think the ride after the tip came to around $15.

Saskatoon, Canada
Level Contributor
742 posts
2 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: TR - A week for a Geek in Vegas

Day 4 - InterOP starts.

Went to the usual hang out. Yep McD's for breakfast. Got my coffee and some breakfast sandwich. Then started the walk towards Mandalay Bay. Wow the place was a buzz. Where else can you go to see 20,000 hung over guys with pocket protectors and 2-3 wireless devices in their hands. Lol, Vegas. Won't bore you with the details of InterOP, but did get to see alot of new computer related products and to my suprise alot of models out trying to get our "the Geeks" attention. Not hard to do. I expecially liked the buttons some of them were wearing saying "Come look at my RACK." Unfortunatley it was to get you to come talk to a salesperson to talk about a networking rack, but thats besides the point. I had to laugh when the one sales guy was saying "Come get your picture taken standing beside a real live girl" Doesn't happen very often, you know, and it was free to yet. LOL.

Got alot of freebies as well during the expo, so had to make a few trips back to the hotel to drop off goods, then head back out.

Ate lunch at the Pyramid Cafe in the Luxor. Tried on of their burgers. Was huge, and tasted great. Thanks to a tip form some lady at a slot machine that noticed I was looking for someplece to eat.

After the Expo 5 ish, stopped for a bite to eat, then back out to the strip. Walked down to the usual spots, Flamingo, Harrah's, NY NY. Then ended the night back at Excalibur with my 10 cent spins. Lol. Found a great waitress who kept bringing me a pile of drinks. I think some group left her after ordering becuase the one time she stopped and dropped off at least 5 Bud Limes and Budweisers for me. And to top it off, I ended up about $10 for the night.