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Trip Report 3/31-4/4 Venetian, R&R, Cancellations (sigh...

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Trip Report 3/31-4/4 Venetian, R&R, Cancellations (sigh...

Ok so some of this report will sound like a bummer type of vacation because my husband was somewhat ill after we arrived - but it wasn't as bad as it sounds on "paper". Plus, it was meant to be a restful few days, just to relax, see some shows, eat well and enjoy each other's company so this isn't the most exciting review, just a detailed one.

Left 3/31 from Newark - uneventful, ontime flight. Picked up our car (bright yellow Mustang Coupe, which unfortunately got little use - more on that to come). Arrived at the Venetian around 1:30ish, our check-in to our Venezia Concierge suite was quick and efficient (as always).

Room was on the 11th floor, strip view. Better strip view than our last trip, since we were not very far down the hall so the angle was better. Room was entirely similar to last year, however, the bed area arrangement was different in this suite. The bed faced towards the window - much nicer and the flat screen TV was mounted on the wall instead of in a dresser in front of the bed, which made for better viewing. However, there was no actual closet in this room, but the armoire was roomy and provided enough space to store our 4 days worth of clothing.

A lovely bouquet of white roses and hydrangea was waiting for me (an anniversary gift from my husband, he was recreating my wedding bouquet). We started to unpack and headed out to grab a light lunch in the Canal Shoppes at Tintoretto, one of our favorite inexpensive places to grab a bite.

We wandered around at the shops for a while and headed to the casino, where I played slots for a while (lost, but only about $20). We were a bit tired, so we headed back to the room (with a stop to the concierge lounge to get some tea and scones) to finish organizing ourselves, rest and cleanup before our early dinner at Bouchon.

I had been looking forward to a dinner at Bouchon since our last trip. We only ate breakfast there last time and loved it. Our dinner did not disappoint. We both had a garlic soup (hey, if one has it you better both LOL). I had monkfish over lentils and he had breast of veal with potatoes. I had a cheese plate for desert (which came with 1/2 apple filled with honeycomb and some fruit/nut breads) and he had butter pecan icecream. They brought me over an extra piece of cheese to try (gratis). We also were given a free plate of little cookies, gelees and chocolate at the table which we asked them to pack up for us as we were stuffed by then. As we paid the bill (I think it was about $150ish included was 1 glass of wine) we were also given a bag of caramelized popcorn and peanuts, Crackerjacks for grownups! This meal was the food highlight of the trip. Service was impeccable, intelligent, just perfect.

Played some more slots on the way out through the casino - lost another $20. Went back to the room and decided to stay in, as the jetlag thing was kind of getting to us. Watched a movie, and called it a night.

Saturday was our anniversary and we had decided in advance we would be spending the entire day bumming in the Venetian. We decided to eat breakfast in Bouchon since we remembered loving their eggs so much. They didn't disappoint. Mine came with corned beef has that was to die for. Yum!

Afterwards, we headed to Canyon Ranch Spa. We'd booked an 80 minute couples side by side massage. We relaxed in the wet areas first and then had the massage which was wonderful as always. We love this spa, pricey as it is, but we spare no expense when it comes to celebrating our anniversary LOL.

Ok, so inbetween all of this, my husband had mentioned he wasn't feeling very well. Funny thing, is the same thing happened last year pretty much but that time he actually got on the plane already ill. This time, it came on the next day (spa day). As the day progressed, he became more and more uncomfortable. So, after the spa, he went back to the room to lay down and we called up room service for a light lunch (chicken soup for him, a salad for me). I went to the casino for a little while (and lost another $20, this trip was the pits for slots).

We got ready for dinner but had 1 stop to make before. We had gotten a private invitation to an art exhibit in the art gallery in the Canal Shoppes by the artist Tom Everhard, because we'd purchased a couple of his works last year. It was a showing of his latest collection (he's the guy who has been authorized by the late Charles Schultz of Peanuts fame, to continue doing artwork of the Peanuts gang). It was VERY pretentious. We wanted very much to meet Mr. Everhard but the gallery was packed with hangers-on, artist wannabees and vegas showgirls. Or at least that's what they looked like. We couldn't get near him for all of our attempts, people kept grabbing him left and right and frankly, while we own 2 of his pieces, these people, you can be sure, are way more invested in his art than we are. So, we walked around, gossiped about the amusing crowd and left. Oh and did not buy anything this year :-)

I then asked if my husband wanted to cancel our dinner at Delmonico? He kept insisting we NOT do that but I really didn't want to sit across from him watching him not enjoying an obviously expensive meal. But he insisted and I knew it was a bad idea. Sometimes, when someone is trying to please you so much it actually becomes annoying because I just knew he really didn't want to be there. I kept telling him don't do it for me - I'm ok with cancelling but that was to no avail.

So, Delmonico dinner was just not fun for either of us which is really unfortunate because we both love the place. The food was great as it always is, but really he was just so out of sync by then that sitting there was downright unenjoyable.

We both skipped appetizers although we were given amuse bouches of a seafood cerviche. He didn't eat his, so I got the 2 pieces abd that sufficed for me as an appetizer. I had a very nice shrimp scampi w/fresh fettucine and he had the filet mignon, which I had to beg him not to finish since I knew it would be disasterous for him if he did. He smartly agreed. He skipped desert - I had a butterscotch creme brulee which was delish. No wine was had at all. Dinner here was the cheapest we'd ever had, only $100ish with tip and tax. It just was a sorry excuse for an anniversary dinner but what can you do?

By now, he really felt rotten. We had tix for Blue Man Group at 10:30 and he again insisted we go. Well, literally a minute before the performance started, I swear he looked like he was going to pass out so I made us leave. Thankfully, they exchanged our tix for Monday night. That was it for the night for us - I felt so bad for him, and decided not to go down to the casino alone (which was my natural desire of course), that I would keep him company in the room. As you can see, we were getting to know that suite quite well LOL.

Sunday, after breakfast, we took a nice long walk to Wynn to look around, and then through TI and Mirage. He still wasn't exactly great but he wanted to get out and around a bit. We went to the art exhibits at the Venetian (Guggenheim) and Bellagio - which was both loved. Spent some time in Bellago, went to the conservatory of course, which was a bit disappointing as it seems they recycled a lot of objects from last year's display. Headed back to the Venetian late in the afternoon to get ready for dinner at Daniel Boulud Brasserie and Le Reve at Wynn.

However...none of that occurred. DH was by now yet again feeling awful. First, we cancelled dinner and decided that I'd just call in dinner from in-suite dining since he really felt he couldn't eat at all. That was fine by me - I actually had very good fish and chips.

So, now it's like 9:00pm, and we have to make a decision about the Le Reve show at 10:30. He was in no condition, that was obvious. I didn't want to go alone. I called the box office and explained the problem and they were gracious enough to refund the tix! Mind you, it says on the ticket information you can cancel up to 24 hours in advance - this was only 1-1/2 hours before. I was very impressed with that service. Of course, we'll see if they credit us in a timely manner LOL.

So, Sunday was a bust for the most part.

Monday, he still wasn't perfect. We went over the the Fashion Show mall just to walk around a bit. I have to say, this is the largest mall I've ever been in - it was very difficult to navigate. Headed back to the Wynn to have another look. Went to the Ferrari dealer and yes, we paid the $10 each to have a look around. My favorite was an electric blue Mazerati actually, and was the cheapest on the lot, only $80,000 hah! They were fun to look at if you enjoy cars - which we both do. We nearly had lunch in Wynn's Country Club Cafe, it overlooks the golf course is was quite something, but again, since he wasn't still quite well it seemed not necessary. We both played some video poker together, won some, eventually lost it but only about $10. As you can see, we are NOT gamblers in the least, it's just a small diversion for us.

Monday night we had Blue Man Group at 7:30 this time. Not alot has been said about this show but I have to mention this was one of the best pieces of performance art I've ever seen. Also, it's a good thing we walked out before it began the other night, because it's very interactive with the audience - be forewarned that NOBODY is safe from being used in the performance. If anyone wants detailed information I'd be happy to provide it but for the sake of brevity here, let me just highly recommend seeing it - it's truly amazing to watch and be involved in.

Thankfully, by Monday night my husband was feeling much better so he enjoyed the show as well. We decided to eat at Bouchon again for dinner afterwards. Had another great meal but service was really terrible this night. Our waiter was a yutz. Truely. We felt very ignored from the get go - although in his defense, we did notice they had him waiting on a lot of tables all over the restaurant. But still, you know? The manager did notice that we seemed to be unpleased and personally came by to help the waiter out in getting our desert orders and he also apologized for the waiter (who did himself apologize a few times). Anyway, we both had salads for starters, I had steak frite and he had gnocchi with roasted veggies. Both were outstanding. We split a mousse au chocolate noir. I had a glass of Four Vines Port Style Zinfindel (desert wine - amazingly yummy) and he had a glass of port too.

Tuesday we had to leave, but requested late checkout, because there was a threat of intense thunderstorms. Thankfully, that didn't pan out. Had breakfast at Grand Lux which was good but I was kind of annoyed we didn't just go back to have another Bouchon breakfast because it wasn't any less money - in fact, their lattes were more expensive than Bouchons.

Went back to the room, packed, cleaned up, left around noon. Trip home was uneventful again - no thunderstorms showed up although the climb up was quite bumpy due to wind. Came home, and today it's snowing like crazy out.

All in all, things could have been a lot better but they also could have been a lot worse. The weather was mostly cooperative, high 60's, kind of cloudy, one day it did reach 80 and was sunny. We both tried to make the best of things and I certainly held no grudges for anything which had to be cancelled. Stuff happens. But, there also was disappointment with the trip - since it was my vacation, not his (he's been living the life of leisure, being sort of semi-retired at this point - well in his mind anyway LOL). A disappointing trip is just another reason to come back yet again!

south bend, indiana
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1. Re: Trip Report 3/31-4/4 Venetian, R&R, Cancellations (sigh...

Lambkin, all in all sounds like you had a great trip....sorry hubby was ill, again. Maybe next time it won't happen till the end of the trip...lol. Very nice trip report and you are right.....that is a good reason for going again..hehe.

Great White North
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2. Re: Trip Report 3/31-4/4 Venetian, R&R, Cancellations (sigh...

Lambkin

Thank you so much for the detailed trip report. I have been looking forward to it for the past several days.

I really feel terrible that your husband wasn't feeling great, I know you were really looking forward to a good time. Certainly sounds like you made the best of it though.

There is something about your writing style that I really enjoy and that goes for most of your responses to other posts as well.

Thanks again. I hope that you get time to post a photo or two.

New York
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3. Re: Trip Report 3/31-4/4 Venetian, R&R, Cancellations (sigh...

Thanks to both of you :-) I'm a repressed novelist at heart.

We didn't take many pix at all this time - mainly because not much has changed and therefore, not much worth showing. I did take a couple of pix of the view from the room - I just have to remember to upload them :-) I will be posting a hotel review as soon as I'm able to.

I had forgotten to mention - I got to the spa myself once more while hubby was laying in bed one night. Got the last appointment for a "sole rejuvination" treatment, which was basically a reflexology session combined with some foot and lower leg pampering to make them look nice. Very relaxing way to end an evening!

Scotland
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4. Re: Trip Report 3/31-4/4 Venetian, R&R, Cancellations (sigh...

I'd be grateful if you would post more on the Blue Man Group. I've never really fancied it before, probably because I don't know enough about the show, but your opinion and description of the show might sway me.

luci

New York
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5. Re: Trip Report 3/31-4/4 Venetian, R&R, Cancellations (sigh...

Luci, I'm going to post this here and as a separate thread just in case anyone else is interested.

Blue Man is surreal and absurb in the best sense.

It begins with messages flashing across large ceiling high billboards announcing amusing tidbits of information, requests to turn off electronic devices, asking the audience to sing happy birthday to other members of the audience and so on. So right away you get involved in the atmosphere.

The performance itself varies nightly apparently, depending on how the crowd is reacting. They have a lot of flexibility built into their act. Much of the underlying message deals with information technology and how silly it is to be human, and how people react with and to each other. For instance, there was a whole skit revolving around what you think was going to be about the internet (interconnected "highways") but was turned out to be about modern plumbing.

There is a lot of music, improvised musical instruments made out of various piping pieces, lots of paint flying, crunching cereal songs and so on. They developed a song based on eating Captain Crunch cereal. Yes, weird but highly entertaining.

At points in the performance, they 3 guys come out into the audience and begin to climb literally over all of the seats in the audience - they covered the entire theater by climbing on seats, peering into people's faces, scanning for someone they though might suit their purposes. It's somewhat unnerving actually, as they inspect you as if they are almost apelike, or aliens visiting and they don't quite "get" our planet and how it works (or us for that matter).

Finally, they picked out a young women and brought her up to the stage to partake in a skit that had them all eating twinkies. Ok, I know this sounds really odd and twisted but it's really hilarious.

Another time, they pulled a guy out and brought him backstage, showed him being painted up blue and doing some other things. In actuallity, it was NOT the guy - we know because they hung him upsidedown and they'd would NEVER be allowed to do this - think about the liability. But it played off as if they were.

They took a camera down a guy's throat and showed all his inside throat workings - again we don't think it was actually this man's throat because - well, you have to see it to understand LOL.

Another funny skit was about being a rock star and all the rock star dance moves that you need to learn to achieve great sucess in this field. Again, seeing is understanding.

A couple came in late and they literally stopped the performance to have the entire audience reprimand them - hilarious.

This goes on for nearly 2 hours. The culmination was from the back of the theater, there are huge rolls of paper that they begin unraveling and everyone in the audience starts throwing them forward toward the stage - it becomes a huge sea of paper, waves of paper in fact, fulling foward. It's a lot of fun, you get very tangled in the mess and I guess it's to represent the fact that we are all connected (which is part of the theme of the show it seems).

Going into this, you have to be willing to do and experience all of it. There is no turning back LOL. It's intensely interactive and anyone can be caught in the act at any time by any means you can think of.

We adored it - much more than we thought we would - even tho I was utterly terrified they would try and get me on stage at some point - especially when one of the guys was straddling my chair, with his butt practically in my face :-)

Lots of fun - but you need to be open minded and have some appreciation of performance art.

New York
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6. Re: Trip Report 3/31-4/4 Venetian, R&R, Cancellations (sigh...

I keep remembering things after I wrote this -another things was we saw Cheryl Hines (of The Larry David Show), wheeling one small piece of luggage through the lobby into the casino. Turns out, we found out this morning while listening to Howard Stern, that there was a poker tournament in the Venetian's new poker room, and she was one of the competitors. It was our first Vegas celebrity spotting!

Scotland
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7. Re: Trip Report 3/31-4/4 Venetian, R&R, Cancellations (sigh...

Many thanks Lambkin, that's the best description of the BMG I've ever read. I might just consider it when we're there in May.

We've already planned to see 4 or 5 shows so it depends if we can fit it in. We're also considering Avenue Q are reading good reports about it on here.

luci

San Francisco, CA
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8. Re: Trip Report 3/31-4/4 Venetian, R&R, Cancellations (sigh...

Thank you lambkin for the report. What room did you have? It sounds a bit nicer than the room that I had in February. I was in a king room on the concierge floor, second room from the end, farthest from the lounge, with a view of Harrah's and Casino Royale, with Mirage Volcano. Your room sounds like a nice one to request. Thanks in advance!

New Jersey
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9. Re: Trip Report 3/31-4/4 Venetian, R&R, Cancellations (sigh...

Hi - Sorry hubby was ill but glad you still enjoyed your trip and the Blue Man Group. You deserved two spa treatments LOL!

New York
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10. Re: Trip Report 3/31-4/4 Venetian, R&R, Cancellations (sigh...

jjb, we were in Room 11-418. Last time, we were further down the hall, sounds like where you were. While we liked it all the way at the end (quiet, although we didn't hear a single peep from anywhere the whole stay), the view was block by Harrah's. This room, looked directly out at Mirage and the volcano was basically right down in front of us. Much clearer view all in all. It wasn't close to the elevators, it was about 6-8 rooms away from them. We kind of missed the closet but were happier w/the room this time when you take into consideration all things combined.