Mermaids, Michael and Rod – Nov. 9 – 15
Our Vegas trips for the past 5 years all have had one thing in common. We scheduled them to coincide with major entertainment events such as the Billboard Awards, NASCAR, Country Music Awards and the Daytime Emmys. This trip – our 26th to Vegas was an exception. Instead, we scheduled shows for every night of our stay, excluding our arrival date. We booked the Crazy Girls at the Riviera, Michael Jackson One at Mandalay Bay, Ka at the MGM Grand, Rod Steward at Caesar’s and Veronic at Bally’s. The only two that we paid normal price for was Michael Jackson One and Rod Steward. Since we went with our older son we needed three tickets to all the events. Two of the three tickets to Ka were free through My Vegas. We also found comped tickets online to both the Crazy Girls and Veronic. Our flight from Philadelphia was via Southwest Airlines for only $206 round trip. That was the lowest Vegas airfare we have ever paid. Our rental car, a Chevy Malibu, was booked via Alamo for $197 for the week. The total cost of our Paris stay of 5 nights was $40 but they gave us $50 in free slot play. Our Saturday night Bally’s room was a suite that cost only $31. We had air conditioner problems in our last Bally’s stay and they promised us a suite upgrade for this stay. We also planned on our dinners to be either comped for mostly comped. Now all that saved money could be used to make sure that Jill would maintain her platinum level for Total Rewards. She needed an additional 1,400 tier points to do that.
Our flight left Philadelphia at 11:45 am and stopped in Chicago. The winds in Chicago were over 30 MPH. It was a rough landing and right after we landed the pilot got on the speaker and said “Yee How!!!”. Everyone on the plane clapped. We landed in Vegas at 4:15 pm their time. On the way to baggage, we met noted NYC psychologist and author Ruth Collier Resch. A very nice lady with a perfectly manicured dog. Then we rented our Malibu and headed down the Strip to Bally’s. There was a long line for check in but not for platinum. They gave us a 750 square foot suite in the newly renovated Jubilee Tower with a jacuzzi located in the middle of the room. For dinner, we did not feel like walking very far so had sandwiches at the snack bar located near the elevators by the Jubilee Tower. After dinner, we played the slots but didn’t get any big wins.
On Sunday morning, we checked out of our suite and checked into a standard room at Paris. The line for the Le Village breakfast buffet was huge! However, the platinum line contained only 5 people. We were greeted by our server friends who had not seen us for the past six months. The manager also came by to wish us well and provide for any special needs. We even got VIP omelet service. We never get this kind of service back in Atlantic City! The food was delicious. After eating Jill went to play her slots and I tried my luck on the ponies. Unlike AC, I was able to earn Total Rewards points for her by playing the ponies. At about 3 pm we picked our car at valet and headed for the Silverton Casino. We have never been there but heard about the mermaids and also wished to try out their dinner buffet. The Silverton is located off the Strip just before South Point. As you enter the Silverton, the first thing you see is the giant fish tank with over 4,000 fish. After about 15 minutes the first mermaid entered the water. She swam very gracefully and attracted quite a crowd. She stayed in the tank for about 20 minutes.
We had a LVA buy one get coupon for their buffet but first needed to get their players card. The buffet had no line and we were seated immediately. The total coast of the buffet for the three of us was $22. We ordered our drinks and right away – experienced the best tasting drinks we ever had at a buffet. When we tried the food, we were also pleasantly surprised on how good and fresh it tasted. There was nothing at the buffet that we did not like. It was not only comparable to the best Strip buffets — it was actually better for a fraction of the cost.
Before we left the casino, Jill put only $20 into a penny Red Wolf machine. Before long she got the bonus and that bonus kept on going and going with additional spins. She left the machine with $450.
[Our entertainment for the night was supposed to be the Crazy Girls at the Riviera. We had last seen their performance about ten years ago. We drove down the Strip and just before the Riviera followed their signs for valet parking to the rear of the building. There was nothing resembling valet parking. Since Jill has difficulty walking and the tickets were comped, we decided to skip this event and headed to the nearby Walgreens to stock up on supplies for the week.
On Monday, we had breakfast at the Le Village buffet. Then I went with my son to the MGM Grand to pick up our Ka tickets for the evening. Two of the three Ka tickets were obtained for free thanks to the My Vegas game. We had to pick up the tickets before 4 pm or they might be given away. We returned to Paris, picked up Jill and then explored the Conservatory at the Bellagio. It was decorated with many pumpkins and talking trees.
It was certainly not the best Bellagio exhibit we have seen. We returned to the MGM Grand at about 6 pm for their buffet. Through My Vegas, we only had to pay for one buffet and were also given a line pass. Great VIP service! The food was very good.
We had tickets to Ka at the MGM Grand. Again, we only had to pay for one ticket instead of three ---compliments of My Vegas. The story line of Ka was kind of hard to follow. However the special effects were great. The best was a giant bird flying over the audience. It made it worth going to.
We played slots at the MGM Grand after the show and returned to Paris for the night.
On Tuesday, we again had breakfast at the Le Village buffet. We played slots and horse racing at Paris afterwards. We drove over to Mandalay Bay for their dinner buffet. We only paid for one buffet - thanks to My Vegas. The Mandalay Bay buffet was not as good as when we last ate there many years ago. The selections were not as plentiful but we would still eat there again if two of the meals were comped. After dinner, we headed over to the Michael Jackson One cirque show. Unlike Ka, it was quite crowded. The show was fairly good – about as good as “Love” was at the Mirage. In many ways they were quite similar.
On Wednesday, we again dined for breakfast at the Le Village buffet. Notice a pattern here? In the afternoon, we went over to the Mirage and visited Siegfried and Roy’s Secret Garden. The white tigers were far more active this time than in May of this year.
One lion even growled and seemed ready to attack a man who leaned over to take a picture of him. After leaving the Garden, we ate at the Mirage buffet. I used one buy one get one ACG coupon for the discount. After the buffet, we got back in our car to drive over to the Colosseum to see Rod Steward. We were told pictures were permitted. That was a change from the last few concerts that we attended at the Colosseum. Rod does one good concert and his daughter was also there to perform with him.
He later kicked his signed soccer balls into the audience. He even managed to kick a few right into the upper balcony seats. Impressive! He sang all his major hit tunes along with a new one that sounded pretty good.
On Thursday, after dining at Le Village Buffet, Jill stayed in Paris to play the slots and I played the horses. Then I went with my son to the Venetian. We visited the wax museum. He had never been there before. This was my third visit. My last visit there was about three years ago and it had changed drastically. There were far more Vegas related people on display and the scenes behind them were also Vegas related. One of the best was Elvis in his car driving along Fremont Street. You could get in the car next to Elvis to get your picture taken. The cost for the museum was $29.95 each but I had a buy one get one from ACG.
We drove back to Paris and got ready for our gourmet diner at Mon Ami Gabi. I called for reservations before going to the Venetian. We had three Lettuce cards worth $50 each which I obtained from my United Airlines points. These points were about to expire unless we flew with United and since we now use Southwest, we redeemed those points. Since we had reservations, we were able to be seated outside without a long wait. Jill had salmon and I had fish and chips. My son had a cheeseburger. We also ordered appetizers and soup. Everything was delicious. The view of the Bellagio Fountains was awesome.
Just today, Mon Ami Gabi was selected as the 7th best restaurant across the USA to have your thanksgiving meal. The Cosmopolitan buffet was the number one selection. Disney and NYC restaurants were further down the list.
Our final show of this trip was Veronic at Bally’s. The tickets were comped. We were given front row seats. The Jubilee Theater was mobbed. Veronic was sponsored by Celine. She recently appeared on the TV show the View. She can do so many voices excellently. When she does Celine, you can close your eyes and from the sound – it is a perfect Celine. I highly recommend her.
On Friday, we had our final breakfast buffet at Paris. Our flight left for home at 3:15 pm. One of the stewardess’s actually sang over the loudspeaker of the plane. She was pretty good at it. So Veronic was not actually our final show of this trip. We arrived home at about 2:30 am.
Jill needed 1,400 tier points to keep her platinum status. She earned over 1,800 tier points. I did not do as well with the ponies but did have a nice winning day on Thursday. It was certainly a fun trip but exhausting as well.