25 April 2008

Viva Las Vegas IV: What The Hell, It Was Cheap Edition

Our home for a couple nights. Nice room, awful view. But cheap!

So the missus and I spent Tuesday and Wednesday night in Vegas, just to get away from town and goof off for a little while. B found a heck of a deal through Expedia and booked 2 nights at the Stratosphere plus the round-trip flight for $350.

Total. Not per person.

This trip was all about just chilling out and wandering around the town. I snapped a ton of pictures, and we marveled at the crazy amount of construction (still) going on. We noticed a lot of it when we were down there in November for our anniversary, but things have really progressed. Billions of dollars being spent.

More glitz and excess in progress.

The first night, we had planned on hitting the NASCAR Cyber Speedway simulator thingy at the Sahara, but when we got over there we found out it wasn't open Tuesday thru Thursday. Marvelous. Prior to wandering over there, though, we hit Roxy's Diner for some '50s style grub and entertainment. A couple of the waiters sang some classic hits of the '50s while we ate. I had the biggest, greasiest burger I've ever had.

Well, we got to see some race cars anyway...

After dinner and missing out on the NASCAR thing, we decided to go hit the theater box office at the Strat to get tickets to the "American Superstars" show. The show is basically a handful of tribute artists - Elvis, Michael Jackson, Tim McGraw, Christina Aguilera, Britney Spears. We weren't too interested in Britney or Christina, but I really wanted to see a good Elvis and we thought maybe the guy doing the King of Pop might be more of the '80s MJ which would be fun to see. We got the ticket package which included tickets to the observation deck in the tower as well as drinks before the show and vouchers for the buffet.

We hit the observation deck a little later on that night, and that was pretty neat. It's so flat out there that you can just see grids upon grids of lights stretching toward the horizon. Then there's the lights and glitz of the Strip, which is pretty amazing to see.

The Vegas Strip, from some 1100' up.

We budgeted some money for gambling, and while we had little success at the roulette table, I managed to win enough on slots that we were able to gamble Wednesday on the money we won Tuesday night.

Where else would you see a giant PSP? Tokyo, probably.

We didn't rent it.

Wednesday, we hit the Monorail to head down towards the MGM so we could check out the M&M's Store as well as some of the other things down that part of the strip. The highlight was lunch at the Harley-Davidson Cafe. That is some damn fine barbecue, but I still think Jazzy's in Gresham is better. It was kinda cool to see all the Harley stuff, celebrity photos with their 'hogs', and the giant US Flag made out of chains. They also had Harleys moving around the restaurant on a sort of rail system like you'd see on a suspended roller coaster.

One of the 'hogs' making the rounds at the H-D Cafe.

We hit the show around 6:00 that night, and I have to say the Elvis guy was pretty damn good. He apparently had won some World Elvis Championship or something in Memphis a year or so ago, and I'd have to say he deserved it. The Tim McGraw guy did pretty well, and the Michael Jackson guy wasn't bad. He seemed to be having an issue with his voice, but he danced really well and engaged the crowd quite a bit. We were spared Christina/Britney, as one was no longer with the show and the other wasn't performing this week. Instead, we had a pretty decent Rod Stewart impersonator.

After the show, we hit the buffet (ate much healthier this time), and then it was off to the slots. We bounced around with limited success (I love the Monopoly penny slot machines - the bonus games are really fun), until I hit one of the quarter slots that had some kind of die-rolling bonus game where you 'climb' a prize ladder. I won't go into the numbers, but it wasn't long after I plunked a $20 into the machine that I had won enough to pay for the trip including the show and the money we'd gambled to that point. We didn't do half bad at roulette earlier, each of us having doubled what we'd bet. Needless to say, we took the money and went to bed. 'Course, it was 1:30 am...

The flight home started out kinda interesting...the takeoff was, shall we say, a tad squirrelly. I wasn't scared, but the whole takeoff roll until the wheels were off the ground was definitely not textbook. I hope we can chalk it up to some nasty crosswinds, but it felt like the pilot was either drunk or a rookie.

But it was a good trip.


BJDorr said...

A chairlift for Harley-Davidson "hogs?" The U. S. Flag at H-D Cafe is sa-weet looking.

Kelly's Corner said...

That is SO awesome!

I admire your spontaneity and tell the Missus I admire her continuous diligence in researching awesome travel deals!

It sounds like you made it a well worthwhile escape.

I love that you guys enjoy Vegas so much. I'm still wanting to hear about the Hofbrauhaus there, so next time you MUST promise to check it out for us! :)

Cool trip!

Ghost Dog said...

We finally saw where the Hofbrauhaus is, so we made a pact to check it out next time. Whenever that is.

Maybe you and R could come with...?

Larry said...

Hey, cool. We are in NC waiting for it to rain. I really don't think we will get much. OOPS it is just starting. Well anyway we are glad you had a good time.

Best Dog Videos said...

Sounds like a great trip. And hey, $350 can't be beat! This travel tip alone keeps your blog from being "a near-colossal waste of bits and surfing time". LOL. Keep making us all smile.

- Your friends at Best Dog Videos

Barkernews said...

Holy crap! That's a cheap trip! Nice work.