Sunday, 20 October 2019

What happens in Vegas

Gets posted here on my blog. :)  First off, I had a wonderful time.  It was so good to get away, to have someone else cleaning up after me, making the meals, doing the dishes, taking out the garbage, and doing the laundry.  All of which I've had to do for myself since I arrived home yesterday. 

I do have photos to share, and I'll probably split this post into two three parts as we managed to cover a lot of ground, literally, over the full four days we were there.  I met S and her husband P, at the Renaissance Hotel located in the Edmonton airport on Sunday.  My own room was their treat, as P had injured his foot, was on crutches and wanted to be as close to the airport as possible.  He was flying home to Inuvik the following day while S and I flew off to Vegas via Calgary.  

Friends of theirs joined us at their suite (an upgrade they were given on registrating) where we had a drink before we gals headed down to the hottub.  It was hot indeed, so after a 10 minute visit, we went into the larger pool.  It was near bath temperature and it felt wonderful to float about while we chatted.  Then it was off to bed, as the three of us had to be up by 3:30 a.m.  

We were on our flight to Calgary, shortly before 6 a.m. and then had a four hour layover before I next flight to Las Vegas.  We did need to go through the border security, spent a bit of time walking, before   S and I grabbed a quick bite to eat prior to boarding and then we were off. 
I'll admit I napped for part of the flight.  I always sleep when someone else is driving!

The first photo was taken about a half hour before we landed, the second one as we taxied into the airport.  That's a few of the humungous Vegas hotels on the Strip in the background. 

We arranged to take the Super shuttle to and from our hotel and the airport.  For $20 return it was definitely well worth.  Funny story (or at least we thought so), the cashier who sold us our tickets told us it would be 30-45 minutes for our shuttle.  So we both decided to hit the ladies room before it arrived.  When we went back out, the shuttle driver was running around looking for us.  He'd texted S three times (though she was busy and didn't see them).  When he dropped us off at the Sahara he told us "the shuttle will be here at 9:15 on Friday, don't forget!".  We chuckled about that and were plenty early.  

We had arrived about 1 p.m. local time and were able to check in early.  The hotel was part of a package deal we got, and it turned out to be a real blessing.  The Sahara is at the north of the Strip, currently undergoing renovations (which never disturbed us), with a smaller casino than many of the larger hotels.  

Our room had the two double beds, a desk and chair under the television (opposite the bed on the right), and an armchair and sidetable opposite the other bed).  In the hallway there was a closet, a fridge, safe and shelving.  The bathroom was large with a huge shower, and lots of storage under the sink.

We did have a couple of minor issues.  The fridge was full of liquor (which we didn't use) and the second shelf on the door kept falling off.  Although we contacted hotel staff twice about the fridge, no one ever came to fix it.  The sink also ran slow, so I took the plug off and tried cleaning the drain with a pen.  I think, however it was the trap that needed cleaning.  Since we'd had no response about the fridge, I didn't bother calling but did mention it on our way out.

The hotel was also adjacent to a large Walgreen's store.  We headed over there on Monday afternoon to pick up a few things, a 6 pack of beer for me, 8 tiny bottles of wine for S, some snacks, and some toiletries that S had forgotten.  Then it was back to the hotel for a quick snooze for her (she didn't nap on the plane), while I perused the various brochures and magazines for things to do. When she woke, we went over some ideas and came up with a tentative plan.  The Sahara is also the last stop for the monorail that runs behind the Strip.  We headed up to the ticket office to pick up passes for the next few days.  We had learned that we could get a discount, but it turns out not at the ticket office, so we went back to the Concierge desk to get a voucher for the passes for the following day.  

Then it was off to Denny's for dinner - we walked past several wedding chapels, a cannabis store, and the Stratosphere on our way there.  The restaurants at our hotel all looked nice but the prices were a bit expensive so we chose to take a walk instead.  After our meal, we stopped in at the Strat and found their box office where we purchased tickets for the Wednesday night showing of Celestia.  Think poor man's Cirque de Soleil.  I've never seen a Cirque show but really enjoyed the Celestia, and at a far lower price!

We were in bed early on Monday evening, with over 20,000 steps registered on my Fitbit.  It was a long day but a good one!

Tuesday, of course, we were up bright and early.  We knew we couldn't get our monorail passes until the ticket booth opened at 10 so we puttered about.  I ran down to get us coffee, while S showered.  I took my turn when the coffee was drank, and then we walked over to the Strat for breakfast.  The price was quite reasonable and the coffee even better.

Just after 10 we were riding the monorail to the south end of the Strip to the MGM Grand.  Somehow we messed up and took a wrong turn when we left the station and ended beyond the hotel and back around.  Our immediate goal was the Coca-Cola store.  S treated us to the 16 variety option and we sat and taste tested such treats as Fanta Exotic Fruit Punch (Uganda), Fuse Berries Tea (Georgia), Thums Up (India), and Beverly (Italy). Some were quite nice, but the one from Italy was horrid, and there were several that tasted more like cough syrup than anything else.  My two favorites were Frestea Green Honey Tea (Indonesia), and Aquarius Libre (Spain).  The former definitely had a green tea flavor while the latter was much like a ginger ale ...without the ginger if that makes sense.

Next up, guess where we went shopping? Not hard to tell.  Next door to the Coca-Cola store is the M&M store.  There are 3 or 4 floors of M&M merchandize including the chocolates.  We were given a taste test of a coconut curry M&M....actually quite good which surprised me.

I picked up a tie died t-shirt for my self for a sleeping shirt, and a red t-shirt for my grandson.  S shopped for her three grandsons, two daughters, and DIL.  

Just down the stree was a Ross Dress for Less.  Years ago I picked up a pair of jeans at sister store in Fort Lauderdale and I hoped I'd be able to find the same brand here.  It wasn't to be, but I did find another pair of jeans for $10.81 USD (about $15 Canadian).  S was shopping for her husband and found 5 dress shirts for under $120 CDN! 

By this time we were famished, it was nearly 2 p.m. so we stopped at the nearby Denny's for a quick bite.  We had plans to head up to Fremont Street that evening and had decided to find a restaurant there for dinner.  We headed back to the hotel via the monorail to drop off our shopping, rest a bit, and relax.

Again, our hotel was in a great location as the taxi ride to Fremonth was just over $10 each way.  We were dropped off at the D hotel, where we made our way to the box office to pick up tickets for "Marriage is Murder", a dinner theatre performance.  (Oh yeah, I forgot, in our walk earlier in the day we'd stopped at a discount ticket booth to get a voucher for these tickets.)

We walked through the hotel, oh my was it smoky before reaching Fremont where even outdoors the smoke was at times overwhelming between regular cigarettes smokers and those smoking cannabis.  We walked the length of the street, stopping and watching some of the live entertainment. 
I could tell that S was not enjoying herself, so suggested we find a place to eat.  We found a small cafe that served Gyros, settled in and enjoyed our food.  My gyro was great, and the French fries were the best we had on the whole trip - we shared an order.

We finished walking down the end where this sign is located, then turned back and walked towards the D.  As we reached the side street, we noticed a cab waiting and took it back to the Sahara.  While I did enjoy the canopy of lights, I had to agree with S that the smoke and the near naked girls was not what I remembered from my last visit.

When we arrived back at the hotel, we settle in for a drink before bed.  I checked my FitBit and we'd managed another 20,000 step day!


  1. I miss Vegas, it's been 10-12 years since I've been. I am so glad you had a good time.

  2. I was in Vegas in 1986 and was not impresed:)

  3. We stayed on the main strip, didn't get to Fremont at all. I don't think we will be going back any time soon. Just wasn't my cup of tea, though I know people who go every year.

    God bless.

  4. Wow, you packed a lot in just in the first couple of days! I've never been, but it's not my cup of tea, either. I'll leave that fun to the extroverts. LOL.

  5. Way to go. You really made your time count and got a bunch of steps in also. Haven't been to Vegas yet but thanks for the heads up about the smoke. That is a big turn off for me.

  6. The amount of activity you put into a few days of holidays is astounding. I could never go to Las Vegas, but it sounds like you were enjoying yourself. And I think if you've seen Celestia, you've probably seen Cirque de Soleil, and as you wrote, at a cheaper price.


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