Las Vegas Journals

Living in Las Vegas

A travel journal to Las Vegas by whirledtraveler

Las Vegas baby!!!! Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada More Photos
Quote: There are two types of weather here, hot and wind. Summers are brutal, often upwards in the hundred and teens. The weather always misrepresents the heat so the tourists won't get scared.

Living in Las Vegas

Best Of IgoUgo

Overview

Las Vegas baby!!!! Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
Food: Vegas is definately known for our buffets. Every hotel/casino has one and prices can range from .99 to over . The Rio by far is the best for international food choices. The atmosphere and price is great for any meal. Most buffets mimic the Rio. The Bellagio has a great seafood buffet, but be warned if you are traveling with children. The Bellagio is very rude to anyone entering their establishment under 21, even with parents, unless they are staying there. For late night cheap eats head downtown to Binion's Horseshoe. From 11:00 p.m to 7:00 a.m. you can get a steak dinner for .99. A huge baked potato, salad, bread and veggies accompany the meal. This is the standard for those late night pa...Read More

Aladdin Hotel Casino

Attraction | "Casinos"

Aladdin Hotel Casino Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
My favorite casinos are the Mandalay Bay and the Monte Carlo. Both are clean, open and easy to maneuver through. The colors and architecture used are classic and easy on the eye. Those strange funky carpets are nonexistent here. The Mandalay Bay has Areole, the restaurant and winery that is four stories high. Women on bungee cords go up and down the four story wine cellar encased in glass and retrieve the orders. Spectators can watch off balconies and not disrupt the clients who are eating. Rum Jungle, the nightclub, is next door to Red Square, the vodka bar. Red Square carries vodka and caviar from all over the world. It has great food and the atmosphere is very continental. Th...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on September 3, 2002

Aladdin Hotel Casino
3667 Las Vegas Boulevard South
Las Vegas, Nevada 89109

Binion's Ranch Steak House

Restaurant | "Binion's Horsehoe"

Binion's Ranch Steak House Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
For late night cheap eats head downtown to Binion's Horseshoe. From 11:00 p.m to 7:00 a.m. you can get a steak dinner for $4.99. A huge baked potato, salad, bread and veggies accompany the meal. This is the standard for those late night partying binges, where you want to eat before you go home. The steak cut is not the best, but it's decent.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on September 3, 2002

Binion's Ranch Steak House
128 Fremont St
Las Vegas, Nevada 89101
+1 702 382 1600

Monte Carlo Buffet

Restaurant | "Monte Carlo"

Quote:
Microbreweries are big in Vegas. The Monte Carlo has the best one. Good live music, decent bar food and great beers. Don't come here to have a conversation though, the music will keep you dancing and toe tapping. It is way too loud for chit chat.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on September 3, 2002

Monte Carlo Buffet
3770 Las Vegas Blvd South
Las Vegas, Nevada 89109
(702) 730-7777

Sam's Town

Restaurant

Sam's Town Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
For steaks, I am partial to Billy Bob's steakhouse inside Sam's Town casino/hotel. On the east side of town and far away from the tourist bustle, it is a major local spot. The steaks are thick and tender, and portions are huge. Either bring a huge appetite, be prepared to share, or take home lots of 'doggie bags.'

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on September 3, 2002

Sam's Town
5111 Boulder Hwy
Las Vegas, Nevada 89122
(702) 456-7777

Green Shack

Best Of IgoUgo

Restaurant | "Green Shack and More"

Quote:
Away from the strip and the tourist scene, visit The Green Shack, a Las Vegas icon in restaurants. This place is almost as old as the city and one of the few places not imploded or 'redone' every few years. The food is traditional American; meatloaf, fried chicken, etc. For sushi, my favorite is the Manda House; for $25.00 it is all you can eat and the chefs stand and create as you order. For more elaborate sushi go to Osaka on the west side of town. it is much more expensive, but the presentation of the food borders on artwork. Cozymel's is a big trendy place for Mexican/American flavor. At lunch time, the corporate crowd descends to eat and people watch. Good food and reasonable pri...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on September 3, 2002

Green Shack
2504 East Fremont
Las Vegas, Nevada 89104
(702) 383-0007

Chicago Joe's

Restaurant

Quote:
Chicago Joe's is one of the best kept word-of-mouth places in this town. Excellent Italian fare with great portions, outstanding service, quiet, intimate atmosphere, and unbeatable prices. It is downtown and off the major streets.

Member Rating 2 out of 5 on October 26, 2002

Chicago Joe's
820 South Fourth St
Las Vegas, Nevada 89101
+1 702 382 5637

Red Square

Attraction

Red Square Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
Red Square is the vodka bar for the sophisticated, cosmopolitan type. The menu is not inexpensive by any stretch of the imagination. Vodkas from all over the world are featured. Caviar, also in a range of brands and prices, is available to enhance the liquid refreshment. The Grey Goose is excellent.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on October 26, 2002

Red Square
3950 Las Vegas Blvd South
Las Vegas, Nevada 89119
+1 877 632 7800

What To Do In Vegas And Beyond

Attraction | "Around Vegas & Beyond"

What To Do In Vegas And Beyond Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
Visit the strip (duh) and the Fremont street. Experience downtown. If you want thrills, the Desperado roller coaster at stateline is a must. Of course, the New York New York and Sahara have their own roller coasters as well. For the true adrenaline junkie, the Stratosphere roller coaster blows them all away. Bonnie Springs and Spring Mountain State Ranch can be done in an afternoon. Red Rock Canyon is still a big draw, but not what it used to be; the city is now right up against the rocks, creating a blemish on the pristine feel. Lake Mead and Hoover Dam are the places to be for water activity. Mt. Charleston, an hour out from the city, has a great lodge for dining. The food is onl...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on September 3, 2002

What To Do In Vegas And Beyond
Various
Las Vegas, Nevada

The Forum Shops at Caesars Palace

Attraction | "Forum shops"

The Forum Shops at Caesars Palace Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
For window shopping and people watching I am partial to the Forum Shops at Caesar's. FAO Swartz, Virgin Atlantic, Guess, Prada, the Museum Company, and Warner Bros. are all here. It is fun to walk through and experience the fountains and the kitschy talking fountains. Definately eat lunch at the Cheesecake Factory here. I am not a burger dan, but these are the best I have tasted. The thai chili wraps are a must. Another great mall with more upscale shops is at the Venetian. Ann Taylor and Dooney & Bourke are here amidst the gondoliers and street performers. Sunset and Stephanie have one of the best selections of everything anyone could need personal or home wise. Old Navy, DFW sho...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on September 3, 2002

The Forum Shops at Caesars Palace
3500 Las Vegas Boulevard South
Las Vegas, Nevada 89109
(702) 893-4800

VooDoo Rooftop Nightclub at Rio

Attraction | "Voodoo lounge"

Quote:
The Voodoo lounge at the top of the Rio is my favorite lounge. The drinks are not cheap, but the view of the city cannot be beat. Live blues and jazz are played nightly. A dress code is required; no jeans and collared shirts for men.

Access used to be free, but now there is a $20.00 cover charge. Puleeze! I have never paid a cover in my life and I still don't pay. Make nice with the people at the door and you can get right in.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on October 26, 2002

VooDoo Rooftop Nightclub at Rio
3700 W Flamingo Rd.
Las Vegas, Nevada 89103
(702) 777-7800

The Beach

Attraction

Quote:
The Beach is great for playing darts or pool upstairs while the trendy set dances and bounces downstairs. Female waitresses and shooter girls in bikinis and bartenders in board shorts make this a unique draw for locals, visitors and the convention crowd. The Beach has a decent restaurant inside too.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on October 26, 2002

The Beach
365 Convention Center Drive
Las Vegas, Nevada 89109

Blue Note

Attraction

Blue Note Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
Blue Note is a great Jazz and Blues club with different performers nightly. If you hang around late enough some of the biggest names in the business show up and will perform with their friends. This quiet little place has yet to explode into the mainstream; so it's quiet, relaxed atmosphere has not been spoiled by the trendy set yet.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on October 26, 2002

Blue Note
inside the Aladdin / 3663 Las Vegas Blvd S
Las Vegas, Nevada 89109

Rumjungle

Attraction | "Rum Jungle"

Rumjungle Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
The Rum Jungle is one of the newest nightclubs. Dress to impress!! Girls in cages, the anorexic elite, and the surgically enhanced "exotic" dancers are standard crowds at this hot hot hot nightspot!!! The restaurant is wonderful, but get there early before the velvet rope goes up. This once hidden eatery has now become very trendy. It's affordable, and has great atmosphere, but once again get there before the club crowd.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on October 26, 2002

Rumjungle
3450 Las Vegas Blvd. South
Las Vegas, Nevada

Rain Nightclub

Attraction | "rain"

Rain Nightclub Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
Rain is the newest, trendiest club inside the Palms. The Palms is a fifties style casino, reminiscent of the glamour of Vegas that never really existed. Rain has an outdoors and indoors section to it, and part is over the pool area. Like the name implies, sheer walls of "rain" fall. DJ's from all over the world have performed here and some of the newest names in trance, house, and techno have performed here, too.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on October 26, 2002

Rain Nightclub
Palms Casino Hotel
Las Vegas, Nevada 89103
(702) 942-6832

Driving Around

Attraction | "Nature around the lights"

Driving Around Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
Go off to Valley of fire (1 1/2 hrs. away), Red Rock (right against the city) or even Hoover Dam (1 hr. away) to get away from the gaming. Mt. Charleston is about two hours out of town (depending on which side of town you are on) and it is cool relief from the heat. The lodge has decent food, a great view, and nice rooms for a weekend getaway. Many people have their wedding receptions there. A golf course, horseback riding, hiking and camping are also available. Bonnie Springs is at Spring Mountain State Ranch Park. It was one of the first ranch houses in the area and you can tour the house and the grounds, listening to what it was like to live in Nevada over one humdred years ago. A ...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on October 26, 2002

Driving Around
Arizona/Nevada
Las Vegas, Nevada

Local Customs

Best Of IgoUgo

Story/Tip

Coca Cola factory Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
1. Tip! Tip! Tip! Vegas is a tipping town. Tip the car valets. Realize you can valet park anywhere. This definitely keeps me spoiled here; I do not have to drive around and around looking for a parking space. Tip showroom hosts; the higher the tip, the better the seats. Tip doormen at clubs and you can get into anyplace considered 'filled' or 'VIP only.' Vegas used to very inexpensive (fifty cent beers, fifteen dollar shows, etc.). Not anymore!! Vegas is incredibly expensive. Concert tickets are a lot more here than other cities. $35.00 in Phoenix or Boston go for $75.00 here. It's ridiculous. So be aware. 2. Don't drive down the street with your head out the window taking pictures. ...Read More
Ethel M's Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
Ethel M's Chocolate Factory is a great diversion. The Mars family lives in town, and Ethel M's is the high end of their chocolate line. Yes, this is the same family that has brought the world M & M"s, Mars Bars, and Milky ways. Anyone can visit and tour the factory for free and get a free sample. It is pretty cool. The really nice part is the shop at the end of the tour. The gifts, displays and attractive packages make it really hard to walk out of there without buying something. The desert demonstration gardens at Ethel M's are very impressive. Every plant is marked and provide those looking for ideas on landscaping their yards, great ideas. At Christmas, millions of lig...Read More

celebrity sitings

Story/Tip

Quote:
Yes, we also have the working celebrities in town. Wayne Newton, Kevin Sorbo, Jerry Lewis, Gladis Knight, some guy from In Sync, Andre Agassi, and on and on. They live here, I have spotted them at the malls, the grocery store, the convenience stores, pumping gas and just living like the rest of us. If you live in Vegas I guess you become immune to seeing them. They are people and we see them all the time in our communities and civic organizations so it's no big deal. The only time I really notice anymore is when visitors from out-of town come here and they make a deal out of it. So if celebrity sightings are on you agenda, then you will definitely see them. The Hard Rock, Caesar's, and the Palm...Read More
Comdex Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
Vegas is certainly known for our conventions. And Comdex, the largest technology conference in the world descends here every fall. Traffic gets more insane and most locals don't go anywhere near the strip, unless they have to, as long as Comdex is here. Traffic is insane!! We have people from all over the world who think they can drive. People do not signal here and they love to ride as close to your bumper as possible. People speed, and I don't mean just a few miles above the speed limit! A 35 mph zone will have people going 60. We have one of the worst traffic light situations in the country. When a light turns red usually about three more cars go through the intersection-so always c...Read More

transportation

Story/Tip

transportation Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
McCarren is an international airport and growing all the time. People who arrive here for the first time are continually amazed at the number of slot machines that greet the tourists the second they get off the plane. We have gablimg available 24/7 and in most places. Do not be surprised when you see machines in convenience stores, grocery stores, and most anywhere else seomeone can obtain a gaming license. The airport can get quite congested. Just relax. Getting the luggage can be a bit stressful if you impatient like I am. Most people think the airport is very efficient, I just have a low threshold for waiting. We have no efficient public transportation here. Cabs, limos, rental car...Read More
Quote:
Yes we have drive up betting windows for those who just don't have the time to get out of their cars and go inside the casinos and place their bets at the sports books. This is certainly a novelty. I don't know of any other place that has gaming that offers such conveniences.

Yes, like all things Vegas, we want people to have the convenience of keeping away those pesky state taxes, so there are slot and poker machines in all convenient stores, grocery stores, and most bars. The jingle of coin can be heard practically everywhere here.

Nascar Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
The University of Nevada AKA the Runnin Rebels have built the football program the past few years. Yes, we used to be known as Basketball U. when Tarkanian was head coach, but that was a long time ago. And like many places, the fair weather fans stopped going to games. But, UNLV does have a following and there is always some sporting event going on. If you can't find a live event, our sports books at every casino broadcast every sporting event imaginable, and you bet on them too. We even have drive up betting windows! Vegas has one of the newest and best Nascar tracks around. It is packed on race days. Once a month amateur racers can take their cars out their and drive on the track. Yo...Read More

look like a local

Story/Tip

snow on the mountains Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
Vegas runs the gamit from dressy to casual. It is mostly always warm here. It can get chilly on winter nights, so a jacket will suffice. Tourists stand out here like a sore thumb; their attitude seems to be if I can't wear it at home I can wear it in Vegas. Wrong! Leave the striped shorts and polka dotted shorts at home. Club attire-slink and skin. Leave the sparkles and sequins at home (that's the sterotype of Vegas). General- for men, a collared shirts and nice khakis can go far. For women, as always a little more upscale. In summer do not wear perfume, it evaporates too quickly and is a waste of money. Use body washes, powder, and lotions. Wear sunscreen, drink lots of wat...Read More

alien central

Story/Tip

area 51 Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
Vegas is the gateway to Area 51-the "infamous" alien gathering place north of the city. It is illegal to go in Area 51 as that belongs to the federal government and is used for "testing" and "top secret" business. Conspiracy theorists believe this is just a cover up to hide the alien visitors.

We even have the Alien highway where numerous sitings have been reported. Along the road are towns with alien paraphanelia.