Las Vegas Journals

Best of $$Vegas$$

Best of IgoUgo

A December 2003 trip to Las Vegas by smmmarti guide

Getting Around Vegas Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada More Photos
Quote: Analytical visitors view Vegas as a source for philosophical pondering. Lost in the midst of man’s most glorious tribute to escapism and hedonism, they examine the basic human desires that bring the disparate together in a universal quest to fulfill primal yearnings. Just kidding. Roll the dice, baby! It’s Vegas!

Best of $$Vegas$$

Best Of IgoUgo

Overview

Getting Around Vegas Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
If the dream of sudden fortune doesn’t entice you to Vegas, a myriad of other Strip distractions will hold you in their grip. In this world devoid of conscience and practicality, scenes of dancing waters, disco infernos, blazing torches, talking statues, erupting volcanoes, disappearing tigers, dancing girls, world-class entertainers, marvels of engineering, and precisely-molded models of the world’s wonders will spin your head as all logical thoughts are temporarily edged from existence. From the down-and-out to the gray-haired grannies, from the rich and famous to everyday citizens from the Heartland, Vegas represents all things human and the chance to escape from life’s responsibilit...Read More

Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino

Best Of IgoUgo

Hotel | "Mandalay Bay"

Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
Having the Four Seasons as an immediate family member and a location at the end of the strip gives the Mandalay Bay a distinct advantage over its fabulous competitors. I like the privacy and exclusivity at the Mandalay, much like cul-de-sac living with community watch. Most of the guests milling about or in the casinos are there expressly because they have a room key. Home to Vegas’ best pool, with its six-foot waves and lazy river ride, the Mandalay carefully restricts admission to ensure the pool remains the exclusive domain of hotel guests. Shark Reef, the infamous House of Blues and its Gospel Brunch, and the ultra-luxurious spa all draw visitors from other hotels, but these at...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on January 20, 2003

Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino
3950 Las Vegas Blvd. South
Las Vegas, Nevada 89119
(702) 632-7777

Aladdin Hotel Casino

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction | "Aladdin Hotel and Casino"

Aladdin Hotel Casino Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
Ever wonder who sang at Elvis’ wedding? Love Me Tender If you are an Elvis fan, you already know he wed Priscilla at the old Aladdin Hotel, where guests were treated to a six-tier cake costing $3,500. The groom wore cowboy boots, the bride designed her own gown, and the couple danced to "Love Me Tender" (purportedly the song that caused Priscilla to fall in love with Elvis before she’d ever seen him). Historical Site There is history lurking under the Desert Passage’s 500,000 square feet of shopping in 140 shops and restaurants. Johnny Carson tried to buy the place once, and Wayne Newton actually succeeded in doing so. In the late ’90s, the hotel was implo...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on March 14, 2005

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

N9NE Steakhouse

Best Of IgoUgo

Restaurant | "N9ne"

N9NE Steakhouse Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
Vegas history can be divided into two distinct eras, pre/post Bellagio. Post-Bellagio Vegas easily lured celebrity chefs to the desert, where they met unparalleled success in a city whose dining scene was formerly limited to all-you-can-eat budget buffets. This good fortune urged others, like Kornick and DeGraff, to jump on the hip dining roulette wheel. To my husband, nothing declares decadence, Vegas-style, like dining in a sophisticated steak and chop joint. To satisfy his craving, we decided to take a gamble on the new kids in town, N9ne. Restauranteurs Michael Kornick and Scott DeGraff have recreated their exceptionally popular Chicago signature establishment in Vegas and g...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on January 20, 2003

N9NE Steakhouse
The Palms
Las Vegas, Nevada
702.933.9900

Tremezzo

Best Of IgoUgo

Restaurant

Tremezzo Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
There’s only one thing better than finding a restaurant that serves great food, and that’s finding a restaurant that also offers great service. Add fair prices and a view of the inspiring fountains of Bellagio and you’ll find yourself standing squarely in the winner‘s circle. Tremezzo, located on the mezzanine level of the Aladdin Resort, claims to be the sort of restaurant little old Italian ladies would recommend. Those same ladies would also be appalled to learn that we had to rush our lovely meal, having barely left ourselves enough time to savor the flavors of the Old Country, before being required to scurry off to our promised eve...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on March 14, 2005

Tremezzo
3667 Las Vegas Blvd S
Las Vegas, Nevada 89109
(702) 785-5555

Mix

Best Of IgoUgo

Restaurant

Mix Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
We grabbed our tickets for Mama Mia before checking out Alain Ducasse’s, Mix Restaurant where we had post-theater reservations. My husband had stayed at THEhotel before; thus, he knew about the dark, secret elevators tucked into an alcove just left of the oh-so-cool reception desk. THEhotel, the latest entry into Vegas’ luxury accommodations, is at the end of the Strip atop the Mandalay Bay. Arriving within moments at the 64th floor enclave of cool, we stepped from the elevators and were greeted by the maitre ‘d as if he’d been expecting us. "May I...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on March 14, 2005

Mix
Mandalay Bay
Las Vegas, Nevada 89119
(702) 632-7777

Spice Market Buffet

Best Of IgoUgo

Restaurant | "Elements"

Spice Market Buffet Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
After flying all night, we didn’t want to spend another evening locked in with room service but didn‘t want to search far for a good meal. The solution was simple; we took the elevator to the mezzanine level of our hotel and experienced the best steak dinner of our trip sans reservation or extensive research. Elements’ theme reflects the earth’s primary elements: fire, water, stone, wood, and metal. One side of the restaurant reveals chefs searing meat and flaming seafood specialties while the entire back wall of the restaurant is made up of a liquid curtain fountain enhanced by Vegas-style mood lighting. Metal sconces, wood trims, and stone highlights round out the stylish venue. The res...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on March 24, 2005

Spice Market Buffet
3667 Las Vegas Blvd S
Las Vegas, Nevada 89109
(702) 785-5555

Cirque Du Soleil-KA

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction | "Ka"

Cirque Du Soleil-KA Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
After my last visit to Vegas, when I’d shelled out hundreds to see a number of shows, Mama Mia and Elton John’s Red Piano among them, I began to fear I’d grown spoiled or overly critical, because nothing was ringing my bell. Even these highly touted, long-running shows fell flat on me. The performances seemed so rote and the stories ho-hum. Perhaps I‘d grown past the stage of wonderment in my level of theatrical appreciation. That would be awful, because I basically love theatrics. Faith was happily restored during my recent visit to Vegas after receiving an invitation to Ka, the Cirque du Soliel show staged at the MGM Grand. I feared I’d never say this again and am t...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on May 28, 2005

Cirque Du Soleil-KA
MGM Grand Hotel
Las Vegas, Nevada

7 Top Tips and Tip-offs

Best Of IgoUgo

Story/Tip

Aladdin's Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
1) Vegas cabbies are the best source of information. If you talk to cabbies, almost all talk back. They are quick with tips, opinions, suggestions, and, best of all, stories! There’s little they haven’t seen or heard and, although they won’t name names, there’s a reason they like shuttling people around. They're often a mixture of voyeur, counselor, medic, and travel guide. These guys wear more hats than a showgirl at the Tropicana! 2) Cabbies told us about the weather in Vegas. Summer temperatures soar typically over 110-degrees Fahrenheit. Locals will assure you it’s dry heat, but then, so is a sauna! Dehydration takes a serious toll on many visitors, especially after late...Read More

Wynn-ing in Vegas

Best Of IgoUgo

Story/Tip

Red Rock Canyon Photo, Las Vegas, Nevada
Quote:
Steve Wynn’s new casino will do at least one thing for him - it will make the average citizen take note of what’s going on in the business trenches of Sin City. Why? Because it’s starting to look as if the Emperor has no clothes on and that's always fun to talk about. Even if you go to Vegas to lose yourself to flash and bling with no interest in the business of Vegas beyond how much you hope to win , you can’t visit the town without learning that Steve Wynn is a major player on the Vegas strip. He literally carved a new image for the town with the construction of Bellagio and its high class art collection and décor. Talk to anyone, any cabbie and clerk on the strip, and they will have an opin...Read More