Las Vegas Journals

Must do in Las Vegas (not for families)

A December 1999 trip to Las Vegas by Laura

Quote: I go to Vegas at least once a year. Here are some of my favorite things to do and see.

Must do in Las Vegas (not for families)

Overview

Quote:
Fire Valley, Arizona. Casinos, shows like Cirque de Soleil. See Hoover Dam (one time is your life is plenty). Freemont Street, roller coaster at New York, New York. Free lounge acts are great.

Quick Tips:

Check out the old part of Vegas - Freemont street. The margaritas at Fitzgerald's are not bad at all. Get the .95 prime rib at the Stardust.

Best Way To Get Around:

Taxis a readily available. I always like to have a car in Vegas. I feel freer to roam about rather than paying taxis all the time There is free parking everywhere.

Boardwalk Hotel and Casino

Hotel | "Holiday Inn Boardwalk"

Quote:
I was very pleasantly suprised at this little hotel. The price was very reasonable, and the hotel was clean and looked newly decorated. It is a perfect central-strip location. My room was spacious and had a coffee maker. The $1 pina coladas and margaritas are great in the bar. This is one of only 2 or 3 non-union hotels in Las Vegas in case that is an important issue for you.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on December 16, 2001

Boardwalk Hotel and Casino
3750 Las Vegas Blvd. South
Las Vegas, Nevada 89109
(702) 735-2400

MGM Grand

Hotel

Quote:
I hate this place. It is too darn big. You walk for miles to get to anything. And be wary. I learned the hard way. There is a BIG difference between the Emerald Tower rooms and the Oz tower. Emerald Tower rooms feel like circa 1978 Holiday Inn. We were given a smoking room because non-smoking rooms were all taken. It was NASTY. Our clothes and hair reeked just from the stagnant stink in the room. The Emerald Tower Rooms are pretty big, but the bathrooms are small and need updating and better lighting.

The Oz tower rooms are lovely with large marble bathrooms. The room itself is small, but the furnishings were nice like a business class hotel.

Member Rating 1 out of 5 on December 16, 2001

MGM Grand
3799 Las Vegas Blvd. S.
Las Vegas, Nevada 89109
(702) 891-7777

Rio All Suite Hotel and Casino

Hotel | "Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino"

Quote:
The rooms are all suites. What more can you ask for? I had a king sized bed and a whole couch seating area with coffee table and large TV. There was a fridge, coffee maker and a very large bathroom. The hotel is off the strip, but there is plenty to do right in Rio. A must-do is a visit to the Voodoo Lounge on the top of the hotel. It offers the best view of the strip in town and has great live entertainment.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on December 16, 2001

Rio All Suite Hotel and Casino
3700 W Flamingo Rd.
Las Vegas, Nevada 89103
(702) 252-7777

Stardust Resort And Casino

Hotel | "Stardust"

Quote:
This is one of the older classic casino hotels, toward the end of the strip. I was pleasantly surprised by the tower rooms. They were very comfortable and clean. The bathrooms in the casino are very nice too with beige marble. The $6.95 prime rib dinner at the Island Paradise Cafe is actually really good and served 24 hours a day. The Sports Book is nice and not overly crowded or rowdy. The Mexican restaurant in the hotel comes highly recommended by a friend too. The buffet is nothing great, but it is also cheaper than other places on the strip. Stardust does not cater to families which can be a good thing in a place like Vegas.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on December 16, 2001

Stardust Resort And Casino
(Closed)
Las Vegas, Nevada 89109
702-732-6111

Harrahs Las Vegas

Hotel | "Harrah's Las Vegas Casino & Hotel"

Quote:
Harrah''s was nothing special. The room rates were average and the rooms were comfortable. The location is great and central to the strip. I did not find anything special about the dining or gaming experience. The circus theme with the yellow, orange and red got tiresome. It seems like one of the older strip establishments.

Member Rating 2 out of 5 on December 16, 2001

Harrahs Las Vegas
3475 Las Vegas Blvd S
Las Vegas, Nevada 89109
(702) 369-5000

Polo Towers

Hotel

Quote:
Best Things Nearby:The Las Vegas Strip!Best Things About the Resort:Location and the untit is wonderful.Resort Experience:This is THE perfect location in the center of the strip. Free parking. We had a 2 bed room, 2 bathroom apartment. It was lovely, newly decorated with all the kitchen amenities and plenty of space to feel comfortable. This was one of those lock-off style timeshares, but we were lucky to have the entire 2 units. There is a one bedroom unit with a master bedroom suite, full kitchen and combined dining area and living room. The "lock off" is more like a hotel room. Much smaller with its own bathroom and a microwave, coffee maker and mini-fridge...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on May 5, 2002

Polo Towers
3745 Las Vegas Boulevard South
Las Vegas, Nevada 89109
(702) 261-1000

Stardust Resort & Casino

Restaurant | "Island Paradise Cafe "

Quote:
This is my FAVORITE place for the famed $6.95 prime rib. It is acually a Chinese Restaurant, but they serve the prime rib 24 hours a day. It comes with soup or salad, a roll and veggies - usually peas and carrots. The prime rib is actually really good. It is not fatty and is a nice 1 inch thick slice. The lines can be long at dinner time, but then again you have all night and into the wee hours to enjoy it.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on December 17, 2001

Stardust Resort & Casino
3000 Las Vegas Blvd. South
Las Vegas, Nevada 89109
(702) 732-6111

California Pizza Kitchen - The Mirage

Best Of IgoUgo

Restaurant | "California Pizza Kitchen"

Quote:
I know it's a chain, but I love this place. The line can be long at the Mirage, but it usually moves fast. It is located in a circle in the center of the casino. The service is efficient and fast. I know it's a chain, but I love this place. There can be a wait, but the estimates given by the hostess are accurate. The service is efficient, friendly and fast. My favorite pizzas are the Thai chicken with a sweet barbequey sauce, chicken, bean sprout and carrots (I hold the cilantro). Other good choices are the Original BBQ chicken pizza with smoked gouda, red onions and cilantro and the Tandoori chicken pizza served with mango chutney on the side. The Philly cheese steak pizza can be greasy, but...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on December 17, 2001

California Pizza Kitchen - The Mirage
3400 Las Vegas Blvd S
Las Vegas, Nevada 89109
(702) 791-7111

Benihana Village

Restaurant

Quote:
Benihana Village is one of my favorite places to eat. They like to tout the "38,000 square foot restaurant where you cross over various Japanese style bridges, past through a forest of bamboo to dine in one of the teppanyaki rooms were masterful chefs slice and dice your meal right in front of your own eyes." However, I like the food plain and simple. The grilled meat and vegetables are done just right and you do get a lot for your money. The dinners are served with Japanese Onion Soup, Salad, Shrimp Appetizer, Hibachi Vegetables, Steamed Rice and Japanese Green Tea. I like the Hibachi Steak and my friends love the shrimp. You will smell like fried food when you leave because of the cooking at t...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on December 17, 2001

Benihana Village
3000 Paradise Road
Las Vegas, Nevada 89109
+1 702 732 5755

Gordon Biersch

Restaurant

Quote:
This is a brewery/restaurant. When I told the taxi driver where to take us, he said it was one of his favorite places. I had the Thai chicken pizza. I think they used some dark meat of chicken which I think is nasty and was not very pleased with it. Others in the group had Roasted Chicken Fettucine Tossed with Sun Dried Tomatoes in a Pesto Cream Sauce and that looked good. There were other comfort foods like meatloaf and roasted chicken. The menu was varied with many good choices using Asian, Indian and Cajun influences. The bar was hopping and I heard from locals that it is a good singles scene. It was noisy and there was a really good reggae band playing the night we were there. Thee is...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on December 16, 2001

Gordon Biersch
3987 Paradise Road
Las Vegas, Nevada 89109
+1 702 312 5247

Star Trek: The Experience

Attraction | "Star Trek: The Experience"

Quote:
This is probably not the thing to do if you are not a Trekki. It was interesting enough, but I did not "get" some of the references. There is a History of the Future exhibit that gives all the background. It goes on and on for blocks until you get into the "ride/performance." You are toured around on foot and then get on a space ship that is like one of those virtual reality rides you see at touristy places in every city.

Member Rating 2 out of 5 on December 17, 2001

Star Trek: The Experience
Las Vegas Hilton 3000 Paradise Road
Las Vegas, Nevada 89109
(888) 462-6535

Mystere at Treasure Island

Attraction | "Mystère"

Quote:
This was a blast. The show kept your attention as acrobats were flying and clowns were dancing etc. They also used humor with a couple characters. The costumes were colorful and creative. The show is quite difficult to explain, but worth the time. It is no Barnum and Baily and can be more likened to Blue Man Group or other fun performance art.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on December 17, 2001

Mystere at Treasure Island
3300 Las Vegas Blvd South
Las Vegas, Nevada 89109
(702) 796-9999

EFX

Attraction | "EFX Alive"

Quote:
I saw EFX Alive when it did not star Rick Springfield. I thought the show was over rated. There is really no story line. The show takes the star on a journey through time, space and magic to a world where mountains move and dragons breath fire. The scenery, special effects and costumes are really wild. The show, while entertaining, did not leave me in awe.

Member Rating 2 out of 5 on December 17, 2001

EFX
MGM Grand Hotel Casino / 3799 Las Vegas Blvd South
Las Vegas, Nevada 89109

Joint

Attraction | "The Joint"

Quote:
I like this club. It is the 23 to 35 year old crowd. They play loud dance music. There are some couches to lounge on when you get tired of dancing. I think there are a lot of Californians that hang out at the Hard Rock. The crowd is pretty friendly. It is not overly clubby with sleazy skimpy black dresses everywhere. It is a bit more down to earth if you are looking for a good scene.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on December 17, 2001

Joint
Hard Rock Hotel and Casino / 4455 Paradise Road
Las Vegas, Nevada 89109

VooDoo Rooftop Nightclub at Rio

Attraction | "The Vodoo Lounge"

Quote:
Atop the 51st floor at the Rio, this is THE BEST place to view the lights of Las Vegas. There is an outdoor deck, but I have found it VERY windy and can not stay outside too long. The lounge is dark and cozy with blacklights glowing. The night I was there, a motown band played disco and R&B hits. It was fun and lively, but not a cheesy pick-up joint.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on December 17, 2001

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

Monte Carlo Pub & Brewery

Attraction | "Monte Carlo Pub & Brewery"

Quote:
The Monte Carlo Pub & Brewery has six microbrews and some food choices like pizzas, pasta and sandwiches. The pub is no small quaint environment you'd associate with a pub. It is a huge industrial-like space with a large bar and lots of tables. When I was there, a really great cover band was playing and the 20 to 30-somethings were enjoying these huge columns of beer you can purchase for $30. The column has a tapper and can be shared like an enormous pitcher among friends. The wheat beer was refreshing with the lemon slice. Other nights there is a DJ spinning dance tunes and I hear the crowd can get a little cheesy.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on December 17, 2001

Monte Carlo Pub & Brewery
3770 S. Las Vegas Blvd.
Las Vegas, Nevada 89109
(702) 730-7777

Rumjungle

Attraction | "The Rumjungle & House of Blues"

Quote:
This place is a Brazilian churasco restaurant early on, but at about 12 am or so, it gets hopping. The girls in leopard bikinis come out and dance above the bar on scaffolding. Much later there is probably more dancing, but I have not stayed late enough to see it. Lines do form late night. The focus here is certainly on rum. There are a bunch of rums from fancy to basic to sip and a slew or tropical drinks. The tropical drinks come with a stalk of sliced sugar cane to nibble while you sip. This is a great place to check out. The decor is impressive with glass and brass waterfalls and a chic tropical theme - par for the course at Mandalay Bay. Careful with the tropical drinks though, I did hav...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on December 19, 2001

Rumjungle
3450 Las Vegas Blvd. South
Las Vegas, Nevada

Red Square

Attraction

Quote:
This is a really chic place. Belly up to the bar and you will see, it is a block of ice and the decorations are very cool making you feel like a Russian communist party activist. The bartenders are friendly and professional. Try the rootbeer float martini. It is delicious. The focus, as you guessed is vodka here. It has never been crowded any time I have walked by, but the decor is so cool, it is worth a stop for a cocktail. I can't speak for the Russian food on the menu.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on December 19, 2001

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