A Wonderful Alternate Vacation

Well, we had planned on going to Ft. Lauderdale, FL, but due to the unfortunate disaster that they encountered, we chose to take a trip to Las Vegas! What a wonderful surprise it turned out to be.


A Wonderful Alternate Vacation

Member Rating 0 out of 5 by Beauchemin on October 9, 2004

Take advantage of the free offerings at the hotels, like the Bellagio fountain show, Treasure Island show, or just walking into all the casinos on the strip and checking out the beautiful architecture and thinking of the imagination used to build these massive hotels. Also, be sure to visit the Hoover Dam and the Red Rock Canyon.${QuickSuggestions} Take water wherever you go during the day - it's HOT. Check with the concierge at the hotel or timeshare for discount coupons to various events and shows, and get an Entertainment Book for Las Vegas before going out. Plan what you really want to see and be flexible for the rest.${BestWay} Drive to a hotel in the middle of the strip in the evening and have your car valet parked. Then walk the strip and enjoy the sights.

The monorail was not working when we were there, but I'm sure that would be a wonderful way to get around.

If you don't have a car, take a taxi, however be ready to wait in traffic. If you do have a car, use the back or side roads to get where you want to go.


Fairfied Grand Desert

Member Rating 5 out of 5 by Beauchemin on October 11, 2004

Best Things Nearby:
Hard Rock Restaurant and Casino, The Strip

Best Things About the Resort:
This resort is kept immaculate, and all the people working there are very friendly and helpful. The two pools and three hot tubs were wonderful. There was an on-site convenience store and a coffee shop.

Resort Experience:
As you walk into the lobby of this resort, you will see marble floors, hear the music of a baby grand piano, and see the smiling faces of all who work there. The doorman greets you with a warm smile, and the quick check-in was great!

We went up to our suite, which was a one bedroom, and were a bit disappointed that it didn't have a Jacuzzi tub. We mentioned this to the gentleman at the front desk, and he made every attempt to be sure that we were moved to a one-bedroom deluxe room the next day.

The large kitchen was well equipped with all the necessary dishes, pots, pans, complimentary coffee, dishwashing detergent, paper towels, and more. The master bedroom had a large, comfortable king-sized bed, and from there you walked into a room with the Jacuzzi tub and a large mirror and sink. As you walked through that room, you entered the bathroom, which had a huge shower, a sink, and a vanity with drawers to put your belongings in. The bathroom opened from the Jacuzzi room and also from the entry area. The living room/dining area was a good size and had an armoir with a TV and DVD player. I must say that this was one of the nicest, cleanest resorts we have ever been in.

Wyndham Grand Desert
265 East Harmon Avenue
Las Vegas, Nevada, 89109
(800) 4386493

Harrahs' Buffet

Member Rating 5 out of 5 by Beauchemin on October 11, 2004

We were given two, free VIP buffet tickets for taking the tour at the Fairfield Grand Desert, so we decided to try it. We are not crazy about buffets, however, this one was fabulous.

We started our excursion around this massive buffet by eating the shrimp cocktail and all the Alaskin King Crab legs we could manage. Then, on to the other stations, the prime rib was cooked to perfection, and the server cut the meat exactly to your specifications; I wanted just a small taste and he did just that. Then came the roasted potatoes; vegetables, cooked to perfection; fresh fruit; chicken; fish; salad; and deserts. Where does it end and how does one even begin to explain how to get through such massive amounts of food? It all looked so delicious, but we found the best way to tackle it was to walk around the buffet first, decide what you really wanted to eat, and then begin!!

Flavors, Harrah's Las Vegas Buffet
3475 Las Vegas Blvd South
Las Vegas, Nevada, 89109
(702) 369 5000

La Creperie at the Paris Hotel and Casino

Member Rating 5 out of 5 by Beauchemin on October 11, 2004

After a day of visiting the Hoover Dam, we decided to wander down the Strip, and we were intrigued by the Eiffel Tower. So, in we went, and, as we walked around looking for a place to have a light evening meal, we came upon La Creperie, and what a wonderful find it was! We visited it two more times before we came back to Rhode Island.

We ordered our crepes, mine was a seafood crepe and my husband had one with ham, cheese, and a wonderful creamy sauce. When they were ready, we couldn't believe our eyes! They were huge! We watched the chef prepare them, and he spoke to us, telling us just what he was putting in each one. How friendly everyone was. We took our crepes ($6.95), and went to a small area with tables between La Creperie and the bakery and began to eat. I could only finish half of mine, and it was full of crab meat, scallops, shrimp, and a sauce. My husband finished his and then finished half of what I couldn't finish of mine.

We then went next door to the French bakery and purchased a fruit tart and had coffee. What a wonderful experience it was. What I did forget to mention was that, when sitting inside the Paris hotel and casino, it's just like sitting outside. The ceiling is painted like the sky and is truly a wonderful experience!

La Creperie
Paris Las Vegas - 3655 Las Vegas Blvd S.
Las Vegas, Nevada, 89109
(702) 946-7000

Hard Rock Cafe

Member Rating 5 out of 5 by Beauchemin on October 11, 2004

We've been to many Hard Rock Cafes, including the original in London. We've enjoyed them all and were not disappointed with this one.

We wanted an informal atmosphere to go for dinner one night, perhaps a good burger or something, and we were not disappointed. The atmosphere was very friendly and the service was excellent. Our waitress was very attentive and helpful.

The memorabilia was great. There were guitars, costumes from singers, and sheet music. This is something which all Hard Rock Cafe's have, and I never get tired of looking around at it.

So, if you're hot (it was 103˚F when we were there in September) and feel like going somewhere for a great informal meal, the Hard Rock is your place.

Hard Rock Cafe
4475 Paradise Road
Las Vegas, Nevada, 89109
(702) 733-8400

Ellis Island

Member Rating 5 out of 5 by Beauchemin on October 26, 2004

When we arrived at the Fairfield Grand Desert, we were famished! After our flight from Rhode Island, we were exhausted and just wanted to get a quick, inexpensive meal.

We asked one of the employees where the locals go for a quick, inexpensive, but good meal. He told us about Ellis Island Casino. He said sign up for the free casino card and then get the barbeque chicken and ribs.

So, off we went to Ellis Island. We played a few slot machines and then sat down and ordered the meal. To our surprise, not only did we get delicious barbecued half chicken, but also a rack of baby back ribs, corn on the cob, coleslaw and a beer for $6.95! (If you don't have a card, the meal costs $9.95.) There was so much food that neither my husband nor I could finish it. It was absolutely delicious. The barbecue sauce was just spicy enough and the waiter brought extra sauce just in case we wanted it. The service was excellent and the waiter was very helpful in telling us about the various places we could visit while we were in Vegas.

The casino itself does not look like much from the outside and when you first enter it is very smoky; however, the area where the food is served was fine. Basically the only smoke we could smell was the wonderful aroma of the barbecue cooking!

I must say that this place one that should be visited while in Vegas. I'm sure if you like barbecue chicken and ribs you will love Ellis Island!

Ellis Island Casino & Brewery
4178 Koval Lane
Las Vegas, Nevada, 89109
(702) 733-8901

Blue Man Group

Member Rating 5 out of 5 by Beauchemin on October 11, 2004

Ok, so we entered the venue, and wondered, why are there earplugs in the lobby?? Why are there people in the audience with plastic slickers on? Why are there tech's walking around with crepe paper? Then the show begins, the theater darkens, and three blue men with WHITE eyes come onstage! They begin to play the drums and iridescent paint transcends into the first several rows of the audience, the answers to questions number one and two. Then the techs come around and pass out the crepe paper, "We want audience participation. Make a hat!" Ok, so we all wrap crepe paper around our heads and everyone begins to laugh, then we all looked at each other and laughed even harder.

The show continues. More music, more dancing, more comedy (silent of course), and someone is called down from the audience to participate in the show. She has to eat with them. They can't open their Twinkies so she helps them. They appreciate her help, and they begin eating each other's food. She goes back to her seat.

Another person is taken from the audience. He goes in the back, is hung upside down, and "paints" a picture with his body after they pour paint all over him. He goes back to his seat. Then the Blue Men do some acrobats, and have a few different acts - these were excellent. At the end of the show, the lights are out and the strobe lights begin. What happens next is something I cannot tell you because, for those of you who have not yet seen this show, it would just ruin it, and for those of you who have, you know the answer. I must say, however, that this is a definite MUST-SEE!!!

Blue Man Group at The Venetian
3355 Las Vegas Blvd. South
Las Vegas, Nevada, 89109
(866) 641-SHOW

Jubilee

Member Rating 5 out of 5 by Beauchemin on October 11, 2004

When we told some friends we were going to Vegas, they said, "You must see Jubilee."

We purchased tickets through the concierge at the timeshare and went to Bally's to see this show - and what a show it was! Dancing, costumes, and glitz and glitter; everything you would expect in a Vegas show.

The costumes were just fantastic. Headpieces weighing in excess of 40 pounds on probably 50 beautiful dancers. Most of them were topless, but you don't even notice it once the show really begins. The dancers were fantastic and the costumes in each segment were indescribable. This is like an old-time Zigfield production, especially at the end when all the dancers come walking down the stairs on the stage with their huge head pieces and shimmery costumes and high heels! Another MUST for anyone visiting Vegas.

Jubilee!
3645 Las Vegas Blvd South
Las Vegas, Nevada, 89109
+1 702 967 4567

Our First Visit to Vegas

Member Rating 0 out of 5 by Beauchemin on October 11, 2004

Vegas was our second choice of our vacation destinations, and plans were made two days before we flew in. We were going to Ft. Lauderdale, but, due to the hurricanes, we had to change our plans at the last minute...should we go back to Sedona? No, let's go to Vegas, and so it was…plans, flights, and timeshares changed all within a matter of an hour or so. How glad we were.

We stayed at the beautiful Fairfield Grand Desert, which was located in a perfect place. We visited the Hoover Dam, the Red Rock Canyon, and, of course, the Strip - how does one explain what it's like to see this place for the first time? The water show in front of the Bellagio was just beautiful. The water is in sync to the music, lights shine in different colors, and the water shoots up in the air about 100 feet. The show in front of Treasure Island with the band and dancers was wonderful; the Mardi Gras at the Rio Casino was such fun; and the shows, Jubilee at Bally's and Blue Man Group at the Luxor, were just great.

The beautiful, hand-blown glass flowers on the ceiling at the Bellagio were a sight that is truly indescribable. Walking through the Paris hotel and eating at La Creperie was a wonderful experience. Going into the Venetian and seeing the water canal with the gondolas was a sight in itself, a little of Italy in the USA. The Star Trek experience at the Hilton was most enjoyable, as was the Shark Aquarium at Mandalay Bay, which can be enjoyed by young and old alike. So, whether you gamble or you don't, if you have an unlimited budget or not, there is something for everyone in Vegas!


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