JohnnyQ
JohnnyQ
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GialmereTigerWuLuckyPhowJoemanAyecarumbatringlomane
July 27th, 2019 at 9:41:44 AM permalink
Just got back home, hereís a summary of our trip.

HOTELS

This year we split our stay between PARIS and MIRAGE. So that adds one more to the list of places I have stayed at over the years. Both had nice, large rooms. The shower at PARIS was large enough for 4 adults which was kindof cool but we didnít end up needing that.

Amenity-wise, PARIS had a larger TV than MIRAGE, but MIRAGE had more channels to surf through. As a Diamond level playerís club member, we got a late check-out of 2 pm which made switching to MIRAGE easier. (We used myVegas to book 2 comp nights there, just paying the resort fee and tax. However, that opened up a few rewards that are "minimum 1 night stay required). There were plenty of desk clerks there, so we didnít have to wait in line very long to check-in on a weekday.

One little weird thing about our room at the MIRAGE is that the floor had a noticeable lean to it, at least a half bubble off of level. I canít imagine that was on purpose, so is it possible the property settled that much over the years ? I didnít see any tell-tale cracks anywhere.

SHOWS

We enjoyed all of the shows we saw. It is a bonus, of course, to get them comp'd or deeply discounted.

KA ( Comp from myVegas )
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

I picked front row seats when I did the redemption on the M-Life website. I know some people donít care for that, but I enjoyed having the performers crouch and hide right in front of us, and march by several times on the raised edge separating the theatre from the pit.

BEATLES LOVE ( Comp from myVegas )
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Last row seats this time, but because it is a ďtheatre-in-the-roundĒ, I donít think there are any bad seats.

The show is mostly the same as we have seen over the years. However, I donít quite understand why they open with a darker scene of bombing in WW II, then abruptly jump about 20 years later to the early 1960ís Beatles. Maybe to show the contrast, I guess ?

We enjoy both of these Cirque shows so much that we have seen them multiple times.

MAT FRANCO ( Comp CZR )
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Mrs Q is still DIAMOND at CZR for a few more months, so we were able to get 2 comp tix for Mat Franco. This isnít exactly free because it takes some serious coin-in to reach that level, but it is a nice perk. The seats in our row, about 6 back from the stage, were large and really comfortable, more like a small love seat than a typical theatre seat.

I agree with the WIZís review that it is a very good show.

Link here https://wizardofvegas.com/articles/mat-franco/

He ( Mat, I donít know about the Wiz ) is a very charismatic, likeable performer with a number of excellent tricks. I only remember one duplicate from his appearances on AGT several years ago, and it is fun seeing it in person anyway.

However, I do think that one of his tricks is an exact copy of what Mac King has been doing for years, so it would be nice if Mat could do something to differentiate that a little bit more.

MAC KING
- - - - - - -

Also saw MAC KING for old times sake using the Free Show with minimum 1 drink purchase coupon. That ended up being about $ 30 total, so a very good value. Another $ 5 to the usher got us to the 2nd Row. Mrs. Qís smile got her on stage for a card trick. Cool ! She was a good natured participant, having a good time up there which makes for a much better experience for the audience too. I heard an interview with Mac King where he emphasized the importance of picking a person with the right personality for his audience participation tricks.

It was fun to visit with MAC after the show for a minute while we got a T-Shirt, deck of cards, and box of Fruit Loops signed ( this was one of the props from his show ).

BEST TRIP VALUE

All the shows above.

WORST TRIP VALUE

I bought a 20 oz bottle of Coke in McCarran. It was $ 4.19.

DINING

I think SPICE MARKET at PLANET HOLLYWOOD and the PARIS buffet have both slipped a few notches over the years. MGM was a little better, but also sortof so-so. At least they included wine (Liberty Creek - it's $ 7.99 where I live for a 1.5 liter bottle). I wouldnít rush back to any of these. The price of the 24 hour buffet pass has also gone up to $ 60 on weekdays, it was only $ 50 a couple of trips ago.

My favorite was CRAVINGS at MIRAGE. Excellent crab legs and a sushi selection much better than the CZR offerings we tried. Well prepared fish as well.

I didnít get the bar package there for $ 12.99, but when one of the cashiers said I could have it for $ 8, I said what the heck ( beer, wine, rum punch, screwdrivers, and mimosas). I think the lower price may be for when you have a dinner comp, but Iím not sure. You can take a drink with you when you leave, just pour it into a plastic cup that the hostesses have. If I recall correctly, the drinks were included the last time we were at Mirage buffet. Aarrgghh.

Anyways, at the risk of repeating myself, the best crab legs were definitely at MIRAGE.

I think all of these have self-service soft drinks now. I actually like that, you can get something to drink yourself much faster than waiting for the waitress. In fact, except for the Diamond room at PARIS, the buffets essentially donít have waitresses anymore. Once or twice, someone will pop by to clear off used plates.

We went to Ellis Island several mornings for the good olí $ 6.99 Steak and Eggs breakfast special. And we did the Steak dinner there one night too. It is interesting to see the renovations there have made it much less dumpy than it was back in the day.

The breakfast buffet at FLAMINGO is still pretty good, but they don't have free mimosas anymore. ;-(

SHOPPING

I went to the south Outlet Mall with Mrs Q since I didnít have anything better to do one particular morning. My shopping consisted of getting a bottle of Coke from a vending machine. We also did the 4 for $ 10 T-Shirts at one of the little shops on Koval, picking out some with a lot of glitter/sparkles for my mother-in-law.

TRANSPORTATION

We mostly used LYFT for transportation. The price is pretty good, especially if you have a one-time first time user promo to apply. I was surprised that several drivers kept the radio turned up pretty loud, especially the one who was playing rap music with explicit lyrics.

All the vehicles were clean, most were well maintained but I could hear a brake or wheel bearing issue on a couple of them, and the drivers were pleasant. We also took several rides on the 202 bus to get back and forth to the PALMS.

Misc - DIAMOND at CZR

I donít know if we will do Diamond again next year. For the past several years, CZR had a promo where they would match your Tier Credits for a month or two in the spring. I didnít see that again earlier this year. And they have started charging for the Diamond lounge. And on many occasions the comp monthly show we have wanted to see has been unavailable, even though the show might only be 60 % sold. For those reasons, it might be time to give M-Life a try.

ĒSTADIUMĒ STYLE BLACKJACK at TI

I was pleasantly surprised to see very player friendly rules there.
- 3/2 Blackjack
- Dealer stands on all 17ís
- DDAS I think
- Continuous Shuffling Machine ( I think )
- Surrender
- $ 1 Minimum Bet !

The drink service while we were there was the fastest we saw during our entire stay, although that could be ďHITĒ and miss, I suppose. We didnít end up spending very much time there, but I think I would next time if the rules are the same.

WORST LUCK

We played hours of FPDW and PALMS but only ended up with Quad Deuces once for each of us. Overall on the trip, we lost more than I had wanted/expected to, but less than we can afford to.

CATCH-22

We like comp hotel rooms, and we know if we don't play on the strip, our room offers are going to go away. So that is definitely a balancing act.

BEST LUCK

We took a voluntary bump on our flight to Las Vegas, and the airline gave both of us vouchers even though I had the impression that they really only needed one volunteer. So we didnít have to split up and got a crazy total amount of vouchers. It was so much that I am a little embarrassed to say how much. OK, OK, it was in the low-ish 4 figures range.
Last edited by: JohnnyQ on Jul 27, 2019
There's emptiness behind their eyes There's dust in all their hearts They just want to steal us all and take us all apart
GWAE
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July 27th, 2019 at 11:06:06 AM permalink
Nice report. Nicest part of diamond perk is skipping lines and no resort fees. MGM doesnt automatically waive resort fees without play
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JohnnyQ
JohnnyQ
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July 27th, 2019 at 11:15:14 AM permalink
Quote: GWAE

Nicest part of diamond perk is skipping lines and no resort fees.

Yep, I am gonna REALLY miss that. Hopefully there has been a HUGE drop-off in Diamond qualifications this year, enough that they decide to bring back some easier ways to get it in 2020.
There's emptiness behind their eyes There's dust in all their hearts They just want to steal us all and take us all apart
FleaStiff
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July 27th, 2019 at 6:53:30 PM permalink
Quote: JohnnyQ


We went to Ellis Island several mornings for the good olí $ 6.99 Steak and Eggs breakfast special.

Do they still have that one FREE bingo card for their first game of the day? Bingo is of vey little interest to me, but 'free' always means a lot.
JohnnyQ
JohnnyQ
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July 27th, 2019 at 7:21:59 PM permalink
Quote: FleaStiff

Do they still have that one FREE bingo card for their first game of the day? Bingo is of vey little interest to me, but 'free' always means a lot.

I haven't seen BINGO there for several years now.
There's emptiness behind their eyes There's dust in all their hearts They just want to steal us all and take us all apart
GWAE
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July 27th, 2019 at 8:54:15 PM permalink
Quote: JohnnyQ

Yep, I am gonna REALLY miss that. Hopefully there has been a HUGE drop-off in Diamond qualifications this year, enough that they decide to bring back some easier ways to get it in 2020.



check your pm
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MDawg
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July 27th, 2019 at 11:23:50 PM permalink
When you say that the Paris rooms are big - were you in a standard room? Never stayed at Paris but friends who have say Paris' standard rooms are actually pretty small and on the Paris website they are listed as 390 sq. ft. Whenever I look across at Paris from Bellagio or Cosmo it does appear like the windows are closer together than on other hotels, which also tells me that the Paris rooms are small.

For example the standard room size at Bellagio is 510 square feet. Standard room at Cosmo, 460 square feet. Hell, the Tuscany has standard rooms that are 650 square feet.

Mirage standard rooms are pretty small too, 394 square feet.


Nice detail, nice trip report. Thanks!
I tell you itís wonderful to be here, man. I donít give a damn who wins or loses. Itís just wonderful to be here with you people. https://wizardofvegas.com/forum/gambling/betting-systems/33908-the-adventures-of-mdawg/
JohnnyQ
JohnnyQ
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July 28th, 2019 at 6:52:04 AM permalink
Quote: MDawg

When you say that the Paris rooms are big - were you in a standard room?

Yes, a standard room as far as I know. It was probably 390 sq ft which is plenty big for a King Bed and then extra room for a nice chair in front of the floor to ceiling windows. Anyways, from my perspective, it seemed like a big room. In the past, I have stayed in a "petite suite" there and it was even bigger.

Quote: MDawg

For example the standard room size at Bellagio is 510 square feet. Standard room at Cosmo, 460 square feet. Hell, the Tuscany has standard rooms that are 650 square feet.

I have stayed at Tuscany and I consider their rooms huge. Same with RIO, which I think calls their 600-ish sq ft rooms suites.
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JeorgeBuckly
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July 29th, 2019 at 7:09:55 AM permalink
It sounds great, I read about your trip and now I would like to travel;)
Hullabaloo
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July 29th, 2019 at 8:45:21 AM permalink
Thanks for the report! You certainly do a lot more than I.

I do hope your vouchers don't say:

"Only Valid on Boeing 737 MAX aircraft".
JohnnyQ
JohnnyQ
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July 29th, 2019 at 3:17:51 PM permalink
Forgot to mention that every trip I try to do at least one completely new thing, in addition to our favorites like KA, BEATLES LOVE, gambling at PALMS. This trip, there were three:

1) Stayed at MIRAGE

2) Saw the MAT FRANCO show at LINQ

3) Even though we have seen MAC KING many times, this was the first time Mrs. Q got up on stage for a Card Trick.
There's emptiness behind their eyes There's dust in all their hearts They just want to steal us all and take us all apart
GWAE
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July 29th, 2019 at 3:30:13 PM permalink
Quote: JohnnyQ

Forgot to mention that every trip I try to do at least one completely new thing, in addition to our favorites like KA, BEATLES LOVE, gambling at PALMS. This trip, there were three:

1) Stayed at MIRAGE

2) Saw the MAT FRANCO show at LINQ

3) Even though we have seen MAC KING many times, this was the first time Mrs. Q got up on stage for a Card Trick.



I think Mat Franco is my currentl favorite vegas show. We saw him last year and I thought it was fantastic.

I love the bottle trick. I know how it is done but it is still amazing when he does it and how smooth he is.
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tringlomane
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July 30th, 2019 at 12:36:28 AM permalink
Great report!

And unfortunately the elimination of alcohol included at the Mirage buffet is a recent development. Still pretty good for the price, and definitely using myVegas. And front row to Ka is covered by a myvegas ticket? Interesting. But I could imagine my neck hurting by the end. And gf hates Ka.
FleaStiff
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July 30th, 2019 at 5:34:32 AM permalink
Quote: JohnnyQ

Yes, a standard room as far as I know.

Terms such as standard, deluxe, room, suite, are becoming as meaningless as the room charge absent the tax and the resort fee data.
JohnnyQ
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July 30th, 2019 at 6:03:31 PM permalink
Quote: tringlomane

And front row to Ka is covered by a myvegas ticket? Interesting. But I could imagine my neck hurting by the end. And gf hates Ka.

a) Yep, just go on-line to M-Life and book 'em. The seats were excellent for 95 % of the show, but for the rest they were a little too close to take in all the action. Or was that the free wine/beer at the MGM buffet ( yep, 2 for 1 through myVegas ) kicking in ?

b) KA has grown on me and I like it now.

But I think I may have finally exhausted my hoard of gold chips on myVegas, so I'm not sure if I can ever "earn" enough to get more show tix.
There's emptiness behind their eyes There's dust in all their hearts They just want to steal us all and take us all apart
GWAE
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July 30th, 2019 at 6:44:13 PM permalink
Quote: JohnnyQ

a) Yep, just go on-line to M-Life and book 'em. The seats were excellent for 95 % of the show, but for the rest they were a little too close to take in all the action. Or was that the free wine/beer at the MGM buffet ( yep, 2 for 1 through myVegas ) kicking in ?

b) KA has grown on me and I like it now.

But I think I may have finally exhausted my hoard of gold chips on myVegas, so I'm not sure if I can ever "earn" enough to get more show tix.



didnt you earn a boat load with those billion chips a few weeks ago?

I was able to earn over a million gold chips with both my account and wifes so I have a lot to play with. I don't think that I am going to play the game anymore though since they are really tightening up things.

I went on a hot run this evening on the wynn game. I earned 5 billion chips and over 8000 purple coins. I have enough for 4 free nights at the wynn with minimal play. I also heard you can request no resort fee on comped rooms there. You lose the things that come with the resort fee like internet though.
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JohnnyQ
JohnnyQ
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July 30th, 2019 at 6:53:33 PM permalink
Quote: GWAE

I went on a hot run this evening on the wynn game. I earned 5 billion chips and over 8000 purple coins.

Ooh la la, billions with a "B" !
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GWAE
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July 30th, 2019 at 7:06:36 PM permalink
Quote: JohnnyQ

Ooh la la, billions with a "B" !



have you been playing the wynn game?

I have reservations for oct at planet hollywood that is comped. I am thinking about changing to the wynn. I have never stayed there, just not a fan of how far down it is on the strip
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GWAE
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July 30th, 2019 at 7:09:04 PM permalink
Quote: JohnnyQ

Ooh la la, billions with a "B" !



have you been playing the wynn game?

I have reservations for oct at planet hollywood that is comped. I am thinking about changing to the wynn. I have never stayed there, just not a fan of how far down it is on the strip
Expect the worst and you will never be disappointed. I AM NOT PART OF GWAE RADIO SHOW
JohnnyQ
JohnnyQ
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July 30th, 2019 at 8:36:54 PM permalink
Quote: GWAE

have you been playing the wynn game?

I started a while ago but figured anything meaningful prize-wise would be out of reach. Also I switched cell phones so I think I lost some of my apps.

Anyhowz, maybe I will try Wynn Slots again.

Thanks. Regards.
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smoothgrh
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July 30th, 2019 at 8:52:20 PM permalink
Thanks for the trip report!

I'm finally going to visit Ellis Island next month, and I hear the "secret" steak dinner is now a not-so-secret promotion where you sign up for the players club and you have to play $5 of coin-in to get the special?

I wanted to see "old" Vegas, but I guess the mrs. will be happy Ellis Island won't be so dumpy.
JohnnyQ
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smoothgrh
July 31st, 2019 at 4:18:19 AM permalink
Quote: smoothgrh

and I hear the "secret" steak dinner is now a not-so-secret promotion where you sign up for the players club and you have to play $5 of coin-in to get the special?

I think that gets you the special for $ 7.99 instead of $ 9.99, but just check with their little Player's Club booth. I assume there may also be some other little perks for new sign-ups.

I think there are also a couple coupons in the American Casino Guide book. We get that sometimes, but didn't get around to it this year.
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Joeman
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smoothgrhJohnnyQ
July 31st, 2019 at 5:26:41 AM permalink
Quote: smoothgrh

Thanks for the trip report!

I'm finally going to visit Ellis Island next month, and I hear the "secret" steak dinner is now a not-so-secret promotion where you sign up for the players club and you have to play $5 of coin-in to get the special?

When I was there last (2017), you needed two coupons to get it down to $7.99. One was just there for the swiping. The other required $5 coin-in and then another swipe.

Here's what The LVA Top Ten has to say about it:

Quote: LasVegasAdvisor.com's Top Ten

#2: The Ellis Island complete steak dinner drops to #2, but only for this month to make way for room rates. Served 24/7 in the Café, get the $7.99 price by playing at least $5 in any slot or video poker machine with your club card inserted, then downloading the required discount coupon from an EI kiosk. If you donít want to play, you can get it for $9.99 ($3 off the listed price) just by downloading a coupon from the kiosk thatís available to everyone with a club card.

"Dealer has 'rock'... Pay 'paper!'"

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