Archive for the 'Las Vegas' category

Las Vegas – The Most Hyped City in the World!

| October 15, 2006 7:03 pm

This past weekend we made our first foray into Las Vegas as part of our anniversary celebration. We stayed at Venetian Hotel and I can only summarize our visit in the context of “The Good”, “The Bad”, and “The Ugly” but I will say that Las Vegas is definitely the most overhyped city in the world…

“The Good”

There is plenty of entertainment in Las Vegas. Any kind of activity from scenic mountain trips to concerts, plays, and other shows are available at various times throughout the day. You can pretty much find any kind of gambling gaming activity nearly anywhere. Lastly, we had a great time celebrating someone special’s birthday up there and eating fine dining and watching the fountain show at Bellagio.

“The Bad”

To start with, service was bad pretty much everywhere. From the beginning of our trip with “Cattle Car Airlines” to the Starbucks at Treasure Island to city infrastructure it was all BAD, BAD, BAD!

Where to begin? First, I can plainly see why the service can be so bad; there are simply car loads/airplane loads/truck loads of people arriving all the time. Why provide excellent service when you can easily make it up in volume!

But the first thing that annoyed us was the poor airport infrastructure. I’m told in 1990 there were 300k people living in Las Vegas and today there are 2 million. I don’t think the City Government has expanded the infrastructure in any way. What are they doing with those billions of tax dollars?

Second, the taxi lines are too long! It’s pretty ridiculous when you have to wait 40+ minutes for a cab at the airport and at pretty much any hotel (the ONLY place you can get a cab is at hotels)!

Third, the traffic is horrendous. There are too many cars trying to drive down the same strip of road. Worst yet the traffic lights aren’t syncronized so you may drive for one or two blocks only to be stopped at the next traffic light.

I mentioned to a cab driver why they don’t simply install a train from airport to the strip and he said, “yeah that’d be great for tourists but bad for us.” So there are vested interests in keeping the cash flow going and keeping the tourists unhappy.

Fourth, the casino action was pathetic at most hotels. We stayed at the Venetian and the place reminded me of the movie Night of the Living Dead as the patrons wandered aimlessly throughout the casio, shops, and hotel. The zombies sitting at the tables were quiet and subdued creating an atmosphere as exciting as a public library. The action wasn’t much better at Bellagio where the zombies were a little more animated. There was some hot action at a few key places and I’ll tell you where down below.

“The Ugly”

With too much traffic comes too much pollution and this left the air on street level hardly breathable. Between the thousand cars driving down the strip and the smoke eminating from every other cigarette dangling from the mouths of zombies the oxygen level must have dropped down to 8% of the air!

Speaking of pollution, there were thousands of lewd sex solicilations strewn across every sidewalk as well as being handed out by some pretty desperate people. It’d be nice if the trash were picked up every now and then.

Lastly, it was plain ugly having to wait for taxi cabs or being forced (ala Baatan death march) to walk up and down the strip amongst a bunch of zombies. The best course of action is to plan you hotel stay either for the casino action or for the proximity to the events and activities you want to do.

“The Summary”

Would I return there? Not really except if there were a very special occasion in which someone wanted me to attend.

As for some hot casino action I would recommend:

The Wynn Hotel, Excalibur Hotel and MGM Grand (in this order).

I walked most of the hotels and I found the Wynn with the best combination of hot casino action and luxury accommodation and atmosphere. What do I mean by “hot action?” I mean action where people are excited to win (or even lose); they create an energized atmosphere (much like a sports arena) where you cheer on your fellow patrons. I didn’t see any zombies at the Wynn nor even Excalibur and only a few at MGM so if you want exciting game action go to the Wynn.

A word of caution

The higher end hotels (Bellagio, Venetian, Wynn) offer the best and wider variety of liquor whereas places like Excalibur offer basic liquor choices so there is a trade off: the higher the luxury, the colder the casino action and conversly the cheaper the liquor (Excalibur, MGM) the hotter the action.

The only exception was the Wynn where casino action and liquor selection were top notch too bad we stayed at the Venetian!