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February 17, 2010, 09:22:27 AM

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Planing a trip to vegas again for Nov. 1st - 5th.

I received an email for MGM for $304 for all 4 nights.
I would like to stay at MGM but scared that if I have too many drinks I will get lost and never find my room, lol. Has anyone stayed at MGM....good/bad??

Luxor for $195 all 4 nights
This is another hotel I haven't stayed at. Seems like a good rate to me. Anyone ever stayed here?

Any suggestions on great deals?

I have been to Vegas many times and I would like to see a show maybe Penn & Teller any suggestions on cheap tickets?
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February 18, 2010, 04:06:48 PM

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Hi Sara!

Those offers sound like they may have come from the casinos and have excellent prices.  I checked the listings and am not aware of any current promos that will touch those prices for those dates...!

Is there a time limit or expiration for the offer?  November is a bit distant in the future...  Depending on the economic climate and room reservation levels, the hotels might offer even better deals as your dates draw near.  However, the good news is that (in most cases) MGM Grand and Luxor will allow you to cancel a reservation up to 48 hours before the arrival date without penalty.  You could reserve one of those offers and then cancel and re-book using a better offer if it comes along!

MGM Grand is huge!  It can be difficult to find people if you get separated... even with cell phones!  They do offer a Property Map (in Adobe Acrobat .PDF file format) which will help.  However, I would suggest 'getting lost' a couple of times while semi-sober shortly after settling into your room to assist with getting your bearings.  After wandering around a bit and noting a few of the landmarks, you will have a better chance at stumbling back to the right elevator while drunk!

I have been in MGM Grand and Luxor within the last few months, but have not stayed at either in a few years.  The normal rooms at MGM Grand are slightly bigger (by around 25 sq. ft.) than at Luxor.  They also have better beds (double pillow top) and nicer bathrooms (marble).  The minimum table stakes at most games at MGM Grand is $10.  At Luxor, you can find some $5 table stake games.  MGM Grand seems to attract a more affluent crowd, but the place is so big that you will meet people from all walks of life.  Luxor is attracting a mix of people in their 20s that want to party and folks that are a bit older that want a decent place to stay at a reasonable cost.  The casino floor area at Luxor has been remodeled within the past few years with new carpet, different night clubs, and a cool center bar area.

Beyond the casino deals that you have, my only other suggestion would be to consider a package deal.  If you are flying out of a city that Southwest Vacations services, you can sometimes beat the casino deals by packaging your flight and room together with a promotion that Southwest Vacations offers.  They typically only allow booking around 6 months in advance, but run short promos every few weeks with excellent deals.  Keep an eye on the Las Vegas Hotel Specials for these and other new promos to be listed.

For savings on show tickets, I highly recommend Tix 4 Tonight.  They have a location next to the big Coca-Cola bottle near MGM Grand and provide great discounts on shows.  The only drawbacks are that the  tickets are only available for shows for that day and you never really know for sure for which shows that they will have tickets available.  Recently, they have had tickets for a lot of the popular shows, including several of the Cirque Du Soleil shows...  I know that they sometimes have Penn & Teller tickets, but like all of the shows, not all of the time.

Penn & Teller are signed to perform at Rio for a long time in the future.  The Rio website is only accepting reservations through the end of May, but I am sure that they will be putting on shows during your travel dates.  You might want to keep an eye on the reservations page for coupons.  I noticed that they have a 25% off coupon currently available for shows through the end of March and know that they have listed coupons there in the past.

I hope that this helps!  Please let me know if I can provide help with any research or information as you prepare for your trip! Smiley

Mike
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February 19, 2010, 07:58:31 AM

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Thanks for all the info.

Both hotels have deadlines to book by. I can forward my promo emails to you if you would like, I have been receiving them like crazy. I think MGM is this weekend and Luxor is by the 26th of Feb. That is a good idea, I should just book one of them now with the pretty good deal I got and see if something better comes up or I find a packaged deal. I will either fly out of Houston or Austin, TX. Well I could do Corpus Christi or San Antonio, I am about 1 1/2 hours away from all of them.

So you think if I would like to sleep in a more compfortable bed I should go with MGM? I also like the location of MGM it's pretty much in the middle. I can't remember where the Luxor is, is it close to MGM? We usually stay at NYNY but I haven't really seen any good deals for Nov. yet. Last time we went I stayed at Riviera for $110 for all 4nights which wasn't too bad, it's just towards the end of the strip. Well if you see any good deals come up let me know.

I will check out tickets when we get there, we haven't seen a show in a few years and I would like to this year. It's my 5 year wedding anniversary & we will also be celebrating my husbands birthday!! Can't wait!!
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February 20, 2010, 12:34:57 PM

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Congrats!  Two reasons to celebrate will soon become three when you add being in Vegas to the celebration list! Smiley

The double pillow top mattresses at MGM Grand are much more comfortable than the regular mattresses at Luxor.  I feel that they have some of the best beds in Vegas!  If the quality of the bed factors into your decision, you may want to give them strong consideration.

MGM Grand is actually at the south end of the strip, but it is in the middle of the majority of the MGM-Mirage owned casinos.  Luxor isn't very far away from MGM Grand.  It is next to Excalibur and has trams available to Mandalay Bay and Excalibur which are always nice to ride as a brief break from walking.  New York New York is connected to MGM Grand via a walkway which makes it easy to get to the other side of the strip.  LVCVA.com provides a simple, but good map of the strip showing all of the properties.

I have not stayed at Riviera in recent times.  I do think that MGM Grand and Luxor are better choices with their easy accessibility to so many other properties.  Riviera is a bit isolated...

Please let me know if I can help with anything for the celebrations!

Mike
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March 02, 2010, 11:41:34 AM

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So I booked my room!  Smiley
I used my promo code for MGM Grand (MKT389) and got a deal on the Celebrity Spa Suite for $106/night. A little more than I wanted to spend but only like $100 more than the regular room! The promo includes
$25 activity credit
25% off spa services
2 admissions to Studio 54 or Tabu

So i'm excited! Plus if I find a better deal I have til October to cancel!
Now I just have to worry about finding a deal on a flight but I don't anyone has November available yet Sad
I also need to decide on what shows I want to see.
Thanks for your advice and November will be here before I know it, can't wait!!
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March 02, 2010, 11:43:14 AM

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One more question...any advice on a romantic place to go eat for our anniversary that has good food and is not too expensive!!

Thanks
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March 14, 2010, 02:09:29 PM

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Hi Sara,

I am sorry for the extreme delay in replying!  I'm not sure how, but I have missed seeing your question for the past two weeks! 

There are several places that I can recommend.  The cost of the meal will depend on what you order, of course, but there are ways to reduce these costs, too.

What type of food do you enjoy?  Perhaps the best way to save money on a great dinner in Las Vegas is through the usage of gift certificates from Restaurant.com.  You can purchase $25 gift certificates that are valid at many top restaurants in Vegas for only $10.  To view the restaurants available, click the link and use 89109 as the zip code for the search...

Many of the restaurants in Mandalay Bay are currently available.  Mix would be a good choice.  It has a great atmosphere, excellent food, and is an incredible view.  I also noticed that Strip Steak at Manadalay Bay is currently available.  They were voted as having the best steak in America by Esquire magazine.  For the record, I still personally rank  Craft Steak House at MGM Grand as the best, but I don't see them on Restaurant.com's list...

If you like pasta, Enoteca San Marco at The Venetian has a great menu.  Another great choice for steak is ENVY The Steakhouse inside the Renaissance hotel.

A truly unique experience would be having a private romantic dinner on Lake Las Vegas on a gondola!  Gondola Adventures has gift certificates available on Restaurant.com.  You can check out their website at Gondala.com.  I have not tried their services, but they look like a great romantic option (as long as nobody is afraid of boats!)  ...It might also be a bit too chilly in early November for this option..

I hope these suggestions have helped.  Please let me know if I can provide any further info, or suggestions! Smiley

Mike
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April 22, 2010, 01:34:48 PM

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Thanks for all your input. I have been doing taxes and working crazy hours lately so I haven't even had the chance to view your response, so no worries about your delay.

I'm thinking that one of the steak houses would be our best bet. My husband is kindof a picky eater. So I don't think you can go wrong with a steak house, unless they cook it wrong of course. So i'm thinking either Strip Steak at Mandalay Bay or Craft Steak House, which would be the most convient since we will be staying there. Have you personally eaten at Craft Steak House? How was your expierence?

I keep checking on flights through Southwest but it doesn't look like they are available yet, hopefully next week they will become available so I can start checking prices.

Thanks again for your help.
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April 22, 2010, 11:22:17 PM

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Hi Sara!

The part about doing taxes that annoys me the most is the part where you have to claim your gambling winnings.  I have never had the pleasure of filling out that form, but I keep hoping..

Las Vegas truly has some of the best steak houses in the world.  Several have received accolades and awards over the past few years with very good reason. 

I can recommend Craftsteak from experience.  The food is beyond perfection and the staff does all of the little things to provide top notch service while remaining non-intrusive to the dining experience.  The meal there becomes a favorite memory.  My favorite steak is a medium-well filet mignon.  They use only the highest quality beef and do it better than any place in any city that I have tried.  The other food items are equally impressive with unique flavorings that will provide surprise and delight.

I have actually met with the General Manager and received a brief tour of the small kitchen area.  They take a tremendous amount of pride in what they are doing.  To them, each meal and overall experience is a carefully coordinated masterpiece of artwork.

The cost is on par with the other high quality steak houses in town and is not cheap...  Check out Moe Green's trip report from awhile back.  About 3/4 of the way down the report, he gives a good review of what a typical experience at Craftsteak is like.

I have not tried Strip Steak at Mandalay Bay.  When I was last standing in front of their entrance and wanted to give them a try, I was with a friend that was not a big fan of steak - so we ended up eating at the House of Blues.  If the Restaurant.com gift certificates for Strip Steak are still available, I do feel that they are definitely worthy of giving a try.  They must be doing something right to have impressed Esquire magazine! Smiley

My guess is that the flights for Southwest will open-up for your dates on May 1st.  I have noticed in the past that they seem to have a booking window that opens around 6 months prior to the travel dates.

Please let me know if I can help with anything as you plan your celebrations!

Mike
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April 23, 2010, 11:09:26 AM

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Hi Sara,

Restaurant.com just released a great promo.  You can save 80% on Restaurant.com $25 Gift Certificates.  Use promo code MEAL at Restaurant.com through 4/30/10 and pay only $2 for a $25 gift certificate!

With the number of restaurants that participate, this is a great way to save some cash and still get a great meal! 

Mike
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April 23, 2010, 12:27:39 PM

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Although you do have to claim your gambling winnings, you can ask the hotel that you won at to print you out a win/loss statement which will show all of your loses too. Many of times this will offset your winnings!!

Thanks for the tips, I will check out restaurant.com and see what I can find!

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May 04, 2010, 11:19:57 AM

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Ok need some help now! Flights are available. Do you have any promo codes for southwest or continental airlines? I would be flying from Houston, Austin, San Antonio or Corpus Chrisi, TX. Let me know if you know of anything that I can check out.

The cheapest I have found so far is $627.80 for 2 from Houston, TX. Non-stop flights only!
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May 04, 2010, 07:23:04 PM

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Hi Sara,

The promos that I have found on the web that are directly for Southwest.com are mostly short term, or for other destinations.  The price that you have found for Continental is also the best that I have located...  I found a few sites that listed the initial price as lower, but once the taxes were added..it was the same price.  It does not look like they have released any promo codes for their flights in awhile. 

If you book with Continental, keep in mind that they are now charging baggage fees.  You can check and pre-pay for the bags online to save a few dollars.

With Southwest, the bags fly free, but there is no assigned seating.  So, you will likely want to check-in online before your flight to obtain a boarding pass that lets you board the plane early to make sure that you get two seats together.  If you do choose to go with Southwest and could use an in-flight drink, Ebay is a good source for discounts on Southwest drink coupons! Smiley

I am not confident that prices will go lower..  You could wait and see if a flight-only promo is released at Southwest.com once their current offers expire and your dates are getting closer.  Southwest has been known to 'stockpile' fuel to help keep their costs low, but it is possible that rates will rise if fuel costs go up. 

My only other thought for saving on the cost would be that sometimes you can find Southwest Gift Cards at a slight discount online.  I did a quick search and did not locate any today, but I have seen them on places like Plastic Jungle at discounted prices in the past...

I wish that I could be of more help!  Please let me know if I can give any advice or provide any research to help make your celebrations perfect!

Mike
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May 06, 2010, 11:04:42 AM

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Ok thanks. I'm thinking that we might go ahead and book our flight thru southwest. My mother-in-law just went to vegas last month and they paid $340/person so it's a little cheaper right now!

Thanks again!
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May 10, 2010, 01:31:51 PM

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FYI: I went ahead and booked my flight thru southwest for $313.90/person! Not too bad I guess!
Thanks for all your help!!
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