Sunday, March 23, 2014

50 States - Nevada

In going to all 50 states, I never thought I was Las Vegas type of person until I realized you didn't have to gamble but could just wallow in the sheer excess of it. We had gone through Reno on our way west back in 2006 and stayed at the Peppermill Casino which was poor preparation for the vastness of Vegas a few days later. We has arrived late in the afternoon and only had one night there.  And because it was a weekend we stayed at the Excalibur which is one of the least expensive hotels on the strip. It's the same place I stayed just a few weeks ago when I was stranded during a busines trip on the west coast when Baltimore was blizzarded in. It's also across the street from the nearly equally garish New York New York.


We hit the Bellagio fountains and the Fremont Street Experience but the temperatures at midnight was still over 100 degrees.


It was last year that we really experienced the real Vegas when for a weekend getaway we stayed at the Mirage and saw the Cirque de Soliel Beatles show Love.


The Mirage is also home to Sigfried and Roy's Magic Garden where they keep their wild cats and dolphins.


The best part of Vegas is the fantastic food. About every celebrity chef has one or more restaurants. Pure competitive pressure keeps the quality of even the burger places high.


And there are always celebrities around somewhere if you know where to look. Penn and Teller sign autographs after their show and sometimes even a Kardasian is making a public appearance.


But there is more to Nevada than Las Vegas. On our most recent trip for our fiftieth birthday, we took a day trip to Death Valley which is technically in California, but on the way, we stopped off at combination tourist trap and brothel as well as a ghost town.


Between eating, drinking, seeing shows, and touring the desert there is enough to keep even the determined non-gambler busy in Nevada.


DemetriosX said...

I've only been to Vegas once, for a friend's 21st birthday. That was in 85, which was right before the big boom and the effort to attract families, so there wasn't much to do besides gamble, eat, drink, and hang out at the pool. I think the only theme casinos at the time were Caesars and Circus Circus. Heck, even the shows weren't much to talk about at the time. We saw Legends, IIRC.

Only other time I've been to Nevada was a couple years before that. A bunch of us were visiting a friend who had moved to Havasu City for New Year's. On New Year's Day we all carpooled up to Bullhead City and took the ferry over to Laughlin for brunch. All I remember is that I was sorely hung over and the time on the river was a tremendous blessing.

yellojkt said...

The Excalibur was one of the places that tried to be on the family friendly boom. It now has an Australian male revue as its premier show.