This is the desert, after all, and it’s very easy
to get dehydrated here. I always bring a bottle with me
wherever I go. If you don’t want to spend $2-4/bottle
at hotel sundry stores, you can buy cheaper water at the
ABC stores in the Miracle Mile Shops at Planet Hollywood,
at the Fashion Show Mall, and on Fremont Street; or at Walgreens
on the Strip; or you can buy cold water for $1 from street
hawkers on the overhead walkways. (It’s perfectly
safe, I do it all the time.)
Nearly every resort in Las Vegas has a luxurious spa. Do
take advantage of them. You don’t have to be staying
at a hotel to use services at its spa. Some of the more
upscale spas include Qua at Caesars Palace, Canyon Ranch
at the Venetian and Palazzo, the Spa at Bellagio, and the
Bathhouse Spa at THEhotel at Mandalay Bay. Be forewarned:
prices for spa treatments in Las Vegas may be higher than
your home town. But the spas are probably a lot nicer than
your hometown, too.
loves a good show...
No trip to Las Vegas would be complete without seeing a
show. Luckily, there are shows to fit every budget, as well
as a variety of entertainment for all tastes: You can catch
a headliner act, a concert, several different Cirque du
Soleil shows, Broadway acts such as Phantom of the Opera
and the Lion King, magicians, comedians, and more. If there’s
a show you really want to see, book your ticket in advance.
If you don’t mind playing it by ear, you can get same-day
discounts at the Tix4Tonight booth, which has 10 locations
on the Strip and Downtown. (They don’t always have
tickets for the top-tier shows, though.)
Shop, shop, shop...
Ladies, if you love to shop, you are going to love Las Vegas!
High end retail stores abound on the Strip, such as Chanel,
Christian Dior, Louis Vuitton, and more. You can spend many
hours (and much money!) at Caesar’s Forum Shops, the
Fashion Show Mall, the Venetian Canal Shoppes, and the Miracle
Mile at Planet Hollywood alone. The Las Vegas Premium Outlets
(150 outlet stores) are available via the Gold Line bus
from the Strip. For inexpensive souvenir shopping, I recommend
the Showcase Mall on the south end of the Strip next to
MGM Grand; the Bonanza Gift Shop on the north end of the
Strip; or Fremont Street.
Pools are outside...
Most Vegas hotel pools are located outside, not inside.
If your idea of a vacation involves pool time, you might
want to avoid the winter months. Also, not all Vegas pools
are created equal. Some of the best pools in town (the Flamingo,
the Mirage) can also be the most crowded, requiring you
to get in line an hour before opening just to get a lounge
chair. For party pools, head to Rehab at the Hard Rock or
Wet Republic at MGM Grand. If you’re looking for a
quieter, more relaxing pool experience, go to one of the
upscale hotels (Bellagio, Palazzo/Venetian, or Wynn/Encore)
or to a hotel whose pool tends to fly under the radar (Paris,
Ballys). If you’re looking for a good pool Downtown
on Fremont Street, go with the Golden Nugget.
Lots of money saving coupons...
Solos are mostly out of luck when it comes to using coupons
to save money in Vegas, since most coupons are two-for-ones.
But if you’re traveling with a girlfriend (or a few),
do take advantage of them. You can find them in the in-room
magazines and coupon books you will see all over town, including
the back seat of cabs. Even solo, though, you will see lots
of happy hour and meal deals all over town that you can
take advantage of.
pays to be a woman in Las Vegas...
You will generally be allowed into adult pools for free,
while men will have to pay. You stand a better chance of
getting into the nightclub of your choice than your male
counterpart. And there are ladies-only specials you can
take advantage of, including happy hours. For instance,
on Tuesdays, the Las Vegas Hilton offers 50% off spa services
from noon to 6pm, and ladies drink free inside the Tempo
Lounge from 6pm to 9pm.
Catch a free show...
There are a number of free and not-so-free attractions on
and off the Strip. If you only have time to do one, let
it be the Bellagio Fountain Show. The Bellagio, inspired
by the Bellagio resort on Lake Como in Italy, has a man-made
lake out front where you can watch fountains that are choreographed
to music. There is nothing quite like standing on the Strip
at night, listening to Andrea Boccelli and Sarah Brightman
singing “Con Te Partiro” and watching the water
jets swaying to the music and soaring several stories in
the air. Best of all, it’s free.
Free drinks in the casinos...
Yes, it’s true: You can get free drinks while gambling
in the casinos! Cocktail waitresses will come around asking
if people want cocktails. Just get their attention and order
what you want. Even though the drinks are free, do be sure
to tip the waitress when she brings you your drink. $1-2
per drink is fine.
BONUS - Botanical
Gardens change with seasons...
If you want
more than gambling while in Las Vegas, Nevada,
head to the Bellagio Casino.
Their 13,000 plus square foot Conservatory and Botanical
Gardens changes with the seasons and is an absolute pleasure
to behold. Specially designed lighting spotlights every
flower to accentuate its best features. To ensure that the
Conservatory and Botanical Gardens maintain magnificence
365 days a year, 140 expert horticulturists theatrically
arrange gazebos, bridges, ponds, and water features uniquely
for each season. For example Fall brings a water wheel cider
mill, an apple tree that winks at you, wood sprites, huge
scarecrow, and so much more. Enjoy it everybody!
(Wendy, Sergeant Bluff, USA)