September 2015 Trip


Day 1: Monday, September 14th
“22 hours of travelling to Paradise”

6.30 am the alarm clock goes off. We jump out of bed to take a shower, we’re going to Vegas Baby!! It takes us about an hour to get ready so we’re out the door at 07.30 am and on our way to Amsterdam airport. Monday morning traffic is a bitch so we end up being stuck in one traffic jam after another. It takes us about 3 hours to get to Amsterdam Airport which would normally take 1,5 hours. Not that it makes a lot of difference because it’s going to be a long day anyhow.

Dutch Monday Morning Traffic

Checking-in our suitcases and going through airport security seems to take forever. In the past you would go through security at the gate of departure but they changed that recently. Now every passenger goes through security at a central point in each terminal which takes a lot more time. Not what we call an improvement. But hey, nothing you can do about it but just go with the flow. We can’t be bothered because we’re going to the city we love.

After the disaster that’s called United Airlines we decided to give Delta Airlines a try this trip (we’re not flying United again). When we arrive at our gate the boarding process has already started. We get settled in our seats and first impressions are good. We’re flying a Boeing 747-400 and it looks fresh and clean.

Our first flight to Minneapolis St. Paul is uneventful. It’s a smooth ride and service is great. Delta offers more than enough food & beverage on board. We get eye masks and ear plugs (in case you want to sleep, which is impossible for us since it’s only 1 p.m.). The onboard entertainment system is great and the headsets are free on intercontinental flights. We could watch about 25 different movies, 10 different tv shows, documentaries, stand-up comedy shows, live concerts, listen to music, play video games and more. So it was pretty easy to keep ourselves entertained during the entire flight.

Since we had clear skies we had a beautiful view flying over Greenland. Isn’t it funny how somebody got the idea to call the country Greenland? See anything green down there?

We arrived at Minneapolis St. Paul Airport after an 8,5 hours flight and we landed on time. The TSA officials and volunteers at this airport are very friendly. Very much different from Chicago O’Hare or New York JFK for example. Going through customs and pick up-drop off our suitcases went pretty quick so we were on our way to the gate in no time.

When we arrived at the gate we found out our flight to Vegas was delayed for 40 minutes. Delta offered everybody who was waiting for this flight a cold beverage for the inconvenience. Way to go Delta, you actually seem to understand good customer service. After waiting at the gate for a little while, we boarded the plane for a 3 hours flight to Vegas. Safe to say it was a bumpy ride. Lots of turbulence so we were glad we landed at Vegas in one piece.

McCarran Airport

Our dear friend Lori (from San Diego) and Darrin (from Vancouver) were already in Vegas and picked us up at the airport. No cabbies long hauling us so that was the first win of our trip. Darrin was staying at the Monte Carlo so it was convenient for everybody. Check in at the Monte Carlo was a breeze. No waiting line so we were in the room within 10 minutes. No Strip view this time but we liked our view of the pool area just as much.

We unpacked our bags and took a shower. We were pretty tired but decided to go downstairs for  a little bit to get some things done (which would save us some time tomorrow). First stop: the M-life desk. Redeemed two $ 50 freeplay rewards and two buffets for the next day (thank you MyVegas). We were going to have breakfast at the Monte Carlo Buffet together with Darrin and Lori. Darrin found us in the casino and we played some slots while drinking a beer. Turned $ 100 Freeplay into $70 cash wich wasn’t bad. Around midnight we were toast. After being awake for about 28 hours it was time to get some sleep. The good news: we’re back in the city we love and tomorrow the party really starts !!


Day 2: Tuesday, September 15th
“Let’s get this show on the road”

We woke up at 6.30 am. We actually slept pretty long since we normally don’t get more than 4 to 5 hours of sleep during our first nights in Vegas. Our room at the Monte Carlo is as expected: the furniture is in one piece and the room is clean & spacious. The bed, super comfortable. Here’s the view from our room:

Monte Carlo Las Vegas Pool Area

We took a shower, got dressed and were out the door at 07.30 am. We walked over to CVS to buy some bottled water and some souvenir Vegas hats for our friends In Holland. At 9.00 am we met our friends Lori and Darrin at the MC buffet. A great opportunity for the four of us to catch up while we enjoyed the Monte Carlo Breakfast Buffet. Our meal was comped, courtesy of the MyVegas Facebook game.

The buffet wasn’t extremely busy so we were seated pretty fast. We had breakfast at the Monte Carlo buffet during our March 2015 trip so we knew what to expect. Solid food, enough variety, in other words a great free meal. To be honest, we would never pay $18 a person for a breakfast buffet. We eat a lot more at a buffet, normally a sandwich for breakfast is all we need. So $18 a person is too much for us to spend on a breakfast but since this buffet is free we’re happy to take it!

We were counting on getting some pool time after that but whatta you know: its’raining in Vegas. Lori had to go home so we said our goodbyes. It was great to see you again Lori. Since it was raining we decided to play a little. We wanted to try some new machines so we sat down at a bank of Willy Wonka machines. We didn’t get much on our first $150 but just enough to keep us playing. But then this happened:

What a great win AND no hand pay so no taxes, YEAY !

We sent Darrin a text message about our win and 10 minutes later he joined us. We already had a number of MaiTais and Malibu & Cokes so we were pretty cheerful. The rain had stopped so we walked over to Excalibur to get our show tickets for Australian Bee Gees, walked over to MGM Grand to redeem MyVegas comps for breakfast and dinner buffet at MGM. While we were walking to MGM we made a stop at New York New York to get some frozen cocktails. On our way back to the Monte Carlo we stopped at New York New York to get refills. The booze is kicking in right now so back to the Monte Carlo because it’s time te play some more.

Big Chill at New York New York Las Vegas

Played the Sons of Anarchy machines for the first time. Had seen a couple of YouTube clips of the game and it seemed like fun. We put $60 into the machine and we played for quite some time without losing. We then decided to play max bet at $3 a spin. When we dropped back to our last $1,60 we got a bonus game that paid out $300. Great score again! We cashed out after about an hour of play and went to the room to freshen up.

At 5.00 pm we went downstairs to have dinner at the Monte Carlo buffet, courtesy of MyVegas. We weren’t really hungry after that big breakfast we had this morning and the drinks…. The food looked good and there were enough different dishes to find something we’d like. We both only had one plate of food because we simply couldn’t handle more. The eggrolls were soggy and the Chinese beef was chewy. The fried shrimp and the shrimp in garlic oil were very tasty. The green beans were crispy and tasted fresh as if they came straight from the farmers market. We didn’t take any steak because there was a little too much fat on it (we like filet mignon). The rice was perfect. Often the rice at buffets is too watery and sticky, in other words over cooked. Not at this buffet. Although we didn’t eat much we liked the meal.

At 6.00 pm we were at the Excalibur to see the Australian Bee Gees. We had a deal through TravelZoo ($45 for 2 tickets). The chairs in the Thunder Showroom aren’t all that comfortable and they’re pretty close to each other. So it feels a little cramped. The show was ok. With some songs you couldn’t hear the difference between the real Bee Gees and the Aussie Bee Gees. Some other songs didn’t sound very good vocally. The Aussie Bee Gees were very appreciative and after the show they gathered in the showroom lobby to sign merchandise and take pictures with the guests. It was a nice show for the price we paid but we probably won’t go back to see it again. The songs that were best were the songs that required that characteristic high BeeGee voice. The show lasted about an hour and 15 minutes so we were back at the Monte Carlo around 8.30 pm.

Time to play some slots! Chantal wanted to play Willy Wonka again. We sat down at one of the machines and played for over 2 hours at $2 a spin. We had a lot of “Oompa Loompa” bonuses but the regular bonuses only happened 5 times in these 2 hours. We went up and down and ultimately we lost $200. Not too bad for over 2 hours of play. We accumulated a lot of points so we’ll probably be back at gold status with MLife in 2 days. We were back at the room around 11.00 pm, incredibly tired and slightly drunk. What a great first day in Vegas !


Day 3: Wednesday, September 16th
“Time to catch some rays and do some serious drinking”

Awake at 6.00 am, watched a little bit of “Wake Up With The Wagners” at News3. Took a shower, got dressed and we were out the door at 7.00 am. Off to MGM Grand to try their breakfast buffet, again courtesy of the MyVegas Facebook game. So another freebie which is always good.

We were one of the first to be seated at the MGM Grand buffet. We walked around to take pictures of the food selections. We both had a full plate of things we like: bacon, scrambled eggs, croissants, butter and some Mexican chicken. The food was good (it’s hard to screw up breakfast) and since it was free it was a great deal. There’s a little more variety at the MGM Grand Buffet than at the Monte Carlo Buffet. Can’t really say the quality of the food was better. A lot of the breakfast buffet items are the same at most buffets and bacon is bacon and scrambled eggs is scrambled eggs. In other words: the quality of breakfast dishes like these isn’t all that different. Would we pay full price for this breakfast buffet? Nope. There are so many places where you can have a great breakfast for only a few dollars, it’s not worth the money to us. You tend to overeat at buffets which is fine when you’re on vacation but to be really honest, breakfast usually is our smallest meal of the day.

After breakfast we went on a little shopping spree. We bought 12 pairs of shoes (6 pairs for Frank, 6 for Chantal) and 4 shorts. So it’s safe to say we have enough shoes for now. After reading this you might think we’re a bunch of lunatics but please keep in mind that shoes and clothes are a lot more expensive in Europe than in the US. So by buying all this stuff we actually give ourselves a “free trip to Vegas” every year. Just to give you an idea, in Holland we pay close to 4 times as much for shoes, shorts, jeans, etc.  So the money we don’t spend on shoes and clothes in Holland goes directly into our Las Vegas budget.

At 10.00 am we were back at the Monte Carlo and went to the pool. Time to relax in the sun! The weather was great, 90 degrees with a 20 mph breeze. Around noon our Canadian friend Darrin joined us at the pool. Time to consume some alcohol! We ordered a bucket of beer (Heineken and Corona) and a 32 oz Mango Rum frozen cocktail for Chantal. We spent the afternoon at the pool drinking and talking and we had a great time. Darrin, if you’re reading this, thanks for all the fun! Hope to do this again next year and maybe we can have a Dirty Ceasar Sanchez (insider joke).

We went back up to the room at 5.00 pm to relax, take a shower and get ready for the evening. When we were ready we walked over to MGM Grand again for the dinner buffet (again courtesy of MyVegas). We walked around and took some pictures of the different food choices. We had one plate of food each since we weren’t really hungry. The steak was chewy and just so so. Nothing special. We had some Chow Mein, spring rolls, bbq chicken (which lacked a real good bbq flavor) and an Asian chicken dish. The food was kinda mediocre. We probably won’t come back to have dinner here. This is kinda what you get at most buffets. A lot of food is being cooked, dishes from different countries, by cooks that have to be able to cook anything. The result: the food isn’t all that special, it lacks flavor and isn’t always cooked to perfection because speed is the key at buffets.

After dinner it was time for some play. We decided to give The Walking Dead machines at MGM Grand a try. We played for about 45 minutes and lost 160 dollars with only two small bonuses. We walked back to the Monte Carlo to give them some play. We played Willy Wonka at 2 dollars a spin and lost 200 dollars pretty fast. When we were down to one of our last spins we got an Oompa Loompa bonus that paid 250 dollars. Gave 100 dollars of that back and decided to cash out. We moved over to the Reel Money Slot Machine and played for about 30 minutes and hit a couple of nice wins. But we still lost about 60 dollars. Chantal was getting realy tired so we decided to call it a night. On our way back to the room we passed a bank of Wheel of Fortune dollar machines and decided to play 40 dollars and see if we would win something decent. We had an 80 dollar prize on the win line. We also got 2 bonus spins on the WOF. One paying 30 dollars and one paying 250 dollars. Sweet ! We recovered most of our losses and ended the day down just a little bit. We were back at the room at 11.00 pm, watched some tv and at midnight it was ‘lights out’.


Day 4: Thursday, September 17th
“A wild bunch is coming into town”

Woke up at 6.00 am and was bright awake. Chantal wanted to sleep a little longer so I took a shower and went downstairs to play a little. When I got down to the casino I realised I forgot my camera. I didn’t feel like walking back to the room and waking up Chantal so I hope you’ll take my word for what happend during my gambling session. I played the Sons of Anarchy machines, Reel Money, Willy Wonka and Wheel Of Fortune (dollars). I had a bonus spin at Wheel Of Fortune for 100 dollars and that’s all I had to show for when I returned to the room at 8.00 am. It’s safe to say I lost my shirt…and there were no moments I missed my camera. Ah well….

Chantal got ready as well and we walked over to the Luxor to try their breakfast buffet (courtesy of MyVegas). The buffet restaurant at the Luxor is really big and they are offering a lot of different dishes. Bacon, scrambled eggs, breakfast potatoes, pancakes, fried chicken steak, breakfast sausage, fruit (apples, pears, melon, bananas) salads, ommelets, etc. The food was pretty good actually, better than expected. We had a very nice meal, especially since it was free. We took our time to enjoy the breakfast. It’s not high end food but we liked it nevertheless.

After breakfast we did some souvenir shopping for the people at home, dropped the goodies at the room and walked over to the Tropicana. A group of friends from different parts of the US arrived at the Tropicana and it was time to have some drinks together. We hadn’t seen each other since 2012 so we were all very excited to see each other again. We spent the afternoon at the Tropicana drinking beers and cocktails and catching up. Pat en Lee from upstate NY got a great Paradise Tower Suite so part of our group spent a couple of hours in their suite drinking and chatting. The suite had a great view of the Strip overlooking Excalibur, New York New York and MGM Grand.

Around 5.00 pm we walked back to the Monte Carlo and made a stop at New York Pizza to get something to eat. The pizza was tasty as usual (this is the place we go whenever we feel like having some pizza). When we got back to the Monte Carlo it was time to play a little. We played, Willy Wonka, Sons of Anarchy and Reel Money. We got a good bonus on Sons of Anarchy paying somewhere around 130 dollars but that was it. We played for an hour or 2 but unfortunately lost.

Our telephone bleeped, it was our buddy Dale who had just arrived at McCarran airport. Dale and his wife Chris came to Vegas for a couple of days to have some fun with us during our March 2015 trip. So we pledged to repeat the debauchery this trip. Dale and Chris are staying until Sunday and when they arrived at the Monte Carlo they got checked in immediately and dropped their luggage at the room. Time to play some more slots and have some drinks. We played some more Willy Wonka and Reel Money, both games not paying much. At around midnight we had had enough. We had been bleeding money all day so it was time to call it a night. Another great day in Vegas had come to an end. But its great to know so many great friends arrived today so the rest of our stay is going to be one big party!

 


Day 5: Friday, September 18th
“Drunk at the pool and other shenanigans”

Woke up at 6.00 am and watched the morning news. Took a shower, got dressed and we were out the door at 8.00 am. We did a little shopping and Chantal bought 2 more pairs of shoes. Because we didn’t have enough already….A woman’s got to do what a woman’s got to do I guess.

We went to the pool, got a couple of beds and waited for Chris and Dale to come downstairs. We met at the pool and decided to go out for breakfast first so we took the rental car and drove to Ellis Island for breakfast. Chantal had the breakfast burrito’s, Dale and I had the 6,99 dollar breakfast steak special and Chris had the corned beef hash with eggs. As always it was a great meal and the total bill was 50 dollars for the four of us (tip included). It still amazes me how you can have so much food (and quality steaks) for this kind of money. Ellis Island truly is one of those “have to go there” places of Vegas.

After breakfast we drove back to the Monte Carlo because it was time to have a relaxing afternoon at the pool. It’s the start of the weekend so the Monte Carlo had a DJ at the pool area. The music was pretty loud but the atmosphere was great (and so was the weather). We all had a couple of 32 oz cocktails (Strawberry Daiquiris and Tropical Mango). We stayed at the pool until 4.00 pm since our waitress Chrystel was taking such good care of us.

 

At 4.oo pm we went back to the room to shower and get dressed. When we were all ready we took a cab to the Fashion Show Mall to have dinner at Stripburger. At first we planned on taking the rental car and drive there but first we did some sobriety tests ourselves and failed miserably. So we walked towards the taxi line, got a cab and the Vietnamese driver must have thought we were freaking nuts. We did have a fun ride though and we tipped generously.

We had a TravelZoo deal for a selection of burgers, fries and a drink for 60 dollars. Chantal had the Turkey Salad, I had the Cheddar & Mushroom Burger, Dale had the Melted Blue Cheese Burger and Chris had a Tuna Burger. We liked the fact that we were sitting outside overlooking the Strip. Our waiter was phenomenal, very friendly. The meal was great, without a doubt one of the best burgers we ever had.

After dinner we did a little shopping and Chantal bought a couple of jeans. We walked through the Fashion Show Mall and probably acted like the type of customers every store owner wants to get rid off ASAP. I think the pictures prove my point:

We decided to walk back to the Monte Carlo. The temperature was great and there were about a zillion people strolling down the Strip. Halfway to the Monte Carlo we realized that walking back probably wasn’t the best choice since we still had a lot of alcohol in our bodies. Those cocktails at the pool slowed us down considerably.

We were back at the Monte Carlo around 9.30 pm, and parked our asses behind the Willy Wonka machines. We played for over 2 hours getting a lot of regular bonus rounds and Oompa Loompa bonuses. At some point we were up about 100 dollars, but eventually we lost (just a little bit). At midnight it was time to get some shut eye. Another great day in paradise went by way too fast…..


Day 6: Saturday, September 19th
“Drinking, losing and a great show”

I woke up at 6.30 am and was bright awake …. Again! Chantal was still sleeping like a baby so I took a shower and got dressed . We had 200 dollars in Freeplay with our reservation at the Monte Carlo. Played the ReelMoney machines and converted that 200 dollars of Freeplay into 154 dollars cash. Not bad at all. That will be our drinking money for today.

Went back to the room and Chantal was awake by now. I watched some tv while she took a shower. When she was ready we went downstairs to meet Dale and Chris for breakfast at The Pub. Chris hadn’t slept all night so it was just Dale and us. Dale and Chantal had the Pub Reuben Sandwich, I had the Banana Brûlée French Toast. The food and the service was great. They had large screens so we could watch Football games. Total bill was 66 dollars, tip included which we charged to the room.

Around noon we walked over to the Tropicana to hang out with our ‘New York gang’, and to see our sweetheart Emma. Of course we had a lot of drinks, enjoyed the tasty Miami Vice cocktails (try them whenever you go to the Tropicana), joked around with the entire group (we were with 15 people) and were the loudest bunch at the Tropicana pool. It’s safe to say we needed a nap at the end of the afternoon to sober up….

At 6.00 pm (after we showered and got dressed) we walked from Monte Carlo to Planet Hollywood to go see Jeff Dunham. We were so very excited about that. We have all of Jeff Dunham’s DVD’s and we wanted to go see him in Holland a couple of years ago. That show was sold out within 3 minutes so we never got the chance to see him until today! We had front row seats so it couldn’t get any better. To make a long story short: the show was hilarious, the only character that was missing was José Jalapeno on a Stick. Instead Jeff did a sketch with ‘Little Jeff’, a new puppet looking like him and which was for sale at the gift shop for anybody who would like to give ventriloquism a try.

He also messed up a couple of jokes which caused some hysteric scenes. It’s always hard to say for sure if these “screw ups” are part of the show or not. At some point Peanut was so wired up on cafeine he actually flew out of Jeff’s hand. It’s really impossible to say if this was planned or not but the 5 minutes of “conversation” between Jeff and Peanut after that were absolutely hilarious. The show lasted for an hour and 45 minutes and the showroom was almost sold out (including the balcony seats). It was without doubt one of the highlights of this trip.

After the show we had a quick meal at Panda Express, walked back to to Monte Carlo, jumped in the car and drove to Mandalay Bay to play the Hot Roll machines. Chris loves these machines and they always love her back. This time was no different. The 4 of us sat down at a bank of Hot Roll Machines. On Chris’ first spin she gets a Hot Roll bonus. A couple of spins later: same routine. In about 15 minutes her 40 dollars turned into 150 dollars while the 3 of us were bleeding money. Mandalay Bay was packed but unfortunately drink service was terrible. We had one drink in more than an hour. After playing for about an hour and a half we decided it was time to let these machines go. Nobody made any money playing Hot Roll. Only Chris had played non-stop for 1,5 hours at 1 dollar a spin losing only 10 dollars.

When Chris had just a few pennies left she started playing 5 pennies on one payline because she didn’t want to print a TITO with a balance of 23 cents. Then she hits this………….would have been great to hit this at max bet:

Hot Roll at Mandalay Bay

We drove back to the Monte Carlo. Chris had an early flight Sunday morning so we said our goodbye’s. Chris it was wonderful seeing you again! Until next year ! Chantal went to bed and I decided to play a little at the MC. Again, nothing worked for me. I couldn’t hit anything decent so I went to bed after an hour. I was done with losing.


Day 7: Sunday, September 20th
“Time to say goodbye to a great buddy”

Finally adjusting to Vegas time. Woke up at 9.00 am this morning. Funny thing is we only have two full days left in Vegas. We decided to skip breakfast because we weren’t hungry. We got ready and walked over to the Tropicana to hang out with our friends over there. Stayed at the Tropicana pool until 2.00 pm while enjoying some beers and conversation with a great group of friends (and yes, we started drinking around 10.00 am). Isn’t it amazing how people from all over the world come together in Vegas to party together for a couple of days? Isn’t that exactly what Vegas is all about?

When it was about 2.00 pm we had to say goodbye to our buddy Dale (who arrived at the Tropicana pool around noon after sleeping in for a little). We said our goodbyes and made plans for our 2016 trip. It was great seeing you again bro! You and Chris are amazing people, love you both to death.

We were hungry by now so it was time to get something to eat. We walked over to the mall at the corner of LV Boulevard and Harmon Avenue and decided to have some Panda Express. We just love Panda Express ! The food was fine (as always) and after our meal we walked back to the Monte Carlo  to hang out at the room for a little while and freshen up for the evening.

After relaxing for a bit we went to New York New York to have some drinks at The Bar at Times Square (courtesy of MyVegas). Our friend Glenda from LA arrived in Vegas today and we were going to meet up with her. We enjoyed a couple of Margaritas and enjoyed getting together with Glenda again. It had been 3 years since we last saw her so it was great to catch up.

At 8.00 pm we said our goodbyes for today and it was time to play a little. First we played Wheel of Fortune (quarters) at New York New York. We didn’t hit anything worthwhile so we walked back to the Monte Carlo to play some Willy Wonka. We got a lot of play for our money and hit a few nice bonus rounds. Unfortunately we lost again. Is it just us or does it appear to get more and more difficult to win anything decent in Vegas? We had one good day and after that: NOTHING! We did hit some great line hits and had a decent amount of bonus games on various games, but never enough to be ahead a couple of 100 dollars. We lost, got some nice wins and were even again and then started to lose again. This seemed to be our daily routine (except for that first day when we ended the day up about $1400).

Something special happend when we were playing at the Monte Carlo. A guy comes walking towards the bank of Quick Hits machines to our left and sits down behind one of the machines. He puts some money in the machine, starts playing and after a couple of minutes this happens:

Monte Carlo Handpay

He got a bonus round with a number of free spins, on one of the free spins he got a full screen of Wild Blue symbols. What a hit!! Funny thing about this machine, our friend Chris had been playing the exact same machine the night before. Anyhow, great win for him. The guy had just arrived in Vegas and hadn’t been playing for more than 3 minutes. Darn, I hope we will be this lucky one day.

We walked to the MLife desk since we were going to check out early on Tuesday morning. We wanted them to look at our bill and see if they could scratch some room charges. The girl at the Mlife desk looked at our play and at our bill, then looked at us again and said “let me introduce you to one of our hosts”. She brought us to an office in the High Limit Room and we were introduced to our new host. She was very friendly and told us she had a lot of European customers. She emphasized she understood European customers have entirely different wishes than American customers (for example: Europeans don’t get excited about 3 nights comped because we’re not coming to Vegas for 3 nights). She told us to contact her when prepairing for our next trip to Vegas and she would “take care of us”. Cool!! She looked at our bill and got rid of all our room charges without touching our express comps (and we’re talking multiple 100’s of dollars here). How nice, an unexpected win at the end of a losing night. We were back at the room around midnight. Only one more full day in Paradise.


Day 8: Monday, September 21th
“Our last full day in Vegas, another trip coming to an end”

Woke up at 7.30 am, took a shower and got dressed. We were out the door at 8.15 am and walked to the Luxor to have breakfast at the Backstage Deli. We happen to love their Tuna Sandwich. It was very tasty, just like the last time we had it and the total bill was around 20 dollars (a large coke included).

We walked over to the Tropicana to meet with the gang. They already reserved some beds for us. We spent until about 2.00 pm at the Tropicana pool taking care of a couple of buckets of beer and some Miami Vice cocktails. At 2.00 pm we were back at the Monte Carlo to hang out at the pool with our girl Glenda. Again we had  something to drink. Its safe to say, around 4.00 pm we were drunk as hell.

We decided to go back to the room to have a shower, relax, sober up and pack our bags since we’re leaving tomorrow. When we had taken care of all of this we walked over to the Miracle Mile Shops at Planet Hollywood to have dinner at Pampas Brazilian Steakhouse. We had a TravelZoo voucher for an all you can eat 12-meat Rodizio with a salad buffet (including 2 drinks, a bottle of wine or a pitcher of Sangria) for 52 dollars (which really is a steal). We’ve had dinner here before so we already knew the food was really good. This time was no difference. What surprised us was how busy it was for a Monday night. Unless you had a reservation there was a 30 minute wait to get a table. The food was marvelous again and the service was stellar. The staff is incredibly friendly and there’s not much that misses their attention. After eating for about an hour we were stuffed. So keep your eye on Travelzoo the weeks before your next trip to Vegas. If you see this deal for Pampas, buy it and give them a try, You will not be disappointed!

We walked over to the Tropicana to say goodbye to all our friends who were staying over there. Everybody was leaving tomorrow so we made sure to all meet one more time to say our goodbyes. Terri & Bill, Pat & Lee, Shaun & Juli, Chad & Crystal, Dawn & Bill, thanks for all the fun. We will be seeing all of you September 2016 !

It was time to do our last gambling of this trip, since we used te love playing at New York New York we decided to give them some play. We had been losing at the Monte Carlo for days in a row so it was time to try something else. We decided we were going to play the Living Dead machines again. We found a bank of these machines close to The Bar at Times Square and donated some money to the “get New York New York through winter fund”. We had a couple of these spins where the reels expanded which paid out pretty well. We had one bonus in one hour. After an hour we quit because we had lost enough. We had been playing at 3 dollars a spin and those machines eat your money faster than you can pull it out of your wallet.

Is it just us or is it ‘all or nothing’/ ‘hit and run’ on all these new machines like Willy Wonka, Sons of Anarchy, Walking Dead, Flinstones, Big Bang Theory, etc? You either hit a big winner fast or you lose hundreds of dollars within the hour. In our case, we had two nice winners in the beginning of our trip and after that it all went south. Despite the winnings we had in the beginning it still ended up to be a losing trip. We were back at the room at 10.00 pm packed the last of our stuff, watched some tv and went to bed. We were going to get a wakeup call at 5.30 am for a long day of traveling.


Day 9: Tuesday, September 22th
“A trip back to reality and a recap”

At 5.00 am we got a wake up called. Time to get ready to go to the airport. At 6.00 am we were out the door and on our way back to reality. We got to the airport in no time. Checking in our bags took way too long but we went through security pretty fast. We had more than enough time left to walk around the airport before our flight left. Chantal decided she needed some bling so we bought her some sparkly stuff. And you know the old saying:  “happy wife, happy life”

Bling Bling

We walked over to Starbucks to get some scones, chicken sandwiches, sodas and brownies. We had a relaxing breakfast at the gate and after that boarded the plane. Our flight to Detroit was uneventful. Walked over to our gate of departure at Detroit airport and our plane was already there. Again, a Boeing 747-400. When we boarded the plane it became clear the flight wasn’t fully booked. We had seats in the emergency exit row which was great: extra leg room….yeay!

Just after we were airborne I started to feel nauseous. It became worse and worse to the point I couldn’t hold anything in me. That chicken sandwich I had from Starbucks got me a nice case of food poisoning. How wonderful when you’re stuck in a plane for the next 7 hours. I had to lay down because sitting up straight was hurting me to much. I spent the night laying down on 4 seats (thank god the plane wasn’t full). I wasn’t able to get any sleep and made a large number of trips to the little room. I survived nevertheless and we arrived at Amsterdam airport on Wednesday at 8.00 am. We got our car, drove back home (which took us about 2 hours), took a shower and went to bed. Hard to believe this trip is really over!

A short recap:
We played a couple of new machines this trip. Had a big win on Willy Wonka and Sons of Anarchy at the beginning of our stay which was great. But in the end it still turned out to be a losing trip. These new “specialty” machines are a lot of fun, very interactive and have great bonus features. But at the same time they can take your money faster than lightning. AND you don’t accumulate points as fast as on other machines (1 tier credit on every $10 coin in instead of 1 point tier credit on every $3 coin in).

Looking at the whole trip from a financial point of view we did pretty well. We stayed within our budget and still bought a lot of shoes, some clothes, a lot of souvenirs for the people at home and some bling for Chantal. We had 5 buffet meals comped through MyVegas, 4 nights comped at the Monte Carlo, $200 of free play from the Monte Carlo, $100 of free play through MyVegas and discounted meals and shows. And at the end of the trip, our host at the Monte Carlo comped several 100’s of dollars in room charges. If we add up the value of all that we actually had a pretty cheap trip.

We had a wonderful time and thoroughly enjoyed the time we got to spend with such great friends. We devoured way too much food and had beaucoup alcohol to give a small country a hangover but boy was this an amazing trip. Can’t wait to return to Lost Wages in 2016!!!

Thank you all for reading. We hope you enjoyed our trip report. Feel free to leave a comment below….

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11 thoughts on “September 2015 Trip

  1. Great to see you guys again. Sounds like I’ll have to make plans to spend a little more time there. I regret that we only had a few hours together.

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    • Lori, as always, it was great seeing you again. Yes, we didn’t have enough time together so let’s make sure we do it differently in 2016. Block your calender for mid september and we’ll be in touch about the details 🙂

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  2. Don’t know where you get all your energy. I was tired just reading about your daily activities. Look forward to your next trip report, hoping we may be around for it.
    I noticed you did not get to visit with Mr. Keno or Vegasbabe this trip.
    Thanks for a great read.

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    • Hi Ken, yes we had a pretty busy schedule. You’re right we didn’t get the chance to meet up with Vegasbabe or Mr. Keno this time. We still talk to Vegasbabe very regularly but haven’t heard from Mr. Keno in quite some time. I’m sure we’ll be able to meet up with Vegasbabe next year. We will be back!

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  3. I agree with you on those new machines. I had the same results. Win a little at the beginning, and put it all back in, and then some. Glad to hear you changed your opinion on buffets. (Well, they were all free!) Hope the lines weren’t too long for you at any of them. I may actually be in swimsuit condition by Sept. 2016, so keep me in mind! Glad you guys had a fun trip!!

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    • To be honest we didn’t really change our mind about buffets. We’ll take them whenever we can get them for free (through MyVegas for example). We probably won’t use them if we have to pay full price. There are so many great restaurants and great deals out there it’s not worth it to us to pay full price. For the same amount of money (or just a little more) you can eat in some nice restaurants and order your food from a menu. To be honest, we will always prefer that.

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  4. great trip report! (sorry-just found it today!) too bad your luck didnt last, I managed to keep my losses on the strip small, and then when I moved downtown for the last 2 nites- i had one incredible day, paid for my entire trip- and then some! Mainly due to craps and VP, my best trip financially ever!

    It was great seeing you and Chantal again, next year is a must- I will book a few more nights on the strip that trip.

    I will bring the suntan lotion 🙂

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