A Long Weekend in Las Vegas
For the Family Day long weekend Jeremy and I flew to Las Vegas for four days. We found a great deal from Westjet Vacations and had a ton of fun!
After spending months in Vancouver under grey skies it was refreshing to see some sunshine in Las Vegas. The temperatures were around 20C during the day. It was perfect. Too bad that none of the hotels had their pool areas open! I guess it was still chilly for the locals.
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Since we were on a budget we booked the most affordable hotel on the Strip that was available to us: Circus Circus. I had stayed there before many years ago when I was a child and travelling with my parents. It’s located a few blocks down the Strip from the main hotels but the location served us just fine.
Every morning we took the Deuce bus down to Fremont Street for the cheapest breakfast buffet we could find. It was only $7.99 on weekdays and $12.99 on weekends (with bottomless champagne!).
The first show we went to see was O by Cirque du Soleil at the Bellagio. This was my second time seeing O, and it still remains my favorite Cirque show by far. I’ve seen a bunch of the traveling shows in the Grand Chapiteau, but the resident Vegas shows always take the cake for me. Mystere was spectacular as well when I saw it many years ago. Next time, I would really like to see KA at the MGM.
Jeremy was luckily tipped onto a fantastic magic show before we departed. The Mac King Comedy Magic Show in Harrah’s! The shows only run in the afternoon and the theater was barely half full, but it was a treat to see Mac King perform. I originally thought that I would like this show the least but it turns out this was my favorite of the whole trip. I really can’t do him any justice by writing here. If you’re in town, go see his show.
The other magicians we ended up seeing were Penn & Teller at the Rio. Another great show, a totally different style from Mac King, but the tricks were extraordinary. It was worth the 20-minute walk off the Strip and over multiple lanes of highway to get to the hotel/theater.
We also made sure to check out as many free shows offered on the Strip as possible. The Fountains at The Bellagio are still my favorite. It's really too bad that the pirate battle at TI (formerly Treasure Island) doesn't happen anymore and that the lake that holds the ships now sits dry.
Apart from the shows, we spent our very brief time in the city along the Strip checking out all the hotels. Every night we went back to our hotel with aching feet from all the walking. Word of advice to anyone planning a visit: bring a pair of runners. You will need them.
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While we were there we also noticed that around the Circus Circus there are several abandoned hotel projects, some with only foundations up and others that look near completion. It definitely appears that Las Vegas has been through a bit of a hard time recently, I'm sure the hotel investors lost millions on their abandoned buildings. The pushy time share sales people that you run into everywhere also don't help the fact that it appears locals are getting more and more desperate.
About a week after we returned we heard the news that the historic Riviera hotel will be torn down this year. It's sad to see some of the older hotels go, as these remind me of the glitz and glamour of old Vegas, despite looking pretty run down now. We'll have to come back for another visit in a few years to check out how the city has continued to develop.