Viva Las Vegas…. what comes to mind when you think of the words LAS VEGAS? Crazy, mayhem, dirty, wild, expensive, partying, clubs… Let’s be honest, we all have a picture painted in our minds of a location before we even get there and mine of Las Vegas was; It is a place that you need to visit once in your life, a rollercoaster of hangovers, gambling, messy, grubby locations and dirty streets… did I leave with this impression? Let’s read on.
So let’s chat about how I got to Las Vegas…. This was the first real beginning of the craze that was to follow for the next couple of days.
As we said goodbye to San Diego, we waited for our bus to arrive to bring us to location number 5 of our American Roadtrip. We booked tickets online after a bit of research with FlixBus. This was the cheapest fare and looks like it still is coming in at $30 1 way to Las Vegas. We packed our bags and got an uber to the bus collection point. We went to the nearest pick-up location to our accommodation which was at a shopping centre area. We were insanely lucky here as our UBER driver was Irish and we were chatting away 90 to him. Very typical thing to happen when we met Irish people abroad. We soon realised there was nobody else at this bus stop and our driver told us this is not the right place to get the bus to Vegas! Do not ask me why or where we got this information to go to this stop… Luckily our UBER driver realising that we hadn’t a clue what to do next he rang FLIXBUS for us and explained where we were and got us a full refund. He then drove us to the next location where to bus will be stopping to catch it along its route! This was an hour and a half of a drive with our new best friend. We caught up to the bus and just made it at the next stop. This trip did cost us €55 each but it was that or wait until the following day to get a bus to Vegas, losing a nights accommodation.. down €55 was the decision.
The bus trip from San Diego to Vegas is about 7 and a half hours and I HATE TRAVELLING by bus, so I was a bit happy deep down that we shaved some of this off in the UBER. We jumped onto the bus, mainly because it was 40 degrees celsius and my flip flops were beginning to melt! There was only a handful of people on the bus and we all got a seat to ourselves. The journey was not half as bad as I expected it to be.. you are driving through the Mojave Desert and the views are great! A few episodes, some snacks and a few hours later you spot it.
Out of nowhere, in the middle of the desert, you see it, the bright lights of Las Vegas!
Before we even arrived in the states, we had this accommodation booked and we had agreed that Las Vegas would be where we would splurge here and a few other locations on our trip. This is because it was more expensive here and we wanted to let our hair down, do the expensive pool parties, a nice apartment as opposed to the hostels and what exactly what we did. I found this brilliant listing on AIRBNB- a condo apartment in the MGM Signature Towers without the MGM cost and resort fees!! The suite was located in Tower 3 on the 26th floor. It was more then what we could want, it had 2 bathrooms, a double room, a sitting room with a pull out couch and a kitchen with a balcony. You check in with reception, have access to all MGM amenities and everything was perfect! I would stay here again in a heartbeat. You have a short walk to the strip so if this is where you want to be then there are a lot of hotels located along here, but it was nice to walk away from the madness and back to the MGM Towers.
WHAT TO DO;
WET REPUBLIC: Many of you may have heard of this pool party. Wet Republic is well known to be pull off EPIC pool parties. Located on the MGM Grand premises so it was walking distance for us from our accommodation and we were able to walk straight in. We didn’t pay anything upon entry which I was surprised about. I’ve read since that they cannot charge entry admission as it against gaming laws but you can reserve cabana’s/table’s and bungalows for your party…starting price of $1,000 and upwards. It was the beginning of September when I was here so it was not packed! It was extremely hot though, the pool was hot too… I was struggling with the heat so it was time for a drink to cool down??? A gin and tonic please… one drink was $50 which was crazy!! So, I decided on a pitcher of gin and tonic for $105? So much better I know… Note: Vegas is expensive! It was a day of cocktails, music, sun, shisha’s & floaties!
“The Chandelier Bar, located in the Boulevard Tower at the Cosmopolitan Hotel in Las Vegas, is one of the most famous bars in the world. It’s considered by some to be the largest chandelier in the world and was even considered an architectural and engineering marvel when it was built”. This is something you just have to see, it is mind-blowing! The elegance, the class, the glitz, all things that I did not expect to see in Las Vegas. P.S. Grab a bite in EGG SLUT located in this hotel!
A Palace is the greatest word to describe this hotel! This is like taking a step back in time into the scenes of a Roman battle with a mix of furnishings from the movie Titanic… weird mix but this might portray the picture for you. Here we tried our hand at some casino, wandered through the hotel and the shops within the hotels and ate in Gordon Ramseys Pub & Grill. Apparently, Gordon visits regularly as he has a restaurant here ‘Gordon Ramsey Hell Kitchen’. Pre-booking is essential.. like a few weeks, if not months, in advance which is what we were told when we chanced our arm for a table. Omnia Nightclub is also in Caesars Palace. Omnia (Caesars Palace) & Hakkasan (MGM Grand) nightclubs are two major venues in Las Vegas. Both of which have great DJ’s such as Clavin Harris, Martin Garrix in house and we saw ZEDD in Omnia while visiting. What an amazing nightclub. It sure beats any club I have been to before. Omnia, a 3 story club that oozes money and expensive with your every step. There is a dress code here too and you will be turned away if you arrive in your slacks. We did not purchase tickets before arrival and got in for free, girls do get off very easy here! Again, drinks are outrageously expensive too! We met some great people and enjoyed the night from a box. I would love to go back here and experience a night like this again!
You need to find yourself a good location looking onto the Mirage Hotel to witness the Volcano eruption shows that take place throughout the days. Again, just was just shocking to see. Las Vegas never failed to impress me on how crazy it is on every corner but everything is done so well too, no expense spared and you can see that.
If you are missing Europe.. then all you have to do is walk by Paris Las Vegas where you will recognise a tall structure- Eiffel Tower. This hotel is easily spotted as it has a half size replica of the iconic Eiffel Tower outside the Hotel and apparently has french streets with Parisian styled shops inside the hotel. I did not go into this hotel. You can, however, woo your partner here and have dinner in this Eiffel Tower as there is a restaurant located in this structure. Enjoy views of Vegas with floor to ceiling windows, for all the romantics out there!
Another jaw-dropping moment was entering the Venetian Hotel. This chic, Italian themed hotel made me feel as though I was transported to the canals of Venice! No literally, we took an actual gondola ride through one of the levels of the hotel. Here shops the streets along the water, Italian pizzerias, gelato shops, water fountains, the ceiling was wallpapered with blue skies and clouds so there was no sign to believe that you were actually in a hotel, in Las Vegas, some 6,000 miles away from Italy. Petty our Gondolier even sang to us and sang Happy Birthday in Italian to my friend. To finish up, we stopped into Buddy V’s bakery for some goodies. If you know the show ‘Cake Boss’… that’s all I’ll say.
This hotel is a very upscale hotel with an 8-acre lake in front of the hotel which displays the best water shows. This was something I loved! I love waterfalls, fountains etc so this was right up my alley! Amazing!
The New York New York hotel is also a hotel worth mentioning here as it has a roller coaster going through the hotel. Madness right> I did not go on this nor go into the hotel but just from the outside, it is something to look at!
Eat Fajitas in NACHO DADDY!
Miracle Mile Shops- All your shopping needs will be found here in this mile-long shopping centre!
Some other spots we didn’t get to;
Rick Harrisons Pawn Shop. I really wanted to get here but we didn’t have the time. This is the shop from ‘PAWN STARS’ and it is located in downtown Vegas.
Ziplining over Vegas. There are a few different ziplines in Vegas which is something that I had on my list of things to do in Las Vegas. As we were planning our next few roadtrip locations we decided against this. Here is a link with more information on this https://www.vegas.com/traveltips/las-vegas-zip-lines/
So what did I learn in Vegas;
It is not as sleazy or dirty as I thought it would be. In fact, it is one of the cleanest, upmarket places I have visited. I can’t compare it with anywhere else I have visited. Las Vegas is on a league of its own.
Party with the people of Vegas, they know how to do it right!
Take as much as you can in and my advice would be to save up and splurge so you can enjoy it because it is expensive! For me, I wanted to be able to say F*** it, I am in Vegas after all!!
Next time I visit, I would go to a Cirque Du Soleil Show, See Celine Dion in Caesars Palace and go to a Magic Mike show.. I’ll say it again…It is Vegas after all?!
Nothing is impossible!
We decided to keep our money for our Day 5 adventure…. LETS FLY TO THE GRAND CANYON! Stay tuned for my next blog!!
If you have any questions please do just ask & more importantly stay safe and use this blog as inspiration to travel in the future when it’s safe to do so.
Until the next location… Shannon x