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Recap MGM Grand - Skylofts - CTIA - Sept 2014

Discussion in 'Vegas Trip Reports' started by riders, Mar 1, 2016.

  1. riders

    riders
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    Location:
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    Trips to Vegas:
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    Thought I would give this TR mover a try ... works great for the first post .. might try my others later.

    I was originally planning to do a live TR but as you can tell that didn't happen (no shocker to me). I have also tried to get this out a number of times but life just keeps getting in the way. I really enjoy all the trip reports and this is my favorite section of VMB. It is almost intimidating to write one with all the great stories and creative writing from many of the people on here but I am going to give it a shot.

    As Beeejay noted at the start of his last report, I started to feel like it might be bad Karma not to give back with how much enjoyment I get out of reading all the other reports. And that I am heading back to Vegas soon and I can use all the good luck I can get. Anyway, here I go with a very belated report .....

    This trip was supposed to be a group trip and I was taking a few of our executive team out for CTIA (Wireless Industry show), however as with anything around here a number of things happened and it end up just being me and one other, let's call him CJ. As this was a "work" trip to the wife, we were heading out on Monday and returning on Thursday.


    A quick note on my pictures, I used to (and still do sometimes), carry a small camera around in Vegas, however after a couple drinks, I completely forget about it (and the one on my phone) so my pictures are sporadic at best and rarely in focus. So if you are looking for good picture in this report, you might want to keep looking.

    When it comes to travel, I am pretty much a Delta whore and being out of ATL it is almost a requirement.

    Boarded on the plane and got settled in and noticed the screen showing the following:



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    While I don't like to see the systems booting up this late, I was happy to know that it wasn't running on Microsoft.



    And finally ......


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    and I was off and ready to get to Vegas. Flight was on time and landed around 11:30am Vegas time and CJ was already waiting on me.


    I had a 2 Bedroom Skyloft reserved, so we were greeted by our driver and off to the MGM Grand we went ... well sort of ...



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    Being a several generation California native (LA born, Valley raised, Silicon Valley career), I miss In-and-Out Burger a lot. I am not going to get into a what I believe is the best burger (and I have eaten a few of them) but have to get my In-and-Out fix every time I get to Vegas. It has almost become a tradition to have the car that picks me up at the airport, swing through the In-and-Out drive-thru from the airport. This trip was no different. It was raining and I was so focused on getting my Double Double, that I forgot to take a good picture, so this is what you get :


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    .. and then back to the MGM and up to the SkyLofts. I took a bunch of pictures of the Loft but I won't completely fill this report with those, so if you want to see more I can ad more.

    .. and Yes, I did get the Foosball table again .... while I like the pool table in the 2 bedroom, I never seem to use either of them so I don't know why I even care.


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    Dining Room (I couldn't help think that a Sushi platter would look good on it, although not real comfortable)


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    Side Area
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    Main Sitting area
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    Media Room
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    Breakfast/Coffee area
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    Guest Bedroom
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    Guest Bath
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    Master Bedroom
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    Master Bath
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    Here are a couple pictures of the view:


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    I am sure at this point I have lost more than a few people but I will try to speed it up.

    After a quick drink in the Loft, I wanted to check out REVIV in the Underground at MGM Ground. I have been known to drink one too many in Vegas and the IV treatment there seemed like a good fit. Talked the receptionist and then one the technicians (Most are ER docs working their part time). Looked like no appt would be needed the next couple days, so I was good if I just wanted to drop in. While there, I did decide to get a B12 shot. I wasn't sure it would be worth it but I am always open to trying something new. I was pleasantly surprised as it started to kick in that night and I generally had more energy throughout the next 3 days. I will plan to do it again on the next trip.

    Back to the loft to clear out some work emails but that didn't last long and CJ and I headed down to the casino to get a drink and play a little. On my last couple trips, I have become very found of the Whiskey Down bar and have become addicted to one of their signature drinks, the Fire in the Hole. Sat down at one of the bartop VP machines and started in on $1 DDB and got my drink. Played on a hundred for a little while but ultimately it was gone ... put in a couple more but bumped it up to $2 DDB and on the very first hand I was dealt 3 aces and proceed to get the 4th and that ever so elusive kicker.



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    Now, while this was a great way to start the trip ... it did take them forever to pay me. As you can noticed the screen is a little messed up on the side and the slot attendant couldn't punch in her code to clear it out.... it seemed to take forever to get the tech over and even then took some more time .. about 10 minutes into this, my friend who was sitting right next to me playing some VP (he doesn't really play that often but I was pointing him in the right direction) and he proceeded to hit $1 Royal. I have been playing VP for almost 20 years and still haven't hit one, so I was a little frustrated but very happy for him. I think he got payed out before me.

    With both the wins paid, we headed to dinner at Stack at The Mirage. I have really enjoyed it the last couple trips so it was on the list for this trip. Since it was just the 2 of us we decided to sit at the bar which I actually really enjoy as I have more time to talk with the bartender and generally better scenery. Steak was great as always as well as the adult tater tots. All the food was very good but I have to admit it wasn't as good as the last few trips. I will probably pass on it for a couple trips but still better than other places. Played a little VP and Slots while we waited for the limo.


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    I had a few more pictures from the Mirage but realized they all sucked .... but had to post that one.


    Back to the MGM and I finally hit the tables. While I will play just about anything, I am completely hooked on Let It Ride. I play as much as I can but the sometime my time at the tables are very very short .. other times I can play for some time .. and others are big big wins.


    [Side note] I know LIR has a terrible house advantage and for the most part is a terrible game to play but I really enjoy it and I have had some big wins that have pretty funded my trips for the last couple years. My last one was early last year, so I due for another one. In addition, since the HA is so high, the comps seem to be pretty good and I definitely get my fair share.

    Well, this night was the first kind of night .... I took out a quick 5K marker and it went very fast. Decided it wasn't my night and headed back the Whisky Down for more drinks and some VP. Couldn't really win much but not really losing a lot either. Decided to move over to my favorite $5 VP machines. I generally just play JoB and most of the time it is when I am done for the night and just winding down. Tonight, I decided that I would stick with DDB as I had been early. I put in a couple hundred and was holding my own when I held 2 aces (but really didn't expect much from it) and drew the next 2 aces for my second hand pay of the day.


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    Played a couple more hands and called it a night and booked the win for a couple grand.



    Got up the next morning just in time to catch some lunch at Pucks. I always enjoy their burger. I had a massage scheduled for that afternoon so just took it easy and bounced around on a number of VP machine. No wins, lost a few hundred.


    I generally don't do the Spa but thought it would be a good time to give it a try. I had a 75 min massage scheduled. The Spa at the MGM Grand was nice and I didn't have a lot to compare it to, however CJ almost always gets a massage in vegas and has frequented many of the Spas and wasn't really impressed. It was clean and the staff was very good, it just seem dated and a little worn around the corners. As I understand, the Aria spa is much nicer. Anyway, it was a good massage, a little sauna and I was ready for the night.

    Back to the room to get ready for the evening and another start at the Whiskey Down (yes, this will be an on going pattern or issue depending on the view). We headed over to the Bellagio for dinner at YellowTail. I have never been a fan of the B but they do have some great restaurants. Once again, we sat in the bar area and while it wasn't a view of the lake, the view of the hostesses going by every few minutes made up for it. Great looking staff by the way. We tried a number of the Sushi items. They had a roll that I haven't seem before, called the High Roller. It is a steak roll and was very good. The Toro and Yellowtail sashimi was very good also. I had to try their Filet (as you will see this is also a pattern with me, I love my steak). It was pretty good but I have to say the sushi was much better and that is saying a lot for me.

    A little bit of VP and Slots at the B, lost again but that seems to be my history there.


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    Back to the MGM and a quick stop at Whiskey Down. This is where the night started to go off the tracks. My buddy wasn't feeling good so he wasn't really drinking, however the girls at WD would always have 2 drinks ready when we showed up. Since CJ wasn't drinking, I would be more than happy to drink his too. after a few too many, I wanted to play some LIR and off to the LIR table I went.


    Took another $5K marker and started in. This was a pretty fun table and while I wasn't winning, I wasn't really losing. I was really wanting another Fire In the Hole drinks from WD, however, I couldn't get the cocktail waitress to get one no matter how much I was willing to give her. I am pretty sure I have had others get it but she would not. One of the guys playing at the table had his wife standing behind him watching and after a number of tries with the CW, she offered to go get them for us. I just told her to tell the bar staff who it was for and put it on the loft and I would close it out later. She went over and got our drinks. I was so appreciate of what she did, I tipped her. My buddy looked at me and couldn't believe I did that. I didn't think anything of it at the time but I guess it might have been taken the wrong way if she hadn't taken the tip. They were a nice young couple and I really did appreciate it. A little later they mentioned that they would be going to Hakkasan and I offered to get them on the Invited Guest list. A quick call to my host and they were set. Finally hit my lost limit and headed back to WD.


    The bar was pretty packed but no one was playing the VP machines. Got a couple of the staff to clear out a couple spots and started playing. This is were it really went off the rails for me. Once again, they are pouring 2 drinks at a time and my buddy stopped drinking all together. I couldn't let them go to waste and they were going down really fast. At some point a couple of girls from New Zeland sat down next to me and I couldn't help but start taking with them. Both were very attractive and one was a factory rider for Specialized bikes and was in great shape... yes, I couldn't stop looking at her legs. I help teach them how to play VP and as I found out the next day from both my buddy and the staff, I was pretty entertaining to those around me. At this point, I have no idea what time it is and I just don't care. What I should have done was just call it a night but who does what they should do in Vegas. I have the bright idea that I want to show them the view from the foundation room, got a car to take us over there. I guess it was later than I thought and the FR was closed. I figured we would try MIX... closed ... so got another care to take us over to Cosmo and the chandelier bar. It was pretty dead but open and I was ready for another drink. Order a couple drinks but the girls were done and ready to go back to the MGM. Called another car (yes, I had MGM transportation hoping that night) and got ready to settle the bar tab. Reached into my pocket and no money ... maybe the other pocket ... no money ... hmmmmmm .... I had a CC and a couple hundred in my walet, so I was covered but I started to wonder what happened to it. It wasn't much, maybe 4-500 or less. I figured it either fell out or I gave one of the limo drivers one hell of a tip. Back at MGM and the girls where done so we parted ways and I went back to WD to see if I left the money there .... I was DONE. I am not completely sure what time I rolled in but sometime around 4am and passed out.


    The next day was very painful ... had a work call at 10am, so I was up and on the call. I guess I sounded so bad, 3 people on the call texted me that I sounded like shit and it must have been one hell of a night. After the call, I went up got ready. I just love the loft steam shower for hangover remedy. It helped but I was still hurting.... headed to lunch at TAP at the MGM. Good burger but I was lucky to get down half of it. I should of headed over to REVIV but didn't want keep CJ waiting on me. Sucked it up and went on. We planned to Casino crawl today and that is what we did. Started at NYNY then, Monte Carlo, Aria, Cosmo, PHO, LINQ, Cromwell, Venetian, Palazzo, TI and ending at Mirage. Played mostly VP at each property except PHO. Played some Mississippi Stud. won about $500 there but for the most part I broke even on the day. Had a car pick us up at Mirage to head back to MGM. I was feeling much better but not 100% but that wasn't going to stop my last night.

    We had dinner plans at Craftsteak with my Host and her husband, her sister and husband and a couple other friends. I always enjoy meeting new people in Vegas so the more the merrier. Great dinner as always. Ceasar Salad, Filet, Yukon Potatoes and I never leave CraftSteak without some Monkey Bread. I never completely understood what one of her friends did but part of her job was going around casinos on the east cost (mainly AC) and playing through free play for some big player. She would get a percentage of what ever she could convert to cash. I have no idea how she does it but seemed like pretty work. The other friend was a professional gambler, mostly sports but appeared he played some BJ too. Always interesting conversations as my host's husband also works in the industry. Finished up with the dinner and they were heading to MB to another bar and some music. I Was itching for for some LIR.

    I would let you guess what I did next but it should be pretty clear by now.... headed to WD for a drink, just one this time and off to the LIR table. Another $5k marker and started playing .... to say it was a quick lost would be a understatement. I think I got to play for all of 15 minutes maybe a little longer and it was gone. My buddy was still in it, so I just hung out with him and watched. I knew this was going to be a bad idea, so after a 15 or 20 minutes of watching, I had to get back in there. Another $5K marker and we were off to the races. I would love to say this is where I hit it big and won it all back but that was not to be. I did get to play a little longer but still ended up being felted. A 10K loss for the night but didn't feel as bad with the VP wins at the start. Headed back to WD for some more VP but it just wasn't happening.

    It was probably 1 or 1:30am now and I was ready to call it a night, the earliest night this week.


    Packed up in the morning and headed to the airport.

    Even with the $8K in VP wins the first night, I was down just over $12K for the trip. I never like a losing trip but definitely could have been worse. Everything was comped, so it wasn't a complete lost. A great 2 bedroom loft, 3 great dinners, a couple massages and many drinks.. maybe too many of those ... nope, just the right amount.

    If you are still reading and didn't dose off by now I appreciate it. It went a little longer than I expected. I had hoped to have this completed a couple days ago and before my next trip, however I am finishing up on the plane to Vegas. How is that for procrastination?


    I was hoping to start a live trip report for the one I am now but we will see if I get that started .. just by my history, I would probably get it started on the way home or sometime next year





    Here are some Misc pictures from the trip. You will noticed many are a little blurry but that is probably a good picture of what my trip looked like.
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