Traveling for work can be a blessing and a curse. On one hand your trip is pretty much paid for but on the other you do actually have to work for part if not most of it. This is how all except two of my trips to Las Vegas, Nevada have been. All in all I’ve been about 7 or 8 times. Basically, I’ve been to alot of different places in Las Vegas – some expensive (like that I could not afford and work was paying) and some not-so-expensive. In this post, I want to tell you about some of my favorite places and some of the best places for your money if you decide to visit Sin City.
Favorite Places to Stay
I’ve definitely been spoiled in the hotel department when it comes to staying in Las Vegas. Because most of my trips have been for work I’ve had the pleasure of staying in the hotel attached to the convention center on the strip – The Venetian. The Venetian is one of the pricier albeit nicest hotel on the strip. It’s connected to the convention center as well as the Palazzo which houses a wide variety of shopping and restaurants (some of which will come up in this post). The Venetian is styled after Venice Italy. It features large marble columns, ornately painted ceilings and a full on replica of the canals in Italy. It is one the most beautiful hotels I’ve ever seen which makes paying for it worth it in the end. The casino is huge and is one of the only casinos I’ve seen in Las Vegas that offers a non-smoking area. The pool area is beautiful as well with water features and a full bar that will serve you poolside. They also have two full size spas outdoors that have waterfalls and also poolside service. All of their guest rooms are suites that boast full size bathrooms with jetted tubs as well as showers and full living room areas to relax in. This is not your basic hotel and will run you anywhere from $169 to $610 for their more “basic” suites. If you have the money to splurge it’s definitely worth it.
Another great place to stay that is a bit more budget friendly, while still being beautiful, is Paris Las Vegas Hotel. Now don’t get me wrong, Paris can still be expensive depending on the time you go and what room you choose. But for our particular trip, which was a week before Thanksgiving, we found this to be the nicest and least pricey option. The hotel is styled after Paris, France and even features a large replica of the Eiffel Tower out front. You can even take an elevator ride up to the top of the tower for a bird’s eye view of the city, or enjoy a fancy dinner at the Eiffel Tower Restaurant. The casino is adorable with an outdoor feel. The ceilings are painted as blue skies and the bars are set up as if they are outdoor cafes. Even the waitresses wear Paris-style outfits as they serve cocktails on the casino floor. Paris’ hotel rooms are nice and will be even nicer once they complete renovations. They aren’t all suites like the Venetian but are still a decent size with a larger bathroom than your average hotel. I’ve also had their room service for breakfast which was super speedy and delicious. I would absolutely stay here again if given the chance.
Favorite Places to Play
Gambling is a huge part of the entertainment in Vegas. Pretty much every hotel features a casino and everywhere you go you can hear the bells and whistles of the slot machines. I’m not a huge fan of gambling, but sometimes it’s fun to play some of the slot machines and get free drinks while you’re doing it. The best places to play the slot machines are in the Venetian and Palazzo because, in my experience, they still bring you free drinks while you play. I’ve noticed many of the other casinos don’t have cocktail waitresses come around as often which makes it much less fun to lose money while gambling. Another fun place to play slot machines is in what they call Old Las Vegas. This Las Vegas is off the strip on Fremont Street. It is lined with neon signs and some rather different sites than what you will see on the new strip. Fremont Street is home to a giant zip-line ride where you can sail above the entire boulevard of lights, and at night is home to a variety of live music playing up and down the street. The slot machines are fun because the drinks are cheaper, the games are older, and you get much of the feel of what Las Vegas must have been like back in the old days. Visiting Old Las Vegas is like being thrown back in time. Someday, I’d like to stay here as well to get a different feel of the other side of Vegas.
For fun that doesn’t include gambling I usually like to go watch the fountain show at the Bellagio. It’s an engineering marvel of water and lights with fountains set to different music depending on when you’re able to watch it. My favorite song to see is Andre Bocelli’s time to say goodbye. The fountain show is spectacular and definitely something you won’t want to miss if you visit Vegas. The best part? It’s absolutely free. Another fun thing to do in Vegas is to check out all the other design and work put into the other ritzy hotels and casinos. A couple worth checking out are the Bellagio and Caesar’s Palace. Both feature amazing design features such as Bellagio’s glass flower ceiling and Caesar’s Romanesque interior. Bellagio also features a conservatory and botanical garden which is redesigned each season. The work that goes into the garden is breathtaking. It’s free to walk around and check out the hotels and their different attractions. You could also stop for a drink at Bellagio’s piano bar near the lobby or play a few slots in either casino. Another fun bar to check out is the dueling piano bar inside of Paris. You could also watch from outside the bar through the large windows if you don’t feel like paying for a drink. Picture two large grand pianos playing tunes requested by the audience. I couldn’t believe the talent of the guys playing and the engagement of the crowd is fun to watch while also being fairly inexpensive.
Favorite Places to Eat
Visiting new restaurants is hands down my favorite part about travelling. I love experiencing new food and trying new places and Las Vegas is one of the best places for that. They have so many different restaurants ranging from run-of-the-mill to Michelin star rated. Whether you’re looking for Italian food, a good burger or something exotic you’re sure to find it there.
For breakfast I love HEXX kitchen + bar located inside of Paris. Their interior is super modern and hip and I loved the variety in their menu. One of my favorite items was their fresh fruit plate, which I know, sounds basic, but is so over the top. It came with a bunch of mini banana muffins and a coconut whipped cream that was out of this world. Also, it’s huge! I’ve never seen a bigger fruit plate in my life! It went perfectly with my bottomless mimosas. I’ve recently learned that my favorite lunch spot in Las Vegas is no longer there after 6 years (super sad face!). So, the next time I go, I will try to update this post with a new lunch spot.
One of the best dinners I’ve ever had was my 30th birthday dinner at Sushi Samba inside of the Palazzo. Sushi Samba is one of my favorite restaurants in Las Vegas and I try to visit every time I am there. Their menu features items that are in a Japanese-South American fusion style. My favorite part is that they also offer an entire vegan menu which can be difficult to find in fine dining. The atmosphere inside is amazing as well with street-style art on the walls, crazy sculptures you walk through to get to your seat, and giant paper lanterns hanging from the walls. If vegan isn’t your thing, have no fear, because they offer a wide variety of meats and sushi items to suit everyone’s taste. Seriously, I went with my dad who is a hardcore meat eater and my friend who is a hardcore vegan and no one left disappointed. They also offer gluten-free items as well as a brunch and a kids menu which I have never tried but I’m sure is out of this world. Next on my list for them is to try their some of the Japanese Whiskey from their extensive drink list. It can get a little pricey to eat here for sure, but the food you are getting is second to none and is an unforgettable experience in and of itself.
Las Vegas can be a super fun place to visit without costing too much money if you plan it out properly. I’d say the most expensive and most dangerous part of the city is the casinos with their many slot machines, the trick is to learn when to walk away. This isn’t to say that you can’t win, though. My husband and I paid for almost our entire trip with winnings off of a single slot machine alone, so definitely don’t knock it til you’ve tried it. Overall, it’s a great city to visit for relaxing as well. There are endless things to do and see, but the hotels can also be so nice that you might not want to leave. I’ve been many times, like I said before, but I think I would go again for sure. It seems like there is always something new to experience in Sin City even if it’s not a show or another casino. If you get the chance to check it out I totally recommend checking out the places I’ve mentioned above.
Until next time,