OK, I admit it. I have a problem. I. Love. Las Vegas.
Given that I am a sometimes-sophisticated gal who aspires to appear to be a run-of-the-mill North Shore, middle aged, reasonably in-shape blond, I can fly under the radar with my Vegas obsession.
I blame all my sins on my parents, just like all the other folks in therapy, because they took me and my siblings camping during my formative years. Hanging out at night in places like Dawson City in the Yukon Territories or Rocky Harbor, Newfoundland, forced me to look for fun outside of the hopping night life that included swatting giant mosquitoes or spending another night playing Hi Ho Cherry-O with my much younger sister.
Thus, nightly poker games began when I was really young. It was a great way to kill time, and since I was the oldest kid and sober, it was pretty easy to take down some monster pots. Later I transitioned to house parties and casino boats in Hammond, Ind.
After my first adult trip to Vegas in 2000, I was hooked. And now I take regular trips with the girls. Big groups can be a blast, but I would recommend a pre-arranged itinerary that folks can opt into or out of depending on their own needs.
Typically, I suggest groups stay in the Mandalay Bay complex. This building includes The Four Seasons Hotel (with a separate, quiet pool area), THE Hotel (the upscale part of the Mandalay Bay) and the Mandalay Bay. Since it ranges from reasonable to pricey, the complex typically has something for everyone in the group.
Check out our sample itinerary. Each day has something sort of outrageous and something not to be missed.
Trevi in the Caesars Forum Shops is my favorite fake place after Disney World. Sitting next to a fake Trevi Fountain and drinking Lemon Sorbitini’s is one of my most loved pastimes. After lunch at Trevi, one can shop … for hours! The Forum Shops have everything from Anthropologie to Valentino, The Gap to Gucci all found under the ever-changing fake Italian sky.
The Red Square Bar is really lively and sexy. The drinks are fantastic, and heading into the Vodka Freezer is a once-in-a lifetime silly thrill. The bartenders have some really fun, circus act type skills and the place is typically filled with some really attractive men. Window shopping can be fun!
Doing at least one silly thing a day is important, so do go play Bingo at the Gold Coast. Ask Bingo Bernadette from Queens to help you get set up. However, try not to be loud while you giggle with your pals or risk having security escort you to the curb (been there, done that!). I am not sure why they serve free liquor in the bingo parlor if they want a library-like atmosphere.
Of course, there is always gambling to be done at any point along the way. However, giggling with your pals beats solo gambling any day, so gather a few friends and pick a long weekend and go.
And, tell Bernadette that Mimi from Chicago said, “Hi.”