Sorry for the delay, I’ve been quite busy over festive period & CBA to write this up as much as I enjoy reminiscing they do take a while & I endeavour to pay attention to every little detail so patients is a virtue guys & I will for sure have all the backlog published hopefully by close of 2010. My 3rd TR & just 7 months after my 2nd visit this time I was out during the summer w/100+F temperatures & of course during the WSOP so the poker action should be well juicy all be it a little more shark filled than normal but cest la vie. I was travelling w/Keith Vincent (Vinny) & ex NUFC player Martin Brittain (Britt) who were school friends of mine between Wednesday 30th May & Saturday 9th June but this TR begins the afternoon of Tuesday 29th May where we congregated at Central Station, Newcastle to travel down Kings Cross, London where we would spend the night before our early morning direct Virgin Atlantic flight.
This was my 1st & only to date visit to London so I was especially excited to check out the nightlife down their albeit a Tuesday night so it won’t be a true reflection of what our capital has to offer but M’EH. We checked into our hotel early evening which was located adjacent to Kings Cross station but IDR exactly where we stopped, it was nothing special just a standard Premier Inn type place IIRC. Anyway we dumped our bags & went for a late dinner approximately 19:00 over an Italian restaurant which again IDR the name but the pizza/pasta was really good & reasonably priced, we of course enjoyed a couple of Italian signature beer’s Peroni during our meal before heading out on the town around 20:00.
Excess binge drinking followed including double aftershock’s w/every round of double vodka redbulls & crawled the bars travelling on some obscure taxi peddle bike w/a trailer & visited a number of bars & clubs mainly around Trafalgar Square IIRC before finally arriving at Hard Rock Casino, London around 2:00am just hours before having to be over Gatwick airport for our flight. We didn’t stay long & IIRC we all won approximately £40 dabbling w/BJ & roulette before leaving 45 minutes later in pursuit of some brothels which we had seen advertised earlier, LOL. After 2hrs of failure I was like FFS & decided to turn in around 5:00am as I felt we were going round in circles & hoping to get 2hrs sleep to freshen up for the flight, the lads turned in moments before we had to leave for Gatwick & I understand they did eventually manage to get their end way but were most disappointed given travelling & cost, “M’EH that’s what prostitution in UK is all about” was my response.
So early Wednesday 30th morning approximately 6:45am we headed for Gatwick via London underground rail & the Gatwick express which runs regularly from London Victoria to Gatwick airport. We arrive in good time after sleeping for the 25 minute Gatwick express journey when disaster strikes, Britt has had his travel bag stolen whilst sleeping which contained all his USD but more importantly his passport. After searching frantically up & down the train over the course of the next 2hrs we try to retrieve the travel bag reporting it to security to unfortunately no avail, finally moments before boarding Britt accepts he won’t be joining us on the flight & has asked Virgin if he will be able to change his flight to a later date & join us in a couple of day’s after he replaces his passport & borrows some $$$ from his father, Virgin kindly allow the request & we go our separate ways.
So then their were 2 & we boarded our Virgin Atlantic direct flight to LV, McCarran just to give a quick flight report from my vague memory no delays ensured we arrived 14:00 PST afternoon, courteous staff all though a little busy at times, choice of 3 meals throughout flight, complimentary soft drinks, reasonably priced alcoholic drinks (AFA flights go anyway), & an array of channel choice’s w/TV’s build into back of seats & even a channel where you could watch a camera which was situated below the plane so on clear flights you could see what you were flying above which was pretty cool. After 10:45hrs of flying as mentioned earlier we arrived in LV mid afternoon & greeted by our limousine driver who I had previously booked via email, collect our luggage & here we go again for round 3. Vinny was making his 1st trip so insisted on enjoying the limousine for the full hour we had it booked for which of course was cool w/me as we coasted up & down the strip as well as a number of other areas around LV while enjoying the complimentary champagne until we eventually reached our home for the next 10 days Caesars Palace.
As we were originally scheduled to have 3 staying we had booked a Forum Tower Executive Suite which considering it cost $290 per night we expected to be 1st class & it didn’t disappoint in the slightest, from the moment we walked through the doors of our suite, we knew we were staying in a 1st class prestigious resort & the luxurious impeccable service ensured all the little finer things than can really make an ordinary visit special were spot on. To give you an idea of the quality here is a list of the amenities available;
2 separate bedrooms "1 double & 1 twin both w/ensuite bathrooms."
Separate living area "Including 1st class leather lounge seats"5 LCD TV’s "1 in every room including the bathrooms"
Complimentary high speed wireless internet
24hr movies available "Including adult entertainment for approximately $10"
Ensuite bathrooms were marble "Including a walk in shower & huge bathtub"Laundry service available for reasonable price IDK exact cost
24hr room service
So I jumped in the shower & freshened up, by now it’s approximately 16:30 & I lay on the bed watching TV enjoying a Budweiser in my Caesars palace bathrobe while I waited for Vinny to shower & get ready as we were still a little early for the evening shenanigans but at the same time a little late to catch any rays by the pool so a couple of hours drinking in the room seemed the most sensible option. We flicked a coin for the room & fortunately I got the double which was neither here nor there for the time being but meant w/Britt arriving in the next couple of day’s he would be sharing the twin w/Vinny so bonus looks like lady luck is on my side for this trip.
After a couple of hours & emptying our mini bar we headed out around 19:00 w/no real idea on where we were heading & the only purpose was to get as wasted as possible, so on route through Caesars Palace casino floor we stopped off at the 25c BJ machines & span $1 up to approximately $3 after 15 minutes which is obviously nothing but the plan was to get the attention of the cocktail waitress for the complimentary drinks which worked so after tipping her a $1 for our Bud we were on our way & ended up heading south strip towards Planet Hollywood. We stumbled across “The Heart Bar” in PH which seemed reasonably busy & plush so joined the party, quick review is very stylish & prices between $8-$15 per drink so pretty standard for LV however the clientele are a little far up their own arse’s & need a reality check so not for me but each to their own & wouldn’t want to put followers off seeing for themselves. We left around 23:00 which TBH was about the time everyone else went onto other places, even though it was a 24hr establishment it needn’t have been IMO as it was beginning to empty BWDIK. So now we’ve effectively been on the go since Tuesday afternoon 14:00 WET (albeit I had 2hrs sleep in London) & it’s now Thursday evening 23:00 PST which given the 8hr time difference equates to 47hrs on the go almost 2 full day’s of pretty much endless drinking & even the adrenaline couldn’t keep us going as we both turned in for an early night to rest well for tomorrow which would of course be Friday night.
Note: You’ll find in this TR my time on the felt is limited & unlike “Las Vegas 2006 Trip Report” my 12+ hour poker sessions are few & far between mainly because the company I was keeping so expect a lot more nights out & all day drinking sessions around the pool.
I woke up around 10:00am after nearly 11hrs sleep & see a note in the living area from Vinny explaining he’ll be found by pool, so I quickly freshen up & apply sun factor before heading down to join him. The swimming & bathing area in Caesars Palace is named “Garden of the Gods Pool Oasis” & you can tell why, there is 6 breath taking pools in the vicinity;
The Apollo Pool
The Fortuna Pool
The Jupiter Pool
The Neptune Pool
The Temple Pool
The Venus Pool
All having their own unique feature drawing you their including Cabana’s, swim up BJ tables, masseuses, high end restaurants & bars, trendy music, & Venus pool is $20 entry but is a nude area & perving on the 1st class naked women is worth the entrance fee alone.
Chilling by the pool listening to a number of recent songs but notably a remix of Fedde Le Grand “Put your hands up for Detroit” which was identical but had replaced Detroit w/Las Vegas in the chorus & sounded pretty cool. Below is a YouTube link courtesy of 1LTPETE of the same remix being played in Pure, Caesars Palace if anybody is interested;
Put Your Hands Up… Pure.
So yea after approximately 5hrs by the pool drinking their insanely priced soft drinks ($20 for a Pepsi IIRC) & already seeing the benefits as we were both pretty bronze we decided around 15:00 to make a move & get showered ready for an early start intending to head over O’Shea’s casino for a 16:00 $40 BI BPONG (beer pong) MTT we had seen advertised the previous night & looked a good laugh. For those not familiar w/beer pong I’ll briefly explain below;
Courtesy of http://www.angelfire.com/ak6/beerpong/
Played in pairs of 2, w/teams standing at opposing ends of a flat, rectangular table. 6 or 10 cups are formed in a pyramid at either end of the table, w/base of the pyramid centered at the edge of the table. The players attempt to toss or bounce ping pong balls into the cups, each of which is filled with 1/3 of a beer. When a player makes a shot into a cup of the opposing team, a player from the opposing team drinks that particular beer & removes it from the table. The game continues in this way, w/both players from 1 team taking a shot, followed by both players from the other team. The team that is able to clear all of the opposing team’s cups 1st is the winner, with the losing team splitting the contents of the winning team’s remaining cups. To begin, a player from each team takes a shot simultaneously without looking at the cups. This is repeated until one team makes, and one team misses. This decides who gets the 1st possestion. After the 1st game, the winning team gets the 1st shot.
So we arrived promptly & handed over our BI & got drawn in the 1st round vs. 2 awesome mid 20’s yanks called Zack & Jane, anyway after having a good bit crack w/them they tell us they play regular before going out back home w/their fraternity house! FML & as expected they brushed us aside as they had pinpoint accuracy hitting the cups when it became short (cup) handed to use a poker term which was our downfall & a quick way to lose our $40 BI but NVM had a great laugh & continued to support them as they trooped on to he 2nd round. We went on to spent next 18hrs enjoying LV nightlife in their company. IIRC they were from LA, California & frequented LV regular so although I already had a good understanding of places to be from my 2 previous trips there was always room for more experience & suggestions & they were 1st class so was great crack all night.
We temporarily left our American friends while they competed in the BPONG MTT for a late lunch/early dinner around 17:30. We noticed an Italian restaurant by the pool over Caesars earlier in the day called ROA’S w/a number accolades such as “Two Crossed Forks, Michelin Guide Las Vegas 2007” among others so decided to head back over to give it a go, we both had their signature fresh home cooked high quality meat balls accompanied w/perfectly cooked spaghetti which was really good, we enjoyed it in the sun on their balcony next to the swimming pool & although the cheapest thing on the menu still a small fortune at roughly $50 per head after some vineyard wine & even more Peroni lager so as much as it was delicious we wouldn’t make a habit of dining their.
So after we’d eaten & we headed over to Shadow Bar, Caesars Palace where we had arranged to meet the Americans when they had finished in the BPONG MTT, so yeah Shadow Bar is appropriately named as behind the bar it has silhouetted shadow dancers which is impressive, below is a YouTube video courtesy of konalove;
Another stylish trendy bar including 1st class bar staff who know how to entertain juggling bottles, glasses, etc as they serve your drinks & a good selection of cocktails to boot w/$$$ between $9-$20 per drink so approximately $18-$40 per round & of course x2 by time the yanks arrived. So after around 3hrs in Shadow Bar, Caesars Jane suggested heading over the road to a popular spot they like & ensured we would find entertaining called Carnaval Court.
By now it was 22:00ish but the night was still very young by LV standards, Zack wanted to play a few house games for a bit to cash in on the complimentary drinks & he informed us that Baccarat was his poison & I’d briefly played the UK variant by the name of Punto Banco so still in Caesars Palace we stopped off at the Baccarat table & each tabled $100 to try & spin up, so again for those not familiar w/Baccarat below is a quick explanation;
You bet on player/punto (1:1), banker/banco (1:1 -5% (D) commission), or tie (8:1) & your betting on whose hand will be closet to 9 after being dealt 2 cards w/T+ = 0 & A = 1. Anything north of 9 then only the last digit qualifies, for example 8+8=16 & the hand is playing a 6. If no natural is out (8 or 9) then player may draw a 3rd card & depending on the outcome if applicable the dealer will also draw a 3rd card.
So in order to avoid the 5% commission I opted to back the player for on average $5-$10 per hand for the next hour & a half & after having to reload for another $100 I managed to finish the session w/$180 which was $20 south of my $200 I’d tabled but I’d drank a minimum of 4 double vodka redbulls only giving $1 tips so I easily made up for my losses in drinks so cest la vie & IIRC the other 3 won about $100 a piece so overall we were beating the house but I kind of wished I was 50/50 w/Vinny but NVM. Anyway we eventually bailed the casino & finally made it over to Carnaval Court for around 23:30.
So Carnaval Court was an outside bar that was part of Harrahs, it had a live band in the background for the 1st half an hour until midnight before their resident DJ T took to the decks & had similar bar staff to that of Shadow Bar using a number of cool techniques to pour your cocktails. The drinks are reasonable at approximately $8 & as it’s centre strip it is IMO a must visit for any LV drinking tourist, we had a great laugh over their & even a couple of Harrah’s, BJ tables if the flurry of sound, light, & motion isn’t enough to interest you & you have an urge for a flutter. So after staying till closing (2:00am) & all very well cut now after all having 15+ cocktails since starting 10hrs ago over O’Shea’s, but in true LV fashion we were in no mood to turn in & looking for a change of scenery the guys suggested Bar at Times Square, NYNY so we headed to Harrahs valet & taxied down the strip.
So after arriving NYNY approximately 2:45am we play a bit of 25c video BJ on the machines directly outside of the bar & grab a couple of complimentary cocktails for half hour before eventually making our way in & after paying the $10 cover charge 1st impressions were a bit posh w/clientele in suits & a piano player as entertainment, so hardly my scene TBH but M’EH I’m sure it’ll be cheesy & the drinks were reasonable around $6 a cocktail so went with it & after a couple of hours we finally left looking for something a little more lively around 5:30am & headed over the bridge towards Excalibur hoping to find entertainment their.
After a quick scout around their didn’t appear to be much open so decided to set up camp at their Baccarat table, I’d calculated I had spent around $250 or so thus far tonight which was a little under what I expected mainly due to our choice of bars not being overly expensive so didn’t mind another shot at busting the house & tabled my $100 this time ensuring I asked Vinny 1st if we were taking 50% of each others action which he agreed. We sat for almost 3hrs & were getting right involved squeezing cards (particularly the 3rd if drawn) counting the pips hoping it was in the range we needed, pushing on 9:00am & after consistently $5 min betting occasionally dipping toe w/$10 bets I cashed out for $135 which was $35 profit & minus the $20 I lost over Caesars made for $15 profit & from the nights gambling & reduced the total cost of the night to just north of $200. We jumped in a taxi dropping Zack & Jane over Harrah’s where they were staying before finally arriving back at Caesars for around 10:00am knackered after near enough an 18hr bender, upon arrival to our suite Vinny has a text from Britt saying he’s sorted out his passport & scheduled to arrive 14:00 Friday afternoon which is only 4hrs away so we ask reception for a wake up call for 13:30 so that we could go greet him from airport.
So despite still being fucked when the wake up call came in we freshened up, ensured their was no delays & headed to McCarran airport to collect Britt…wasn’t really necessary as I’m sure he would have been capable of making his own way but just thought it would be a nice gesture. We arrived at the airport right on time & waited approximately 20 minutes, talking to an elderly Irish couple who were collecting their daughter & we had a meet & greet sign sporting his name that we knocked up that the limousine drivers usually has & then Britt to appeared through customs & we all burst out laughing & gave each other hugs & stuff before heading back to the strip to get on it. We arrived back over Caesars around 15:00 & Britt as was expected was blown away & in awe of the whole city & hotel, couldn’t help but have a quick $25 BJ bet before heading up to our suite to get changed & by the time we were freshened up it was 16:00 Friday afternoon & we were ready to get it on. We started again in Shadow Bar, mainly because it was convenient being in our hotel & stayed for best part of 4 hours just generally getting hammered & catching up before heading over Palms Maloof Resort on my recommendation.
So I recommended Playboy Club, Palms after the great night I had their the previous year so we taxied over & arrived 20:30 so before going straight in, Britt being a gambler insisted on trying out some of their table games so we dabbled w/Caribbean stud poker, for those not familiar;
Caribbean stud poker is similar to 5CS but played vs. the house rather than villains & involves no bluffing, after you’ve anted your dealt 5 down cards as is the dealer & the rest of seated players. The dealer then turn’s 1 of his cards face up & pushes the cards towards the players to signal they can look at their own cards (only theirs) as it is against casino policy to share cards or information with other players. Players then choose to play or fold & if playing must bet x2 what they had anted & if folding they surrender their ante, after all players have made their decision the dealer reveals his hand & only plays w/AK+ & then dealer compare’s his cards vs. the players cards right to left & any players hand that beats the dealers is a winner.
We all sat w/$100 & began playing, I was anteing $5 so total bet was $15 if I chose to continue which didn’t leave me much room to manoeuvre if I lost a couple in a row. Anyway sure enough I went bust after approximately 45 minutes but M’EH no big deal it was now 21:15 & Playboy Club was calling my name as well as it’s sister bars & clubs including Rain, Moon, & Ghostbar, which w/$20 cover charge got you access to all of them so yeah we headed up. All 4 establishments really are 1st class & IMO the best place for a night out on the strip, reasonably priced AFA LV goes, & full of the finest women, so no bottle service this time around & we were just going rounds at the bar which for double vodka redbulls were around $50 a round for the 3 of us. Roll on 5:00am after we’d been to all 4 & it was closing time, we were all absolute wankered & although 5:00am the party certainly doesn’t stop in LV because we’d only had 3hrs sleep the previous night which evidently was after an 18hr session we really were ready to retire to bed & eventually made it back to Caesars for around 5:45am before collapsing in my bed while they stayed up & played a it BJ.
I’d arranged for a wake up call for 10:00am, not something I make a habit of on holiday & usually just sleep till my heart is content but had to make my way over Rio All Suite Casino because I full intentions of playing my 1st WSOP event which was #3 $1500 NLH. Anyway I headed over alone not wanting to wake the lads up so left them a note explaining where I was in case they had forgot me telling them, I arrived around 11:00am still pretty tired after a total of 10hrs sleep since Monday night. Anyway the cue to register for this event was 300+ & I just CBA to wait, so after cueing for 20 minutes & taking time to consider my options I decided it wasn’t optimal to play for a number of reason’s;
All these were playing on my mind & I just decided I’d rather spend the $1500 playing some higher ring games & maybe take a shot at the $500 No Limit Hold'em Charity tournament at Mandalay Bay the next day. I followed the event & the eventual winner from 2,998 entrants was Irishman Ciaran O’Leary taking home a cool $727,012 of the total $4,497,000 prize pool…footage of the FT can be found over PokerTube.
So after being up & around Rio I decided despite being tired to take some pro plus & play my 1st bit of poker since arriving in LV & settle over the 500NLH. Here I had the pleasure of playing w/Beth Shak, Amanda Leatherman, & Eric Baldwin all at some point during my 7+ hour session, which began at 11:30am & didn’t finish until Vinny arrived around 18:30. I ended up stuck about $700ish after taking some sicko beats including AK vs. KQ AIOTF xKKxQ, TT vs. 89c AIOTF x7TxJcc so despite really enjoying the company I would have liked the cards to fall a bit better but cest la vie & it was now time to head back out & again despite being absolute exhausted I forced myself to get out as after all it was a Saturday night in LV.
Here as leaving I see John Juanda in the corridor & Vinny has the camera so I ask for a photo which he kindly agreed but requested I turn the flash off due to his bad eyes & because it was a disposable IDK how, D’OH so that was a missed opportunity…anyway I wished him GL & shook his hand. Now I find out last night when I went to bed that Britt got carried away w/the excitement & blew all his cash playing BJ over PH (1st stolen, 2nd lost, UL M8) & that’s why he’s staying in on Saturday night in LV…rather him than me even if I was skint I’d still go out but each to their own I suppose.
So since we were over Rio & having already spent the previous night next door in Palms we didn’t fancy the same place again so had a scout around Rio to see if their was anywhere worth visiting. Anyway we found this awesome place called i-Bar which is basically a 21st century bar where using the Microsoft screen tables you can flirt with other people in bar playing various games, order drinks, surf the internet, it’s like a virtual bar…pretty cool & 1 of a kind. We stayed here till around 23:00 & kept trying to get into these hotties who clearly weren’t interested & just used us for free drink, FML NVM before heading off w/lets say some less attractive girls to Rio’s nightclub Voodoo lounge. Similar to Playboy Club, Palms the Voodoo Lounge, Rio is sky high requiring a lift to access & has similar prices & atmosphere to suit, we stayed till closing despite for the final couple of hours I really was on my last legs & just wanted my bed. The birds were up for coming back but I just CBA & Vinny wasn’t too keen on his because she was carrying a few extra pounds, so we just took their numbers & said we would call them…well aye deleted those instantly. So yes finally got back to Caesars & in our suite for 5:30am & hit the sack w/o setting any alarm & intending to catch up on some very well over due sleep.
I set my alarm for 11:00 after five hours sleep & see a note from the lads explaining there by the pool, I jump in the shower and decided to head down to Mandalay Bay for their $500 charity event. Despite being hugely hungover I played and ran very well, but unfortunately just missed out my first five figure score as I bust in 6th for $4,635 with the remaining five splitting for $15,000 each. So the lads had been speaking to a couple of lads by the pool & were told Body English, Hard Rock host’s a night called Sunday school (every Sunday believe it or not) which is inundated w/naughty sexy young girls dressed in skimpy little school outfits so needless to say I didn’t need much convincing. Soon as I was finished the tournament I jumed straight in a Taxi to meet the boys at Hard Rock for around 12:30 which still a little early to go clubbing & decided before heading to the bar we’ll experiment in a table game offered called Casino war whilst also enjoying some complimentary drinks, for those not familiar w/Casino war;
Casino war is recognized as 1 of the lowest forms of house table games, played w/6 decks & 1 card is dealt to player & another dealt to dealer & the highest cards wins, simple. In the event of a tie the player then choose to either surrender (lose 50% stake) w/o continuing or go to war (place another bet of equal size) & they both see another card behind 3 burn cards.
Quick tip for Casino war is never surrender, the house edge is approximately 2% if played optimally which involves always going to war however surrendering 50% in the result of a tie then significantly increases house edge which naturally depends on how many times you surrender to give exact %. So after sitting w/$100 & going to war so to speak I managed to cash in $170 around 22:30 before so now running +$150 for the night in total decided to head over to a bar called Wasted space which TBH wasn’t our scene at all, very rock n’ roll type place with leathers & hard nosed females sporting mullets & exceptionally loud racket which they called music…we were there for no more than half an hour while we finished our drink & bailed. We then headed to Body English for this Sunday school & to check out the talent, $15 cover charge & drinks about $10 for a double vodka redbull was fair enough & the place really was covered wall to wall with sexy birds because I understand they had either free or reduced entry, MBN. I would 100% recommend Body English especially for this particular night on a Sunday by I recently found out it’s closed & now operates under the name Vanity which has similar themed nights but has been refurbished etc, so I’m looking forward to my next trip out their to check out the new décor.
So rolling out Body English for 4:00am closing were all absolute mortal & have a rethink about our next COA whilst chilling in their 24hr centre bar ordering some $2 bottled beer & shots for good measure. 3 & half hours later & were still no further forward about what to do next but were all the more tired & 6:30am now I make an individual decision to head for bed so that I can get up for the opening event of the Grand Summer Series over at MGM Grand hoping to continue my heater, the lads agree heading back to the Blvd is best course of action & I drop them off at MGM Grand as they still haven’t been in yet & are eager to see it. I jokingly tell Britt to behave & not blow all his $$$ which he laughs off & we head our separate way’s as I eventually turn in to bed just before 7:00am.
I wake up in the 12:00 in the middle of the afternoon & still no sign of the lads, so decided to just head to the MGM Grand to late register for the $300. I find them chilling by the pool still drinking from the previous night & a much happier Britt as he won $800 on roulette after I turned in, which was a bonus & although not much got him back in the game & he paid me back the $300 which was a bonus to have so early & had about $400ish left to help get him through the week which is IMHO only enough for 1 night out their but least if he’s paid me back I don’t mind sorting him out again later on in the week if need be. Anyway I grab a bite to eat at the poolside café & then head to MGM Grand. I played and ran really well again despite nursing a bit of a hangover, but I fell short of the good money and bust in 8th for $750. The boys come to meet me after I bust and we then decided to hit the house games, and play a few $5 hands on the BJ tables for the next couple of hours till & after the dealer kills us I leave about $120 in the hole, FML I’ve had some rotten luck on the house games thus far;
Baccarat, Caesars Palace, -$20
Baccarat, Excalibur Casino, +$35
Caribbean Stud Poker, Palms Maloof Resort -$100
500NLH, Rio All Suite, -$700
300NLH, Caesars Palace, +$80
Casino War, Hard Rock Casino, +$70
Blackjack, Caesars Palace, -$120
So I was -$765 in total for my gambling exploits which isn’t disastrous but coupled w/$1000+ I’d spent on nights out I was really running a little below expected, I guess it can all be put down to the bad 500NLH session I had over the Rio but all things considered I told the lads I was having a night off the heavy drink & was going to grind the 500NLH at either Bellagio or Venetian which would serve 2 purposes as I wouldn’t be spending & could potentially be earning. The lads weren’t even arsed because they’d been on it for like nearly 24+ hours & were on the verge of collapsing. So sure enough the sun began to set & as they headed off to bed around 18:30 I got my poker attire on & feeling very fresh (unlike Rio when I dropped $700) headed over Venetian w/4 BI’s for 500NLH. They had their VDSE running so the card room was really busy & the side games were particularly juicy but not necessarily soft, I picked up a schedule & noticed they had a couple of MTT’s that I found appealing;
Wednesday 6th June: $300 (+$30) NLH F/O
Thursday 7th June: $500 (+$50) NLH F/O
I settle at the 500NLH & about 2hrs in around 21:00 I’m joined by none other than retired professional footballer & a pivotal member of the famous MUFC treble winning squad Teddy Sheringham, N1. I was the only person at the table that recognized him as the rest were Americans & not familiar with football or soccer as it’s commonly known their. I was completely star struck but at the same time didn’t want to be too clingy so just introduced myself & said I was a big fan, we had a bit football crack about how MUFC had just won the title & whether or not they would go back to back. I played a couple of pots vs. him but nothing too exciting to report & as he was playing a large % of the WSOP events he didn’t stay long & left around midnight I asked if he would swap his UEFA Champions League medal for a WSOP bracelet to which he replied “no comment” & laughed as he wished me GL & left.
Around 1:00am & I was in profit of $400 after grinding for 6 hours so I was delighted & had noticed a particularly loose soft 1000NLH table which had several stacks of $3000+ & seen that as an opportunity to take a shot if you like & really make this a profitable night so w/o further a do I put my name down & soon enough I was called & left the 500NLH game. So eventually sat 1:30am & played for several hours generally just keeping out of trouble & really playing my big hands strong on every street which worked out perfectly as another 4 hours later & now 5:30am I decided to cash in for $3300 after initially tabling $1500 so add the $1800 to the $400 earlier gave me a total profit of $2200 for the night & brought my total holiday cost thus far including gambling & nights out to +$5,000ish so that needless to say put me in a good mood. I then retired to bed around 6:00am after 1st catching up with the lads who had not long been up & were playing a bit roulette waiting for Caesars Palace’s Lago Buffet to open at 7:00am so they could get some breakfast, I had a bit crack with them & arranged to meet them in the room around 15:00 before heading to Alamo Rent A Car where we intended to get a set of wheels to see a bit of LV away from the strip. So right on time we headed to rent a car desk which FYI is in Caesars Palace just next to the entrance to the pool area & had a chat with the girl at the desk, take a quick look over & decided a Ford Chevrolet Colorado would be most convenient as their was 3 of us but mainly because it was absolute lush & we wanted give it the big-un, Britt was still short of cash so Vinny & I covered the cost which was IIRC about $250 for 48hrs so N1 & off we went in our wheels.
So like majority of car’s over USA it was an automatic & as the gear stick had no indication as to what was reverse, 1st, 2nd, etc. I had to guess & unfortunately I guessed wrong as I thought I was in 1st to pull away when in actual fact I was in reverse & reversed straight into the wall, FML but fortunately the damage was minimal & when we handed it back later in the week they didn’t notice. So eventually I got to grips with it & we were away, coasting up & down LV Blvd listening to radio & recent releases such as “Because of You” Ne-Yo & “Summer Love” Justin Timberlake, etc. We visited a number of place’s either on the strip are within close vicinity on this day including;
Stratosphere Las Vegas
The lads hadn’t visited Stratosphere yet & I recommended the thrill rides up top so I made my 2nd visit their & was fortunate that this time round the high winds didn’t prevent me from riding the Big Shot which was the case in 2005.
So continue north we ended up on Fremont Street & I parked up over Binions Gambling Hall, after I parked up I got on the drink & handed the key’s over to Vinny to take control of the wheel when we left. Quick scout around the hotel casinos this way, caught viva vision again, & picked up a couple of $2 Budweiser’s before hitting the road again.
Palace Station Hotel Casino
On Sahara Avenue west of the LV Blvd & south of Fremont Street, it’s a dive by LV standards TBH, but just wanted to visit to say I’ve been & having the motor was an ideal opportunity. We were in for no more than half an hour & played a few hands of BJ losing about $30 & enjoyed some complimentary drinks.
Rio All Suite Hotel Casino
Britt hadn’t been over & wanted to spot some of his favourite poker players so we took a drive over & managed to see the FT of the $2,500 Omaha/Seven-Card Stud Hi-Low-8 or Better (Event 5) which was playing host to this array of talent;
1) Tom Schneider
3) Annie Duke
4) Chris “Jesus” Ferguson
6) David Benyamine
8) John Phan
Also seeing 11 time WSOP bracelet winner Phil Hellmuth Jnr. who FYI was actually only a 10 time bracelet winner until later that summer being interviewed by the beautiful Tiffany Michelle. Finally seen the main man himself for the 2nd time Phil Ivey & even managed to trade my MUFC jersey for his Ivey 11 Full Tilt American Football Jersey.
Gold Coast Hotel & Casino
Flamingo road just next door to Rio All Suite & over the road from Palms Maloof Resort, similar to that of Palace Station Hotel Casino this was place was a dump…I mean maybe I’m being too harsh because any hotel/casino of this standard over UK would blow the rest of them out of the water so when I say it’s a dump bear in mind I mean by LV standards & not standards we’ve become accustomed to over the UK.
The Orleans Hotel Casino
Located west Tropicana Avenue, The Orleans is home to all the LV residents & regular HORSE MTT’s. A marginal upgrade from Palace Station & Gold Coast but nothing extravagant & still way below usual LV standards.
South Point Hotel Casino Spa
All though technically on LV Blvd it’s way further south than rest of strip hence the name South Point. This however is a 1st class establishment & a must visit especially if you have a car & easy access. Some of the many amenities include a cinema, bowling alley, restaurants, as well as huge casino floor with brilliant courteous staff. By now it was 20:45 & we hadn’t eaten & managed to catch their Garden Buffet for dinner before closing which was really nice, huge selection of Asian, Mexican, Italian, Barbecue, Chinese & Seafood dishes for approximately $15 so South Point come’s well recommended from me.
Terribles Hotel Casino
Paradise road east of LV Blvd, Terribles similar to The Orleans attracts all the LV locals for their cheap gaming, food, & drink, & their daily slot promotions. 1 of the smallest casino floors I’ve been to in LV as it’s marginally bigger than Aspers, UK but still a nice friendly welcoming atmosphere & only a $7ish taxi fare from the strip so if you want to get away from the hustle & bustle of the strip then worth a visit.
Las Vegas Hilton
Home to the majority of LV high rolling European & Asian clientele, billionaire entrepreneur Richard Hilton has build a wealth of contacts around the world with his world famous hotels meaning a large % of his millionaire/billionaire friends are loyal to LV Hilton every time they visit so needless to say this is a 1st class establishment. I haven’t had the pleasure of staying their but I hear some of their high roller suites are mind blowing & still the best available in LV despite the opening of all the new mega resorts but like I say that’s just what I’ve heard on the grapevine & is of course well out of my league, 1 day.
So it’s now gone midnight & we’ve been cruising around & generally just sightseeing for over 8 hours, fortunately me & Britt gave up the driving early so have been on drink all day while Vinny has been behind the wheel. He’s now sick though & want’s to get drinking himself so we decided to head back to the strip & park up at Venetian leaving the ride in the hands of their valets until the morning. We go straight to their nightclub TAO which is guarded by a 20 foot Buddha & they have this funky night on called Temple Tuesday which had stunning sexy go-go dancers, unreal views of LV Blvd from the balcony, a number of rooms with different choices of music. However not for those looking for a cheap night, in less than 3 hours I’d spent north of $500 on fine champagne & double vodka redbulls, D’OH yeah so well recommended for our younger readers who have cash on the hip & are considering a visit.
After leaving for 4:00am closing we chilled in their casino & played 1 of the house games of poker called let it ride, it’s a really interesting concept were you kind of play flop’s, turns, & rivers but in an unique vs. house type style. Below if a Wikipedia link that explains in a lot of detail for those not familiar with the game;
Let It Ride
This was the 1st time I’d played it & was pleasantly surprised at the fun aspect of the game, of course like all house games they have the edge but as long as it’s minimal & I’m having a whole lot of fun IDC. Anyway it’s a slow game mainly because of the 3 streets of betting so after sitting w/$100 we were all still their 3 & half hours come 7:30am & was fortunate to be on a bit of a heater as I cashed out approximately $230 so a nice little $130 profit to recoup some of my over spending in TAO but no complaints because I’m still beating Venetian for almost $2,000 if you include my previous sessions of 500NL/1000NL. So we’d traded alcohol for tea & exhausting was beginning to take effect so we decided to call it a night, all far too pissed to drive back by now & not wanting to face 2 blocks of the sweltering temperatures we jumped in a taxi & headed for bed arriving around 8:00am.
So I wake up 15:00 in the middle of the afternoon & the lads are already up & have been over Venetian to collect our wheels, they suggested going on another road trip & just driving around seeing a bit of Nevada which sounds good to me so I get ready & were on the road by 16:00.
We ended up out in red rock canyon, which is approximately 15 miles west of LV Blvd in the middle of the Mojave desert & is of the complete opposite to the hustle & bustle of the strip. It really is a tranquil place where you can forget all your problems & just relax, we attempted to hike this mountain which was a great laugh but very tiring as every time we thought we’d reached the peak their was another 1 to conquer, we gave in & just sat & had a few laughs wishing we had some cold beers for the back end of the afternoon.
Then as we were heading back to the strip by pure chance we stumble across Red Rock Resort Spa & Casino which is part of the Station Casino’s Inc corporation but is their flagship property & much better standard than the rest of their resorts. Because it’s so far out of tourist area it’s largely just full of LV locals but not wanting to miss the opportunity to see another mega resort we parked up & took a look inside. We found a Lucky’s bar so set up camp their & coz Vinny drove majority of previous night me & Britt flipped to see who would be on the soft drinks & taxi us back to the strip in a couple of hours which I unfortunately lost & ordered a Pepsi, FML.
So several cocktails later & a flutter on the wheel of fortune AKA Big Six Wheel, which is a simple game of unequal chance where you bet on the outcome of the wheel after it has been spun. For those not familiar below is a Wikipedia link detailing the game;
Wheel Of Fortune
Lots of luck & all bad as I went big & w/$100 I was using to spin I was doing $10 spins w/$5 on no.1 which paid out 1:1 & covered my bet & $5 on no.40 (Joker in most casinos) which paid out 45:1 & advertised that most casinos only pay 40:1 for no.40 so they were giving away 5 points in juice. Anyway after 45 minutes or so I didn’t find the elusive no.40 for my elusive $230 jackpot & accept defeat leaving $100 down, sigh NVM.
So we left around 22:00 & they had a couple of Budweisers to enjoy the 45 minute journey back to LV Blvd, upon arriving I told the lads I was nipping into Venetian in order to pre-registered for the DSE $500 (+$50) NLH F/O which began noon tomorrow & didn’t fancy my chance’s being up bright & early so thought this would be my best option & just blind out for a level or 2 until I pull myself together. So after I’d taken care of business over Venetian we were back over Caesars Palace for 23:15 headed back over Shadow Bar for a couple of swift cheaper drinks before hitting Pure nightclub for my 2nd visit since 2005. We stayed till closing which was good crack but I didn’t get as ruined as previous nights as I was playing catch up due to being designated driver up until 23:00 & also had my mind on the $500 MTT tomorrow afternoon, but NVM still had an awesome time. So 4:00am after Pure was finished we played a bit roulette for half an hour or so before I turned in hoping to sleep well ready for the VDSE & they stayed up gambling, drinking, & just generally having a good time.
So I was tucked up by 4:30am & the MTT started at noon but I didn’t want to get a wake up call for 11:00am in order to make it in time for the cards in the air so I figured it was no big deal if I missed a couple of levels so asked for 13:30 wake up call which would mean I would be a lot fresher. However I didn’t need it as like expected I woke up naturally around 13:00 & was freshened up & over Venetian for 14:00. So arriving 2 hours late I’d had a small % of my 10,000 starting stacked blinded down, IDR exactly how much but it really wasn’t any significant as 1st 3 levels were 40 minutes of 50/100, 75/150 & followed by 100/200. Anyway I played for 4 hours up until level 9 (missing 1st 3 levels) & eventually got my 21,000 AIPF at 600/1200/100 w/AA vs. KK vs. QQ & I had QQ covered so had a 20,000ish side pot w/KK so huge 70% to have 60,000 until board runs QxxKx for me to finish 3rd & KK to rake the pot after going in 2nd PF, 3rd OTF, 1st OTT, & most importantly 1st OTR, sigh NVM GG UL WP. The MTT attracted 562 entries which created a prize pool of $271,165 & gave 1st place Stan Zielinski $84,061 so N1 WD lad. So it was now around 19:30 & I headed back over Caesars Palace looking for the boys, I catch them in the suite just heading out for dinner as they had been by the pool all day so basically just walk through the door & back out.
We head over Planet Hollywood for dinner but not Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino but rather the restaurant in Caesars Palace, Forum Shops. We had it recommended & I must say it was really good, the staff were excellent & very accommodating, the décor was full of old movie memorabilia (including an actual size Rocky), food was California style burger, fries, spare ribs, etc. & reasonably priced at about $25 for 2/3 courses & unlimited Pepsi refills.
It’s after dinner I make a decision to stay in LV longer than scheduled, I explained this to Britt & Vinny they kind of expected it to be honest with me running so well on the felt and no real commitments back home. Rolling on with the night and wanting to try somewhere different we headed to Treasure Island which was 2 blocks up from Caesars Palace & bar crawled round a number of cool establishments in here;
Kahunaville Party Bar "Really lively, loud music, talented performing bartenders"
Isla Tequila Bar "100+ types of tequila, nice casual laid back atmosphere."
Christina Audigier "Nightclub, $30 cover charge, very plush & drinks expensive"
Breeze Bar "24hr bar to ensure the night doesn’t finish, video poker available at bar."
So by now it was like 7:00am & although it would maybe be astute to go & try & get a couple of hours sleep but totally not in the mood we all decided to hit the gaming tables & experiment in a bit of everything;
Among the various forms of house poker games they have on offer, I ran like god those last 5 hours & won across almost every table variant I played & by the time I left Treasure Island I had won $650ish which minus the $400ish I spent around the bars earlier gave me a tidy profit of $250, bonus.
So the boys had packed their bags & I said my good byes to the lads as they headed off to the airport for their Virgin flight home. I of course moved out of Caesars Palace and into Americas Best Value Inn on Tropicana avenue to cut back on the nightly rates. I ended up staying for two and half months (May 30th to middle of August), and only come home because I had already had a holiday to Ibiza booked and paid for with the boys. I had the best Summer of my life, which if I was to blog in detail would end up like a book and take me forever to write. I played a bunch of the MGM Grand Summer Series events with great success, and also spent a lot of time down-town playing the 1st Annual Binion's Poker Classic with a little less success. I came home with over $30,000 which was all the money in the world to me back then. Well although I knew I had a few extra things to detail, I didn’t expect it to be that long & I really hope you all enjoyed my 3rd edition of my LV adventures, look out for my Las Vegas 2008 Trip Report featuring;
Glitter Gluch Gentlemans Club
Simon Robinson “FTP Fan”
Dilly, Nicky, & The Olson Brothers “American Boys”
Nancy & Alice “American MILFS”
Among others, coming to FTP fans in the forthcoming months.