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Help with my holiday please

melave

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 29, 2011
Messages
281
HI all

Sorry if this has been asked before. I did a search and didn't see much

My fiance (still getting used to saying that) and i are coming across the ocean for a holiday!!!! I am so excited :) We have 3 weeks in September in America and planning on going to Las Vegas, Seattle and Vancouver.
We fly in to Vegas, so far the plan is 5 days in Vegas, 6 days in Seattle and 7 in Vancouver. I am in 2 minds about how to handle accommodation. Whether to book it all in advance or just fly into Vegas and wing it from there. I am going for the latter at the moment as my job is planning and i don't really want to be on a schedule on my holiday.

So..... i have a LOT of questions for all you lovely people over the ocean :)
Where is a good place to stay in Vegas? i have looked at Aria, Bellagio and Ceaser's Palace and the weekend costs are getting up there. I think it is narrowed down to the Monte Carlo and Planet Hollywood. Are either of these ok? and any better ones in the middle of strip you can recommend?

Also is it hard to find nice accommodation last minute in Vancouver and Seattle? That's one of my concerns with not booking.

Last but not least (for now) Any nice jewellery shops i should be looking at in these 3 cities? We won't have a car in Vegas (well not planning on one, again that could change) but will probably get one for Seattle and Vancouver. I would love to be able to look at some bling while i am over there

Thanks in advance :)
 

centralsquare

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jan 18, 2009
Messages
2,201
The Monte Carlo is nice...a few others of similar price/style may be New York New York and the Mirage. In terms of jewelry stores there....there's pretty much every national/international chain has a store there. I think the Bellagio has the best shopping!

You can certainly plan the day-to-day activities once you get in the States, but you may want to book flights and hotels to make sure you get what you want, for a reasonable price.
 

melave

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 29, 2011
Messages
281
Thanks CS for the reply. I will definately check out the bellagio for shopping!!! I am getting so excited :)
 

centralsquare

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jan 18, 2009
Messages
2,201
melave|1312159761|2981301 said:
Thanks CS for the reply. I will definately check out the bellagio for shopping!!! I am getting so excited :)
Let us know what you find there!!
 

sonnyjane

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jul 13, 2008
Messages
2,476
All of the Vegas hotels you've mentioned are perfectly fine. I may have misunderstood what you meant by "waiting until you get there", but I hope you will have your hotel reservation in place before you arrive! Do not wait until you show up or you might end up at some seedy motel 20 miles away! Conventions and special events can cause hotels to sell out, and weekends are always at high capacity anyway no matter what time of year.
 

melave

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 29, 2011
Messages
281
Hi sonnyjane. Sorry i wasn't very clear. What i meant was book Vegas hotel but wait until in Vegas to book Seattle and Vancouver. so if we like Vegas, we can stay some more, or decide once we get to Vegas if we want to spend more time in Seattle or Vancouver. I hope that makes sense :)

I think i am going to book all flights and hotels and lock us in. I have a feeling if i don't we will never make a decision and like you guys say, end up in some seedy place.
So any recommendations for hotels in Seattle and Vancouver?
I was thinking of the Wedgewood hotel and spa in Vancouver but have absolutely no idea about Seattle. Would like it be downtown close to all the good eating and shopping :)
 

noelwr

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Mar 21, 2008
Messages
1,961
I'm jealous of you going to Vegas. DH and I have been 3x. our favorite hotel is the Wynn. it doesn't have a theme and is across the street from the mall. when we go to Vegas, we usually stay there Mon-Fri as, like you said, prices really go up in the weekend. there are expensive jewelry stores in most of the hotels. Planet Hollywood is one of the newer ones and doesn't seem classy at all. I had the feeling that it attracts a lot of college students. we've also stayed at Paris, Las Vegas, which wasn't bad and might be in the same price range. not sure. don't rent a car while in Vegas. you will walk mostly from hotel to hotel (bring comfy shoes) and can take a taxi to ones which are a bit further. just don't stay at the Stratosphere - it is too far away from the other hotels.

for Seattle and Vancouver, I would check if there are any major public holidays when you plan to be there. if yes, you need to book at least the flights in advance.
 

aliceinwonderland

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jan 3, 2009
Messages
112
Hi,

I find that hotels in Vegas are WAY cheaper compared to anywhere else I have stayed. If you are not married to the idea of being mid strip the Four Seasons is awesome because it gives you access to their own private pool that is DIVINE (read not a bunch of drunken college students but rather always available lounge chairs with plush towel covers) and also gives you access to the super fun wave pool at Mandalay Bay. I found it quite affordable. If pools are not your thing though then you are likely better off at a place like Wynn or Aria for location. (Sorry I don't remember what time of year you are visiting so pools may not be a factor).

In Vancouver hands down one of my fav places to stay is the Fairmont Pacific Rim. It is AWESOME!!!! We stay there whenever we are in Vancouver. It's fairly pricey ( I think it's maybe around $390 taxes in per night for a King Suite) It would be cheaper if you just need a straight King room. It is just a super nice place to stay (it's basically brand new and has really nice finishes in the rooms like a tv in the bathroom mirror in the suites and super service).

As an aside we recently did the Capilano suspension bridge. There is a free shuttle from down town that will take you there. It's a pricier attraction but they have this super cool suspension bridge, this tree walk thing and a cliff walk if you don't mind heights.
 

Colltee

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jul 22, 2011
Messages
80
I just spent a few days at the Bellagio back in June.

Pros: great location, good service, (fab room-service breakfast), decent prices for what you get.

Cons: hotel is pretty dated now, casino downstairs is very average compared to others (note am not a big gambler but I preferred the 'buzz' in other places during previous stays), restaurants close early (couldn't get a table after 10pm in any on first night), free drinks whilst gambling are pretty non-existent or take 30 mins to arrive, bars in Bellagio are very pricey ($24 for a bottle of beer and a vodka soda, minus tips). Overall it just feels tacky and old.

Overall I would stay again possible due to location only (restaurants and casino in Cosmopolitan literally next door were fun - however do not stay here at Cosmo – way too noisy). Next time I'd try Aria or Wynn - heard great things about both.

Note - I'm really fussy when it comes to hotels but I stayed a few years ago in the MGM Grand and other than the fact it's a bit way down one end, it's not that bad. Esp. if you get a room in the newer wing. The casino floor was good and bars were varied as were the restaurants.

One final tip - you MUST book Cirque du Soliel The Beatles 'Love' show at the Mirage - best show I have ever seen in my life.
 

allycat0303

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 19, 2004
Messages
3,260
I'm totally in love with Vegas. It's funny because when my husband decided he wanted to go, I was SO against it.

I stayed at Aria and thought it was very nice. I loved the location, but it was a more *quiet,dignified* hotel. Honestly, it depends on what type of vibe, mood you want to experience. In retrospect, I would have stayed at Planet Hollywood or the Cosmopolitan. Why??? Well honestly, I loved the energy, the young people at both of those hotels. It felt like a party every night! And honestly, that was what I wanted to experience in Vegas, so why not?

The Wynn is a nice hotel to, but furthur down the strip. This is not an issue if you are not renting a car, but walking back and forth might be annoying. I would suggest you rent a car, honestly, there's free parking everywhere and if you're going out, you might not want to walk all the way back to your hotel in heels.

Have fun on your trip!
 

amc80

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jun 18, 2010
Messages
5,765
Be sure to stay on the strip, and aim for mid-strip. Monte Carlo is a good choice, as is Planet Hollywood. You won't spend a ton of time in your room but you will want somewhere easy to get to so you can change your clothes or whatever. Be sure to bring shoes you can walk in. You will do A LOT of walking. And remember it is generally still pretty hot in Vegas in September. If you can swing it, I'd consider Ceasar's as well. Oh, and the Bellagio has a Tiffany's in it :)
 

Gypsy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
40,198
We've go to Vegas a fair bit so here are my thoughts.

Most Vegas hotels will have seasonal promotions. Except for big conference dates (and you can just call and ask if your date is a bad one, or a good one) I've always been able to find a nice accommodations promotion. Usually where you book two nights and get the third free, or some such deal.

I used to love staying at TheHotel at Mandalay. But our last trip there was awful and the property is slatted for renovation for good reason.

You have to decide if you are a 'location' person or an "accommodation" person. If you are going to be in clubs and restaurants and shops and the pool and... just sleeping and showering in your hotel room you want a good location, a clean property and a nice room. If you are going to want to take a bath, nap, order room service, go down to the pool then come back up and watch TV... but see the sights and shop a bit as well. Then you want a nicer room, then you may want to consider upgraded rooms as you will be staying a fair bit of time in them. And Las Vegas has some REALLY NICE ROOMS to spend time in.

I'm going to assume that you are a location person.

So here's my advice. Call or email and ask A) when the last time the rooms you are considering were renovated. Because of the INSANE amount of traffic and abuse the rooms in Vegas take you generally want to stick to something renovated in the 4 years at least. B) check the website and contact reservations for promotions for accommodations and C) Make ABSOLUTELY SURE you tell the booking agent (or put a note on your reservation if you re booking online) that this is your first trip to the states and that the hotel is your first EVER destination in the US, that it is a very special occassion and that you would appreciate a room that is 1) not near the elevators or the ice machine and 2) has a nice location on the property and 3) is their best available. THEN, a week before you leave CALL (don't email) the hotel, ask them to pull up your reservation be absolutely nice and sweet and tell them how excited you are... and ask them to please take note of your room preference request.

Next time we go, we are planning on staying at the Aria. Neither of us needs a casino anywhere near us and we want a new property, fabulous rooms and lots of amazing service.

If you are insanely energetic and want to party and just don't care if you sleep stay at the Cosmopolitan.


If you want to do some sleuthing of your own to find out who has renovated and who hasn't here's a site that will help you as well. http://www.vegaschatter.com/story/2011/5/5/02228/13838/vegas-travel/Think_You_Know_Vegas_Guess_The_Hotel_Carpet The Plaza (affordable and well located, I've never been there so I don't know anything else about it) will apparently be newly renovated in September though. Apparently they are offering some great "Grand Re-Opening Deals" so it might be worth a look!
 

Gypsy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
40,198
Remodeled Stratosphere Select Rooms at the Stratosphere are an excellent deal apparently, FYI.

About the Monte Carlo, top level floors have been renovated, rest not so much. Nice Pool and a GREAT French Restuarant named Andres... I hate the casino at this hotel though. http://andrelv.com/ Our Favorite LV restaurant for great food at a great price and an intimate dining experience with knock out service. Another "must try" is Fleur at Mandalay Bay-- their lobster mac and cheese is to die for.
 

melave

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 29, 2011
Messages
281
oh wow!!!!! thank you all for the replies!!!! i really appreciate it :)

Ok so i might have done a stupid thing.... but i booked the monte carlo. My brain was just swimming with all the different hotels, it seemed the easiest :) i think we have a strip view room ? not sure
Gypsy you are right, the room is for sleeping basically. I want to see everything!!!!!! so i don't plan on sleeping much. I will do that when i get to Vancouver :)

We booked the Wedgewood hotel and spa in vancouver http://www.wedgewoodhotel.com/index.php it looked nice and got good reviews on trip advisor.

Now for Seattle. I have left that one up to the OH so who knows where we will stay there!!

AMC already have the comfy shoes picked out :) i can see us doing some miles. I didn't realise how big vegas strip was until OH showed me a clip on you tube. It is massive!!!

allycat we are not planning on renting a car, maybe when we get to seattle. we should be fine without one i hope

Collte i really want to see cirque de soliel. I have heard it is an awesome show. there was a couple of others i wanted to see as well but i can't remember them.

Alice the suspension bridge sounds great!! i went on a small one down south of western australia that was good. I will defineately have to try that one :)

Noelwr i am getting so excited over this holiday. 3 times!!! you lucky thing. this is my first time overseas so i think it is going to be a real eye opener :)

Thanks for your help all. it has been really great :) now the countdown begins :)
 

allycat0303

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 19, 2004
Messages
3,260
Melave: For Vegas without a car is ok too. For me, it was not possible because I wear 4 inch heels everywhere. And I wanted to visit everything. Personally I could not walk from the stratosphere to Aria. Even with flats on, it's FAR! I've never been to Seattle of Vancouver, so I can't say much about that!

I visited the Monte Carlo when I went to Vegas. It was nice, comfortable. I think you will be fine. Enjoy!
 

Gypsy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
40,198
Okay so.. pack summer clothes and swimsuits and comfortable sandals for LV.

Bring rain wear for Seattle and something a little warmer to put under the rain wear for Vancouver. And you will need boots.

So pack for both summer and a wet fall.
 

pregcurious

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Mar 18, 2009
Messages
6,724
The MGM Grand was nice several years ago. I think staying there, and visiting the Bellagio for shopping and their great buffet would be nice.
 
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