Monday, December 18, 2006

Second Annual Festivus in Las Vegas - Update 2

Continuing in the Festivus festivities we headed off for dinner at Mix, located at the top of the Hotel at Mandalay Bay. The meal was delicious and afterwards we walked into the club area and enjoyed the view of the entire strip at night.

Saturday started off with a quick ride on the New York, NY roller coaster which was well worth it. I haven't been on a roller coaster in a long time and it was intense.

We then grabbed the Las Vegas monorail for a ride down to the other end of the strip. Of course there was a narrative played as we traveled. The first thing that struck me was the ride was NOT smooth at all. It jumped around almost as much as a NYC subway. The narrative then mentioned how it was one of the most modern monorails. My impression was that a monorail should be a smooth ride.

We arrived at the end of the line and expected a quick walk down to Fremont Street, quickly it was obvious that it was too far to walk and through a relatively sketchy looking neighborhood. We hailed down a taxi which happened to be a Chrysler 300. We hopped in and I thought I was back on the roller coaster. This guy was blasting heavy metal music to the point where I couldn't hear anything. My buddy was in the front seat looking stressed out, from my vantage point I couldn't see the speedometer which was a good thing.

This guy raced down the strip, I thought we hit 50 mph easily (later found out we hit 80 mph on Las Vegas Blvd).

Fremont Street was definitely not like the strip, it was run down. We stopped in a few casinos to see what they were all about. Not for us, blackjack tables with "liberal rules." It's worthwhile for a visit, but I wouldn't recommend spending any significant time there.

We then visited the Stratosphere for the view from the top. The view was spectacular, they also have a few rides that we avoided. Next stop was Caesars, the ladies wanted to check out the Forum shops and my buddy and I stopped for a beverage at the cigar store near the Tommy Bahamas shop. After relaxing for a while we had to head back for dinner at Alize in the Palms.

Alize was clearly the best meal we had in Las Vegas. Our table was dead center against the windows facing the strip for the best view in the house. The waiter Derreck was great and even let us in on their speciality of habanero infused vodka. The vodka was so spicy that they didn't serve it to their guests, it was used as a rite of passage for the staff. I like spicy foods so my buddy and I tried it after dinner. Highly recommended.

After dinner we had tickets to the Blue Man Group at the Venetian. Excellent show.

That wrapped up a great Festivus holiday. We experienced a few Festivus Miracles, including winning at the tables.

I did forget to mention that we visited the Bodies exhibit at the Tropicana. Simply amazing to see what we look like inside.

Looking forward to our third annual Festivus trip next year (Dec 13th to the 16th). Hope to see you all there.

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