Day One we landed near the Vegas strip and Uber’d to our big shiny pyramid of a hotel. As soon as we stepped inside we were greeted by a lady who we thought was an usher for the hotel, telling people where they need to check in. As there is a casino right in the middle of you and anything else you might want to do, this made sense. Turns out, this was the beginning of many Vegas Shenanigans. “Hey there! What shows would you like to see for cheap? All we require from you is that you have a wee look around one of our other hotels. It’s not a TimeShare, I promise.” Shenanigans aside, we got ourselves all settled in and went exploring the strip.
Right next to our hotel was the most magical castle hotel called Excalibur, which quickly became my fave. We made our way all the way down to Caesar’s, for some shopping under the imitation blue sky ceiling. So many of my fave brands were all in there, as was a gelato stand (or five), so I was set for the afternoon (poor Steve). After hitting one mega sale at the fanciest, most-smouldering lingerie brand around, Agent Provocateur, and coming away with my own lil pink and black bag and a sparkle in my eye, we were back out on the strip as the sun went down and the Vegas lights started to really show off their stuff.
Vegas strip is a trip and a half! All those people, all those lights, all that hard-selling of sex and club nights… you’re barely left alone for a second! Everyone walking with their faces to the sky, taking in the glistening, strobing, fluorescent glory of Vegas. We decided to go to a show that night, and had picked the medieval experience of the Tournament of Kings, at the Excalibur. In traditional style, dinner was served without utensils, and you had to make your way through a game hen each, while yelling and cheering for whatever country you had decided to sit with. We went bad, and chose the Dragons instead. Our knight was badass. It was so much fun!!
Day Two we got up early (enough) to attend our ‘not a TimeShare’ breakfast meeting, and joined the bus with all the other young couples and families the hotel kiosk had tempted with cheap tickets. We kind of knew what we were in for, or at least Steve did, and we went along for the ride anyways. After being assigned an agent per couple, and filling our plates with breakfast goodies, we sat and listened to the sales guy do his thing. And he was very good at it. So charismatic, so entertaining, involving almost everyone in the room. We were asked how long we were away for and a rough cost of the trip, and most of the room gasped at both. We sure are a lucky bunch here in NZ! We get four weeks leave, when Americans gets two. We live in a beautiful country, and for the most part, enjoy really enviable lifestyles, so we don’t feel the clawing need to have to ‘get away’ at any chance you get. Staycations work very well in little ol’ NZ, as you’re never far from a park, beach, forest, or mountain… So, long story short, they couldn’t sell us on the deal, because of our beautiful NZ, but we had a lot of fun debating all the pros and cons anyways!
We got our pay, left on the bus, and headed back to see more of the strip. Along our way we happened across one super stylish menswear store, WITH in-house tailor, called Stitched. I’m a moth to a flame when it comes to uber-dapper suiting and statement jackets, and this shop had it all! Steve ended up getting some new jeans, which were then altered onsite, and we picked up later that eve. Such service! We were also recommended by the cool and friendly shop assistant to visit downtown, or Old Vegas, for a slice of local hipster life. I’d already heard about the awesome light show they do down on Fremont Street, so it was an easy sell! In my opinion, the light show was ‘ok’. It was worth it more to see all the old original casinos, with their same flashing lights, and the cool and creative Container Park where we had a delish dinner from The Perch. There was an arcade bar called Insert Coins, which unfortunately wasn’t open that night, but I could tell this would be the area we would hang out in if we lived in Vegas. After having our fill of old casino pokies, we Uber’d back to the strip and got dessert from Dairy Queen.
Day Three was our big Grand Canyon ADVENTURE! Steve had convinced me to do the helicopter tour over, through and into the Grand Canyon, which was pricey, but totally worth it! We were picked from the Luxor pyramid by a limo (fancy!), and driven out to the airstrip. Split into groups of six, we met with our pilot, and got the safety briefing. We shared our flight over the plains, lakes and dams with young Australian and Russian couples. They were all really lovely and excited, and seem to already know a hell of a lot about helicopters! I just nodded along while munching my champagne brunch in the Grand Canyon (yup, fancy!). The views we got of the Grand Canyon and its surrounding geological features were astounding, and bonus, we also flew over the strip at the very end. It’s weird to see this crazy little party town, so tall yet so isolated, in the middle of the desert.
After landing safely back in town we hit Fat Burger for lunch, Hard Rock Cafe for rock memorabilia drooling (like a dress from The Supremes!), then wandered off the strip to play KISS minigolf. Yup, KISS!! It was so much fun, and a nice break from the mental strip. Was ice-cream time afterwards (when isn’t it??), and I’d had my eye on Blvd Creamery ever since the first day. Monster handmade ice-cream sundaes for us, with flavours like Smores and Birthday Cake…mmmm, so good! This was our last day in Vegas, so we had to tick the Bellagio fountain show off our list, and night-time showing was my request. So pretty! After taking food-court food back to our room, we got off our feet and got ready for our flight the next morning.