Two Way Hard Three | Las Vegas Casino & Design Blog

May 4, 2011

April 2011 Trip Notes (Cosmopolitan, et al)

Posted by Hunter

Some notes from my trip, now two weeks past:

- Hotel: Stayed at Cosmopolitan and tried their lowest end room product, the City Room (which I believe is the only room offered with two beds). I took my brother along on this trip, who is 29. This was his first experience at the Cosmopolitan and he absolutely loved it. Everything from the design, to the room to the pool - right up his alley. It was interesting to see the place through someone else's (significantly less jaded) eyes.

- Cosmo: Generally, things went well. The room was clean and we got in right way. I visited the spa and while I appreciated the design, the attendant allowed towels and used cups to stack up all over the place and they didn't have any combs or brushes for your hair. Weird. In the casino, I was informed that none of the bars have Stolichnaya Vodka (they have flavors but not the normal stuff). It's such a common brand, that seemed odd to me as well. Service was pretty good throughout the resort. Friendly workers and lots of curious folks wandering the property. I didn't see a lot of gaming action.

- Food: Hit some places I'd already been or had been recommended to me: China Poblano (twice - so good), Tacos al Gordo (near Encore ; very good taco stand style - highly recommended. It seems their new Strip outlet was a surprise to some based on the Twitter reactions), Steak and Shake (South Coast ; was fun and worthwhile but the line was loooooong). Drinks at Sinatra where we had a long talk with the bartender - he'd actually served The Chairman long ago.

- CityCenter: Took my bro through CityCenter for the first time. He's an artist and really appreciated the work they've installed around the campus. He didn't care for The Crystals very much though ("this place is a disaster. WTF?")

- Construction: Ruffin is removing more of the TI lagoon to add a Starbucks and some sort of margarita debacle. The area being torn up is the southern tip, between the porte-cochere and the front of the hotel. Further down The Strip, the Tropicana is looking more 'finished' - less jarring moments as you move from a renovated part of the hotel to one that hasn't been touched. At Cosmo, Blue Ribbon was having it's floors replaced (it's since re-opened) - in talking to employees, it sounds like it was pretty dramatic when that pipe broke (I can't believe we haven't seen any random customer video). The Sugar Factory at Paris is just as ugly as I expected it to be.

- Sahara: Went by for what might be the last time. It was medium busy in the casino but the employees looked pretty sad and tired. Being in there was a bit of a bummer but I'm glad I got the opportunity to take some pictures.

- Crowds: This was a Tuesday and Wednesday night but it was crowded. There were people everywhere. Nice to see.

- Vegas Video Network's Pub Crawl: On Wednesday, I went to a taping of Pub Crawl at the Vegas Video Network studio. This was a lot of fun and if you're a fan of the show, you should consider it on your next trip. Everyone was super friendly and they're a laugh riot. Bring booze.

I took a load of photos. They're available here in case you want to see them.


Read archived comments (8 so far)
May 4, 2011 3:24 PM Posted by Romaman

Did you walk by the Mirage during your trip?

I'm glad they brought back the mermaid statues in the lobby.

May 4, 2011 4:03 PM Posted by Hunter

Sure did. I snapped a pic:

May 4, 2011 6:29 PM Posted by jinx

That's pretty inexcusable for spa service to have stuff left around like that, I'd definitely drop them a note on it. As it's pure service at that point.

While I can appreciate those that think Sugar Factory is ugly, since it's no architectural marvel, I actually from a laymen perspective thought it's a nice bookend to Mon Ami Gabi. The Harrahs properties have done an awful job outside of their partnership with Pure with creating any kind of buzz or nightlife through their properties, so while it's not in anyway some marvelous design, I think it fits what they were looking for and in many respects is perfect for a harrahs property. (I know many miss the fountains, but it's not like Harrahs did any upkeep on them anyway).

Ruffin seems intent on turning TI into his own personal carnival of horrors. I'm surprised he hasn't modified the pirate ships to sell ice cream cones during performances.

May 5, 2011 8:58 AM Posted by detroit1051

Hunter, great photos. I was surprised that The Mirage has stools at the slots, not chairs with backs. The only other casinos with stools in your album is Sahara. Certainly, The Mirage isn't striving to be like the Sahara.

May 5, 2011 12:28 PM Posted by jinx

Detroit, they do have some areas with chairs, I can tell you that those stools suck!

May 5, 2011 9:47 PM Posted by Romaman

I believe that I saw those stools and were still there in '99, when Wynn still owned the place. I guess MGM never bothered to replace them.

Also, I have been doing a little research and found some detailed information about the mermaid statue up front as well as the dolphin statues in the main valet entrance. Here it is.

May 5, 2011 9:59 PM Posted by romaman

Oh I forgot. Found some awesome pictures of the old Kokomos and a little of the 'rainforest' before it was thinned out.
Right here

May 6, 2011 11:20 AM Posted by detroit1051

Romaman, thanks. I liked sitting in the original chairs right next to the railing as in the photo you posted: