Friday, April 17, 2009


I think it's time to play tourist.

I got an email this morning from the Bellagio, offering discounted rooms over the course of the next couple of months. Now, of all the swank joints in Vegas, Bellagio is one hotel that I've always wanted to stay at but never have. So I was thinking to myself how fun it would be to go and check in down there for a couple of nights and just hit their poker room for hours on end, not having to commute my ass back to Henderson once I got finished playing at night.

That idea really appealed to me this morning. I then remembered that I had three days off from work near the end of May so that I could play in a World Series of Poker event. Why not combine the two--stay at Bellagio while played poker at the Rio for 12 hours a day. Brilliant!

I found that I could get 2 nights in a lake view room for just over $300 total, which wasn't too bad at all. At least, it met my definition of 'reasonableness'. But before I put in my credit card info, I thought--Hey, where else would I like to stay during the WSOP?

And then it hit me--I am becoming totally enamored with the new M resort (been there three times this past week), and that was just as good an excuse as any to go and check out the hotel and live like a tourist. So instead of the lake view rooms at Bellagio, I booked an 'Executive Resort' room at the M for a little less than half as much. Done and done! Oh, and the M doesn't charge my credit card for one night's stay right up front, unlike Bellagio.

One thing, which was *almost* a deal-breaker for me, was that the M has a $25 per night 'resort fee'. I've always felt that's kind of a chickenshit way of doing business, advertising one rate and then tacking on a $25 fee per night. Why not just include it in the room rates? Upon further investigation, I found out that for the $25, here's what you get: Unlimited in-room wireless access, Unlimited access to the fitness center, Nightly turn down service, Choice of daily newspaper, Free scheduled transportation to/from the airport and Fashion Show Mall, and Free local & 800 phone calls.

That's not too bad, considering that most places now charge at least ten bucks a day for the fitness center and at least $12-$20 per day for in-room internet access. So that's not a deal-breaker for me, because I'll bring my laptop along and get full use of the the internet access. The nightly turn-down service would be a nice perk, but I hope they make little animals out of my towels like they do on cruise ships. And if there is a steam room or jacuzzi in the fitness center, a little pre- or post-tournament stress relief would be right up my alley.

Anyhow, it seems like a fun thing to do, and the price is very reasonable. Besides, by then, I might end up getting the whole thing comped anyways.


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