Saturday, May 06, 2006

Seven Deadly Sins?

We demand a recount!

Duncan and I had so much fun in Las Vegas I don’t even know where to start ... it was absolutely FABULOUS. Magnificent. We were hand in hand smiling to ourselves the whole time. I can't think of anyone I would have rather experienced Vegas with!

We had clear weather for travelling which availed to us the delight of viewing the impressive terrain belonging to Death Valley (California), which we flew over on our way to Nevada (via Vancouver). We arrived in Las Vegas in the afternoon and immediately (and with much excitement) cruised the strip, stopping to have dinner at the Paris buffet (tres bon!) before heading to Bally’s to enjoy the late show of Donn Arden’s Jubilee! This year it is the show’s 25th Anniversary, and it is definitely traditional Vegas. We enjoyed it greatly.

We had a chance to see many shows during our visit and in addition to Jubilee!, we also saw the late show of Folies Bergere at the Tropicana (these two shows are considered to be the best of the Showgirls acts in Vegas), an afternoon show of the comedian Mac King (we laughed for an hour and a half!) and of course, the Cirque Du Soleil show KÁ at the MGM Grand.

Food in Vegas is AMAZING and plentiful. Buffets galore! We enjoyed the special Sunday brunch buffet at the Hilton before exploring the Star Trek Experience (won’t describe what happens here lest I spoil it for anyone who has yet to still go) and having drinks at Quark’s Bar. We enjoyed the dinner buffet at le Village Paris (twice, as it was my favourite), the famous dinner "Cravings" buffet at the Mirage (best strawberry daiquiris on the strip and my second favourite buffet), the breakfast buffet at the Stratosphere and the wedding reception dinner which was held at the "Dishes" Buffet in TI. We also enjoyed some sit down meals at places like Nine Fine Irishmen’s Pub (NYNY), a light lunch at HOOTERS (Hooters Casino), a 5.99 12 oz Steak Dinner at the famous Binions (Freemont Street), drinks at Tsunami (Venetian) and we bit into a doughnut from Krispy Kreme (Excalibur) that we never could have guessed would taste so good!

We managed to get to a few dance and nightclubs that were all very Vegas in their own way. Of notable mention is Coyote Ugly (Dance Club) in New York New York (where the female bartenders have literally elevated pouring drinks to an art form), the Tangerine in TI (famous for their burlesque table dancing performances) and Mist, also in TI. All very good experiences.

Duncan and I explored the strip day after day. At the Venetian, which I thought was quite grand and romantic, we enjoyed a private gondola ride through the canals outside of the hotel, kissing all the way through the tunnel (supposed to be good luck) and enjoying the sun as our gondolier sang to us in Italian. Up the Eiffel Tower at night we observed the lights of the strip and watched the Bellagio water show (which was very cool). I became quite enamoured with the Sirens of TI, the architecture of Caesar’s Palace, the Sphinx at the Luxor, the skyline of NYNY, Paris and the Bellagio. Here are a few shots:

The Arc d'Triumph at Paris

The Eiffel Tower at Paris

The skyline of New York New York

The Sphinx and Pyramid at the Luxor

The Bellagio Watershow (seen from the Eiffel Tower)

We made many new friends – Rod, Chris, Brett O., Tiffany and Brett’s family - in addition to everyone we met in Vegas being massively friendly and wanting to spend time talking with us about where we were from and what we had done while in Vegas. Everyone thought we were newlyweds, which I think is a great compliment and a nice testament to how happy we are together!

I finally got to fire an AK-47 (just one of those things I have always wanted to do) when we visited the famous Las Vegas Gun Store and its indoor range (recommended to me by a friend). I got many approving glances from the staff as I selected Osama bin Laden as my target. It didn’t take long as I only had 90 rounds and being fully automatic (even with controlled bursts) poor old Osama was finished within seconds.

The day of the wedding Beatrice and I spent the morning at the Mirage Spa having our hair and makeup done before getting dressed and ready for the ceremony. The wedding was beautiful and everything went perfectly! Duncan and I were most honoured to be included in Brett and Beatrice’s day as they became husband and wife. I will post some pictures of the wedding soon but for now you can see some on Brett’s blog.

Our visit to the Grand Canyon also needs to be a post all to itself – it’s beyond amazing, it transcends description – its sheer size is humbling – and its beauty intense, unlike anything I have ever seen. We flew from Vegas into Arizona to the Grand Canyon National Park (we also flew over the Hoover Dam). Before embarking on a bus tour through the park we took a helicopter over the width of the Grand Canyon, which was an excellent way to garner an appreciation for it’s enormity and to see all of the different colours of the mesozoic rock formations and the mighty Colorado River. We had three hours or so to hike around in the park, but I can’t do the experience justice here just right now, so I will post more later.

A view of the Grand Canyon

I must admit I am tired. We barely slept in Vegas – everything is 24 hours and there is so much to do, so much we wanted to get done – that it was hard to justify sleeping. We really did have an awesome time, and despite a few minor disappointments (we didn’t have time for the roller coaster for example) we have no regrets, we fulfilled our most hedonistic desires, we made many good memories together, we didn't run out of cash, and we are already planning our next trip out to Vegas!

Viva Las Vegas!


daveberta said...

Klingon! Ferengi! Las Vegas! Ahhhhhh SENSORY OVERLOAD...

great post, allie.

Allie said...

Sensory overload, hehehehe.

Don't forget the girls!

Really though, it was likely the most fun I have ever had! You should try it!

Jon said...

I went to Vegas when I was 18 and it was 67.3% less fun then it would have been if I was 21.

I guess someday I will go back, especially since it is a great place to start from if you are going to Death Valley and the Sierra Nevadas.

Allie said...

You should go back now - and take Rea too!

It's the best deal for your money (just don't gamble) and sooooooooo much fun!

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