This past July 4th weekend I ventured to Vegas with some friends and my boyfriend for my 25th birthday getaway! I have been to Vegas a few times since being 21, and definitely have some tips to maximize your next trip.
First, I’d like to share with you all the fun I had this weekend…
I stayed at the Hilton Elara right on the Las Vegas Strip. The hotel was beautiful! I’d definitely recommend staying here as it’s connected to the Planet Hollywood Hotel & Casino, Axis Concert Venue, and Miracle Mile Shops while also being across from the Cosmopolitan. It features a beautiful pool, suite-sized rooms, and plenty of dining. If you’re looking to stay at one of the resort hotels with a casino, nightclub, etc then I’d look elsewhere as the Hilton doesn’t have its own.
I started off my birthday night with dinner at Sugar Factory Bar & Grill. They feature their famous goblet cocktails, which were great for sharing. Of course, I treated myself to my favorite food – Mac ‘n Cheese! My boyfriend also surprised me with a “Drunken Sundae” for dessert. This restaurant is in the Paris hotel right off the strip in front of the Bellagio fountain.
We spend the night a TAO for Snoop Dogg’s “Snoopadelic Cabaret.” There was a lot of hype and we used a promoter to get in (keep reading for promoter tips). Most people had tickets, but we got in for free. This was my first time at TAO – inside it featured a late night dinner space, club with stage, and smaller jazz lounge. It had a fun vibe, but I think the venue was not big enough for the crowd or this show.
For the 4th of July, we spent the day at the Hilton pool drinking Fat Tuesdays. It was so much fun! The pool is perfect for relaxing as it features lots of zero depth entry areas that are perfect for laying around.
We ended the night watching the Bellagio fountain show and gambling at the Cosmopolitan. My favorite games are the slots, and we ended up breaking even! Quite the accomplishment in Vegas 🙂 I love the Cosmo! It’s probably my favorite hotel/spot in Vegas. It has beautiful decor, shopping, casinos, night/day clubs, and dining.
Below is just a picture of our first winnings – only $0.13! We obviously got much better, haha!
So, ready to plan your next trip to Vegas? I’ve got some tips so keep reading:
- Plan, but know that your plans will change! Vegas is unpredictable.
- Allow plenty of time to walk the strip – it takes longer to get around than you may think and there is so much to stop and see along with the way.
- If possible, find a promoter to work with. It makes going out to night/day clubs so much easier – they put you on a list, usually provide free cover (for guys and girls), can give free drinks or drink specials, and allow for faster entry. I was able to get in contact with a friend’s promoter, but you can also contact clubs for their specific promoters. If even seen them advertise on Twitter and Yelp, you’ll just want to be careful. Contact me for more specific information! 🙂
- If you get to clubs early – they usually have a free open bar (before 11:30pm).
- The big club venues are fun and usually always have a famous performer. However, I’ve had the most fun at the smaller places that usually don’t get over-packed.
- Unfortunately, for guys most places will make you pay cover, especially if there is a special artist performing.
- Try a buffet a some point, they are a bit pricey but totally worth it! However, I’d stick to 1 per trip.
- Even if you don’t want to waste your money gambling, at least check it out! You can always spend a few dollars on the slots or watch the high-rollers play at high energy games like roulette.
- Invest in a good hotel near the strip, it will totally dictate your experience. Some of my personal recommendations include: Wynn/Encore, Venetian/Palazzo, Aria, Cosmopolitan, MGM Grand, Hilton Elara, Caesar’s Palace, and the Bellagio.
- Anything goes with clothing in Vegas – so bring that piece you’ve been dying to wear but always seems like too much for just a simple night out with friends!
- Girls – bring sandal options!! By the end of the weekend, you’re feet will be dying no matter what. Bring some fast flats if you can as well to stick in your purse at night.
- Go to Secret Pizza in the Cosmopolitan!
- Spend a day at a Vegas pool – it’s probably my favorite activity. Bring sunscreen – it’s in the middle of the desert!
- If you’re from the Midwest, there is a Steak ‘n Shake on the outskirts of Vegas. We went there on our way back to LA and it was so worth it!! Steak ‘n Shakes aren’t in California unfortunately ;(