Monday, January 14, 2013

And the winner of the Amazon gift card is

Well I'm back from the Consumer Electronics Show, and I'm ready to start paying all the bills that are pouring in from my Vegas trip because I didn't stick with just what my work was willing to pay. I took one day of vacation and then splurged on Vegas shows and some fine dining. Yes, I had a very nice vacation, but there were some pitfalls, and I'm going to tell you about them so that you don't experience the same thing if you make it to Vegas.

My first bit of housekeeping involves giving away the $50.00 Amazon Gift Card for the tweet support I received from my friends because of this post HERE. chooses... Sarah Ahiers Falen!


I'll send you the gift card via email on Monday.

Okay, so the low point of my trip really was the place where I was staying, i.e., the Mirage Hotel and Casino. Right off the bat, the front desk person was snippy and could answer none of my questions about the CES shuttle service. In fact, she seemed clueless that there was even going to be a convention in town. Then in order, this is what I got (I attended the conference with friends):
  1. Room lock didn't work half the time. I think there was a short in the lock so when you stuck in the magnetic key card, it just wouldn't register.
  2. Room had no view. Just the roof of the casino.
  3. Volcano attraction was broken and being repaired.
  4. Found a bandage with dried blood on it stuck to the computer desk. That was gross.
  5. Television had like 10 channels on it that showed anything other than local news. You had to pay for everything else.
  6. WiFi did not work the entire first day and pretty much sucked every day after. There's no way you could stream anything. I was just lucky to get a blog post up every day last week. That was a real chore. Thing is, the technicians we spoke to by phone said the WiFi is only shared over six rooms. He had the nerve to blame other rooms for hogging the bandwidth.
  7. We went to the spa and my friend Tomeka got handed a robe with human feces on it. She took a picture and we got our visit comped.
  8. The buffet at the Mirage sucked. Worst buffet ever. Felt like I was eating at Chuck o' Rama. Their shrimp was old and really smelly, crab tasted bad, and the ribs were cold. Complete bullsh*t if you ask me. I teased my friends that they probably just grabbed the dead fish from the lobby fish tank and served that at the buffet.
* The Mirage did comp the spa visit and also took off the $25 a day resort fee as an apology.

  1. The Wynn everything. We ate there at Tableau four times, ate the best dinner I've ever dined upon at Wing Lei, enjoyed the drunken noodles at Wazuzu, and with the money we saved from the spa at the Mirage, we did the spa at the Wynn. Best spa experience ever hands down. I will never visit Vegas again and NOT stay at the Wynn. Oh and did I mention that everything but the room is cheaper at the Wynn? Yeah...the Wynn is a winner. Did I mention that the Wynn is sending my friend and I some robes from the spa? They're so comfortable. Oh and they have this deluge shower that literally pours 10 gallons of water on your head a second. It's like standing under a warm waterfall.
  2. The Vegas shows. We saw David Copperfield, the Jersey Boys, Absinthe, and Daniel Tosh and they were all amazing. Daniel's show is really short (like 45 minutes of standup is all). But Daniel's hilarious.
  3. The best buffet in Vegas is the Wicked Spoon at the Cosmopolitan. It has fourteen flavors of gelato, a gourmet macaroni and cheese bar made right in front of you, French macarons, and just incredibly fresh cuisine including wine service at your table. Go see the will be blown away.
  4. I chickened out on Goretorium and I consider that a highlight because I read one person's experience and said, "I have no idea what possessed me to even think I want to see this attraction." Sure, Eli Roth blew 10 million on it, but it's supposed to be incredibly scary and they plunge you into a maze that just goes wrong at every turn. Nope...I skipped that one.


Today I'm at Alex J. Cavanaugh's blog. Please go read my post if you have the time. You can find his blog HERE.

I'm also at Charity Bradford's Blog. You can find that post HERE. Please visit both if you can because then the lottery fairies will bring you millions of dollars in power-ball money*

*Disclaimer: If you believe this, you should also look into a bridge I have for sale in Iowa.


  1. I'll take all of that into consideration if I ever do go to Vegas.

  2. Oh, so many bad jokes can be made about the Mirage... Sorry you had such a bad experience, terrible service, bloody bandages and people poop is the worst I think I've ever heard. With a hotel like that you'd expect better everything...but then again, it is called The Mirage...

    Congratulations to Sarah Ahiers Falen!

  3. Congratulations to Sarah!
    Won't even ask what might've been floating in the dolphin's pool at the Mirage.
    You didn't go do one of the rides on top of the Stratosphere?
    And happy to host you today.

  4. So I Tweeted and retweeted all that stuff for nothing? Consarnit. I'm going to assume you did a lot more in Vegas but you just aren't saying. I mean because from what you posted it sounds like what my 64-year-old mom would do in Sin City.

  5. I was there last August and it felt like a different city from the one I remember pre-recession. We, too, had a bad room experience, finding dirty towels on the bathroom floor upon checking in. But I hope you had fun at the shows. And the strip is kind of cool for people watching at night. All kinds.

  6. But at least through it all, you kept your spirits high and kept in touch with the blogosphere!

  7. I haven't been to Vegas. I guess I certainly don't want to stay at the Mirage if I go. :)

  8. I've never stayed at The Mirage and now because of your post I doubt I ever will. Thanks for the warning.

  9. Probably going to Vegas later this year so it's good to see some first-hand experience. I haven't heard much good about the Mirage from anyone else and clearly there's a reason for that. Glad it didn't ruin the whole trip for you though

  10. @Andrew: I think I had a lot of fun.

    @Elise: I want to stay at the Wynn.

    @Alex: I'm afraid of heights, Alex. The top of the Stratosphere is too much for me to handle :/

    @P.T.: I didn't really do a lot more. I guess you can call me an unexciting person, and I'm okay with that. *shrugs. I like spas, restaurants, and shows. I'm overweight and over 41 and there's only one gay club on the Strip and that's Krave at Caesar's and it's waaayyy expensive.

    @L.G.: It was a little cold to do much people watching. 30 degrees in Vegas!

    @Elizabeth: I tried. I'm gonna be doing a lot more today, but I'm so busy at work *swamped.

    @Brinda: Yeah it was like a Motel 6 to be honest (but more expensive).

    @CBame: I would stay at the Cosmo if I were you.

  11. Already saw you at Alex's. Your hotel stay sounded like a horror but you found lots of other fun. I enjoyed your reports on all that tech stuff.

  12. Hey, Mike,
    It's good that you had fun, considering all the stuff that didn't go so right where you stayed.

  13. Congrats to Sarah Ahiers Falen. I can't be jealous because I won an Amazon gift card and amazing pin the last book tour.

  14. Michael, I'm STILL laughing at your post over at Alex's place. You are SO funny! Loved it. And welcome back! Though I am a bit disturbed by this Daniel guy bashing red heads... grrrr...


  15. I'm not much of a gambler, but I do love to eat, so I would probably like Vegas.

  16. I did dine at the Stratosphere once (and I'm leery of heights). The height issue wasn't bad, but the restaurant wasn't all that great. (You didn't miss anything.)

  17. Awww sweet! This really made my day!
    And man, how horrible were your lows? Gross upon gross. I'll avoid the Mirage if i ever visit vegas.
    BUT i'm totes jealous you got to see tosh! I love his show

  18. Congrats to Sarah! One of these days I may make it to Vegas. Sound slike you had fun.

  19. Congrats to Sarah!

    Sounds like you had a fun time in Vegas even though you had a few problems with the hotel.

  20. I've never been to Vegas but I want to go sometime. Thanks for all juicy info. Nothing worse than a bad hotel experience. Glad you some good stuff to enjoy as well! Welcome home!

    (I already dropped by Alex's today. I'll try to make over to Charity's too.)

  21. First, Congrats to SARA!!!!...

    WOW, How sad that the Mirage took such a downfall. When I lived there in the late nineties, The MIRAGE was one of THE TOP hotels. Sad really. Sorry you had such HORRIFIC experiences there.

    I haven't been to Vegas since my dad died in 2001. SO much has changed since then. I'd love to go back and visit the Wynn and see all the NEW sites.

    Overall, it sounds like you had an awesome time Michael.... YAY!

  22. Congratulations to Sarah!

    Glad to hear you had a good vacation, despite the hotel problems.

  23. Sorry to hear about the problems with the hotel. Yuck...

  24. If I ever get to Vegas, it sounds as if I should stay at the Wynn. Funny how the more famous Mirage didn't measure up.

    I'm so happy you had (generally) a good time there and the convention sounded so productive for you.

  25. Hope you had a splendid time. Did you notice if Shania Twain was on any of the billboards? I'm trying to convince my husband a visit in February would do us both good. I may be able to tempt him if she's still there.

  26. Congrats to Sarah!

    Ugh! I'm sorry to hear about the crappy experience you had in Vegas. Thankfully it sounds like the highlights were wonderful, though.

  27. With Vegas it's always a learning experience.

    Bummed I didn't win, but then I really didn't play enough. Great tour.

  28. Congrats to Sarah!
    and your hotel . . .shudder, eww, nasty, and I'm so sorry . . .that's all I can say.

    Vegas is one of the weirdest cities ever . . .I can't say I like it, and I used to say I hated it, but now I will begrudgingly say that some of the shows are good.

    I'm glad you had some highlights from your trip!

  29. Every time I've stayed in one of the 'Hot' hotels in Vegas, I've been disappointed. It's like "did I really pay $200 a night for this?" But I there are better places to stay away from the strip that cost less and you can still enjoy everything. Silly what a prime spot costs!

  30. The Mirage sounds like a nightmare! I'm not a real Vegas fan, but if I ever go, I'll stay at the Wynn.

  31. Are you sure the Mirage wasn't a trip like Goretorium? :)

    All the best with your book...saw it on Alex's blog!

  32. I hope you had some fun while you were there. It is overwhelming. I used to travel there on business years ago, and really only enjoyed the first trip. Don't like all the glamor -- not good for the soul. But I do like some of the performances.

  33. whoa, highs and lows to all of it! and congrats to the winner!!

  34. I miss Vegas. I haven't been in almost four years now...and I used to go every year. Your Mirage experience sounded terrible. I guess I won't stay there. But I so want to stay at the Wynn. My boss was actually there this past weekend. I was jealous. Haha.

  35. Sorry to hear you had such a bad experience in Vegas. :( At least you found some place better to stay at on your next visit.