Vegas Recap

We came. We fought. We emerged victorious.

Volcano at the Mirage

As planned, we returned to Jackson safely with no bruises, hangovers, wedding rings or children. Whew! As expressed in this post, my previous excursions to Vegas were compiled of a mix of sparkly halter tops, foot long margs, $39 hotels and of course, vodka. However, I’m not 22 anymore. I’m 5 years the wiser and I have some sound advice for any Vegas newbie.

1. Stay in a nice hotel. I.e The Mirage.

Our standard room featured an awesome view of the strip, a super-comfy king bed, tasteful modern decor and robes. Coincidentally, it was also neighbored by Caesar’s Palace (hello Forum shops) and the Venetian. Now let’s talk POOL. Despite the fact that I had to pull a J-Wow in order to procure two lounge chairs for the boy and I (and you know I pounced on a little old English couple for one), all was well. Over the duration of our short weekend, we managed close to 7 hours (SPF a’course) at the pool and I savored each moment.

Souvenir Cup!

2. See a show.

Don’t skimp on this one. The Cirque shows basically all rock the hardest, but we saw “Love” and were blown away. “Love” is described as: 

With LOVE, Cirque du Soleil celebrates the musical legacy of The Beatles through their timeless, original recordings. Drawn from the poetry of the lyrics, the show explores the content of the songs as interpreted by innovative performances from a cast of 60 international artists. A youthful, raw energy is channeled through aerial performance, extreme sports and urban freestyle dance.

Here’s a shot of the theater’s lobby. I thought it was awesome that they sold popcorn, candy and BOOZE.

Phone Booth Advertisment for "Love"

I may have peed a little bit when they did “Hey Jude”. Just sayin =).

3. Gamble.

Oh come on. It’s fun! This advice does come with a caveat: If you say, have a gambling problem like Clark Griswold then definitely steer clear of the casino. But for anyone else like me, who likes their money kind of alot, put aside an amount of money that you’re comfortable with and have fun! My gambling opinions? Don’t play slots. Unless you like to mindlessly bet your hard-earned cash on trying to get 4 smiley faces to line up, skip this one. It’s boring and the cocktail waitresses seemed to ignore us (although maybe that’s because we were on the penny slots…). Also, I abstain from playing any kind of blackjack or poker. It’s intimidating for me when other human beings are involved. I start sweating.

Instead, a more approachable idea is to play video blackjack or poker. Keep in mind the margin of winning the video versions of these games is significantly less than if you play with  human beings. The perk however, is that you can play $1 hands as opposed to $25 hands (which is the minimum at most tables). Also, if you scope out a bar that hosts a bank of these machines and you’re nice to the bartenders – you’re drinkin for free. Bryan and I did this every night, broke even and were served several delicious drinks – on the house. I felt like a pimp. A pimp with a Hello Kitty necklace on.

5. Eat delicious food. Vegas boasts some of the best restaurants in the country and my advice is – chow dizown. For a fro-yo eating, cupcake-lovin gal like myself – I was in HEAVEN. The only thing that could have made it better was if I had puppies surrounding me and maybe the cast from Wicked. I had frozen yogurt at Blizz (at the Mirage) like errday and also rocked Serendipity and the Sugar Factory.

Iced Coffee by the Pool

My Breakfast by the Pool - Berries and Toast

Bryan's Breakfast by the Pool - Breakfast Burrito

Burger at BLT Burger

Dinner Before the Show at Sushi Roku

Lunch at the Paris

Here are some other foodie-type pics I deemed pretty sweet:

Chocolate Fountain at the Bellagio

And Another...

Gelato at Caesar's Palace

World's Largest Gummy Bear

4. Have 2nd dinner. This is paramount guys. One missed 2nd dinner and you may be hurtin the next day and have to take a Pedialyte hard to the face. On Friday and Saturday we dined around 7:30 and then with gambling/drinking/clubbing until 2, homegirl needed her sustenance. We had flatbread and salads 2 nights in a row at The Cheescake Factory (open 24 hours thank you) and yours truly managed to slay one basket of bread alone. Both nights. Hollller.

Pre 2nd Dinner

6. Buy things. Over the course of this minication – I managed to spend a purtty little penny. Most money was spent at H&M (duh) and…Coach. It was not a drunk-buy. It was a well planned out, methodical, economical purchase. Ok, maybe it was a teensy bit alcohol induced. But hey, people gamble away hundreds of dollars in Vegas everyday! At least I came out of it with a cute, summery handbag right?!

Audrey Canvas Sling

It's Real

Also, after pining over the couture bejeweled lollipops owned by many celebs, Bryan bought me one. Oh, and it’s Hello Kitty. Don’t be jealous.

They even come with caps for the lollipop part, so you can enjoy as much or as little as you like and save the rest for later. Genius, I know.

Even Holly Madison has one! Who I didn’t meet, but apparently she would be signing books next weekend. Grrrr…

7. Where stylish, yet comfortable clothing and makeup. I succeeded in this for the most part except once. Two words: False. Eyelashes.

Halloween '08. Killa Lashes

Disclaimer: I have successfully worn false eyelashes dozens of times, with no hiccups. This time however, was an exception. I struggled with them while getting ready for close to 20 minutes. Then I made the decision to cut them in half and simply wear them on the outer-corners of my eyes. Totes Sofia Loren right? Maybe it was the fact that they cost $1.99. Maybe it was the dry, Vegas air. Or maybe it was my shaky, awkward hands. Whatever the case, I got them on but after “Love” my eyes were a’burnin. As we sat down at the video blackjack table and had consumed a couple bevs, I made the bold decision to rip them off. And rip I did. Suprisingly, the glue gave way fairly easily and before you could say “Wayne Newton”, I was back to natural. 100% Natalie lashes. However, I did look a little bit like a hairless cat, ala Mister Bigelsworth so I promptly threw on my Bans and said “When in rome!”. Not applicable but we were at the Venetian so you get it.

A More Successful Makeup Application

All in all, the trip was majesty. It was shining, shimmering splendid.

Gardens at the Bellagio

As the song says, “I love Vegas the springtime, I love Vegas in the fall…” 😉

Have you ever been to Vegas? What is your favorite thing to do there?

Her Name was Lola

Hi, my name is Natalie and I’m a sunoholic.

I was also born in the wrong era. But that's neither here nor there.

I enjoying being tan. Snooki tan.

Heart You Nicole

I know, I know. I live in Jackson, where temps dip as low as -18 degrees. And you don’t see consistent sun until July. Yes, July. Did I do my research before I decided to move here? No. Was I blind-sighted by the Tetons, abundance of mellow, Patagonia-clad people and the prospect of getting out of the ‘Kane? Certainly.

Jackson Lake

I’m ok with it.

While the weather here is not for us sun goddesses, the other amazing attributes make Jackson one of the most beautiful places on earth. For a true account of the power this place holds, not to mention absolutely gorgeous writing, please check out my bestie Carey’s blog post here.

So about 2 months ago, B took pity on me and indulged my hard-core sun addiction by suggesting we plan a trip to the land of sun, sin and foot-long margs. No, it’s not Sprague, Washington! Good guess though.

VEEEEEGGGGGGGAAAAAAASSSSSSSS

Both Bryan and I have been there multiple times, which means this trip we won’t be making those classic mistakes, such as:

  • Staying in a sh*tty ass hotel at the end of the strip because it was only $49 a night.
  • Strutting around the strip in skimpy clothes we bought at Rave that later break when we’re dancing too hard to “My Humps”.
  • Going inside EVERY casino and catching all those free shows you have to see as a Vegas-virgin.
  • Puking. Period.
  • Not reserving a hotel for the last night we’ll be there and booking a flight out at 5 am. Since, like, we’ll totally be partying until then at a kickin’ night club when really we’ll end up sitting around a 24-hour diner eating cold stuffed mushrooms while my false eyelash dangles off my glitter-crusted eyelid. Or, was this just me, Meg, Holly, Carey and Bekah (the besties)?

    It's Game Time B*tches

Instead, Bryan and I are taking the classy route. Although our trip is indeed ridonculously cheap, we are planning some pretty sweet stuff. Consisting of, but not limited to:

  • A 3-night stay at the luxurious hotel + casino, The Mirage.
  • 2 tickets to LOVE (Cirque du Soliel’s Beatles show) SO pumped for this guys.
  • Ridiculous amounts of pool-time.

    The Pool at the Mirage

Ok, so you know that Fantasy Football thing? Well here is my fantasy Vegas team:

  1. Holly Madison –  Former GND. Current Vegas head-liner. Adore.
  2. Bill Cosby – I hear he’ll be in Vegas. “Theeeooo likes the swirrly puddin popsss…” (That was my Cosby)
  3. Bobby Flay – He has a restaurant in Vegas called Mesa. He’s a ginger. Need I say more?
  4. Barry Manilow – Confession: Not really a fan other than Copa Cabana.
  5. Criss Angel –  Magician and mind freak. Duh.

We leave in two weeks. Tally ho!

Stretch Question:

What is your favorite thing to do in Vegas?