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Las Vegas, Baby! (Mandalay Bay)

This year is a crazy one.  All of my friends and I are turning 21!  That calls for parties, trips, and Vegas of course!

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We left Huntington Beach, CA at around 8:30am and had a nice, easy drive to Nevada.  At state line (Primm), we stopped at the Fashion Outlets.  I was looking forward to taking a walk around the mall after the long drive & hopefully finding some deals.  There was a Lulu Lemon sign outside which made me really excited to find.  I am always in the mood to get some discounted Lulu Lemon’s!  Inside, there weren’t very many people.  I was surprised- I thought this would have been a popular place to stop and shop.  We walked all throughout the outlets & I was not impressed.  Disappointed actually.  There were not very good deals or great stores.  Yeah, there was a Nike, Calvin Klein & Michael Kors, but they didn’t have any amazing deals or new merchandise.  Also, the Lulu Lemon I was excited about was closed down.  They just left the sign there.  Coooool.  There were not very many food options either.  There was a small casino attached, but it was a ghost town in there.  We all walked away empty handed.  Half of us got Taco Bell, and my friend, Shelby & I got Mad Greek (see the bottom of the page for my food reviews).

Next stop was alcohol.  We stopped at a liquor store in between state line & Vegas.  It was still very overpriced!  Buy your alcohol before you even get kind of close to Vegas!!

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There was 10 of us… It’s not thaaat much!

5 hours later we made it!  We stayed at Mandalay Bay for the weekend.


Well, not really.  We stayed at the Delano, which is attached to Mandalay Bay.  It is a non-smoking hotel, and only has a bar and restaurant on the casino floor.  It is right next to Mandalay Bay and I barely noticed which hotel was which the first day.  We got a suite with two queen beds.  There were 2 bathrooms, a couch, and 2 rooms. IMG_1299

It was a very nice room with plenty of space.

IMG_1212The first thing we did was go to the pool!  There is only one pool area for both Mandalay Bay & the Delano.  I hear they are opening more pools soon though. The whole reason we stayed at Mandalay Bay was for the pools. They have the best ones on the strip!  Theres a wave pool, lazy river, regular pool, shallow pool and jacuzzi.  There is also areas that have the lounge chairs on top of sand (which I personally hate, but I guess some people like it.)

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The only bad thing was that the pool closed at 6 on Friday.  I think summer hours are different, but still!  It’s spring break!

IMG_1259After dinner, we just hung out in the hotel.  They had a fun band playing downstairs that we all danced to.  Also, Mandalay Bay is connected to Luxor and Excalibur.  You can get to either of them by walking or by tram.  We walked all the way to the end, and it’s not a bad walk.  There is also an aquarium and shark reef in Mandalay Bay that we checked out.  There was a long line to buy a ticket so we didn’t go in.  There is a Starbucks in the hotel as well.  During the afternoon, there was no line, but they were out of my first 2 choices of drinks…

One night, we visited the Mirage for dinner (see food reviews below).  Since we were already down there, we walked to the Bellagio to see the fountain show.  Little did we know, the last show is at midnight.  So after waiting for 45 minutes, we decided to move on.  Make sure to check the show times before you go!

Here's what it's supposed to look like :)
Here’s what it’s supposed to look like 🙂

Bars


My favorite bar I visited was The Minus5 Ice Lounge . I’ve always wanted to go to an ice bar!!  My grandpa was actually in Las Vegas the same weekend I was because he is in the process of moving there.  He took me to the ice bar.  We went in the middle of the day so there were only 2 other people inside.  We got the $75 package that included entry for 2 people, one drink each (in a cool ice cup), upgraded fuzzy coats, one hat you get to keep, and a 5×7 photo.

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They didn’t tell us until right when we walked in, but they make you put phones and cameras in a locker before you go in.  If I were to go again, I would sneak my phone in, sit in the corner and take selfies!! But thats just me :p  Anyways, it was gorgeous in there.  It wasn’t too big, but there were tables and seats everywhere that were carved so beautifully.  The drink was good.  I had fun sucking on the side of my cup until I made a big hole in it.  Also, once you buy admission, you can get in the rest of the day!

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I snuck this picture when we were viewing all of the ones they took of us! shhh

It is not a trip to Vegas without going to Fat Tuesdays… more than once!!!  It was my first time trying one.  I’ve always heard the hype about them.  Yes, I have a sweet tooth so I absolutely loved them.  They are delicious alcoholic slushies that come in some of the best flavors.  They let you sample as many as you want, and encourage mixing flavors together.  My favorite flavor is peach bellini.  Soooo yummy.  There is a fair amount of alcohol in them too, but adding an extra shot is well worth it.  Once you buy a cup, you can bring it back and get refills for cheaper. IMG_1486

 Plus, you look really cool walking around with a giant cup of adult slushie.  I got the yard dog size- $14 for the cup and drink, $11 for refills.  DO IT. 🙂

IMG_1386There is a lounge on the very top floor of the Delano called the Mix Lounge.  Confession- yes, I was already in my pajamas when my friends went up there, but they called me trying to convince me to come check out the breathtaking view.  I didn’t go… BUT they sent me a good amount of snapchats, so I might as well of been there.  It is a great viewpoint to see the strip.  Apparently even you have a good view as you’re sitting on the toilet!

There is also a hookah lounge a short taxi ride away from Mandalay Bay.


Food


Mad Greek always reminds me of the delicious strawberry milkshakes I would get there as a kid.  This time I actually ordered food & I was pleasantly surprised by how good it was.  I got a chicken gyro salad.  It was big, and came with warm fresh pita bread.  I would definitely recommend it.

For breakfast, our group split up.  My friends went to Della’s Kitchen in the Delano.  The pictures of their food were amazing, and they all enjoyed their meal.  They also said they probably wouldn’t go back because of how expensive it was.  Most of them got eggs benedict which is $19.

I went to The Omelet House, about a half hour away from the strip.  It was definitely worth it though.  It’s a little family owned place with friendly service and a big menu.  I ordered the California omelet.  It came with fresh, warm banana bread & home made hot potato crisps.  Ohhhhh my.  Just thinking about it makes me want to go back.  There was so much food that came with it, I was beyond stuffed and still couldn’t finish it.  My meal was $10.

For dinner, we walked around in Mandalay Bay until we found the place that seemed cheaper than everywhere else and didn’t have a wait.  We ended up at Slice of Vegas.  It’s a pizza place, but they really have everything- pizza, sandwiches, burgers, pasta… AND a vegan menu!!!! I am lactose intolerant and it was the most exciting thing to see pizza with dairy-free cheese served!!  I actually ended up getting a chicken sandwich on gluten free bread and sweet potato fries. No charge to substitute gluten free bread!!  I really enjoyed my meal, it was $18 including tip though.  4 or 5 people in my group ended up getting sick that night… they think it might be from the restaurant, but I think it might have just been a mix of being in the car all day and eating a big meal and drinking right away… who knows.  You have been warned.

One day for lunch, we went to The Burger Bar in Mandalay Bay.  We had previously tried to go there for dinner, but there was a half hour wait.  I built my own burger.  They have a lot of options including naturesource beef and gluten free buns.  Most burgers do not come with fries, so you have to order them separately.  I got sweet potato fries.  I really enjoyed my burger, and our server was very attentive.  The price is not bad compared to most other restaurants in Mandalay Bay.  My meal was $17.55 for a burger on gluten free bread with bacon and avocado and a side of sweet potato fries…. okay maybe that isn’t as cheap as I remember, but a typical burger on their menu is $12-$17.

We were still on the hunt to find food as cheap as possible.  There is a California Pizza Kitchen in The Mirage hotel, so we thought it would be our best bet since it’s a chain.  Well, of course the prices are still hiked up.  They don’t have the prices on their online menu, but I believe a pizza was around $18.  The food and service was good.

Last but definitely not least, we tried Lupo.  It is Wolfgang Puck’s restaurant and is in Mandalay Bay.  We started off with appetizers.  We got a meat and cheese plate, and bruschetta.  The meat was tender and delicious, and the bread was warm and toasted to perfection.  My only complaint is that the prosciutto had ligament or something in it, and we had to spit it out.  For my meal, I got hand rolled ricotta gnocchi.  It might have been the best I’ve ever had.  It was worth eating dairy even though I’m lactose-intolerant.  It was so soft, it melted in my mouth.  The gnocchi was comparable to the dish I had in Italy.  It was seriously that good!! They say the menu changes pretty much daily!  I 1000% recommend this restaurant.  The prices were not outrageous either.  I don’t remember exactly, but I think my dish was around $20.

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I hope you are able to have your own awesome experience in Sin City!  What are your favorite places in Vegas?

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