Holiday Inn Club Vacations Desert Club Resort is in an amazing Vegas and I was happy to be going back to Vegas. Whether you gamble, try to understand what the sin in the city is all about, or just love shows, food, and fun, Vegas has it all.
Video by hiclubvacations
Day One Travel & Arrival at Holiday Inn Club Vacations Desert Club Resort
Vegas has one of the closest airports to the fun and to accommodations you will see anywhere. Flying into Vegas is how most arrive and they placed this airport in an ideal location. I often like to go up a level in the airport so I can just order uber verses taking a cab. You save a few bucks and often get a nicer and cleaner vehicle.
I have come to Vegas as a high roller (meaning a Casino was sending a car, and that is fun) but to call myself a high roller is laughable. I do tend to use their points systems and gaming cards to my advantage though. Someday I will have to put all my gaming tips into a short book. I know over the years I have benefited from the many value card deals. More on that later.
Once I hit the ground at the airport I was on the move. First to baggage claim, then to the area to meet my driver, and head to the resort. Often on short trips, I do not check a bag, but on this trip, I knew Vegas was going to be hot and that I would need more clothing to allow me to refresh often.
The resort itself is just 1 block away from the strip, which makes it easy to get a car and then walk to many locations if you want. I am out of shape so I am trying to push myself to walk more everywhere I go. This means not looking for a close parking spot anywhere, and it means not getting a cab or uber if I can walk a few blocks more and get somewhere. On other trips, it might mean that I am going on a short hiking trail to just try to move more. This resort is close to the Hilton Grand Vacations Flamingo resort and behind the Venetian. You can also see Harrah’s from the resort and Caesar’s in between buildings.
- Cable TV
- Coffee Maker
- Ice Maker
- In-Room Safe
Then the resort itself offers all of these options.
- Free WiFi
- Outdoor Pools
- Business Center
- On-Site Restaurants
- Fitness Center
- Concierge Services
The entry to the resort reminds me of the look at Paramount studios that you have seen in so many movies in shows. Not an exact copy, but that gated feeling is all done with an arch above the security gate.
They made check-in simple and that seems to be the case when you book through Tzort. Everything is simple and easy. You are very close to a lot of locations on the strip here. After I checked in, I walked to the Ferris wheel which is just up the block. The High Roller Ferris Wheel is unique not just because of its giant size but also because they offer a happy hour kind of experience as an option, which is an open bar for the duration of the ride. You get in a giant gondola that has a full bar and staff. That is a unique experience for sure. The observation wheel rises 550 feet or 168 meters above the center of the Las Vegas Strip, offering 360 views of the city.
I like to relax after a flight and often have a few drinks, so since this was within close walking distance, I figured let’s set some kind of drinking record during the happy hour ride. For $60 you can fire for effect with the open bar. However, note you only have 30 minutes, so most people, unless they are gifted drinkers, would be hard-pressed to drink more than 6 drinks (a ton for 30 minutes) and that would still be $10 a drink with the nice fun setting. I myself do not drink as I did in my 20s. Back then, I could scare people with my drinking ability. But hey I was 6’4” and a big guy that had lots of muscle mass to burn off alcohol fast. Those days are long gone now, but as a bigger guy now, I can still handle myself.
Another note is that with the open bar concept, you are talking well drinks or tier 2 level options only.
Another cool thing to do at Caesar’s is Fly Linq which is a zip line 12 stories high and 121 feet across. More than high enough and long enough that I wanted nothing to do with it. But people who like the scare of heights will love it. Even if I wanted to give it a try, there is a weight limit of 300lbs that sadly I exceed still at the moment. They do accommodate riders up to 6’8” which is rare for rides, so if this is your thing you will enjoy it as long as you are within the weight limit.
With all Caesar’s has to offer within a quick walk, this makes me feel this location is ideal for me.
Day Two A Great Days Start
The location of the resort it great, not just for Caesar’s but for several other Casinos all within a block or two. Today I started the Wynn because they have what most consider the best buffet in Vegas. So, whatever the meal, you can find what you want here. They serve brunch from 9 to 3 during the week and 8-3 Friday, through Sunday. Since this was Saturday, I made it to the buffet a little before 9 to beat the crowds or try to, anyway.
The food was as good as people say, and the brunch opens up options that breakfast does not. Your time at any buffet in Vegas is timed, so hanging around for the next meal service is not advised, allowed, or practical. If you need to pay less, there are other nearby buffets that cost less.
At Wynn, you get instant access to 90 different foods and many of those are made custom in front of you, which is nice. Who does not love a great omelet station?
Today, I wanted to gamble some. I have casino cards with several of the casino groups and some credits or points already on my cards from 3 brands. This means I can choose any of the 3 and earn points faster, and rewards today for sure since I already have some value on all cards. I think Bailey’s is the one with the most points, but I need to check.
After more food than I could really handle, I went to walk some on the strip. I knew if I started now I would be at it all day and that could be good or bad, but I felt better about starting later in the early afternoon.
Drinks for Free
Drinks are free if you’re gambling in Vegas and you don’t just have to be playing at a bar top, you can be playing at a slot machine or a table game, and in that case, cocktail waitresses are going to be coming around asking if anyone wants drinks. You just order what you want from her, she brings it to you and you just give her a tip of a dollar or two, but there’s no charge.
How do you know they’re going to be free?
Well, for starters, you can ask if they’re complimentary, and she’s always going to say yes. But that’ll give you some peace of mind. If you’re wondering what you can order, well, really anything alcoholic or non-alcoholic, they are a little limited on the selection.
For example, they might only have a couple of whiskeys or a couple of tequilas for you to choose from, but they’ll name what they have had and you can order from that. It’s also worth noting that the fancier the casino, the better drink options they’re gonna have for you. My two favorite places to drink for free are the Wynn and Encore. It’s basically two hotels in one and The Cosmopolitan. These hotels give you awesome options for free while you’re gambling.
And to give you an example of what you can get for free at Wynn or Encore, well, you can usually ask for a Don Julio Anejo tequila. And if you go to like a Total Wine, that bottle is going to be about $80 and you can drink it for free here. And on the other hand, if you’re gambling at one of the lower-end casinos, well, you’re still going to get free drinks.
It’s the liquor just isn’t going to be as high quality. However, if you’re out of one of those, if you go into the high roller room, you will get better drinks.
And also, you’ll get better options if you’re drinking at a bar versus on the casino floor. But if you’re trying to drink for free at a bar, just be sure to ask whether the complimentary drinks work on a ticketing system, or if as long as you’re playing, you get free drinks because some of the bars have started implementing a ticketing system where you have to bet a certain amount and then it will spit out a free drink ticket.
Vegas is a place where it is easy to lose all sense of time. In part, this is due to the free drinks, but also, you must realize that the casinos want you to lose track of time. They know the longer you play, the more they will win. So, they design everything to keep you playing.
Single Guys FYI
Word of caution: as a single guy you will be approached by attractive women in Vegas. (Sounds great, but keep reading). The vast majority of these ladies will be “working” if you are traveling and you do not normally pick up people, or attract members of the opposite sex, but you start to in Vegas just be aware that they are likely sex workers. This happens at every casino and every location. There are also single women traveling, but far fewer traveling alone. They often travel in groups for fun and safety. So, when you see an attractive woman out in Vegas solo, and she starts to chat you up, just be aware.
Now, this happens more later in the day and night, especially in the casinos because they know men have been drinking, and they have money. So, it is a target-rich environment. Some casinos do a better job than others of keeping this hidden and stopping clear open-air transactions. Some male travelers get confused because some things are legal in the state of Nevada, but they are not legal in Las Vegas in any form. Be aware.
The weather in Vegas is generally hot. It is a desert, after all. But they do have a rainy season and that is June and July. November through February, depending on where you live, you may be shocked to hear that Vegas gets into the 40s so it does experience wintertime lows. Just not freezing temperatures, really.
In the summer not only does it rain more, but it is also hot. The average high in June is 100, in July is 104, and in August is 102 degrees. Even with dry heat that is hard to enjoy. Though when it is hot, you do not often have to walk more than 1-2 blocks before you can duck in somewhere with great air conditioning. I do not know how much power they consume on the strip for air conditioning alone, but it must be a ton.
One thing to catch on your trip is the fountains. The Bellagio Fountain is another fun and free attraction along the Strip. Every 15 to 30 minutes, more than a thousand fountains sway in front of the hotel in sync with music and light.
It’s a beautiful and impressive spectacle with water reaching as high as 460 feet or 140 meters into the air. They do not start this most day until 11 AM. Check the website four times before you walk that way.
Day Three Shows
One of the many reasons tourists come to Las Vegas is to see a concert or show at one of the hotels on the Strip. Some of the best ones include any of the Cirque du Soleil shows, the Chippendales, David Copperfield, and the Blue Man Group. There are also famous artists who frequently play on and off the Las Vegas Strip. If you want to see a show and have a Casino loyalty card, see if they offer tickets. You may have enough points for one or more free tickets. Also, the casino hosts can hook you up with great seats to some shows since they have amazing connections. You just need to be on their radar to get special attention and treatment.
I was able to score some free tickets to a mind reading and hypnosis show through Caesar’s. I have some experience with hypnosis and even trained in a class a few times.
There are tons of shows in Vegas these days. There are a few fewer than before the pandemic but you still have plenty of options.
If you want to see the shows, and sites, and have a great vacation. Book through Tzort.