Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Our trip to Vegas.

Two weeks after we came back from Hawaii we headed out to Las Vegas for a friend's b-day.

A tip to save you some money when booking your room in Vegas.

We wanted to stay at the Palazzo cause that was where the birthday girl was staying. So doing a bit of research on deals and price comparison. The cheapest rate I could find for our travel dates was $169 per night at the Palazzo for a standard suite.

I read that you should always call the players card number for whatever hotel you want to stay at to see what prices they can offer you. All hotels want you to stay with them cause they want you to gamble at their place. Especially in this economy. So since we wanted to stay at the Palazzo I call the Club Grazie number. (Venetian and Palazzo are the same entity) Link below.

Venetian http://www.venetian.com/Pages.aspx?id=382

When I called they asked for my players card number. I told the host the I was planning to visit Vegas and was wondering what they can offer me. They offered me a standard suite w/o view for $99 a night. I took that deal. It ended up being $107.XX after tax. I instantly saved like 70 bucks a night. I do have a players card with them and have played a bit at the Venetian so I got a better rate than my friend.

He called and is not a member of club grazie (it's free by the way). My friend ended up getting two nights in a standard room for $300 for both nights. I looked up the rooms rates for my friend's dates of travel and the cheapest I could find his first night stay online was $229.00 (he was going a day ahead of us) so he saved quite a bit just by calling the number.

I would recommend calling the players club number just to ask what they can offer. It doesn't hurt and they are not pushy either about booking with them.

Here's a trick for an attempt at a room upgrade ( i have personally not tried this but have read a lot about it)

So what I have read is that when people check in. They stick a fold $20 bill or more in between their driver's license and credit card (also called the sandwich). Then they hand it over to the desk clerk. What is suppose to happen is they usually take it and you ask if there are any upgrades and usually they will upgrade to a really nice view or possibly a better room. Of course with all successes there are some failures.

you can read some of those success and failure stories here.

http://www.frontdesktip.com/

If your taking the taxi from the airport to your hotel on the strip. Make sure your not getting dooped. Some taxi drivers take what they call "the tunnel" which leads to the freeway and you end up going the long way around to your hotel. I have had this done to me before so I researched it.

I know depending on where your staying the freeway is required, but I have taken the taxi from the airport to the Wynn Encore and it cost me like $30+. It was suppose to cost under $20.

Whenever I take a taxi to a hotel on the strip I ask to avoid "the tunnel".

Here's an article I found about it.

http://www.thelasvegasadventurer.com/las-vegas-taxi-tips/

Here's a site to calculate your estimate taxi fare so you can know if your being taken for a ride or not.

http://www.taxifarefinder.com/main.php?city=LV


Agenda:
1) Tao Beach (day time pool party at Venetian pool)
2) XS Nightclub @ Encore http://www.encorelasvegas.com/#/nightlife/xs/

So we arrived around 3pm. Got to the hotel and checked in at the Palazzo.

The rooms at the Palazzo are very nice. One of the things that I like most about the rooms is that it sleeps 6. There are two queens and a pull out sofa. All standard rooms at the Venetian and Palazzo are suites minimum 650sqft.

Here's a video I found on youtube with a walk through of the 1 king room. We had the 2 queen.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lveNkNoSlko

So after we settled down. We went shopping for some attire for the club that night.
After shopping we decided to check out Tao Beach. It's a day time pool party. Just a knock off of Rehab. It's free though. It wasn't packed or anything, but I didn't like the vibe. So I only stayed for like 20min. Had a few drinks and left. The girls on the other hand got really really drunk.



Here's the pull out sofa in our room.


Guy on the right is my friend Son who got the $300 for two nights.



Just a side note. Save yourself the money and don't book with those VIP hosting sites for bottle service. It's a rip off.

I like to visit Jack Colton click banner below to visit. It's a site by a local resident of Vegas that reviews clubs, gives you tips and tricks about Vegas, and gives you direct email and phone number contacts to the VIP host that actually work for the Hotel not some outside company that requires money up front for your reservation.



If you can't find the VIP contact for the club your looking for sometimes they have the contact info on the hotel's website.
For example XS nightclub.
If you visit http://www.encorelasvegas.com/#/nightlife/xs/ it provides a phone number for you call to make reservation. Every time that I have made reservation they have never asked for my credit card number or require a deposit. They just ask contact name for the party, how many people, and date of your visit. So if you don't show up you don't loose out on any money. Jack Colton is the only site that I have found that provides direct contacts

Usually clubs require a 1 bottle minimum for every 3 people. Due to recession I have noticed that some clubs are letting this standard slide a bit. I visit Body English on a previous trip and was able to get 2 bottles for 15 people.

Anyways back to our trip

So 9pm rolled around and we went downstairs to grab a bite to eat at the food court before we head out to XS nightclub. We had bottle service reservations.

So after we returned I attempted to wake up the girls to get ready. They were all out cold. I could not wake them up for the life of me and some of them were just out of it or already had a hangover from the pool party.

We ended up bailing on the bottle service plan and just went down stairs to gamble and drink. My friend really wanted to go to Spearmint Rhino Adult Cabaret so that's where we ended up. He got bottle service there. ( I didn't know you can get bottle service at a gentlemen's club)

Any ways people got really drunk. Especially Peter. To the point that we had to leave the place.

When we pulled up to our hotel the security was nice enough to offer a wheelchair for Peter since he wasn't really walking and escorted us up to our room. I have a video Peter and the wheelchair in all his glory. I will post it up once I get it from John.

So we set Peter on the bed on the left and John on the right. Charyl woke up and felt a lot better. So Charyl and I went downstairs to gamble. When we came back up to the room this is what we found.

John somehow ended up on Peter's bed and......



Peter ended up on the floor. We have no idea what happen to this day and nobody can remember.




Next morning went over to Wynn to eat lunch. I think we ate at Terrace Pointe Cafe.
The service was horrible. Food was alright. I won't go back for sure.'
Birthday girl on the left Chary on the right.


Vanessa and Cali


Charyl was having a mimosa and accidentally knocked it over. It fell over onto the plate and the plate broke. I kid you not.

Flute-1 Plate-0
All I can say is they either have shitty plates or awesome Champagne flutes.


Peter just had to clarify with everyone that his is a real G.



We ended up going to XS nightclub the following night. I must admit that place is very very very nice. The interior is almost exactly like Tryst but XS has a huge outdoor pool/patio area. Which is totally chill. They have lounge chairs and tables out there. You get the best of both worlds. If you don't want to be in the club scene where it's packed you can just walk right outside and just lounge around, but if you want to dance just head into the club. It's a really nice setup.
Not many pics this trip but hopefully we'll get a lot more on our next one.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Day 8: Final day.

Agenda: A whole lot of nothing...

So the last day finally came. Our flight out was at 8:45p so we still had some time left.
We dropped off John at the airport cause his flight was before noon.
Then we spent some time shopping for souvenirs and ended the day at the beach again.
Packed our stuff and had our last meal in Oahu at

Tenkaippin Ramen
617 Kapahulu Ave
Honolulu, HI 96815
(808) 732-1211

This place had really good ramen. The night before when we went to eat sushi we saw a long line for this place so we decided to try this place out. I was glad that we did but sad that we didn't discover this place sooner.

I don't have many pics of our last day except for this pic of Charyl's sunglasses after she sat on them.

Dropped off our rental van, hopped on our plane and flew home.
That was our 8 day trip to Oahu.

We came home to this.. Lex ended getting a fox tail in her foot so she had to wear a cone so that she couldn't lick her foot. The cone did not last long cause she destroyed it within a few days.





Here are some videos that we took from our whole trip.

Day 4: The octopus that was caught on our Bob trip.

Day 4: John's magic trick at the restaurant

Two weeks after we came back we headed out to Vegas. I have very few pics from that trip but have this great video of Peter and a wheelchair. I just need to get that from john.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Day 7: More beach and Sushi

Agenda:
1)More beach time
2) Dinner @ Tokkuri-Tei (sushi)
611 Kapahulu Ave Ste 102
Honolulu, HI 96815
(808) 739-2800

Today isn't exciting as yesterday and it was our last full day in Oahu.
The morning started off great. Brandon's mom made us breakfast. What a treat. She prepared french toast, bacon and sausage. It definitely hit the spot after what happened last night. To bad I don't have any pics of the food.

Went back to Waikiki again for some more surfing and swimming.


Para sailor



On Saturday night we went out to eat for Brandon's mom's birthday.
We went out to Tokkuri-Tei. The food was really good. It's a really small place so we waited about 30mins or so for seating.


Howie eating some type of salad.




Very good squid pancake.



I forgot what salad this was but it was good also.






John gives this place 1 thumb up.


Mushrooms


Tempura Salmon


This is Tempura ahi poke.


spider roll (deep fried soft shell crab)








Deep fried amaebi (sweet shrimp). I like almost anything deep fried



I believe this is liver of a monk fish. It was labeled foie gras of the sea. It definitely didn't taste like foie gras.


some sushi rolls


assortment of sashimi


amaebi (sweet shrimp) raw




That white thing is Squid. Charyl said it was the best Squid nigiri she has ever had.





Kani (crab) sashimi


The end of our meal.



After the meal we headed back to the house had some cake and just chilled out for the rest of the night. John had to pack up cause he was heading home the next morning. Our flight wasn't till 8:45pm. So we still had a partial day left.
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Thursday, June 25, 2009

Day 6: Level 4 Nightclub & Ultra Lounge review

Agenda:
1)Beach
2) Level 4 Nightclub & Ultra Lounge http://www.l4waikiki.com/

So during the day Friday we just went to the beach. Nothing too exciting. When night came we suited up and headed out to Level 4.

First a little bit of info about Level 4.

The club is located at an outdoor mall on the 4th floor. Hence the name Level 4. The mall is located on the Waikiki shopping strip. So if you can walk to the waikiki shopping area. You can walk to this club. I know what your thinking. A club at a mall? I thought it was weird at first too, but you have to see it to understand.

During the day the venue is a Performance Theatre. So when you look at the pic below it should make sense as to why there are theatre seating and a huge stage.

I must admit for a place that is a theatre during the day the venue was well decorated as a club at night. It isn't vegas standards but it is definitely better than some clubs/ lounges in the bay area.
Everything you see outlined in black is the actually club venue. Everything else is part of the outdoor mall.

The red line connecting from bar to bar is the velvet rope that sections off the VIP area. The distance from the velvet rope to the stage is about 10-12ft from what I estimated.




So I did a a lot of research and came to a final decision to go to Pearl Ultra Lounge. We were looking for a nice venue that had bottle service and good music. After arriving to Oahu I spoke with Brandon's sister in-law and she told us that we should definitely go to Level 4. Level 4 was my second choice was from reading the review on yelp and people talking about the dance floor being small and about people walking through the dance floor to get to the other side of the club. So we ended up changing our mind and made reservations for bottle service at level 4 instead.

For those of you who don't know what bottle service is. You're pretty much reserving a table where you can sit and drink and it's reserved for you all night, but you have to purchase a bottle based on the clubs minimum.

perks:

1) Reserved table and seating area for the whole entire night.
2) Assigned cocktail server.
3) Free admission
4) No waiting in line
5) Assigned security (some places)
6) Unlimited juice and soda mixers with your bottle

I called the number provided by Level 4's website to book bottle service. Left them a message and they called me back the next day. I spoke to a female and asked her what the bottle minimum was for my party.

There was 8 of us and she told me it would be 1 bottle for every 4 people.
I also asked her about the seating arrangements.
From what I am told there are 3 areas.
1)Skybox - parties of 15-20 people
2)Ultra Lounge area - 1 bottle for every 4 people
3)Main dance floor- 3 bottle minimum for a party of 9
After hearing the dance floor area bottle minimum I was surprised that they would try to pull a 1 bottle to 3 people ratio. That's vegas status and this was definitely not vegas. She had no comment when I stated that. So I settled for the Ultra Lounge area and asked her if I could check out the dance floor area just in case I want to change my mind when I arrive. She said that was fine. She then asked me what bottles I wanted and I told her I was unsure. I asked her if she could just put us down to 2 bottles and if we could decide when we arrive. She was persistent about us making a specific choice on what bottles we wanted. So I just choose goose and heny vsop (privilege). I would have gone for Heny VS but they don't carry it. I asked if there were any bottle specials and she told me that I would have to speak to the promoter but did not provide any contact info.

If I remember correctly goose was $275 and Heny VSOP was $350 w/o tip.

So the day before we just happen to walk by the mall where level 4 is located and at the foot of the escalator there is a small booth promoting for level 4. So we stopped by and checked it out. They were taking reservations for bottle service. I told them we already had reservations but the guy told me that if we were celebrating for a special occasion he would give us $100 off our first bottle. Peter's birthday just happened to be 3 days away so we just re booked our reservation.
So if you are planning to do bottle service at the club i recommend you stop by the booth to see if there are any specials.
The opens at 10 or 10:30p I forget but we got there around 11:15p. Walked up met with out host and were promptly walked in. With out even asking the host decided to seat us in the dance floor area anyway since we were already getting 2 bottles he said that was close enough. That was really nice of him. So it all worked out in the end. They had barely opened up the main dance floor so it was pretty empty but filled up really quickly. We were introduced to our cocktail server and our security.
The service: This had to be one of the best if not the best bottle service we ever had. The cocktail server (Ariel) was very attentive. If there was a drink on the table without a napkin she made sure to place one down for it. I was really impressed with that. Service was very prompt. Our security made sure that nobody was in our section. The VIP area was very spacious. We had two sofas and a huge table. It easily accommodated our party of 8 and some. There was also plenty of room to dance in the VIP area too. So we never had to step foot onto the main dance floor.
We didn't get to see the Ultra Lounge area so I can't comment on that. When we entered the building we turned left and went all the way around into the main dance floor.
The music was good. Your normal top 40's and there was a small portion of trance/house but that's it.

Overall I was really impressed with the place. I would definitely recommend this place to anyone who wants to do bottle service. I must admit the main dance floor is small and people do walk through but we weren't out on the main dance floor much so it didn't bother us.
If you have any questions send a comment and I will address it.

We had a great time. You can probably tell from the pics below.

Our bottle service set up.






It took us a while to get faded so you will see how the night progresses.


John and Peter sober as hell.





Charyl got drunk quick




Sober...





John found Batman



Peter with Ariel





John and his stunners in a club at night!















howie loves brandon





spirit fingers





cyclops was there too











Who's is Soulja Boy's best friend? Youuuuu!!!!





Our Security guy.





No means no Louie!






The main stage where the dj spins





from our VIP section this is what we see to our right.








you can see the theatre seating behind us. Which people are typically not allowed.











Peter and Ariel again.





Brandon is pretty red





John's getting closer to the finish line.




Louie likes big butts and she cannot lie! especially if they're chocolate chip cookies










Peter seems to be enjoying himself now.







John never drinks goose.





Is Brandon blinking or is he looking at something?







This photo just happen to come out this way.




What's this guys name again?



Howie found religion





click clack m****f***





Superman!!






I'm gonna get you in your nightmares..







Why so serious?














That's not Howie...








How did these guys get in?


Round 1




















That's the end. A very fun night. We ended up staying till 3:30am. The club closes are 4am. We ended up at zippy's again and then back home.

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