“Airplanes” by B.o.B Featuring Hayley Williams of Paramore

Before I left for Las Vegas last week I heard “Airplanes” by B.o.B. Feat. Hayley Williams of Paramore on the radio 3 times in a 5 minute drive.  It was at that point I figured this would be the song I heard most on my trip and set a 16.5 as the number of times I heard this in the casinos.

I heard this song a lot when I was last in Atlantic City, so I figured the over was a no-brainer.  That was wrong and I don’t think I heard the song once at a casino!  I heard it once it the car, but that doesn’t count.  I was mostly at Planet Hollywood, where I mostly remember hearing bad dance music, and Venetian where I only remember hearing some kind of trip hop in the morning.

Usually there is a specific song that I can relate to each trip I take to Vegas because I hear it everywhere, but this trip didn’t have that.  I’m not the only one who noticed this, check the 3:30 section of Bill Simmons trip to Las Vegas last year.

3:30: You know, every Vegas weekend has one song that every casino beats into the ground to the point that people groan when it comes on. The song is always peppy, but in a nonthreatening way. It’s designed to appeal to people of all ages. It has some sort of signature hook. And by the 10th time you hear it in 20 hours, you are ready to break a beer bottle against the blackjack table and start stabbing people with it.

This year’s song? “Use Somebody” by Kings of Leon. Heading into this weekend, I wasn’t for or against these guys. I had no opinion. Within 25 hours in Vegas? I hate them with every fiber in my body. We get it, Kings of Leon: You could use sum-BAH-dayyyyyy. Heard you loud and clear. And I understand you’re hoping it’s someone like you, someone like you, someone like you … believe me, I hope you find this person. Because if you don’t, I’m going to kill everyone in a 25-foot vicinity. Now go away.

Maybe I’ll hear a song that I can relate to this trip, but odds are I’ll just use “Airplanes.”

B.o.B. ft. Hayley Williams “Airplanes” from ISAAC HAGY on Vimeo.

Second Quarter Casino Earnings

I did my first roundup of casino earnings last quarter and the information is easily available so I figure it’s worth sharing.  On a headline glance the information is mixed.

  • Boyd Gaming profits drop 75%. LV Sun
  • MGM net income down a lot, but revenue about even year over year. LV Sun
  • Las Vegas Sands turns in much better quarter than same period last year.  LV Sun
  • Wynn profits double in the second quarter because of Macau income.  LV Sun
  • Harrah’s has 2nd quarter loss, but sees upside. LV Sun
  • Hard Rock Hotel loses 35% on earnings. LV Sun
  • UPDATE: Station Casinos Loses Widen.  LV Sun
  • UPDATE: Even improvements don’t slow Tropicana loses. LV Sun

I’ll update this information as more becomes available.  For more commentary check Two way Hard Three.  There’s always great feedback from their community.

Optional Resort Fees at Venetian

My trip to Vegas has me splitting time between Planet Hollywood and the Venetian.  I started my stay at Venetian last night and woke up at 4am (again) this morning.  I was bored so I decided flip on the laptop and see what was going on in the world.  Low and behold a screen popped up asking if I wanted to pay the $12.99 wi-fi fee.

I was flummoxed (10 points please) as wi-fi was included in the resort fee when I stayed at Palazzo in April.  I called down to the front desk to get the scoop and was way too confused for 4am.  Resort fees are optional for some, but not all, invited guests who are tripping on comps of for tournaments (like me).

So, I could either pay the $17.99 resort fee and get everything included or I could pay $12.99 for wi-fi in my room or I could go down to the food court and snag free wi-fi.  Guess what I chose…

So, if you’re keeping track on wi-fi at the Venetian here’s the deal.

Free wi-fi is available in the lobby, the food court on the casino floor and the Canal Shops as well as the Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf at the shops.  Wi-fi will cost you something in your room, but depending on who you are it will be either $13 or $18.

If you’re hoping the resort fee may go away, forget it.  The hotel is figuring out how to make it mandatory for everyone.

Harrah’s Las Vegas Diamond Clubs

I was reading the latest Seven Stars Insider and found a couple interesting bits about Harrah’s Diamond Clubs in Las Vegas.

Las Vegas Diamond Clubs
It’s official. . .you now can take out your favorite cocktail (in a plastic cup) from the four Diamond Clubs in Las Vegas.  The policy was quietly changed about a month ago.  Up until then, only beer and bottled water were allowed out of the clubs – unless, of course, you were able to sneak one past the employee at the door.  [Some folks were known to ask the bartenders to fill an empty Perrier or water bottle with gin or vodka, or decant their clear drinks themselves.]  It’s about time.  Most other Diamond Clubs allow drinks to be taken out; plus, it seems to me that Harrah’s would prefer their customers to be out on the casino floor rather than warming a seat in the club.

Sports Bar or Diamond Club?
It’s bad enough that nearly every television in the Vegas Diamond Clubs (and practically every other club in the country) is tuned to ESPN or some other sporting event, but, according to one of the bartenders at Caesars Palace, the TV over the bar must be tuned to sports.  The “policy” came to light recently when two customers sitting at the bar asked for the channel to be switched to CNN.  [The other two sitting at the bar didn’t care which channel was on.]  Whatever happened to listening to the customer?

I never realized that drinks couldn’t be taken out of the Las Vegas Diamond Clubs.  I usually go to a Diamond Club to relax and have a drink or three.  Maybe I’m abnormal.  I don’t just look for a free drink to take with me.  I also don’t visit the clubs for a meal.

Also, the new rule that the Diamond Clubs have to show sports is awesome.  Unlike Daryl I hate when there’s anything else on.  I’m a sports junkie and will watch anything sports related so this is cool for me.  However, thinking more broad-based, this is pretty closed minded.  Like he says “what ever happened to listening to the customer” if someone wants to watch something else and nobody else minds?

The Diamond clubs are supposed to be a touch above typical service.  This seems as if it’s closer to the mediocre Harrah’s customer service many have come to know over the years.

Repeat Order

I’ve been planning another trip to Las Vegas and it is upon me.  Earlier this year I ask for your opinion on where I should stay on my next trip and Palazzo won.  I kept one night at Planet Hollywood just to have a second place to crash.  That’s how I roll.

Last month I received an offer to be in a slot tournament at Venetian/Palazzo so I figured what the heck, let’s give it a whirl.  This time I’ll be staying at the older half of the mega-complex – the Venetian.  I figured it would be nice to check out a different property.

Photo: Flickr: lucianhanga

I’ll also be spending a couple nights at Planet Hollywood.

All rooms on this trip will be comped thanks to my last couple of trips to Vegas and continued patronage to Harrah’s properties in Atlantic City.

This time I’m aware that my comp room at Venetian won’t actually be free of charge, but I’m OK with the small fee as I’ll be using the wifi anyway.

This will be another solo trip for me and I’m looking forward to a different experience.  I’m even renting a car for the first time so I can explore a little bit of Las Vegas.  I’m looking forward to another new adventure.

Rumor: Plaza Becoming Union Plaza Again

The Plaza Hotel will be receiving a slew of renovations as well as a name change to Union Plaza.  This will coincide with renovations to two other downtown casinos – the Las Vegas Club Hotel and Casino and the Western Hotel and Casino.

(Anthony F.) Santo, who is a consultant for Tamares, the landlord of the three properties, said negotiations are under way for a $20 million loan to refurbish the rooms at the Plaza and to rename it the Union Plaza.

There also will be theme changes in the Las Vegas Club, he said. He added that the Western will see fewer changes, with some possible slot machine upgrades for its mostly locals market.

During the remodeling at the Plaza, some customers will be moved to the Las Vegas Club, Santo told the board.

Any updates downtown should be a good thing.  The name change brings the Plaza hotel back to its original name.  It would be nice to see the property cleaned up – even if it’s just on the surface.

Signs Signs Everywhere Signs

It seems as if a new sign on the Las Vegas strip is a news worthy item.  With that being said, the Cosmopolitan‘s marquee took life yesterday.

Photo: Las Vegas Sun

It looks very cool.  Nice, big and bright and will light up the strip nicely and unlike its neighbor CityCenter.  It’s still a sign, it takes a little more too get me excited.  I’m not really one that likes the tease.  Just give me the steak already, I’m already stoked.  Here’s the inspiration for the subject.

Get 25% Discounts At Legasse Stadium

Legasse Stadium announced on their twitter feed that you can get 25% off your bill after you “check in” three times on Foursquare.

Many visitors can do this on one trip to get discounts of your own.  You can check in from just about anywhere in the Palazzo, so it should be easy to grab this discount.

It’s cool to see casinos use technology as a marketing tool.  It’s also nice to see the offer of a large discount like this.  I’ve easily spent a couple hundred dollars at Legasse Stadium with friends – and that’s with each of us getting drink tickets for our bets.  Hopefully this will bring more business to Legasse Stadium so more places do this.

Foursquare and Gowalla are apps available on smartphones that, in short, let people know where you are.  Foursquare is offers different kinds of rewards and “mayorships” while Gowalla offers badges that you keep on your phone.

Both are competitors and I’ve tested each of them for a while, but will be making the switch to Foursquare on my next trip to Atlantic City.  It seems as if more major corporations are using FourSquare.  I figure if I’m going to use my time on *another* social network I might as well receive something for it.

Connect with me on twitter and foursquare if you’re mobile and inclined.