Look Out Vegas…Dita’s In Town

Dita Von Teese is in the midst of a short run as a guest at MGM Grand’s “Crazy Horse Paris.”  In fact, I missed the beginning of the run and she’s done April 7.

As a burlesque artist Dita Von Teese is known for her raunchy performances…The Crazy Horse is an iconic Paris burlesque show, which Dita says inspired her current career.

I find Dita Von Teese interesting as she always seems to have a different, retro look.  Get tickets on the MGM Grand website if you’re in town.  If not, you’ll have to enjoy a nice PG picture.

Total Rewards 1 – Players Club 0

This morning I saw that BlogWorld was announced for October in Las Vegas.  I’m not sure that I’ll be able to make the expo, but I figured I’d see if there were any comp rooms available in case I could make it.

Players Club

Since BlogWorld will be at Mandalay Bay I looked at my Players Club account to see if there were rooms at an MGM property.  Not a bad site, but not very functional.  Rooms cannot be booked through the site.  You’re just given the information for your comps.

I saw that I had 3 comp nights at Luxor, but the offer only went to June.  I called Luxor VIP services to see if they could offer the same in October and was told they would charge me (and my credit card) full rate and adjust if offers come through.  Offers are only made available once a quarter.  I thanked the woman and told her I’d probably go elsewhere if I can get an offer today.

Total Rewards

After that call I went to check my Total Rewards (TR) account to see if there were any comps available at the Harrah’s properties.  My TR account showed me that I had comps available at 4 properties.  Not too shabby.  Since the offer was available I booked at Bally’s since I’ve never been there and it was the closest comp room to BlogWorld.  It was easy as pie and done in about 5 minutes.

Conclusion

Harrah’s Total Reward program is the grand daddy of all comp programs.  I’ve read multiple articles that say it is the best.  MGM’s Players Club is still, relatively, new and developing. In fact, I recently posted an article how MGM is trying to improve Players Club

Nothing done here was wrong here as most casino offers only come out quarterly.  For a person like me, that plans almost everything in life well in advance, the ability to book a comp room 6 months out is great.

There may be plenty of things Harrah’s doesn’t do well (6:5 blackjack, poor video poker pay tables and mediocre customer service) but Total Rewards shows comp offers and easily makes them available.  That gives Harrah’s a big edge on the competition and gives them my business again.

MGM is trying to improve Players Club and a great place to start would be linking all of their properties reservation systems together and making offers available more in advance.  I’m looking forward to seeing if Players Club can catch up with Total Rewards.  They have a big hill to climb.

CityCenter Opens!

There has been much talk about CityCenter, and its parts, opening to the public.  After reading many articles and listening to a slew of podcasts my feelings are mixed.

I’m excited to look at the shiny new “city” of buildings but I’m also managing expectations because many flaws have been pointed out to me.

I want to share the pictures and articles that I’ve read over the past week.  There is plenty of eye candy and reading below.

Vegas Report – Early Friday

…so after only about 3 hours of sleep I was wide awake so I decided to shower and head down to the casino.  The closest cup of coffee was Payard’s, so I grabbed a large cup and a croissant.  Both were excellent.  While drinking my 1st cup I was checking twitter when I read the news that Danny Gans had passed away.  Many were saddened by this and it’s always sad to see someone pass away so young.  A cynic will wonder how they will replace all of the billboards around the airport and Las Vegas strip.

I played a slew of penny and nickle slots throughout the morning.  I lost everything I put into the machines.  I did so bad, I didn’t even take note of how bad.  This was a rough start to the day.  After a couple hours I went back to Payard’s for a crepe and orange juice.  I’ve never had a crepe before, but this one was pretty damn good.

I was invited for a tour of Zappos Friday afternoon, but the time coincided with the Manny Pacquiao & Ricky Hatton weigh in and the fight was the excuse for the trip.  I love Zappos, so this was a hard decision for me.  However, I was traveling with someone who’s never heard of Zappos (gasp!) so that eased the pain.

After a little relaxating back in the room I headed over to MGM for the weigh in.  It was packed!  There were tons of Brits in for Ricky Hatton.  I made my way towards the arena when I found all of the boxing fans.  I could not believe how crowded it was.  In fact I was told that they were only letting VIP’s after standing in the crowd for about 20 minutes.

weigh-in

After not moving for another 10 minutes I decided to head back to the casino to gamble.  Standing around isn’t very fun to me.  On the way toward the arena I noticed a giant slot.  Of course it was another stupid penny slot.  I lost another $20 and really didn’t have any fun playing so I headed over to play 8/5 Jacks or Better video poker where after about an hour or so I left up $5.

Since this was my friends first time at the MGM I decided to show him the Lion Habitat. The Lions are located on the opposite side of MGM – about a 15 minute walk when not crowded.  On the way there we were sidetracked by 3 card poker.  Table minimums were $10 and would be $25 by the time we left.  After too many drinks, a great dealer and nice pit boss I walked away up $400.  Not too shabby.

Unfortunately, closed circuit viewing of the fight at MGM had sold out while I was at the table so I was told to head over to NYNY to get tickets there.  There was a pit stop to look at the lions on the way to NYNY.  No more tickets available by the time I get NYNY but I was able to secure viewing at the Mirage.  Not ideal, but it wasn’t a big deal.

It was back to the room to change before dinner at Prime…

MGM Stocks Halted On Stock Market

Trading of MGM Mirage stocks were halted at the end of the trading day today.  This sent many Las Vegas watchers into a frenzy – myself included.  The news wasn’t as interesting as the chatter.  Straight from the horses mouth.

MGM MIRAGE (NYSE: MGM) and Dubai World through subsidiary Infinity World, 50/50 joint venture partners in the CityCenter project, today announced that the companies have reached an agreement on a revised joint venture agreement and also reached an agreement with CityCenter’s lenders on a comprehensive plan to fully fund the completion of CityCenter for its scheduled opening later this year. 

This is a bit of good news for MGM Grand.  If City Center is able to be completed as planned MGM Mirage shouldn’t have to divest any more properties to finish the project.