Vegas, Baby!

We started and ended our hiking trip with nights in Vegas–definitely a culture shock!

Our first night was at the original pyramid at the Luxor, just because we had never stayed there. It is certainly not as neat as when it had the floating disco, but it was fine for a low-to-mid level stay. The best part was that it was next to the Cosmopolitan and Mandalay Bay.

We ascended to the Skyfall Lounge at the Delano tower of Mandalay Bay and enjoyed drinks and appetizers with a fabulous view of the Strip.

Next, we went to the Bellagio to see the Chihuly ceiling. This Chihuly fan isn’t going to miss that! I wish I could have afforded something from the Chihuly store. Maybe next time, when we win big!


We also enjoyed the flower show depicting Japanese spring (we think).


Finally, we checked out The Cosmopolitan. I think I’d like to stay here next time! The Chandelier Bar was something else!

We had dinner at China Poblano, Jose Andres’ Mexican-Chinese fusion concept. The shrimp tacos were very good and their specialty Siu Mai (tiny dumplings) were good, but not great. The best part of the meal for me was the Salt Air Margarita with a salty foam on top instead of a salted rim. I don’t think we’d eat here again, but would probably enjoy Social Hour (Sun-Thurs 3:30 to 6) for margaritas and snacks.

Then we were off the next morning to Utah. (Upcoming posts!)

Our last night of the trip, we stayed at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino. It is much larger than in past years. The room was fabulous, but the casino and lobby were really smoky. I loved the directions to our room in the Paradise Tower, “…then take a left at the tattoo parlor.”

As you can imagine, the piped-in music is very loud. The demographic target is definitely younger people, but the music is almost exclusively from our time.

We ate at Nobu in the Hard Rock. This pricey restaurant serves delicious tastes and reminded us of Qui in Austin. We had their signature yellowtail sashimi with jalapeno, which was delicious. Steve’s ceviche “taco” and my tuna one were very small, but the crispy rice “taco shell” gave a wonderful crunchiness to the delicious fish fillings. We finished with skewers of salmon with teriyaki sauce (excellent) and scallops with Peruvian anticuho sauce (the sauce completely overwhelmed the delicate flavor of the scallops). And Steve’s success in the casino paid for the meal!

Hasta la vista, Vegas!



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