Our tour guests came from far and near. Those who travel the farthest usually make good use of their holidays by visiting several destinations in one trip. It is not unusual for guests to tell us they are visiting Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco, Las Vegas and Hawaii in one trip. Las Vegas has never topped my list of favorite places to visit but that may have changed recently. I attended the wedding of two Princess Cruises shipmates who now live near Las Vegas. I met another shipmate there who traveled from Vancouver, after we had spent months plotting our time together before and after the wedding. We had a variety of things we wanted to see and do, in and out of the hotels, on and off the strip.
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We started by visiting the World’s Largest Chocolate Fountain, located in the Bellagio Hotel and Casino, as part of the Jean Philippe Patisserie. This stunning attraction stands 27 feet tall and circulates white, medium and dark chocolate. This chocoholic was in awe! We took a ride up the Eiffel Tower in the Paris Hotel where we were entertained by local tour guide Verne and all his many amazing facts about the city and its connection to the mob. We arranged to see the longest running review show, Donn Arden’s Jubilee at Bally’s, which was extra special as I had a friend (yes, another Princess shipmate) dancing in the show.
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We visited the famous Welcome to Las Vegas sign before taking a tour of the Neon Boneyard Museum, which I heard about through Charles Phoenix. Although the sun beat down upon us, it was still a fascinating look at the earliest neon signage that defined the businesses on and off the strip. We took in yet a second aerial view at the Stratosphere, where we had the most amazing seats during their happy hour. We were able to watch the bungee jumpers right outside our window, with a view of the strip in the distance. We were also entertained (not once but three times) by the complimentary Fountains of Bellagio water show.
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We also got some pool time with the wedding party, and speaking of pools, we snuck in and walked around the Caesar’s Palace pool area. We both remarked how lucky we were to have experienced the real Athens, Greece during our ship days but that this property came pretty close to the real thing (just without the pickpockets on the train)!
Let’s not forget the last big lunch we had before parting ways, Jan back to Vancouver and me to Los Angeles. The Hash House a Go Go had been recommended by tour guests years ago and it’s been on my to-do-list ever since. I opted to try the namesake “hash” and Jan tried the Sage Chicken & Waffles. Both of us barely put a dent in the portion sizes, and had mixed reactions when told the leftovers go straight to a nearby pig farm. The novelty of the gargantuan sizes wears off as you see plate after plate piled high with so much food. My Banana Latte was a bit disappointing (didn’t taste much like banana) but Jan’s beverage, a Watermelon Spritzer, was so good she ordered two! But again, I’m so glad I finally tried it. The only item we didn’t manage to check off our list was a Frrrozen Hot Chocolate at Serendipity. Which to tell the truth, just may have to wait until I visit the original Serendipity in New York.
I discovered there really is something for everyone in Las Vegas. Take your pick.
By Trish Procetto