Well, hopefully my quick trip to Vegas with my sister-in-law for the last two Decembers will become a holiday tradition. We have such a good time in the action packed two days. Too bad Katie ended her trip with a long 18 hour travel day home! Thankfully, Southwest came through for me, and I only had a bumpy flight home. The icing on the cake in Vegas this year was being able to see my sister Liz. We didn’t know we were going at the same time!
Katie and I arrived Wednesday, checked into Bellagio, admired it’s conservatory beautifully decorated for Christmas before we found a place for a late lunch. Luckily, Katie is more in tune to the cooking channel than I am, and we tried a new hot spot, Giada. While the dining room was closed, the bar still offered a full menu until 2:30. We were seated just in time. Given I was ready to gnaw off my arm, we ordered the Pecorino cheese with apricot preserves as we expected the plate to come out quickly. With our expectations granted, we dove right in and were not disapointed! Our salads, which were a healthy size, came next and our empty bellies quickly expanded. I can see how the restaurant would be popular, especially in the evening with a view of the Bellagio fountains.
The rest of the afternoon included browsing the shops in Ceasar’s mall and taking a circuitous route off the strip to Treasure Island to pick up our show tickets to Mystere. We purchased tickets in advance, but let the show assign us seats. This provided a big savings online, and better yet, gave us 2nd row seats just to the left center of the stage! We could see the cirque performers shaking during their strength routines and adjusting with all their jumps. It was quite fun to get such a close up view and definitely made up for the mediocre dinner at Fix which was a slight disappointment, but still fun to meet Katie’s friend Beth.
While Katie attended the Expedia conference, I crossed the street to enjoy breakfast with Liz and Ron at Mon Ami Gabi. Liz’s mushroom brie omelet was tasty! We moved on to try our hand at Blackjack. Ellis Island is just a few blocks off the strip and offers $5 hands and pays 3:2 on blackjack. The only problem was the cards didn’t go our way, but at $5 a hand we got to play for a while. Ron bid us farewell while we went on to Tableau at the Wynn for lunch. Of course, the Wynn was basically at the opposite end from where Liz was staying so we spent the next hour or more walking all the way to the MGM Grand while taking detours through the Venetian and a few other places to enjoy the decorations and browse the shops.
As the sky turned dark (by 5 pm), Liz reunited with Ron, and I returned to the Bellagio to meetup with Katie for a final dinner. Katie picked the best restaurant I’ve been to in Vegas I think. Perhaps it helps to go without expectations. Yellowtail is a sushi restaurant in the Bellagio with a small patio that offers a spectacular view of the fountains. We arrived at the restaurant early (around 6) and got a premium table on the patio under the heat lamps. During our relaxing, dining experience we enjoyed about six fountain shows! And as much as I absolutely love the fountains, I think the food may have topped everything. The albacore pizza drizzled with truffle oil was true ecstasy.
Our night continued in the sports book where we caught the end of the football game and then we tried our luck at the poker slots. I won half the money back that I lost at Blackjack…not bad to go home with a pocket book only $25 lighter! We managed to stay up a bit later while enjoying a nightcap in the bar just near the guest elevators to the spa tower before we finally called it night to catch our morning flights. ETB