Jul 23
by Don

So by now you have been to Vegas several times; and have been getting rated for your play as you should, you are now ready to start reaping the rewards.  One of the better properties in Vegas for online reservations is Harrah’s.

Once you log in you will see all sorts of stuff that is specific to you, based on your play, tier score, etc.  You can see your offers, tax information from previous years, and general stuff related to all of their properties.  But you are looking for the reservations tab in the upper left of the page.

Now here is where it gets interesting.  It’s simple enough, you just plug in where you want to go and when and then it spits out your rates.  These are based on your level of pay, which will then yield more favorable rates.

You can also use an offer that you might have, which will also lower your rates.  They vary from month to month, but for the most part they give you basically the same type of offers across all of the properties (this seems to apply only to Vegas). 

Now what is really crazy is if you put in a companions Total Rewards number (in this case Lori) while you are checking your rates, you will notice even better rates.  This is really a great thing that only Harrah’s allow you to do.  Basically they look at both people’s play and decide what you are likely to do while you stay.  This is why it’s critical to always get your play rated.

Now if you use an offer, I have found that it will supersede the combined rating of both people.  Subsequently this will sometimes result in higher rates than just using a companion’s rating along side your own.  It’s really just a crap shoot so it’s always good run the same search a couple of different ways.

So if you follow these tips, you will always pay far less for rooms on the strip than you otherwise would.  If you do it right, you could get your stay completely comp’ed!

Jul 14
by Don

Here are some random things I have been thinking about in no particular order:


– Lori will no longer play in the Ladies Event.  Every year it’s the one event that we circle on the calendar and make the pilgrimage to Vegas for, but no more.  Year after year the play is so bad and you get no chips to start with.  Even the professional women players hate this event, but they have to play it for their various sponsorships.  It’s a shove fest and no one can ever release a hand no matter what’s on the board.  So you can image the bad beats that go on.  Just gut wrenching.


– Harrah’s is really getting better at running the WSOP.  This year everything was just a little better.  They moved the registration area and it was way more organized.  There wasn’t this massive congestion at the entrance to the main room like the year before and really just more room for tables and stuff.  No “outside” tent for tables. A room only for satellites.  Just better overall. 


– I am watching Umberto playing in the main event from last year on ESPN and I can’t help but to like the guy.  He is even more personable in real life.  He doesn’t like throwing hands away, but he normally has the goods when he is in there.  Hellmuth was as advertised, but I was fine with that too.  Just watching it makes me want to get back out there.


– There is no better time to be in Vegas if you like poker.  There are so many games outside of the WSOP that are going on that there is just a cornucopia of action.  We love the DeepStack format at the Venetian, but the Mirage and Bellagio also have some great tourneys running.  Just a ton to choose from and a great time for poker players.


– Vegas is everywhere.  There are more shows, commercials, magazines; everything Vegas.  It’s more than I have ever remembered.  Even banner ads on random sites are littered with great airfare and room rates to Vegas.  Maybe I am just more aware of it all because I love it so, but I think it’s more.  I think that the Casinos are savvier now and their marketing departments are getting more sophisticated.  I don’t know, but I am loving it!

Jul 5
by Don

Wolfgang Puck is one chef who Vegas can not get enough of.  He has 6 restaurants on the strip and each has a distinct look and feel.  Lori and I had lunch at Postrio in the Venetian and it was grand.

The atmosphere is modern sophistication with dark woods and rich touches.  There is “outside” dinning, which is to say that you will be out on the patio where you can people gaze over a lighter café style fare.  Of course there is almost always a wait for this section so we just opted to eat inside.

We order some an amazing caprese salad to start our meal, which we have to thank Goldie for introducing us to some 3 years ago.  They have a bevy of bread to choose from and we nibbled until our main courses came.

Lori ordered a roasted chicken dish that took longer than I think it normally does, and sure enough our waiter later apologizes and offers us a free dessert.  We have nothing but time and didn’t mind the wait, but who are we to turn down a free piece of yum-yum?  I had a seafood paella with whole prawns.  The “heads” spooked Lori a bit, but they were delicious.  This was just a great meal with great service to boot.

All in all I would have to recommend Postrio’s as it’s just a very nice experience all the way around.  It’s not inexpensive by any means, but I feel it is well worth it!