We are so very lucky that we have so many people willing to watch our kids. Even still, it has taken us 18 months to coordinate a getaway with just Chris and I. Granted, Oscar was born during that time, so we get a pass on that.
Even though we have lots of loving help with the boys, it takes weeks to prepare to be gone for three days. Given the short time frame (I’m not ready to leave the boys for a week!), we had to be very particular about our vacation spot. If there were no limits, I’d be on a beach in Mexico in no time. No question. But, time and money win this battle and it’s damn cheap (and quick) to go to Vegas. Besides, I can close my eyes at the pool and pretend I’m at the beach. Close enough.
|Off we go! I love this handsome man 🙂|
We stayed at The Mandalay Bay. I’ve stayed several times for work and always longingly looked at the pool area. Plus, they’ve redone THEhotel to be “The Delano” (a la Miami). Not bad. My feedback on the hotel? Not bad. We should have splurged on a nicer room or The Delano. Our room was fine…just meh. It was dirt cheap, though!
|Looks like a beach, right?|
|Beer, sun, water, waitress… sounds like the beach to me!|
We basically had Facebook guide us to nearly all our eating spots. That was a fun game. Here’s where we hit up:
- Ri Ra Irish Pub – Mandalay Bay – not bad. Authentic pub atmosphere. Good for a casual lunch.
- Kumi Japanese Restaurant and Bar – Mandalay Bay – really good, but also pretty pricey. We ate a roll called “Hot Mess” that was pretty amazing.
- Citizens – Mandalay Bay – this 24-hour cafe became a favorite of ours. We ate here twice. It’s so reminiscent of a NY cafe with a super trendy edge to it (thanks, probably, to the fact that it’s owned by The Light Group). Great coffee. Awesome breakfast. Highly recommend. (PS this one we found on our own).
- Burger Bar – Mandalay Bay – (I swear we left the hotel). This was a recommendation and it did not disappoint. As suggested, we ate the kobe beef burger and it was SUPER yummy.
- Rose. Rabbit. Lie. – Cosmopolitan – This was an incredibly unique experience. The Cosmo hotel itself is in its own league. So uber trendy. Everything is a spectacle. We will stay here the next time we come 🙂 Back to the food – this restaurant used to be a performing restaurant. There’s a stage, but the action happens all around you in all this little rooms. Even without the entertainment, the set up was wicked. Oh, and the food was yummy too. Unique twist on comfort food (I had short rib stroganoff……)
- Border Grill – Mandalay Bay – great lunch spot with outdoor patio option (by the pool). Like many restaurants in Vegas, this one is run by celebrity chefs (Top Chefs). I thought this was a great, modern take on southwest food. It was tricked up, but just slightly. Amazing guacamole and I had some super fresh chicken tacos. Great casual spot.
- Prime – Bellagio – This was our super fancy splurge meal (after all, we WERE celebrating our 5-year anniversary). This restaurant is located right on the Bellagio fountains, an absolute fave of mine in Vegas. Thanks to a tip, we were lucky enough to get a table by a window to see the water show during dinner. This was definitely the best part. The food at Prime was really awesome, but it was “just like any other fancy steak place” to us. Service was outstanding. Decor was old fashioned (as most steak places are). Not sure we’d go back, but it was totally worth it for the experience we had.
|Look how lovely those fountains are!|
We also entertained ourselves with two Cirque de Soleil shows. The first, a relatively new one: Michael Jackson’s One. It did NOT disappoint. I be-bopped in my seat the whole time and definitely cried during it too. A great homage to a great performer 🙂 We also saw Mystere. As one of the original Cirque shows, this had lots of classic elements: very quirky imagery, focus on the stunts and performance, and some comic relief. I really enjoyed it.
|Dad gave me $100 to play on video poker. This is what I walked away with…wah wah.|
Other than eating and seeing shows, we gambled some and mostly enjoyed just walking around and spending time with each other. It was a fabulous vacation, and I can’t wait for the next.