Joining us on this trip to Las Vegas was Ursula, Monica, Heather, Emily, Rob, Margaret and a cameo appearance by James and Robin. Being a winter trip, we did not attempt to visit the pool although apparently the pool at the Bellagio was open and people were swimming. The weather did get almost to 0 at night and was quite chilly.

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Activities

Atomic Saloon Show at Venetian

After fully enjoying Opium and Absinthe, we decided to check out this show. First off, the venue is really cool, you are immersed in a saloon/church type atmosphere. The seats themselves were a little tight and I was craning my neck a bit because there was no elevation in the fourth row. The show was fun, the consensus is that Opium and Absinthe are better but it doesn’t mean this show wasn’t great. I enjoy the (adult) humour and the acrobatics. I’m a fan of ping pong ball and spaghetti noodle tricks too, so I was amused. The acrobatics were fun and it helps the space is so intimate.

Valley of Fire

Saturday we did a day trip to the Valley of Fire. It is about an hour out of the city and has a very Utah feel. Red rocks of limestone spread out that are really quite beautiful. We didn’t do any hikes but we drive around and took some photos.

Our trip home with Emily and Heather required us to stop for some lunch. “Where could we go?” was the question. Well they had never been to Jack in the Box so we thought we would give it a go.

Well, never again. My sandwich was good but Heather made the grave mistake to order tacos. A picture says a 1,000 words... and yes that is hand ripped pieces of sliced cheese.

Seven Magic Mountains

On the last day, I woke up at 6am and headed out alone to the Seven Magic Mountains armed with my drone. When I arrived there was two people and about 30 minutes later some Instagram girls showed up. I had a ton of fun flying around and videoing the stones with the sunrise and shadows from the sunrise.

Seven Magic Mountain Drone Video

RuPaul Drag Brunch and Senor Frogs

I had a bright idea to get tickets to the Drag Brunch. This isn't an itty bitty drag show, it is RuPaul's queens from season's past. For $49.99, you too can have one run at the buffet and be squished into a Señor Frogs. I do have to say, they were really good about the bottomless mimosas. You started with two bottles and when you finish you turn the bottles upside down and they quickly replace. They didn't run out and they staff was really good. The food was edible, more so than Jack in the Box (see above). It was actually quite a substantial salad bar, breakfast bar (with powdered eggs) and meats, waffles, and a make your own fajita - tex mex thingy bar. The line up was long so you would probably not go back for second helping but maybe for the better.

The show itself was pretty good. 5 queens in total: Shannel (she was the host), Kahanna Montrese, Desree  St James, Alexis Mateo, and India Farrah. At first I was a little worried that the show would feel cheap. The show did feel cheap but the queens were pretty fun and talented. Overall it was a fun time if you can put up with the very crowded restaurant. It is a money grab though, they do a group act, an audience participation, a few solo, another group and then a few solo with the finale group act. The solo acts are basically mega mixes that give them enough time to go down every aisle to grab their $1 bills. Ariana Grande has a lot of songs! Some of them definitely deserved it. Actually most of them did.

Eating

Hattie B’s

I got the chicken sandwich this trip and it was divine. The chicken is moist and I got no spice which my butt thanks me for. No ring of fire for me. I was too full after the sandwich to dig into my potato salad so I put it in the fridge. I forgot to eat it, the worst.

Aria Buffet

I have to admit, I’m over buffets. Not this buffet in particular, the food was great, the brisket was fatty and delicious and nona’s meat ball was better than the balls I got at Giada’s the following night. But I just can’t eat as much as I used to. Not a bad thing, but feeling full is something I’m trying to break away from. It is definitely a solid choice for a good buffet and good selection.

Giada’s

This restaurant came highly recommended, it was our destination to celebrate Ursula’s birthday. The decor was nice, I approve. The food was also quite good. I wouldn’t say it was the most memorable meal but I have to give her credit for some forking delicious pasta... we had pepper and butter pasta that came in a wheel of cheese (for 2). It was extremely simple but rich and tasty. As I mentioned in the buffet post, the orzo meatballs were mediocre.

Accommodation

Cosmopolitan

It’s always a pleasure to stay at Cosmopolitan hotel. We stayed in the Boulevard tower which I normally poo-poo the thought of but it is my preferred tower now. Closer to the restaurants, the strip and just better situated. We got a fountain view and that is all I need for some great Vegas photos and of course time lapses.

There is a new Barbershop in the hotel right along the strip entrance. What hides within the shop is a speakeasy. A secret bar with stage and live music depending on the day. You enter through the Janitor door within the barbershop. You knock on a metal door and the little slide window opens up and you are let in. The drinks are delicious and the waitress was very proud to suggest Empress Gin (which Jordan gifted us recently) which is from Victoria BC. If you are hungry, the only thing they have is candied bacon that they bring in a cup... or pickles. But if you order a pickle, it comes with a shot of Jamieson and as a chaser. Bottom line: Don’t come here hungry.

Transportation

Flights - Air Canada Rouge

We flew down to Vegas with Air Canada Rouge in business class. We opted to upgrade since it was a birthday trip and the price difference wasn’t much. The flight down was easy, complete with meal and some drinks.

We weren’t in Business on our very delayed (1.5 hour) flight home but the plane was far from full, so that was nice. And the biggest surprise was that our bags made it to the carousel before we did! This is not normally common at YYZ.

Click here to view the Las Vegas 2020 Gallery Smug Mug.