Birthday in Vegas

As long as I can say I’m 30 years old again… and again… and again…

I used to love big birthday celebrations. I had themed parties – movie characters, masked ball, fashion week, etc. I invited everyone I worked with. I invited all my Facebook friends.  I had three celebrations in one year.  Then, I turned 30 for the 10th time. That was my last party at FTV (club/venue). The following year, I gave birth to the prettiest little princess and she became the center of my universe.

Last year, I gave myself a birthday treat – a trip to the States, with my parents and my toddler.  It was my first time in America.  It remains one of the best gifts I have ever given myself.  The U.S.A. was on my bucket list for a very long time.  Actually, I can do more trips to the U.S.  Fortunately, I have a 10-year multiple-entry tourist visa.

Today, I celebrate my birthday with this post.  This is a “throwback Thursday”, remembering our trip to Las Vegas last year for my birthday.

Driving with your toddler and mother may not make an ideal road trip but we had fun all the same.  I must say that I even enjoyed being the driver.  The road was good and I didn’t get bored.

Soon, Sin City appeared on the horizon.

After being totally clueless where to park and how exactly to get to Planet Hollywood where we will be staying we found the parking.  Second time lucky.

I booked Planet Hollywood via Hotwire. It was one of those hot deals on offer which hides the hotel name until paid for. I guess we got lucky. Although needing refurbishment, our room for 4 was good enough.  We got a Charlie Sheen movie-themed room, Major League II. My husband would have loved the theme as he is a Charlie Sheen fan. The best part was the view from our room. Despite some domestic squabble (okay, it actually wasn’t trivial but unnecessary from the young one), Vegas stirred some excitement in me.

Las Vegas - Planet Hollywood
Planet Hollywood Hotel via Miracle Mile Mall
Las Vegas - Planet Hollywood
View from our room
Las Vegas - Planet Hollywood
View from our room
Las Vegas C (4)
View from our room
Las Vegas C (5)
Entrance from the Strip

Now, I’m going to get this out of the way. I did get to gamble a bit… as in a tiny bit! I took out $10.00 from my purse, sat in front of a slot machine for 10 minutes and I got out one of these cashout vouchers. The other one is for my mom, who would not watch my toddler for longer than 10 minutes. Bummer for me.

I don’t advice that anyone goes to Las Vegas and stay in one of the hotels on the strip if with children, even one.  I don’t know what I was thinking.  I don’t think that you can enjoy the strip as much as if you were without a child.  Going to Vegas with a child or children?  There are probably more appropriate accommodation options away from the strip.  After all, it isn’t like you can gamble.  Not even if you have your mother with you, unless she will babysit.  Both adult and child/ren will have more fun in a resort that has facilities for children and simply take the cab to the strip to see the lights and feel the party vibe.

I will be going back to Las Vegas, I am sure, and a couple or more times, I hope.

Las Vegas Casino

That out of the way, do go out and see Vegas during the day.  While the city is best explored at night when everyone is out and about on the streets, there are things to see while the sun is out. It is a pity that we didn’t get to see much outside of the strip. We didn’t see all on the strip. I didn’t even make it to the Hard Rock Cafe. We were rather lazy tourists and we stayed put on the strip, around Planet Hollywood mostly, save for a visit to a family friend way out of LV and dinner away from the lights.

I love Paris so I have this separate section, please humor me.

Both the Eiffel Tower and the Arc de Triomphe in Las Vegas are of course tiny compared to the real things in France but if you can’t get to Europe, the copy should do… temporarily.

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We saw very little of the sights on our first night as we wanted to rest. My little princess also got scared of the Minnie Mouse character and fell asleep during our walk. My mother was also exhausted and could not walk anymore. We had two more days and nights so there was no rush to do the tourist thing. I did some work instead. There are some of us who don’t necessarily leave work behind even when we are travelling, locally or internationally.

Finally, we went out to see Vegas at night! A cousin played tourist guide and we only quit when our feet were too tired to take another step. We were exhausted so we wanted to take a cab but we couldn’t grab one so we kept walking. Chatting while walking, we didn’t notice that we had arrived at our hotel.

The one thing we made sure we visited was Wynn Hotel. My aunt, another Vegas local, told us that the hotel had some gorgeous flowers. I didn’t expect what we found there. They were indeed lovely. I wish I could afford to stay at Wynn, or Encore, or Palazzo, or Venetian… Bellagio and Caesars Palace are also on my wish list. There are of course the hotels on the other side of Planet Hollywood that would make my wish list, too. The hotels are unbelievable. The interiors are simply amazing.  Then again, I like hotels.

Las Vegas
Wynn Hotel
Las Vegas
Wynn Hotel
Las Vegas
Wynn Hotel (lovely flowers)
Las Vegas Interiors (4)
Wynn Hotel (gorgeous flowers)
Las Vegas
Wynn Hotel
Las Vegas
Wynn Hotel
Las Vegas
Wynn Hotel
Las Vegas
Wynn Hotel
Las Vegas
Wynn Hotel
Las Vegas
Hotel interior
Las Vegas
Hotel interior – ceiling
Las Vegas
Hotel interior
Las Vegas
Hotel interior
Las Vegas
Hotel interior – ceiling / chandelier
Las Vegas
Hotel interior – ceiling
Las Vegas
Hotel interior
Las Vegas
Venetian Hotel
Las Vegas
Hotel shopping
Las Vegas
Venetian Hotel

Here we are…

Las Vegas
Just outside the casino area of Planet Hollywood
Las Vegas
Meg dressing up for and in true Vegas spirit
Las Vegas
The Linq / The High Roller

Win or no win, if you’re from Africa, Victoria’s Secret is a must shop. I would have loved to get myself a pair of those Manolos but I don’t think I had enough capital to try and win the monies I needed to do proper shopping in Las Vegas. We went to an outlet store instead as we head back out of LV. I got an MK bag for my birthday from my parents. Happiness!

This was supper with relatives local to Vegas.  My cousin took us to a restaurant called “The Boiling Crab”.  Delicious!

And, as we must always “end well”, and being a lover of unhealthy but mouth-watering treats, I leave you with a must for me – a visit to Carlo’s Bakeshop for some of these super yummy goodies. Hmm… The only regret I had as we got back in Los Angeles was that I didn’t have enough supply of Carlo’s delectable creations to last a few days.

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