At times like this, I’m sure we have all looked back and reminisced about earlier casino visits. And remembering trips to Las Vegas are particularly comforting these days. Read our Las Vegas Trip Report from 2006 – Reminisce with Me.
My wife and I have been visiting and bringing people to Las Vegas for over 20 years annually. We even called it BinBin Tours – your guide to Las Vegas.
Las Vegas was booming in 2006, with construction reaching a peak. The South Strip was complete, and the Stardust was still standing, but not for long; Wynn Las Vegas was one year old. Aria / CityCenter would open for another three years.
So, come along and reminisce with us. Let’s get away for a while…..
2006 – A Great Time to Visit Las Vegas
We landed at McCarren Airport, which is always bustling with hopeful excitement. It was always a thrill to see slot machines in the airport and barrage area.
We always rent a car. It gives us the freedom to visit everywhere – Henderson, Summerlin, and North Vegas, as well as Downtown whenever we wanted.
Day 1 – Las Vegas Trip Report from 2006 – Reminisce with Me
We stayed our first two days at the Las Vegas Hilton, which is now Westgate, off the strip.
LVH had no timeshare vultures in 2006. LVH had the Star trek experience – a 4D ride that ended up at the Quark Bar and casino. While the main casino was small, the Sports Book, with full-pay video poker, was second only to Caesars Palace.
Our first-day highlight was always the same – the $4.99 Steak dinner at Ellis Island for supper. It wasn’t on the menu. You had to ask for it! One of the best Las Vegas bargains for years. A meal and beer at Ellis Island is our first stop to this day.
Day 2 Highlights
Another “must-do” was the $2.49 Ham and Eggs breakfast special at Arizona Charlies off the strip. As you can see, we loved to find quality food bargains.
We were always on the lookout for full pay video poker. In 2006, many casinos offered good paytables – even on the Strip. One was the Palms, slightly off the strip and celebrating its fifth anniversary. We loved taking our time to play great video poker and slots there. Breakfast or lunch at the coffee shop was another favorite. Fried Spam, eggs and rice….mmmmm. No coupon. I love Spam.
Day 3 Highlights
As you can see, food had a definite influence on our adventures. This day was no exception. We spent this day at the center of the strip. The Paris Breakfast Buffet was no bargain, but in 2006, it was one of the best buffets, especially for breakfast. Paris staff greeted in French in those days, you could learn French phrases while in the bathroom, and the buffet had a french culinary influence of crepes, cheeses, and desserts that made our mouths water.
Gambling coupons were also a fun thing to do. Las Vegas Advisor’s Coupon Book was full of many great deals that lead you to places otherwise not considered. The Aladdin offered a play for $20, get $20, with another coupon for a free mug! Many casinos were offering a table game promotion of $15, gave you $25 of promotion chips., which we took advantage of as well. By the way, in those days, $5 tables were in every casino, even on the Strip.
Days 4 Highlights
We decided to try the newest resort in greater Las Vegas – Red Rock Resort. At the time, it had only been opened for four months, but we loved it from the get-go. Way out in Summerlin (30 minutes from Strip), it felt luxurious. Its large, open casino offered great video poker, hundreds of the newest slots, and they always gave us comps in the coming years. After playing all morning, it was time for our favorite buffet – the Bellagio Lunch Buffet.
Now back then, the best time to eat at a buffet was early afternoon, when they were switching over from lunch to supper. Lunch prices, but some supper choices. This buffet was beyond compare. It was the one others attempted to mimic.
I ended the night at one of the first places I ever stayed – Main St. Station. This place had great gambling, great offers, great beer (another early brewpub), and great service. I don’t think we have ever visited Las Vegas without a stop at Main St. Station. One of the best gambling plays to this day.
Related Las Vegas Post – 3 True Stories About Slot Machine Vultures
I hope you enjoyed a look back when Las Vegas was a booming wonderland of possibilities. What are some of your favorite “Vegas” trips? If anything, these memories can help us hope for a brighter casino day in the future. Until then, hold onto those memories and reminisce.