Aspire at Mohegan Sun Was a Fabulous Experience

I was alerted two weeks ago about a terrific deal at TravelZoo. Mohegan Sun’s new hotel within a hotel, Aspire, was having a sale. Prices can start for non-suite rooms around $600 depending on the day and events on property. For a little over $200, we had to take advantage of this deal. I can honestly say staying at Aspire at Mohegan Sun was a fabulous experience and NETG will be looking for a deal like this again in the future.

Hotel Within A Hotel 

The idea of having a hotel within a hotel began more than a decade ago at MGM Resorts International’s Mandalay Bay. In 1999, Four Seasons managed the top five floors as a 424-room luxury hotel at Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino. Other examples include Nobu at Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, Nobu Hotel at Eden Roc Miami Beach, Miami, and NoMad Las Vegas’ with 293 rooms and suites on the top four floors of Park MGM, Las Vegas. But now the concept has traveled to the northeast, in Uncasville, CT. It’s a multi-million-dollar project that’s been years in the making. It allows Mohegan to compete globally for that special gaming client or high-end customer.

Aspire at Mohegan Sun

A luxurious experience for hotel guests,  Aspire at Mohegan Sun is located in the 1,200-room Sky Tower, on floors thirty-one through thirty-six. In total, Aspire accounts for 93 rooms on the top floors of Sky Tower. Guests are allowed to take advantage of exclusive access to a fully remodeled VIP luxury food & drink experience entitled, Thirty Three, on the 33rd floor, overlooking the Thames River.

Kevin Hogan from WFSB in Hartford quoted President & General Manager of Mohegan Sun, Ray Pineault, saying  “Aspire & Thirty Three will become two of the most opulent experiences Mohegan Sun offers our hotel guests. From the moment Aspire guests arrive to the moment they check-out, they receive VIP treatment, exclusive access and a truly personalized visit.  We absolutely enjoyed our stay immensely.

The Arrival

Our secure elevator.

Our first opportunity to experience Aspire was at the Valet Parking dedicated for Aspire guests only.  Upon arrival, from the valet to the checking to the concierge, everyone lets you know your experience will be a special one. The concierge stored our bags since our room wasn’t ready. Upon arrival, the hotel registration clerk offered us champagne and told us we would receive a text when our room was ready. We decided to access Thirty-Three, the Aspire & VIP lounge, for lunch. We walked around first and then headed up for lunch. An exclusive “Aspire” elevator brings you up to Aspire and floor Thirty-Three.  I felt so special – my own elevator.

Aspire at Mohegan Sun – Luxury at Thirty-Three

Thirty Three is a showcase of modern designs & interior with a sky-high view of the beautiful New England countryside. Aspire guests have access to the new space, where delicious food options, wide screen TVs, private table games and a complimentary bar are at your service. The private gaming area had two blackjack tables and one roulette table. Premium players can reserve these  games, which, I believe, can be changed to suit the player(s) needs.

The buffet setting in Thirty-Three.

Our lunch included lobster salad, with huge chunk of lobster, a panini station, the meatiest and most delicious peeled shrimp I’ve ever tasted. Small gourmet sandwiches, fruit, assorted salads  and desserts rounded out the lunch menu. The food was spectacular, with constant refreshing of the buffet offerings. After eating, we relaxed with a drink and enjoyed the scenery from high above in the Sky Tower. It wasn’t long before the staff sent us a text to tell us our room was ready, and it was only 12:30!

Aspire at Mohegan Sun – The Room

Welcome from the butler staff, our room key and our Dream Catcher.

The room is the same size as the deluxe rooms throughout the hotel, extremely clean and spacious. No noise in the hallways. But, in addition to the same size, Aspire includes other particular amenities. According to General Manager Jeff Hamilton, “We’ve made the rooms nicer, the toiletries are different, the bedding is different, and the mattresses are going to be the softest mattresses you ever slept on,” Our experience was exactly that.

The room – calming and comfortable.

We enjoyed the Verbena scented L’Occitane toiletries and the bed that you literally had to climb UP included a perfect mattress with soft, comforting bedding.

For your many devices, there are plugs and USB ports on the bed nightstands and at the large desk area. But I couldn’t find the remote for the TV.  That’s because it all run by the complimentary mini iPad by the bed.  Not only does it control your access to the TV, and it’s over 80 channels, it offers you over 20 magazines and newspapers from all over the country – including the Washington Post, Miami Herald, and the NY Times.

The mini iPad – so much at your fingertips.

But wait, there’s more!

In addition, each room includes:

  • The most comfortable and inviting twin sofa sleeper I ever sat on.
  • High-speed Wi-Fi
  • In-Room Coffee
  • 2 bottles of water
  • Refrigerator in all rooms
  • And – wait for it24-hour butler service. The staff delivered a cake to our room for my pending retirement from teaching.  Thank you, Mohegan Sun.

Dinner & Breakfast at Thirty-Three

The hallway to Thirty-Three VIP Lounge

All meals at Thirty Three are served buffet style at the following times: hot breakfast with omelet station (7-11:30 a.m.), lunch (11:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.), dinner (4 p.m.-close).

Dinner was similar to lunch, complete with that scrumptious lobster salad. The chef offered grilled center-cut lamb chop on mashed potatoes, cold stone crab legs, a pasta dish made to order and a chicken dish as the main entrees. Same great hospitality and service throughout – they even remembered our drinks from lunch.

Breakfast entree was an omelette station, blueberry crusted french toast, salmon, bacon & homefries to accompany the beautiful array of breads, bagels, and fruit.

Aspire at Mohegan Sun – Service and Hospitality

Every associate we met and spoke to was gracious and helpful; going out their way to make sure we were enjoying our stay.  The staff greeted us with smiles and the kind of service you’d expect from a 5 Star Hotel.

As I said, we would stay there again with a deal like this.  Add to that the fact it was Status Mayhem Promotion Day just made it even better.  And we even took in the comedy show at Comix.

Related Posts – Mohegan Sun “Status Mayhem” – A Great Low Roller Promo &  Comix Roadhouse at Mohegan Sun Opens

What a great start to my retirement.  But don’t wait for YOUR retirement to stay at Aspire, because you’ll be missing out on a great staycation.

Thanks to Michael Trager of TravelZork and his new venture with Las Vegas Advisor called THE TRAVEL GAME. 

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Why Vegas Casino Loyalty Is Broken – the Monday Link

Every Monday, NETG Brings you a Gambling Post from someone else for your interest, ENTERTAINMENT, and KNOWLEDGE. We Call this:

“The Monday Link”

When you have a team of experts the likes of Michael Trager (FOUNDER/CHIEF OF CONTENT), Marc Meltzer (VEGAS/SPORTS), Coach Kitty (AIRLINE/CASINO/VIDEO POKER), Eric Rosenthal (AC/COMPS/REWARDS) and the technology expertise of David Luke (CO-FOUNDER), and many others, you have an exciting group of experts, you have TravelZork.

Michael Trager, author of today’s Monday Link, is intensely interested in Miles+Points airline/hotel loyalty programs and learning to optimize the use of loyalty programs. However, Mr. Trager shows another passionate interest with today’s article – Las Vegas and Casino Loyalty programs. This is a great post that coincides with drops in gambling revenue in Vegas, even though visitation is up. Enjoy the following:

Embrace ALL Gamblers | Why Vegas Casino Loyalty is Broken

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Casino Freebies – 5 Considerations For Your Casino Play

One thing that we all like to get in the mail is offers for FREE STUFF!  Casino Freebies are always a fun part of the gambling experience.

I always wonder if my mailman thinks I have a problem when he sees the mailers I get from casinos all over the country. If they were to inquire about it, I’d have to say “It’s for blog research, of course.”

Free stuff means casinos want your patronage.  It’s not because they REALLY like you and just want to show you they care.  There is a price to casino freebies and comps from casinos. The reality is casinos want you to spend two things in their facility – money and time.  And, logically, they feel the more time you spend, the more money you’ll spend.

Casino management has software that tracks slot players and video poker players, so what they see, is what you get according to your rewards card. Of course, without inserting your card, you won’t get anything.  Table players have to deal with a more subjective system, but still need your rewards card. The days of discretionary comps has passed us by, but it doesn’t hurt to ask for a meal or room – just don’t expect it. Here 5 Tips Concerning Casino comps, “free stuff:”

The Big Play

You will get a better casino rating if you go to the casino less frequently, but when you do, play longer.  So, Instead of a bankroll of $100 for three visits, try $300 for one long visit.  Remember, money and time is what casino management is looking at.

CoachKitty

 TravelZork Video Poker expert Coach Kitty has a great series for thought and application concerning the best way to bring the factors of money and time in your favor. Check out the links below:

The Big Play Casino Gambling Day – Part 1

The Big Play Casino Gambling Day – Part 2

The Big Play Casino Gambling Day – Part 3

A TRUE STORY

Once upon a time, a gambler friend of mine went to the casino, played his free slot play usually on a $1 Full-Pay JOB video poker machine, cashed out after the correct number of hands for the available free slot play ($10 free slot dollars, $1 per hand) and left, usually with most of his free slot play.  Casinos don’t like this.  If you follow this practice, you may end up with most of your casino freebies and offers diminishing quickly. You may walk out a winner in the beginning, but your slot play even discontinue altogether. Don’t burn the “comps bridge” – it’s difficult to rebuild them.

Comp Freebies – Read the fine print.

If you are given free Dining Promotional Dollars, be sure the casino isn’t expecting you to stay and play.  Many dining promotions expect you to stay and say so “in the fine print.”  If you don’t stay a while, marketing may decrease your offers or cut them out. Also, comp rooms from casinos, or social casinos like “MyVegas” offer free slot play, only in you stay there at least two nights.

Related Post – Online Social Casinos

Free hotel offers come with a price

If you hope to have similar offers or better offers for hotel stays, expect to play more than usual.  A free stay, and no play, will probably mean a lower rate offer to stay next time instead of casino freebies.  Some properties, such as MGM Las Vegas properties, see free rooms for players as an empty hole that needs to be filled by money & time expectations before additional comps are available.

Finally, don’t gamble to get comps.

Gamble to entertain yourself, or give your self a chance to make a few bucks, or just for fun within your financial means.  The formula casino marketing uses to give out these promotion is definitely skewed in their favor.  Comps should be included when evaluating the house edge, but should never be the sole reason for gambling.

That’s all for now.  Remember, embrace the math not the myth!

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