Travel Thoughts by Kim

By Kim Pritt, Contributor Posted 7 August 2021 at 3:00 pm

The lobby in Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas. Caesar’s is a huge and beautiful hotel and casino. If you go to Vegas, even if you stay off strip, be sure to go in all the big hotels and just wander around. They are amazing and have so much to see and do. Our favorites were Caesar’s, the Venetian, and the Mirage.

Let’s go on an adventure together….to Las Vegas!

Let’s go back a few….well, a LOT….of years to 2006. I was booked to go to Las Vegas for a seminar for work. My Mom always wanted to go to Las Vegas. So, since it didn’t cost any more for a second person to stay in my room, I talked her into joining me. I flew from Raleigh, NC (I was living near Raleigh at the time) and Mom flew from Buffalo and we met up at the Las Vegas airport for a chance to make some amazing memories together.

The seminar was held at Caesar’s Palace, so that’s where I was booked to stay. If I recall correctly, we spent four full days there. During the day, I was tied up with the seminar, but we had our evenings free to explore. Also, we rented Mom a scooter because she couldn’t walk a long way without pain, so she scooted herself all over the place while I was “working”. We’d meet in the room to get ready for dinner and adventuring and she’d tell me all about what she did all day. She definitely got out and about and enjoyed herself. I’m glad we got the scooter and she didn’t feel stuck waiting for me to get done for the day. And, then, our dinner and together time fun began!

Las Vegas is an amazing place. Full of fun and excitement and lights and activity – right from the day we arrived at the Las Vegas airport and walked through several mini casinos on the way to baggage claim! With the help of the scooter, we covered the whole strip and checked out many of the wonderful hotels, casinos, and restaurants. We didn’t go off the strip – mainly because we only had the evenings and we weren’t there that long. But, also because the scooter was our only means of transportation, unless we wanted to take a taxi somewhere. But, we got around and saw everything we could on the strip.

Mom and I spent a little time with “Elvis” in Madame Tussaud’s Wax Museum. We had so much fun having our photos taken with all our favorite celebrities and laughing about some of the poses and dramatics we shared. You might think, “nah, I’ll pass”, but give it a chance – could be a lot of fun!

One night, we had dinner at Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville. What a place – a bit pricey, but so worth it to do at least once in your life! The food was awesome and the waiters and staff were all dressed like pirates and many were on stilts! We were amazed watching them carry trays of food walking (sometimes running) on those stilts going up and down stairs to the various levels and ducking to avoid overhead collisions with beams and doorways. It was a riot! Then, every hour or so, they would play “Margaritaville” and the huge blender pool at the end of the bar would light up and a bikini-clad pirate gal walked the plank at the end of another pirate’s sword and slid down a big slide to splash into the blender…..and the crowd roared while the whole place sang out loud!!! Definitely an experience not to be missed.

Another restaurant we enjoyed was Toby Keith’s “I Love This Bar and Grill” – I think it was in Harrah’s. We had delicious steaks with wonderful country music blaring in the background.

We also loved exploring all the hotels. Of course, Caesar’s is amazing – HUGE – and so much to see and do with the casinos and statues and entertainment and a mall under a ceiling that looked like the sky – you feel like you’re out in the open. Our next favorite was the Venetian. It, too, has a huge mall with a sky-like ceiling and a casino and statues, but it also has a canal with gondolas flowing all through it inside and out – just like in Venice. At the Mirage, we saw stunning gardens with water features and the famous white tigers strolling around a beautiful enclosed pool.

We had a great time scooting through Madame Tussaud’s Wax Museum. I know – corny – but we had a BLAST taking our photos with all our favorite celebrities – some we posed rather dramatically with. We laughed so hard and enjoyed sharing memories that popped up when we saw certain ones.

Here I am helping “Tiger Woods” line up the perfect putt in Madame Tussaud’s Wax Museum. He didn’t seem to mind that I know absolutely nothing about golf! Hahaha

But, the most wonderful part of the whole trip was the special surprise I arranged for us to share. We were there not long before Mom’s birthday, so I searched to see if there was a show she might really enjoy for her birthday gift. I discovered that the Mirage had a Cirque du Solei based all on Beatles music called “Love”. It was just getting started at that time and the tickets I got were for “dress rehearsals” they were doing for live audiences to get opinions and work out any bugs, so they cost about half what they did once the show officially opened. You’d never know it wasn’t the official show….it went smoothly and was absolutely incredible! I got us front row balcony tickets, so we were right on eye level with the high flying action and could easily see all the action on the stage, as well. This was perfect for us — Mom and I had a lifetime of shared love of the Beatles and had many wonderful memories connected to their music and movies. This was one more cherished memory we shared with them. I will forever be grateful for the opportunity to see this show with her in Las Vegas. 

I don’t know if I’ll ever go back to Las Vegas. I really enjoyed it and am incredibly happy to have memories of sharing it with my Mom, who we lost just 10 years after this trip. But, I can’t help but feel like I can’t top the experience I had there in 2006. If I do ever decide to go, again, I really want to do the off-strip stuff and maybe get over to the Hoover Dam and other things near there. Maybe someday…..we’ll see. 

The best part of the trip and the thrill of a lifetime for me was getting to see the Cirque du Solei show “Love” with my Mom at the Mirage. “Love” is a highly entertaining and energetic show based all on Beatles music. Incredible! I don’t know if it is still there or if you can find it playing anywhere, but if you ever get the chance….go see it!!!

As I mentioned at the beginning…..this adventure was “pre-blog” and before I got into taking photos of everything I see. So there is no blog post with lots of photos and stories to refer you to. But, you can still visit my blog for photos and other adventures – just type ADVENTURE in the search box (or just scroll around) and see what you can find to read about – not just trips, but local adventures, too:

Happy Adventuring!