Overindulgence in Vegas

A few weeks back, I mentioned here that James and I met up with some of his friends and decided to plan for a weekend in Vegas.   And we so we went.  This past Friday, we packed up our car and headed East, meeting Rudy and Kindell in Apple Valley, we all jumped into one car and were on our way.  This was my first visit to Vegas. Driving on The 15, you really are just in the middle of the desert.  There’s NOTHING.

We finally made our way there, surrounded by flashing neon lights, the streets are packed with cars while people walk up and down the strip.

From our hotel window, I watch the fountain across the street at the Bellagio dance into the air, synchronized to music.

We change clothes and head out to one of Rudy and Kindell’s favorite spots, Firefly.

Drinking sangria’s as we wait for our table and watch as those around us prepare for a wild night ahead of them.  The wait was well worth it and the food was amazing.  Our favorites being the Stuffed Dates,  Tuna Tartare and Apple Salad.  There was more food, a lot more!  I could go back many times over, everything  we tried was delicious. Especially the Banana Nutella Sandwiches we finished with.

We spent a little more time walking around the Casino back at our hotel and then over to the Paris Hotel, which was next door and across the street to the Bellagio, each place equally over the top as the next.

The next morning we are up and ready for a good hike to work off the dinner from the night before.  But not before a quick stop to get show tickets for later in the evening.  We also popped  into Quiksilver for some stylish clothes, only to leave with Rudy and James walking out in matching hoodies.  Aren’t they cute!

On the way to the hike, we stopped in at Hash House for breakfast.

Waiting with Bloody Mary’s in hand, we eye the enormous plates brought out to the nearby tables, our mouths salivating.   Everything on the menu looks  wonderful and the Chicken and Waffles look big enough for all four of us to share.  We finally get our plates, equally as large as the others around us, and dig in.

Okay, now we really do need to work off all this food, Red Rock Canyon is our next stop.

There are several trails heading off the beautiful scenic drive that loops around.  We stare in awe of these Red Rocks as we make our way to our trailhead.

White Rock/Willow Springs looks to be a perfect 6 mile loop.  We excitedly jump out of the car, only to be slapped by the strong force of wind whipping through the canyon.  Others just returning from their hike, dressed for a blizzard, stare at our bare legs in disbelief!

We pulled our hoods over our heads and march on, determined to get this hike in.  We climbed over rocks and posed for pictures, we even battled extreme weather!

The rocks are beautiful.  Different patterns, different textures.

Brave ones, we are.  We turn around after making a little over ½ a mile!  I know, I know….weak.  But we didn’t want to get stuck in inclement weather, it was snowing after all!

See the snow.

Well, we also had a show to get to.  We continue our drive through the park and admire the beauty around us, nice and warm in the car!
Later that night we head to the Luxor to see Criss Angel/Cirque du Soleil.

Okay, so it was more Criss Angel and not so much ANY Cirque du Soleil, but none the less, we had fun. Now, on to more food aka indulging, we head to a Japanese place HIGHLY recommended by friends of Kindell’s.  At Raku, we order some Sake and ooh and ahh over the authentic items on the menu.  The food was absolutely incredible!

Jason, a friend of James, Rudy and Kindell (from VES), is a chef at the restaurant MIX at the top of THEhotel.

We head up to meet him after he gets off work and I’m instantly amazed at the decoration in this restaurant.  I take a quick peek out to see the wonderful view of Las Vegas down below.

We head over to Cosmopolitan to get drinks and connect with their old friend!  If any place has seemed impressive up to this point, it’s all completely trumped by the interior of the Cosmopolitan.  Good thing we didn’t see this place first!  Not one detail was missed, the swirls and color of the carpet, the details in the many different lights, the gigantic chandelier (and the lounge/bar aptly named “The Chandelier”), it ALL took my breath away.

I’m just glad I didn’t trip walking around with my eyes catching onto every detail around me.  I wanted to take it all in.  We found our place in a cozy nook among the Chandelier and as they chatted about old classmates and fond memories, I took in the details of the logos of nearby restaurants, the cozy chairs and the antique telephone placed among leather bound books.  I was in my own little “eye candy” heaven and it was good.

How cool is this comfy couch?

Loving this phone!

The next day we got up and packed, hoping to beat a little of the traffic that was sure to be leaving Sin City.  On the way home, we made one more stop, only to cross off yet another experience on my list I’d never done…we went to In-N-Out Burger.  Okay, so I didn’t technically have a burger.  I had the “grilled cheese”, really it’s the cheese burger without the burger and not so much grilled.

That’s the WHOLE menu.

I feel that if you’ve just spent a weekend in Vegas, In-and-Out is the only appropriate place to grab lunch on your way home.  It’s fitting.  Now back to reality.

What’s your favorite thing to do in Sin City?  How much have you won/lost?