My wife surprised me with a 40th Birthday trip to Vegas and organized a group of friends to meet in Vegas as part of the surprise. Very nice.
The first night most of us played at the Ex. Always feel comfortable at the Ex with their rotten players and excellent dealers. If Bergan is dealing talk him up on college football and proceed directly to the cash out window. Patty and Tim are excellent as well.
One of the main draws for me at the Ex is the wheel you spin if aces are cracked or you hit quads. Unfortunately, in 8 hours of play I hit neither. And this was a weekend where they were offering double the amount of the spin. It's a great promotion and helps beat back the rake and tips but you need to actually see some aces before you can walk to the wheel. Even if you're not a fan of the Ex you may want to call ahead and see if they are doubling the wheel promotion. Just makes good financial sense and as I mentioned before, the competition is soft.
I also played a few hours at the Palace Station on my final night in town. I didn't like the room. Far too many locals for my taste and they allow smoking smoking after midnight. Dealers were good. Y.C was very personable and ran a good table.
I think I played 2 hands to showdown the entire night and won neither. It was also at the Palace Station where I finally got aces cracked on one of the two hands I did show down. A local ATM played her 7-4 offsuit to perfection, catching her third 4 on the river. And no, the Palace does not offer the wheel spin for getting aces beaten. I think there's a better than 50% chance that I did get emphysema or some type of cancer from the smoke though.
But, getting aces beaten by a blue-haired local in Vegas beats getting them cracked at the home game or on-line.
Thanks to my beautiful wife of 16 years for the surprise trip.