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Brief review of Bellagio over 4th of July, 2020, weekend

Brief review of Bellagio over 4th of July, 2020, weekend

Old Jul 6, 20, 12:50 pm
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Brief review of Bellagio over 4th of July, 2020, weekend

Just returned from a 3-night stay at Bellagio over the 4th of July. We were scheduled for a 4th night, but the babysitter for our exotic pet died late Saturday afternoon, and we had to get back in panic to handle the situation.

Executive overview: Bellagio is nowhere near FS, unless the issues are related to the Corona virus. But FS was closed ... (another story)

- Uber/Lyft are not running at critical mass. This means that you have less than a 50/50 chance of getting a ride -- at all. We could not get to the Pinball Hall of Fame on Friday afternoon via Lyft or Uber. Neither app would even give us a time that a driver would be available. We gave up after 30 minutes. In the short term, do not count on Uber/Lyft for transportation to/from the Strip. The airport might be OK, but we didn't need transportation since a limo was part of the package included with the room. We did not try the cabs. I always hated'em in Vegas.

- Most shows are closed. I couldn't get clean information about the various Cirque du Soleil shows. They were all shut down and with the bankruptcy, all bets are off going forward. There are ongoing rumors that Ka will close. This is off-topic, but I am suspicious of this bankruptcy. It seems contrived to get better deals on labor and leases along with a convenient way to close marginally profitable shows and zero the debt. I have enjoyed Cirque shows but I have no interest in the porn version of Canadien acrobatic dancing (Zumanity). Never saw Chris Angel at the Luxor, generally considered the worst show ever in Vegas.

- Food/restaurants were not an issue. We ate twice at Prime and once at Yellowtail. The service was prompt and cheerful. Apparently everybody is new and not returning employees. The employees we talked to were happy to be back. We ate at the bars and did not have to wait. For tables, reservations are required and could be difficult to get. Plan accordingly.

- Gambling has returned in limited form. There are plexiglass partitions up for craps/blackjack et al. A blackjack table, for example, has a maximum of three players in separate plastic prisons.

- We were in a Penthouse suite with a wonderful view of the parking structure, freeway, and pool. We could hear the freeway. The suite was large -- 1800 sq ft (?). The good rooms at Bellagio, of course, are the rooms with a fountain and strip view. I suspect Bellagio 'upgraded' us to a larger suite without this view as the vaulted 'Virtuoso Upgrade'. We've had long discussions here about upgrades that turn out to be massive downgrades in reality. This might count, although it did give us a better view of what fireworks there were. Since I was happy to be traveling again, I didn't put up a fuss about the room location. Hotel management has enough issues to deal with as it reopens without me whining about my 'view' from a large corner suite. I will, however, never return unless forced. Everything I hate about Vegas is amplified at Bellagio and minimized at FS.

- Housekeeping was cheerful and crisp but there was no turndown. The minibar was never replenished. Water was not provided, forcing us to pay for the Dasani water taken. This added $45 or so to the folio which I did not dispute. I find this very irritating. In a suite at a 5* hotel ... in July ... in Vegas ... bottled water should be provided. We can have a long argument as to whether the water should be Fiji or Voss, but at least it needs to be there. Don't get me started on the stupid 'resort fees'. In this case, $40+/day. There were no utensils in the room, making me wonder how you stirred your coffee. I had to chase down the ice to fill the bucket. Made me wistful for the days I used to stay downtown in the $50/night rooms with 3 other dudes and fight for floor space with the cockroaches. Oh ... and put gas on a credit card to get home. Good times, but long past ...

- The pool lived down to my expectations. It was crowded and hot with very little shade. Water and ice were a $10 minimum if you could get it -- nothing was complementary. Service was almost non-existent although the frazzled attendant was trying. I just hate the whole scene. Think of FS Maui at its worst but add the seediness of Vegas. To honor Lynn and David, I got a club sandwich. It was every bit as poor as the view from the room. Bleech!

- Masks are required and this is enforced. So no need for any Karens to enforce the rules.

Any questions?

UPDATE: It turns out my return trip to La Jolla from SAN was under surge pricing (4.1x). So Uber charged me $98 to get home. Clever of Uber to hide this and not make me aware of it at the time of booking. So, for the moment neither Uber or Lyft is a valid option anywhere or anytime for anything.

Last edited by RichardInSF; Jul 8, 20 at 7:34 am Reason: Change terminology
mike_la_jolla is offline  
Old Jul 6, 20, 8:55 pm
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Thanks for the review. A few questions if you don't mind:
1) Were the employees new or returning? I think you say they were new and not returning, but then you say that they were happy to be back. Just curious because new servers everywhere may need some seasoning
2) I know exactly what you mean about those Penthouse suites. It can be nice to have that much space, but the views are quite disappointing.
3) What exactly do you get for $40 resort fee if not water?
4) Was the gym or spa open?
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Old Jul 7, 20, 8:35 am
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Wynn,encore ,cosmo, red rock,jw Marriott ,palazzo only hotels worth staying at . Golden nugget ,Circa look interesting .Bellagio was great 20 years ago like four seasons .
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Old Jul 7, 20, 11:05 am
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Originally Posted by uclabruin82 View Post
1) Were the employees new or returning? I think you say they were new and not returning, but then you say that they were happy to be back. Just curious because new servers everywhere may need some seasoning
The hotel employees, meaning front desk, bell desk, and management, appeared to be seasoned hotel employees that had returned. In the restaurants, there was a mix of new and returning employees, with most being new. This did not affect the service we got at Prime and Yellowtail. Some of the new employees at the bar were new to Prime, but had obviously worked elsewhere in the industry. Some seasoning will be required, but not much.

The pool was poor in every measurable metric. Service was non-existent, but that might be standard operating procedure at this place. Water/ice was not provided and I was embarrassed to track down one of the frazzled servers for help. Bellagio told us that the pool would be limited to 25% capacity. If that was true, I'd HATE to see what it is like at 100% capacity. Lounges were all occupied. Shade of any sort was limited. Altogether a disaster. Utterly unacceptable for a hotel of this supposed caliber.

2) I know exactly what you mean about those Penthouse suites. It can be nice to have that much space, but the views are quite disappointing.
Bellagio made it *clear* to us that they didn't want our repeat business. I feel bad that I soiled their hotel with my presence. They refused to allow us to view one of the villas: "Those are invitation-only!". They aren't and I don't like being told that I'm not good enough for the Bellagio.

No problem really. I got the message. I'll go back to the FS when it reopens. I rather dislike Vegas these days anyways.

3) What exactly do you get for $40 resort fee if not water?
No idea. Wifi?

4) Was the gym or spa open?
Yes.
I think both Spa and the gym were open.
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Old Jul 7, 20, 2:17 pm
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Thank you!
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Old Jul 7, 20, 5:30 pm
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Was the VIP lounge at the base of the penthouse elevators open where infinite water bottles and soft drinks are free?

Out of curiosity, did you notice whether pool service seemed more attentive for folks with a cabana?
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Old Jul 7, 20, 5:33 pm
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Mike, that all sounds just awful.
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Old Jul 7, 20, 6:20 pm
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Originally Posted by nnn View Post
Was the VIP lounge at the base of the penthouse elevators open where infinite water bottles and soft drinks are free?
VIP lounge was open. I didn't see any water or soft drinks. Might have been removed as a covid thing.

Out of curiosity, did you notice whether pool service seemed more attentive for folks with a cabana?
Oh yes. To the point that I inquired about the price of a cabana. They started at $800/day and went up from there. That got us both laughing pretty hard.
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Old Jul 8, 20, 8:38 am
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Interesting. I’m in a similar situation. Had FSLV reservations, but since they delayed the opening we switched to a 2-bd PH at Bellagio (which we’ve stayed at several times). Also have daily pool cabana reservations, as that is where we planned to spend our days (at a much lower price than you were quoted, but it’s mid-week). I assumed the VIP water/drinks would be available, so I’d have to look into that if we decide to go.

In any event, with the recent spikes in Covid, not just in NV but in so many places from which the other hotel guests will descend, we are probably canceling the trip altogether.
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Old Jul 8, 20, 10:48 pm
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It's Vegas... Your host would arrange for a ground-floor villa if your play was high enough. That's standard.

Same with Wynn's villas. You're not getting in unless you have the play spend or they have a gap in bookings. Sure, you can book a Fairway or Duplex, but they're nothing compared to the finish-out of the Wynn villas. Those are beautiful suites.

You booked into a standard Pent at Bellagio. They may have offered you something more if you were booked into a Grand Lakeview or Chairman's.

You're acting like this is an Aman. It's a very large hotel in Vegas. Don't kid yourself.
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Old Jul 8, 20, 11:06 pm
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Whoa.
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Old Jul 9, 20, 10:03 am
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Originally Posted by mike_la_jolla View Post
They started at $800/day and went up from there. That got us both laughing pretty hard.
During my stay 10 years ago I had 800 Dollar on my bill for a cabana. When I complained (I would not pay 1 pence for it) they said they would check and remove it temporarely..... At this hotel you feel as a bagger all the time. Terrible!
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Old Jul 9, 20, 12:11 pm
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Originally Posted by mike_la_jolla View Post
VIP lounge was open. I didn't see any water or soft drinks. Might have been removed as a covid thing.
I just spoke with VIP and indeed water/drinks are still available at the lounge as usual. Sounds like you just missed it (they are in the fridge below the counter).
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