LAS VEGAS: Budget-minded girlfriend getaway in February

VegasJenLeo & Elvis on the Strip in 2014
VegasJenLeo & Elvis on the Strip in 2014

I’m sitting here having my coffee when my friend texts me for Las Vegas trip advice. She (early 40s and living in San Diego) is going on a Vegas girlfriend getaway with some high school friends the weekend of February 20. They’re on a restrictive budget with an interest in food, shopping, maybe catching a show and hanging out.  Emphasis on hanging out. They’ll be sharing a room with two women per room and are ok with spending $150-$200/night on hotel but want their own beds. They’d even consider lodging for all of them if it stayed true to the price range. I love this kind of a challenge, and helping friends find their best Vegas experience, so here are some recommendations. One problem, this is one of the more expensive weekends to travel to Vegas in Februrary.

The Bella suites at Venetian Las Vegas – Approx 700 sq. ft.

VENETIAN

Venetian is my first choice for group trips because of the sheer value. You get big rooms with a living room and a big bathroom. All which is key when it comes to women sharing rooms together. In this case, it also checks the box for shopping. The Venetian has it’s own shopping area, is connected to the Palazzo for high end shopping and is walking distance to the Fashion Show Mall, not mention a short drive to the outlets. Bingo.

Venetian Dining: They have a range of good dining options which only increase with the Palazzo’s restaurants. I’d want them to have a long breakfast or brunch at Bouchon (my fave), and then it’d be up to them if they wanted to splurge on celebrity chef restaurants like Wolfgang Puck’s Postrio or  Mario Batali’s Carnevino at the Palazzo or eat casually by the gondolas at Canonita. But lets get back to Bouchon. It’s absolutely the perfect European breakfast or lunch setting for a gaggle of girls to catch up and talk the hours away.

Venetian Rates: Here’s the problem. They were hoping for rooms for $150-200/night to split between two people. I tested rates on Vegas.com ($279/night), Venetian.com ($269/night) and Expedia.com ($249/night). All before taxes and the $25/night resort fee. So, while this would absolutely be my first choice for their style of trip, it’s out due to price. I’m not even going to break it down.

Double Deluxe room at Treasure Island

Double Deluxe room at Treasure Island – Approx 400 sq. ft.

TREASURE ISLAND

I wanted to cut the price way down but keep the proximity to the shopping options still available, so my next suggestion is TI. I’ve stayed at TI several times, and while you couldn’t get me to gamble there again, I do like their rooms for moderately priced rates with a great Strip location. It also checks the box for shopping because it is right next to the Fashion Show Mall and across the Street from the Venetian. Not to mention walking distance to the Forum Shops at Caesars. Sounds good, eh shoppers?

TI Dining: Gilley’s Saloon, Dance Hall & BBQ could be a hoot and the cafe is consistent for breakfast (they have a huge fruit plate and good hash browns). I don’t know much about the other restaurants there. But now that you know how much I love Bouchon, you bet I’d be begging them to walk across the street to Venetian for a meal there.

TI Rates: I recommend getting on their newsletter program to see if you can grab some specials. Vegas.com had TI at up to 35% off plus two free buffet passes per room right in their price range. Two Deluxe rooms with Queen beds for two nights Feb. 20-22 came to $698.26 including all taxes and fees. Divide that by four women and the price comes to $174.56 per person for the whole stay or $87.28 per person per night. By the way, I found the package (minus the buffet tickets) at TI for a full total of $683 but I would’ve totally gone with Vegas.com for the buffet passes.

Deluxe 2 Double room at The Linq

Deluxe 2 Double room at The Linq – Approx 300 sq. ft

THE LINQ HOTEL & CASINO

I’m a sucker for wanting to try new hotels, so I thought I’d just check out the rates for The Linq. Right next to High Roller and in a location that’s full of action. This could be a win, or rather loud and not relaxing. I turned to TripAdvisor and read enough reviews for The Linq  to know that the price is right but if these women are looking to be spoiled, they’ll have to put in a little legwork. For example, some TripAdvisor reviewers complained about noise due to the construction (and advised to ask for a room away from the construction) and others said there were no coffeemakers in their room and no coffee bars in the hotel – you had to go just outside the hotel for a Starbucks. I can’t wait to see what they pick!

Linq Dining: There’s plenty of casual dining here plus you could say you ate at Guy Fieri’s Vegas Kitchen and Bar. I’ve only eaten at the Haute Doggery and I’d totally go back. This is definitely the place for someone with a sweet tooth as there’s also a Ghirardelli and Sprinkles cupcakes within arm’s reach!

Linq Rates: The Linq (part of Caesars Total Rewards program) has a sale right now where rooms are up to 25% off. But rooms were going quick. I was able to find two rooms  (Deluxe 2 Double) with two double beds in each with a view of the High Roller on the Feb. 20-22 dates for a grand total of $792.96 including taxes and resort fee. That’s $198.24 per person or $99.12 per person per night. This rate was on Vegas.com. The Linq was already sold out on Expedia. Tip: If you join Total Rewards program there’s a chance you could find an even better price.

MANDALAY BAY

Now, Mandalay Bay is on the South wend of the Strip, but I like it there. I’m sure the ladies are priced out of the new Delano Las Vegas  (once THEhotel at Mandalay Bay) but I thought I’d just check on the Mandalay Bay room rates. The property is spacious and they’d have more hang out options as opposed to TI. Plus, Mandalay Bay has its own shops, lots of restaurants to choose from and is less than a five min car ride to the Town Square for the true shopping enthusiast. Not to mention easy access to the freeway for those that are driving.  Sadly, room rates were insane for MBB – $249/night. Maybe because they had some concerts happening. Dammit. You can often find rooms there under $200 on the weekends and even under $100/night mid week.

RED ROCK RESORT SPA & CASINO

So, my husband reminded me that the brand new Downtown Summerlin shopping center just opened. Red Rock is way off the Strip, but that might be just what the girlfriends need—a total getaway. I started to get excited, but this darn pricey weekend in February had rooms over $200/night and closer to $250/night after the resort fee. Too bad, I think they would’ve loved having a lunch (or dinner) at Vintner Grill in Summerlin! The ambience at VG Summerlin is perfect for a girls retreat!

World Double Room at SLS Las Vegas

World Double Room at SLS Las Vegas – Approx 360 sq. ft.

SLS LAS VEGAS

OK— I couldn’t resist. I really enjoyed myself at the SLS the last time I was here so I thought I’d check prices. While it’s more of a boutique hotel experience more than a big hotel casino resort experience, I like it. It still feels new, comfy and modern. Dare I even say girly if they stay in the World Superior or Lux rooms. The World rooms definitely fit the bill for the budget but are pushing the upper end. And if two of the women opted to pay more for a Lux room, there is an awesome check in room just for the Lux guests that I’d totally want to hang out in. Not to mention, the Lux Suites have a whole living room area where they could gab away right in their own room and bringing their own champagne would totally be in order here. The coffee bar is cool, the bar is comfortable, great restaurant choices and if the weather is tolerable they could hang out by the pool and chat (even if not in bathing suits). As for shopping, you’d have to drive to everything, Sorry.

SLS Dining: I only tried the Ku Noodle (good but overpriced), Griddle Cafe (one order of pancakes can feed the whole table!) and The Perq coffee bar because I was traveling midweek, but I was dying to try all the other restaurants, especially Cleo and Bazaar Meat by Jose Andrews.

SLS Rates: World Superior Double Rooms are the only ones I want you to go for. Forget the “Story” rooms. Trust me. I wouldn’t dare. Unless you’re OK with floating beds with mirrors on the ceiling. Ew. Go for World rooms or Lux rooms. Now, for the cost. On the SLS Las Vegas website. I found World Superior Double rooms for a grand total of $315.12 including taxes and fees. You’d have to get two rooms, but based on that one room it would be $78.78 per person per night.  If you are going to opt for the Lux Suites – call the hotel and find out which room would be best for you. Also consider signing up for their Loyalty program “The Code” on their website in advance in case they’re offering them extra deals. One last tip – skip the spa. Totally lame.

OK ladies, there you go. Which one will it be? There are even cheaper options if you choose to go downtown and stay on Fremont Street. If you do I recommend getting a suite at the Golden Gate Hotel & Casino (around $80/night), a non-smoking room at the Golden Nugget (many options), or trying the new Downtown Grand (around $100/night).

LAS VEGAS: Cyber Monday Deals $7 – $87

Cora at the Golden Gate Hotel & Casino Suite - Vegas, Baby!

Cora at the Golden Gate Hotel & Casino Suite – Vegas, Baby!

OK – The whole Black Friday – Cyber Monday deals thing can totally do your head in. Especially when the holidays are around the corner and every penny needs to be saved for presents, let alone a new Christmas party outfit. What’s an eager Las Vegas hotel and resort hopper to do? Well, stretch your thinking—and your wallet because there are some great Las Vegas  Cyber Monday Deals  worth buying right now. Whether you’re a downtown Las Vegas loving deal grabber or a searching for a luxe Las Vegas hotel deal, we’ve got you covered. Dig in – these are the only deals I’d let my friends grab. We can all thank Vegas.com for organizing these great Cyber Monday Las Vegas Deals.

$7-11—Golden Gate Hotel & Casino | Great suites. We stay here a lot. I love the renovated rooms, especially the suites. And if I could buy the art off the wall I’d do that, too. We are downtown lovers so we stay here for the great value and close proximity to the Container Park. There are 15 days in December with rooms $7-$13/night. The cheapest two nights were Dec. 16-17 and Dec. 21-22 for the standard rooms. The total came to $69.95 for both nights including tax and resort fee. Hello! Now, with those standard rooms, you’re getting a small room. But if you wanted a suite (pictured above), I found them for only $35/night on Dec. 22-24. The total cost for both nights was $117.98 including tax and resort fee.

$7-$11 —The D Las Vegas Hotel & Casino | Book Dec. 1 for travel now -April 30, 2015. Make sure to book a room that says “Up to 25% off your stay” to get the deal. But guess what? You can get up “Up to 50% off your stay” for travel in December. I found rooms as low as $7/night on Dec. 14-17 and Dec. 21-22. Use the Rate Calendar to find the deals that fit you best.  I tested Dec. 19-21 (the cheapest weekend at The D Las Vegas in December) and got a total of $78.43 for both nights including tax AND resort fee. Boom! I think the D is a great choice for downtown lovers or budget-minded bachelors. I’ve seen the rooms. They’re newish, clean and I saw a lot of red and black decor. If those are your colors and your style – go for it!

A living room in a Lux suite at SLS Las Vegas

A living room in a Lux suite at SLS Las Vegas

$45—SLS Las Vegas| Book now until Dec. 8 to get up to 50% off room rates at the SLS. This is my new fave hotel on the Strip. Why? New rooms, short walk to casino and restaurants and shops, and a hip modern vibe to with everything from the whimsical monkey details at every turn, to the filtered coffee at The Griddle Cafe. The cheapest weekend in December was 19-21. I tested the deal and got a total of $166.48 for both night including taxes and resort fee. That was for the “World Superior King”. If you want to splurge, go for the Lux King Suite (pictured). Rooms were only $125/night for a total of $328.90 for the whole weekend including tax and resort fees. Yes, please! Use the rate calendar to find the variety of $45/night rates.

$79—Vdara | Get 20% off certain stays if you book on Cyber Monday. I love this hotel because it’s casino free, yet casino agent to the Aria. It’s spacious even in their smallest rooms (582 square foot suite). I tested their cheapest nights in December and found two nights Dec. 21-23 for only $79/night. The total for two nights including tax and resort fee came to $233.41.

The soft sultry tones of Delano Las Vegas at Mandalay Bay

The soft sultry tones of Delano Las Vegas at Mandalay Bay

$87—The Delano at Mandalay Bay | The Delano (formerly THEhotel) is one of the hottest new hotels in town. To grab a room there at less than $100/night is quite the steal. Especially since the rooms are such great sized suites (pictured). I used the Vegas.com rate calendar to see that the cheapest rooms in December were on Dec. 14-16, and Dec. 22. Go get that $87 room. I tested it for Dec. 14-16 to factor in taxes and resort fees and the total came to $251.32.

The bottom line is that Vegas.com has heaps of savings for all of the hotels listed on their site. Run over there and check out the deals. These were just a couple great opportunities for you.

 

LAS VEGAS: I’m LOVING SLS Las Vegas for $74/night

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LAS VEGAS | Best hotel under $100? SLS Las Vegas might very well be my new favorite hotel on the Strip. It’s modern, hip, and most of all—FUN! Youthful. Whimsical. Delightful. These words kept popping up in my mind from the videos of birds and abstract art behind the registration desk to the monkey-theme throughout the hotel.  Monkey art is everywhere! In the lobby bar, on the ironing board covers, even  your in-room coasters—they’re a classic mascot.

We booked our room via Priceline just a few days before we arrived and they had deals starting at $74/night. (We took the 2 Double Non Smoking Superior World rooms for $79.51/night). Priceline rates the SLS  a 7.6 out of 10 with 169 guest reviews and the hotel only opened in August. The deal comes with $40 food credit and free Wi-Fi. For those of you that have been coming to Las Vegas for decades, SLS is what the Sahara turned into. Keep your eye on the carpets for great vintage Vegas scenes.

lg_worldtowerdouble-quality60

DEAL | I already thought the Priceline rates were a great deal, but once I became an SLS Las Vegas fan I found a 30% off deal on the SLS Facebook page (Promo code PLC04).  I checked Nov. 30- Dec. 2 rates on this promo were only $62.30/night for a World Superior King. Of course there’s still the $25/night resort fee which is common with Vegas hotels. And of course, don’t forget to check Vegas.com. I found rates as low as $60/night Thanksgiving week.

TESTED | You know you have to take a last-minute Vegas trip in you! I chose to test the Vegas.com rates for three nights Nov. 24-27. Vegas.com had rooms with a king bed starting at $59.63 which came to $275.36 for the whole stay *including* taxes and the resort fee. I call that a deal for such a cool new hotel!

Cora at Griddle Cafe SLS Las Vegas

Cora shocked at how big the pancakes are at The Griddle Cafe, SLS Las Vegas

 

TIPS | If you or your kids love pancakes—don’t miss the GARGANTUAN pancakes at The Griddle Cafe. They’re epic. One order was more than enough to feed our whole family of three with plenty left over. We also had fun taking pics by the giant duck at the pool and having an afternoon gelato at PERQ, the hotel coffee bar.

Jen Leo and Cora at PERQ, SLS Las Vegas

Jen Leo and Cora at PERQ, SLS Las Vegas

Want to get in on ever more deals? Sign up for the SLS loyalty program called The Code. I saw 40% off deals for members (membership is free).

If you make it out to Las Vegas, have a great time at the SLS Las Vegas!

VALENTINE’S DAY: Last-Minute Rooms in Las Vegas $100 or Less

cora_vegas_2013_720I love spontaneous trips to Vegas so much that I would not object if my husband wanted to zip over there this weekend for Valentine’s Day without prior plans. On the off chance that he might want to, I looked at hotel prices. Ouch! Before you jump to bunk in at some of the best-loved casino resorts in town like Cosmopolitan, Caesars, Bellagio. Be prepared to open your wallets to the tune of almost $300/night or more. Even the cheaper Las Vegas hotels are either double what they normally are, or in some cases, sold out. So, I did some digging and found a few options under $150/night plus some helpful tips to keep the costs down.Heck, I got lucky and found some rooms that I’d stay at for $100 or less!

VALENTINE’S DAY VEGAS TRAVEL TIPS

1. It’ll be easier for you to book a room if you only stay Friday night, February 14. I tried looking for rates for both Friday and Saturday night and some of the hotels had availability for Friday but not Saturday. Or in some cases, Saturday night was near double the cost of Friday night. If you can, take off work and stay Thursday & Friday instead of Friday & Saturday nights.

2. Before you buy a ticket via a typical online travel site, check the hotel’s direct website and compare rates. I checked Vegas.com and rooms at the much-loved Cosmopolitan were an average of $532/night for the two nights. Pricing Friday at $325. But when I checked the Cosmopolitan’s website, they only had availability for Friday night. The price was $250.

3. Split the cost with some friends. Yeah, yeah, it’s Valentine’s Day. A night for love, indeed, but  single people celebrate Valentine’s Day, too. College girls, guys and grads—hello, I’m talking to you. Save money by piling in together.

4. Don’t forget about taxes and fees. If you’re not used to staying in Vegas and are on a strict budget—don’t forget about resort fees. If you see an advertised room rate, make sure you follow the steps to see what the true cost would be after factoring in taxes and resorts fees. It can jack the price up considerably.

5. Remember to ask if they have AAA, Military and Senior rates. It’s an easy way to knock off a few more buckaroos. Sometimes they’ll display in online booking but most times they won’t. Pick up the phone and ask.

FEBRUARY 14 VALENTINE’S DAY ROOMS $150-ish and UNDER

(in order of rooms that I’d want to stay in)

Treasure Island | TI is one of my go-to hotels for decent, mid-priced rooms with a great location. I found rooms on their website available for $101.72 on Friday night. The total cost after taxes and fees was $141.93. If I wanted to stay both Saturday and Sunday the price went up to $294.18 or $385.49 after taxes and fees.

Monte Carlo | I found a Deluxe Room with two queen beds available Feb. 14 for $117.80 before tax and the $22 resort fee. The total came to $154.34.

Tuscany Suites | If you need a little bit more space, try the off-strip Tuscany Suites. I haven’t stayed here yet but my husband and other friends have. The suites are 650 square feet, have kitchenettes, living room space and a dining room table. Room start off at $120 for Feb. 14 before taxes and the $17 resort fee.

Hard Rock Hotel | This party palace is not my ideal Vegas hotel, but on a busy weekend like Valentine’s Day weekend the price is right. I found rooms on the hotel’s website starting at $101.65. After taxes and fees it was $138.49.

FEBRUARY 14 VALENTINE’S DAY ROOMS $100 OR LESS

LVH – The Las Vegas Hotel has a lot of history and quite often a fair deal. It’s close to the Convention Center and monorail. I haven’t stayed here before but it gets decent reviews for a cheap hotel. I found AAA rates starting at $59.96  or $87.32 after taxes and fees. Have a look at the website. If you want to be a baller your dollars can upgrade you into big suites fast.

The Palms – Now that I know about RoomerTravel.com I check there too! It’s a shop where people resell their rooms when they can’t used them anymore. I found a room at The Palms on Feb. 14 for $72.20 or $80.86 after tax. Note: This does not include the resort fee which will be collected at the hotel. Note, I linked to Roomer in this graph, not The Palms.

If you’re willing to use Priceline or Hotwire you can find more rooms under $100/night. Check with BetterBidding.com if you want a community of support. In order to get those rates you’ll need to venture off the Strip and even delve into three-star hotels. But the deals are there.

 

Let us know if you find a brag-worthy deal for a Last-Min trip to Las Vegas. And most of all—HAVE FUN!

LAS VEGAS: $15 Room at Golden Gate Booked on Roomer

goldengate_15room_720

Why would you stay in this room for $15/night when they have suites for $69/night?! Well, because $15 is $15! The One-Queen Non-Smoking rooms at the Golden Gate Casino often go for $21/night mid-week, and can cost anywhere between $29-$129/night on the weekend. They are decent rooms for the price. You get a recently renovated room with a queen-sized bed downtown in the heart of lots of action. The room is not big, but neither is the price. For those that gamble on a budget too, you’ve got $5 table games downstairs and all of Fremont Street at your doorstep.

DEAL: Have you heard of Roomer yet? It’s this fantastic website where rooms are sold at a discount because the people that originally booked the room can’t make the trip and they’re selling it at a lower price just to recoup whatever they can. We grabbed this room for $15/night on Roomer when the hotel’s website was charging $21/night.

TESTED: Oh yeah, we got this deal. It is and will probably be the cheapest room I ever purchase in Vegas. We got it for Feb 25-27 but the $15 does NOT include tax or the $20/night resort fee. Roomer charged me a little tax but not the resort fee. No doubt the hotel will get me for the rest when we check in. Oh, and as you might expect — this rate is non refundable.

What’s the cheapest price you’ve ever paid for a hotel in Vegas? I saw one for $11. Yep, you guessed it, on Roomer.

 

LAS VEGAS: $69 Suite Deal at Golden Gate Hotel & Casino Downtown

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Earlier this month I got a press walk through of the Golden Gate Hotel & Casino in downtown Las Vegas. Some people wouldn’t be caught dead staying downtown, but I’ve always had a soft spot for the other end of Vegas. I even got married at the Golden Nugget on 7-7-7. Only now, I don’t just have a soft spot for downtown Vegas, I’m downright excited about it! And I couldn’t wait to stay at the Golden Gate. The renovated rooms are sweet. And Suite. We just nabbed a suite like the one in the picture above for only $69/night. Cool, huh?

BTW - Downtown is totally changing thanks to the efforts of the Downtown Project spearheaded by Tony Hsieh.  If Fremont Street scared you before, try it again and don’t miss the Container Park.

DEAL: A recently redone suite for $69/night is plenty exciting, but what I loved about this room was the style. It’s gives props to its Old Vegas past yet is decked out with modern furniture and amenities from Wi-Fi to the Keurig coffee machines and rainfall shower heads. The yummy Dupar’s is right downstairs and the brand new Container Park is right down the street.

TESTED: I found the $69/night deal available most nights midweek in February and beyond. If you can only travel on a weekend, the rate was also available Feb. 7 and 8, 2014. I grabbed it for Feb. 25-27. Tax was 13% plus a $20/night resort fee. So, all in all the room cost $195.94 for two nights.

TIPS: Don’t miss a meal at Dupar’s downstairs. They are particularly known for their pancakes, but I’d eat there for any meal. It’s a cozy diner that delivers.

Let us know what you love about staying at Golden Gate Hotel & Casino. And hey, have FUN in Vegas, Baby!

 

LAS VEGAS: Buy 1 Night at Treasure Island, Get 1 FREE

TI_Exterior

BOOK BY NOV. 19, 2013 | Did someone say BOGO offer on Center Strip? I like staying at Treasure Island for reliable, decent rooms in a great location on the Strip. I like the fruit plate and zucchini bread in The Coffee Shop for breakfast, the Ribs at Gilley’s and playing a tourney at the poker room. I even like the convenient location to the Venetian, Forum Shops and Fashion Show Mall. Here’s a real good offer you’ll have to act fast on.

DEAL: Go to Vegas.com and punch in your desired dates. Look for the deal that says “Buy 1 Night, Get 1 Free plus Extras“. When you book this deal, you also get to pick one extra:

  • 2-for-1 Mystère tickets
  • 2-for-1 lunch or dinner voucher valid at the Buffet
  • 2-for-1 draft beer voucher valid at Gilley’s Saloon

DATES: Book by November 19 for travel now through February 28, 2014.

TESTED: Prices vary, but I found rates as low as $39.97 per night (average over the two nights) on Dec. 1-3, or a total of $89.53 including tax but before the $25/day resort fee that gets charged at check in. I was actually thinking about going out a few days before Christmas and Blackout dates: Dec. 6-7, 31, 2013; Jan. 5-16; Feb. 3-5, 15, 2014.

TIP: Who knew? Treasure Island Las Vegas wins a lot of awards.

Let us know what you love about staying at TI? And hey, gave FUN in Vegas, Baby!

 

LAS VEGAS: $39 New Room at Palms + Nightclub Passes, Breakfast

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BOOK BY NOVEMBER 8, 2013 | There are lots of hotels under $50/night in Vegas these days—but to find a newly renovated room at a hotel people actually want to stay at—well, it’s time to get excited about this deal. Have you stayed at the Palms Hotel Casino before? It’s best known for having great nightclubs like Moon and Ghostbar, stunning views, a kick ass steak house (N9NE), famous suites, and celeb spotting. Sure, it’s a little off the Strip, but not by much. Way back in the day I’d go to the Palms just for the fortune teller and the movie theatre.

DEAL: Travelzoo has rooms at the Palms starting at $39 per night for a Premier Room and $89 per night for an Ivory Suite Sundays through Thursdays. Along with the room you get a breakfast buffet for two ($18) and front of the line passes for two to Ghostbar or Moon nightclub ($80). If you want to stay on a Friday or Saturday, add $80 per night.

DATES: Good for stays between November 2013 and June 2014. This deal is not so much about when it is available as when it is NOT. Here are the blackout dates: Nov. 3-9; Dec. 6-7, 30-31; Jan. 1, 5-10; Feb. 1-2, 14-15; March 3-8, 20-23; April 4-12, 17-19; May 2-4, 23-24; June 3-5, 15-18.

TESTED: This is a Travelzoo voucher deal. That means you purchase the deal before the timer runs out on November 8, and then call the hotel to book your reservation  (877-823-0392). Make sure you buy more than one voucher if you plan to stay multiple nights. And note that there will be a $20/night resort fee added plus tax. Note: When I looked at Sunday – Thursday rates on the Palms website for Premier rooms over the next few months rates ranged between $59-$119 per night.

TIP: Hey, the @Palms Twitter account also tipped me out to another great deal on their special offers page: Up to 40% off with a free upgrade to a Premier Room through the end of the year.

LAS VEGAS: $100 Credit at Mandalay Bay this Winter

MandalayBayNight

BOOK ASAP | It’s true. They are giving away money in Las Vegas—well, at least to spend while you’re there. Mandalay Bay has a deal going on right now where you can get $100 resort credit. I found dates available where the rooms start at $68/night. So, the question is, not when are you going but how will you spend it? Me? I’ll be taking it to the spa! Or to try the new Kumi Japanese Restaurant and Bar.

DEAL: Mandalay Bay is offering a $100 resort credit when you book two nights with them this winter on select dates. It is called the Winter Resort Offer. Room rates started at $68/night midweek and $100/night on weekends. Book online or when calling, ask for promo code “P3RC100H”.

DATES: The promotion runs November 22, 2013 – January 23, 2014.

TESTED: I found the deal available at the $68/night November 24-27, December 15-19, 22-23, and with higher prices on several dates. The cheapest weekend to take advantage of this offer was on Dec.ember 20-21 when rooms were only $100/night. I tested a three-night weekend December 19-22 and the total came to $267.75 or $388.83 after taxes and resort fees. When I looked at what this would cost by booking Vegas.com the room total was $360.47 including taxes and fees but without the $100 resort credit. If you wanted to stay for two days at $68/night the cost would be $208.88 after taxes and resort fees, or $302.96 if you wanted the largest room available – a Great Room Suite via the promotion.

NOTE: This deal cannot be combined with other offers and is good for single or double occupancy only. If you are adding a third or fourth person to the room you will be charged an additional $35 per person. There is also a resort fee of $28/night which was calculated into my test.

Be sure to let us know if you were able to take advantage of this great deal and have fun in Vegas, Baby!

LAS VEGAS: The $34 Suite

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BOOK BY SEPTEMBER 30 | It’s no joke. There are rooms all over Las Vegas that you can get for under $50 a night. Several for less than $30 a night. But when I saw that Rio Las Vegas was having a special 25% off promotion, my ears perked up. Why? Because the Rio, just a short bit off the Strip and across from the Palms, has a resort full of suites. That’s why they call it the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino. If you’re looking for a cheap room, and like a little extra space—this deal can set you right. Six hundred square feet of right.

DEAL: It’s called the “Extend Your Summer Sale”. If you book directly through the Rio’s website you can get 25% off by using the promo code,”EXTEND13″. Rooms start at $45 (Deluxe Studio Suite) on their rate calendar but wind up as $33.75 per night before taxes and fees. There are several room styles to choose from and each with their own starting prices.

DATES: Book by September 30, 2013 for travel through February 28, 2014. Blackout dates may apply.

TESTED: Grabbing this deal is easy to do. I found the cheap rate month after month on the Rio website. Most of the cheapest dates were for Sunday through Wednesday. I tested November 24-27. The three nights came to $101.25 or $166.24 after taxes. Note: There is an  extra $20/night resort fee that is taken at the property and includes use of the fitness room and Wi-Fi. If you’re looking for activities as well, try booking through Expedia or Vegas.com. They are offering incentives such as 2 for 1 Helicopter tours and more.

NOTE: The new Samba rooms are not included in this promotion but I found King Strip View rooms starting tarting at $60 per night.

TIPS: You might come for the Penn & Teller or Chippendales show, but don’t miss the view from the Voodoo Rooftop Nightclub is pretty spectacular. But hold on to your hats and glasses, it can get pretty windy.

Let us know if you’re able to take advantage of this deal! We want to know what you love about the Rio Las Vegas.