Paul Cronin


Just back from five (non-bridge) days in Las Vegas. Some things haven’t changed – very tight slots (bad) and lower limit Pai Gow games (good). But some things have changed, and perhaps those changes are exaggerated for me because I haven’t been there for a while. The old-fashioned, and very good, low-price buffet on the strip has disappeared – the supper buffet at Caesar’s is now $43. And a breakfast buffet where I stayed was $12 for a very short table with scrambled eggs, sausage and bacon, and a bit of fruit – coffee $2 extra. Maybe I was spoiled by that wonderful chef at the Maxim of old who stood there making omelets while ankle-deep in “spill-over”. Yeah, yeah – I know the casino at Maxim closed in 1999, and the hotel in 2001, but still – memories, of a golden time……Things seemed a bit more like the old days when I went downtown – Binion’s, the Golden Nugget….and food prices a little more reasonable. Brought back some great memories of my first trip to Lost Wages in 1960 where it seemed to take forever to drive from downtown to what was then the “strip” way out in the desert. Things always seem rosier through the eyes of youth, but I was very much impressed this time with the efficiency of the operation and the great guest service where I  stayed on the strip. Anyway, all you bridge players who will be there this coming week for the Regional at Bally’s please let us know about any “finds” you make – good food, good shows, etc. And maybe some Vegas veterans could chip in with the location of any ” hidden gems” they know of  – maybe something off the strip or away from downtown? 

1 Comment

Judy Kay-WolffJanuary 19th, 2014 at 7:25 pm

Hi Paul:

I wish you had contacted us prior to your visit and perhaps we could have arranged to meet to say hello and have a quick bite (i. e., if we could rob a bank first). Seriously, I know exactly from where your reaction is emanating. Yet, it does not disccourage our many visitors. The casinos are like melting pots with just about every country and nationality represented.

You discovered Vegas three years earlier than moi as it was one of the three stops on my honeymoon in 1963. Yes, it was practically like a prairie — with few hotels on the Strip and the Binion/Golden Nugget area a great tourist attraction. Suburbs like Summerlin where we live were obscure or even non-existent and everyone stayed put when they arrived — with a myriad of restaurants and shows closeby.

We enjoy the suburban living (with three casinos within a couple of miles and heaps of eateries in close proximity). Because of the economy and the downturn in business, everytime you pick up your mail or read a newspaper, you find several inducements to patronize the casinos .. free bets and substantial discounts on meals. Their objective is “to get you there.” What you do when you arrive is strictly up to you. Just don’t check your brains at the door.

We look forward to this coming week at Bally’s. The present chairpeople (Jane and Bruce Rubin) have done a yeoman’s job with reduced room rates and other accommodations. They always give 100% of themselves (or more) in an effort to assure everything runs smoothly.

If any of you plan to attend, be sure to stop and say hello and introduce yourselves if we have not had the pleasure of meeting you before. And, if you enter the fray, please go easy on us!

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