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So you or someone you know has just turned 21 and you want to get out there and have some fun gambling in Vegas. Every year, thousands of people come to Vegas for their 21st birthday to drink, party and, of course, gamble
legally for the first time. But, a good question is where do you take a first-time player to ensure they get the most bang for their buck?
I have been a casino dealer for about five years and, when I gamble, I look for the best odds with the best limits. When friends and family hit the big 21, they always ask me to take them out for a night of lucky chance. I love to gamble! Some might think, “wow, this guy has a problem!” Not at all, actually; I play smart and never put myself in financial harm. So, with that in mind, here's my personal guide to how to go all in for the big 2-1:
Poker / Gambling / Gaming / Bellagio / Venetian / Rio Las Vegas / The Mirage / → All Tags
VegasChatter reader Jim L. recently asked a question about which casinos in Las Vegas use different chips in their poker rooms than in the rest of the casino. The question stemmed from his discovery of the cream-colored $1 chip (seen below) during a visit to The Mirage poker room. This chip differs from the blue $1 chip which is found elsewhere in the casino.
When it comes to $1 chips, to the best of our knowledge, The Mirage is the only casino in Vegas that uses a specific chip set just for the poker room. If you were to play blackjack or other table games at The Mirage, you would see the blue chips. In the $3-$6 limit game that regularly runs in the poker room, you would see the cream-colored chip.
The Mirage / Poker / Casinos / Bars / Lounges / Drinking / Construction / → All Tags
The Mirage is building a new dream experience. We know this because it says so right on the construction wall.
Where poker was once the only name of the game will rise two new drinking spots, Center Bar and Parlor Lounge. Since an official announcement has yet to be made, here's what we can surmise from those same construction wraps:
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There's a lot of sh*t that happens in Vegas and not all of it can make it on our site as a full report. So, every Friday, we take note of some of the smaller announcements around town that may be of interest, too. Here's the rundown for the week of March 2:
You've Got Some More Eating To Do: Las Vegas Restaurant Week returns June 15-26 and only for those dates this year. The event will no longer take place twice yearly with spring and fall dates. During the week, restaurants across the city join together to offer special prix fixe meals ranging from $20.15 to $50.15 with a portion of the proceeds benefitting local food bank Three Square.
Pools / Pool Scenes / Party Pools / LIQUID / Aria / Bare / The Mirage / Adult Pools / → All Tags
Two more party pools will get back into the swim of things in just a few weeks.
Bare at The Mirage and LIQUID at Aria have announced respective opening dates of Thursday, March 12 and Friday, March 13. The former will return with five newly refurbished cabanas while the latter will feature new daybeds and banquettes.
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In our book, MGM Resorts' quarterly earnings call is a must listen. Beyond a reciting of dollars and cents, it's always filled with fascinating insight into what's really popping for the gaming company, and what's on the horizon. Here's what we learned from the latest call that took place earlier this week:
Shake Shack is so money: Everybody knows cult burger fave Shack Shack opened at New York-New York late December. You may have even stopped in by now. What you probably don't know is the Las Vegas location is "already the highest-grossing Shack Shack in the portfolio's history, second only to Times Square."
The Strip / VegasChatter Reviews / Dining / The Mirage / Italian / Restaurants / Eating / Portofino / → All Tags
Did you know Mirage had a tasty (we mean really tasty) Italian restaurant? We had no idea until a recent public relations push for Portofino. After Onda closed, Portofino made its quiet entrance into the Las Vegas dining scene and is now gaining speed along with positive reviews. That $100 lasagna stunt didn’t hurt, either.
Though that delicious dish ended in December, the restaurant is certainly worth your time. Chef Michael LaPlaca puts a modern spin on traditional Italian cuisine. While he was eager to be inventive with the menu, this is still a casino restaurant and thus the menu must appeal to middle America. The masses want chicken parm but Chef LaPlaca instead does a Chicken Rollatini Parmesan ($35) featuring a chicken breast stuffed with ground dark meat chicken for a rich and unique flavor that gives you the crispy-coated chicken you were expecting along with a surprise inside. The dish is served with a tasty marinara sauce, plenty of cheese and delicious spinach.
Vegas Rants / The Mirage / Eating / Dining / Restaurants / Carnegie Deli / → All Tags
We all love Vegas, but that's not to say that some things don't get under our skin. That's why we created Vegas Rants to let you get it all off your chest, heave a big sigh and move on to the next fun thing.
Just before Thanksgiving, Carnegie Deli at The Mirage quietly closed for a remodel. It reopened in December, but what we thought was just a decor makeover happens to be much more. As VegasChatter member file1040 relates (and, yes, he is a CPA), the transformation came with some unexpected changes, and not necessarily for the better:
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Thanks for joining us on the last day of the fifth annual VegasChatter Awards.
While all of our awards are based on our personal experiences, we would be nothing without all the Vegas visitors, lovers and locals who send us tips, share personal stories, dish on gossip, ask us questions, and most of all, who comment -- whether they agree with us or not. You always keep us entertained and on our toes and we hope it's a two-way street. Keep it up in 2015!
No matter where you stay, what you do or who you see, we wanna know how you spent your time in Vegas. Here's how to fill us in:
VegasChatter 2014 Awards / VegasChatter Awards / Sportsbooks / The Mirage / Venetian / Betting / Gambling / → All Tags
It's time for the fifth annual VegasChatter Awards! Today, we begin bringing you the best and worst of the year. All of our picks are based on what we've personally experienced in Vegas over 2014 -- the good, the bad and the mind-boggling.
For the longest time, whenever someone asked us to point them to the best sportsbook in town, we were like, bam! Lagasse's Stadium. But, this year, we started crushin' on another venue right across the Strip. It was older, but knew just how to make us happy. And now, we're ready to pledge our love publicly.
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Not all Vegas hotel porte cocheres are created equally. Sometimes, you can leave your car with valet, grab your bags and quickly get where you need to go. Sometimes valet is on the opposite side of the property and entirely inconvenient for your visit. It's not fun lugging yourself through the casino until you get to whichever part of the property you want to be in. Here are some valet tips for visitors who prefer to drive themselves, but don't know Vegas quite as well as they'd like to yet:
The Strip / Poker / The Mirage / Casinos / Renovations / → All Tags
One of the oldest poker rooms on the Las Vegas Strip is about to be dealt a new hand.
The poker room at The Mirage will reportedly close for renovations January 24, with a tentative reopening date set as May 15. When the new room emerges it will be noticeably smaller in size, clocking in at 12 tables, down from the 19 that are currently in use. The new room will be located in the same general area that it currently sits, however the elevated portion that is usually reserved for high-limit games will be removed. The casino’s main cage is also being relocated to an area that sits inside of the current poker room’s footprint. A source inside the poker room reports that all dealers will be laid off during the roughly four months of renovations and will then be rehired based on seniority.