Monday, July 27, 2015

This Hermit Gets Her Week in the Desert

I'm something of a hermit. Not - as my husband would like to believe - the sort that would happily live in the middle of nowhere for the rest of my days, with zero human contact. I just find being around people draining and I have to carefully balance my being social with alone time... which is why I never found the idea of Las Vegas appealing, but I did love the idea of visiting the less-populated areas around it.

We were recently lucky to find a great deal through Orbitz (no, they're not paying me to say this and they did not comp the vacation - I wish!). A week in Vegas - hotel, flights, and car rental - all for about $1500. Some people told us we were crazy to go there in July, at the height of summer. Given the storms of Kentucky, staying here was not overly attractive. Others instantly thought we would be gambling and trolling the strip for the entire time we were there. These same folks told us we were silly for not staying on the strip. But we had other plans.

Our cute blue upgrade!
We flew out via American Airlines, and I'll leave my comment on the airline there, except to note that interior parts of the plane fell off and I was less than impressed. The car rental and hotel more than made up for it though. After checking in for the car, and refusing a paid-upgrade, we were told that we were getting a free upgrade and could choose any car available in the standard row. Goodbye Kia and hello sporty blue Bug! The guy loading his family into a Camry looked envious as he admitted he'd love to have had this instead.

Our hotel was in the Fremont Street area. The El Cortez is the city's oldest continually operating hotel and casino. As we wandered through the maze of slot machines and casino tables to reach the check-in desk, I wondered what we were in for. Surprise! Another upgrade! Instead of our original room, we were across the street in the Cabana Suites, recently renovated in a fabulously funky retro style. There was also a huge shower - how I miss that shower!
Retro at El Cortez.

I should also give kudos to the staff at the El Cortez. The morning after arriving, I discovered I had mistakenly brought an empty bottle of my medication. The woman at the front desk instantly leapt into action, calling her sister (a nurse) and helping me find a local clinic that would be able to provide a new prescription at 10am on a Sunday, thereby saving my bacon and our vacation!

Over the next week, I will be sharing details of our many trips, as well as some of our fun Vegas discoveries. I ended up liking Vegas much, much more than I expected to, although that may have been because we alternated time in the city with time on the road. So check back in tomorrow for the next installment.

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