Today would be a very long day. The return leg of our journey, the flight out of San Diego was 7:00 am which meant a 4:30 alarm call. But the Short 1ht ish hop on Delta only took us as far as Vegas with our outward flight on Virgin, not until 8:00 pm giving us a FULL day in VEGAS! But we had a problem. Our flights were booked via different carriers at different terminals meaning we had no way to check our luggage through. So we were in Vegas but had bulky carry-ons and two 23kg (Really we were right on the weight limit!) Suitcases…how much fun can you have lugging that around.
P.S if you are wondering why we booked the flights this way? It was simply Price. It was $2-300 more expensive to book the exact same flights directly through Virgin/Delta than booking them separately.
What to do with Luggage on a Las Vegas Layover?
A Taxing question, there are no facilities for it at the airport due to safety concerns and while there are places away from the airport that will hold luggage they are not very convenient nor particularly cheap. Our solution is, Pay for a Cabana/Day Bed!
This technically makes you a guest at the Hotel and as such, you can make use of the Luggage facilities at the Hotel. We did maybe suggest we had checked out that day, rather than just arrived, to avoid any questions but as far as we were concerned we were well within our rights having booked a Daybed to use the Bellhop. A good tip ensured the path was smooth. This way also ensures you get to really enjoy the layover, sprawled out bay a Las Vegas Pool being waited on. A perfect end to the trip
This may be less appealing if you are wanting to Explore the strip as the money is wasted if you are not going to use the facilities But shop around and pool beds can be picked up quite cheaply.
Mandalay Bay Pool Daybed
We LOVE the Mandalay Bay Pool but we never get to experience it. It has two drawbacks, it’s miles from anything and It gets REALLY busy, so we tend to avoid it. The one thing it is near is the Airport, so Cheaper Ubers, so for our purposes today PERFECT and as we had a nice plush Daybed all to ourselves who cares about the bun fight for sun loungers!
For $100 we picked up a Day bed in the Adults only Moorea Beach Club. A private Oasis away from the main pool area. You still have access to everything that makes the Mandalay Bay Beach Awesome, The Wave Pool, The Lazy River, etc, but the hordes do not have access to you. There is also a great hot tub right by the bar. With our bags safely stowed with the bellhop, we took our beach bag and went to enjoy the facilities!
Sea Breeze Cafe
First up was Breakfast at the Sea Breeze Cafe. There had been a Distinct Lack of Traditional American Breakfasts on this trip, we just seemed too busy or had cheap/free options so we made sure we got a good one today. We had a MyVegas 2 for 1 at the Sea Breeze Cafe so took full advantage. Unfortunately, the Cafe was living up to its name. The Weather in Vegas was Wild. the wind was howling outside, as we noticed on the very bumpy arrival in the Tiny Delta Embraer we Flew in on.
The Palm Trees outside the Restaurant were shaking wildly while ominous black clouds built all around. While we ate breakfast we watched as the weather developed. Unfortunately, we had a lot of time to do this as the service was excruciatingly slow. The food was decent but in no way spectacular. Still at 2 for 1 we can’t complain too much. It took over an hour to grab breakfast but in this time while the wind had kept up it had driven the worst of the cloud away and as such we headed to the Beach Club.
Moorea Beach Club
Back at the Beach Club, the Wind was still howling but the sun was blasting down and when laid out on the bed we were nicely sheltered from the gale. After the early start, it was the perfect way to recharge ready for the flight home.
The Club Itself is very classy. Our waitress was excellent and very attentive, Bar Prices were pretty steep even by Vegas Pool Standards. A bucket of beers was $38 and a Large Cocktail was $22. But this was our last splurge so we bit the bullet. Photography was strictly prohibited due to the Toptional Policy and Privacy but as everyone was decent we snook in a crafty shot or two in!
$100 to sit by a pool would normally feel a little extravagant but under the circumstances, we felt very happy with ourselves.
Mandalay Bay Beach Pool
Apart from the Bar Side Hot Tub, the actual pool in the Moorea Club was a little small and rubbish. However, you have full access to the main pool. So whenever we wanted to cool off we had a choice of splashing around in the wave pool or chilling out in the lazy river. The Tropical Beach setting of the Mandalay Bay Beach Club really is excellent. The wind and impending ad weather kept most people away so it was actually very quiet, but without booking a Day Bed we would not have had access to the pool as we were not guests.
After several hours soaking up the sun and getting through our drinks the time was getting away with us. We literally could have stayed there all day but Time and Virgin Atlantic wait for no man so we grudgingly had to tear ourselves away from the pool and head back to the airport.
Departing Las Vegas
Unfortunately, I had $40 in my pocket that simply couldn’t come home with us. This got fed into a Slot MAchine on the way out of the casino. Our Gambling hadn’t been a great success on this trip but this last Hurrah was sure to pay off. We have a history of last-minute emptying of pockets tuning up big(ish) wins, so fingers crossed…Erm, let’s just say this was out final Tip to the Casino! The only Saving Grave was it took our cash FAST so we would not be late for the Flight.
Bags retrieved from the Bell Serice without a hitch and into an Uber headed for Mccarran. The Airport was nice and quiet and Security, for the second time today, was a breeze. We were in the departures lounge super fast and ready to board.
Virgin Atlantic Economy A330
The Return Leg was pretty similar to the Outbound. The food slightly improved and they didn’t run out of booze, mainly as most people, us included, had their fill in Vegas. The Main Meal Looked pretty ghastly but it was actually quite good basic comfort food, Pulled Pork, Mash, and Beans! The awful legroom of these Leased A330’s meant sleep was hard to come by which meant maximum use was made of the Vera entertainment system.
Breakfast was Inedible, they provided a Granola Bar that has the consistency of a cobblestone along with a cheese croissant “Melt” that was microwaved to hell and simply disgusting. Believe us when we say we are not harsh food critics, we will eat anything and not complain too much, but something is wrong with Virgin’s breakfasts at the minute!
After a long flight, we landed Back In Manchester barely able to remember the life we left a whole 16 days ago. We were both back at work tomorrow scarcely able to believe we were back to normality. The only saving grace was being Renuinted with our beautiful Cat Maui!
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