Las Vegas was the one place on our Southwest trip that I had the most problems in planning. There’s so much do to there and so many hotel choices that it was dizzying. I wrote a whole article about my decision making process and why I ended up booking a room at the Delano with AMEX Fine Hotel and Resorts program.
I had every intention of checking our the rooftop bar during our stay.
So why did I throw all of those plans away and change hotels at the last minute?
Part of the miles and points game is flexibility. You never get too hooked on any plan because another option might come up at the last minute. That’s exactly what happened in this case.
Before our trip, I received this offer on some of our American Express Cards through AMEX Offers:
Save 15% & earn 5,000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points on your next qualifying 2+ consecutive night weekend stay until 10/17/2017 at participating hotels in the Hilton Portfolio. Pay with your American Express Card for bookings made by 9/15/2017.
I knew when I saw this that were planning on staying over a weekend for 3 nights in Las Vegas. I had looked at the Tropicana Las Vegas – A DoubleTree by Hilton as one of my options. The price was OK but the Delano was just a better option. With this bonus offer of 15% off and the extra points, I went back and looked at the price again. Instead of just looking for the Tropicana, I searched for all Hilton Hotels in Las Vegas. One hotel in particular was showing very low rates for the nights we needed so I dug a little deeper.
I found a hotel that was charging $127 a night for the weekend and $110 for Monday night. With the bonus points and discounts, I went and changed our plans to stay at:
The Hilton Grand Vacations on Paradise was built in 1999 next to the Las Vegas Hilton and has 419 total rooms split between studio, 1 bedroom and 2 bedroom units. The hotel was fully renovated in 2012 and is undergoing another renovation which was still in progress during our stay. It’s a bit confusing to find the hotel because it sits in the parking lot of the Westgate Casino Hotel (formerly the Las Vegas Hilton) and online directions will often take you through the Westgate property to get to the front gate of the Hilton Grand Vacations building.
I booked through the Hilton website using the AMEX discount code. The total for the three nights of our stay (including a $25 a night resort charge) came to $496.57.
I paid for the room with our American Express Everyday Preferred so I earned 1.5 Membership Rewards points per dollar spent. Not a whole bunch of points but I needed to pay with an American Express card to get the AMEX offer.
I also earned Hilton Honors points. Bunches of points. 20,580 of them to be precise.
5120 – Base Points
1280 – 25% Gold VIP Bonus Points
2560 – 50% Bonus on Base Points
5120 – Hilton Double Up Offer
1000 – MyWay Preferences Bonus Option ( I chose points over a drink at the pool bar)
500 – Las Vegas Tour Bonus (we talked to the Timeshare desk for 5 minutes)
5000 – AMEX Offer points
At even a conservative value of 0.5 cents a point, that’s over $100 back in points.
We drove from Grand Canyon to Las Vegas with a stop at Grand Canyon Caverns and Hoover Dam on the way. It was still early evening by the the time we arrived and we were pretty tired but still had dinner plans for that night.
I went to check in while Sharon stayed in the car. I read online that depending on how full the hotel was, they might upgrade Hilton Gold members to a one bedroom suite upon check in. I went through the formalities (drivers license and credit card) and it was becoming quite clear that I was assigned a studio room, exactly what I booked. I kindly asked about the room and the desk agent described the studio to me, very knowledgeably and with great detail. I then asked if they might have any larger rooms available.
At this point I wasn’t looking for a free upgrade, but I was willing to pay for one if the price was right. He said they did have some one bedroom suite rooms available, if I was interested. He described the room and said that he could upgrade me for $35 extra a night. I didn’t haggle because I wanted a 1 bedroom and this was a fair price to pay (although I was kicking myself for not taking the $25 offer they sent me 3 days before check-in). He did say he was putting us into one of the newly renovated rooms on a floor that was just finished because, as a Hilton Gold member, he knew that we would take care of the room. I believe him when he said that they just finished the floors because you could still smell the glue from the carpets in the hallway.
We were assigned room 1408, the second room from the elevator facing towards the Las Vegas Strip. We could see the Westgate Casino from our window.
The room we were assigned was wonderful. If I owned this as a timeshare, I’d be happy to stay here year after year. It was really a great room.
Upon walking in, we entered the living room/kitchen area. We realized during our stay that the artwork on the walls were all photographs of signs at the Neon Museum.
Directly to the left was a FULL kitchen with stove, cook top, refrigerator/freezer, microwave, coffee maker and dishwasher.
The living room was spacious, with a couch, additional chair with a large screen TV and Blu-ray player (videos were available to check out at the lounge)
There was also a desk with four chairs that would be perfect for eating dinner (or to use as nerve center to write blog posts).
The bedroom was equally comfortable with one of the best king size beds we’ve ever slept in. Note that we each had nightstands with lamps, a huge plus in my book.
Just to make it even better, the lamps each had USB and regular outlets on the base.
The bedroom also had a full size flat screen TV that was almost too big to be that close to the bed.
Next to the bedroom was the full size soaking tub and huge closet. I still will never understand the need to put a window from the tub to the bedroom. Is this supposed to be romantic? Of course Sharon needed to Photobomb the picture (Note from Sharon: Mmm.hmmm. That’s right!).
The bathroom was also stylish and very comfortable. We had two sinks along with a large walk in shower.
The one major selling point to the room, for me, was that it had a washer/dryer. I was obsessed about this because it meant we wouldn’t have to lug our clothes to a laundromat in Las Vegas and spend part of a day doing our laundry. Sharon, on the other hand, was convinced the washer and dryer would be so small that we’d only be able to wash one pair of pants at a time. I won that argument. We did all of our clothes over the 3 night stay and were set up for the rest of our trip (Note from Sharon: Yes, dear.).
Was I happy with my last minute change of plans? You bet I was! First of all, there’s no casino as this hotel. While that might be a major downer for some people, it’s a huge plus for us. We’re not gamblers and being able to get from the lobby to our room in less than five minutes is wonderful and a rarity in Vegas.
While this hotel is on the north end of the Las Vegas Strip, it was only a $10 Uber ride to get to the casinos like the New York New York, Bellagio, Paris and Mirage. We never had to wait more than five minutes when we called for a car either.
If I was returning to Vegas, I’d stay here again in a heartbeat (if the price was right).
We loved traveling through the American Southwest. Here’s the other posts we’ve written about our trip:
No, My Carry On Bag Is NOT Too Big To Fit In The Overhead
Hotel Review: MOXY Phoenix Tempe/ASU Area, Tempe, AZ
Our Visit to Mystery Castle (a.k.a. “The House A Man Built By Himself”)
Hotel Review: Hyatt Residence Club Sedona, Piñon Pointe, Sedona, AZ
Our Visit to Bedrock City in Williams, AZ
Hotel Review: Thunderbird Lodge, Grand Canyon, Arizona
Hotel Review: Bright Angel Lodge Cabin. Grand Canyon, Arizona
Our Visit to Grand Canyon Caverns (Warning! They Might Be Haunted!)
Sharon’s Review of the Hoover Dam
What To Do When Your Uber Charge Is Higher Than Expected
Hotel Review: W Hollywood, Hollywood, California
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