Covering Ground and Taking Chances

The Good Ole Slot Tournament

The Good Ole Slot Tournament

I recently ventured out to Vegas on a offer for a hotel stay with free entry into a slot tournament. This particular invite was from Gold Coast and I saw it as an opportunity to visit this off strip location to check out a new spot while getting free odds to make a little money. Killing two birds with one stone. I made the 3 night reservation and already knew what I was in for. These slot tournaments are a joke. These slot tournaments are never really a great value unless the house is giving you a freeroll in which I say, “Go for it!”

Slot Tournament Machine at Gold Coast Las Vegas, Nevada

In case any of you out there are wondering, there are a couple ways a slot tournament can be run. There is no strategy to these. It’s simply button mashing. Usually old button mashing too. There are some slots tournaments that have a certain amount of spins or an amount of time. When there is a time limit, it’s best to just hit the button as quickly as possible. The more spins you get in, the more points you rack up. So I’ll give you guys the rundown of how these tournaments go.

  1. You sign-up or check-in to get your machine number and time of play.
  2. Show up on time and sit at the machine you are assigned.
  3. Mash button until the time or amount of spins is up.
  4. Let them record your score.
  5. Return for each round and continue mashing buttons.
  6. Show up for prizes.

Sometimes the big prizes have a time in which they have to be collected by. Make sure you ask if you’re unsure. Asking questions is never a bad thing. Have fun and just enjoy yourself. I hope this little guide helps. Good luck!

 

-The Wolf

Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino Review Las Vegas, Nevada

Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino Review Las Vegas, Nevada

Home to the World Series of Poker, the Rio is set a little away from the strip and continues to attract visitors to their suites. The Rio brings a Brazilian theme without as much festiveness and jubilation.┬áThe colorful decorations and obvious theme don’t lighten the feel of this place. With it’s best days behind it, the Rio continues to bring in guests and offer what it can. Let’s jump in and take a deeper look at the Rio!

The Room – 7/10

Rio All-Suite Hotel Room Las Vegas, Nevada

The first thing that caught my eye when I entered the room was the size of it. They weren’t kidding when they call their rooms suites. There was a lot of space, a sectional couch, coffee table, a small table with chairs, vanity, mini-fridge, and a closet. I was not expecting the room to be so big but it was pretty nice. The furniture was a little worn and used with a few stains. Everything looked and felt dated. I had a great view of the pool area below and I really liked the window treatments that gave everything a yellowish tint. Oh yeah, the entire wall was a window. There was something weird though. There was a window from the shower looking into the bedroom. Here’s a picture of the weird window.

Weird Shower Window at Rio All-Suite Las Vegas, Nevada

The room was pretty nice and would take care of most people’s needs. It was comfortable and had plenty of room. The linens and upholstery just need a little touch up and these rooms would be beautiful. Comfortable, spacious, and clean enough. Not too shabby Rio!

Continue Reading

    Vegas, Vegas, and More Vegas Vegas, Vegas, and More Vegas Vegas, Vegas, and More Vegas Vegas, Vegas, and More Vegas Vegas, Vegas, and More Vegas Vegas, Vegas, and More Vegas

It’s been a busy few weeks and Vegas is the place to be!

I made it a point to get more poker hours in this year and I wanted to put those hours in at one of my favorite places, Las Vegas. I’ve been using every chance I can find to make my way out there and my last trip was on glorious Super Bowl Sunday. Super Bowl weekend is one of the best in Vegas!

Let’s not jump the gun yet. Before Super Bowl weekend, I made my way out to Vegas to hit the felt and catch my bearings. There is nothing like trying out some new places in Vegas whenever you get the chance. This time I was able to try a new place called Beer Park which is attached to Paris. A great beer selection with your typical bar food but it’s done right.

Beer Flight and Backyard BBQ Dog at Beer Park Las Vegas Nevada

I couldn’t decide on one beer so I went with the flight. Let me tell you, there were no bad selections on it. Paired with the Backyard BBQ Dog and you’re good to go. It’s nice to sip some beer and have a bacon wrapped dog with it. Plus, that view will keep you coming back for more.

Beer Flight at Beer Park in Paris Las Vegas Nevada

Look at that view! It’s a pretty cool rooftop sports bar with a casual vibe. Definitely check it out when you get the chance.

After Beer Park, it was off to Fremont Street to see what was crackin’ downtown.

East Fremont in Downtown Las Vegas Nevada

Made my way over into East Fremont to see some more of Container Park. I wasn’t quite sure what Container Park offered and it blew my mind.

Container Park in Downtown Las Vegas Nevada

Take a step into this great arena of boutique shops and restaurants and embrace it. This place is beautiful and there is something for everyone. Take the kids to the playground and enjoy the storage container shops. It’s really a cool place and a great use for these shipping containers. It was just a wonderful night seeing everyone exploring this community and enjoying the businesses here.

It was time to get back to the strip and hit the tables for some more poker action. Oh yeah, if you ever want to get downtown without paying a fortune on Uber, Lyft, or taxis, just get a bus ticket on the strip and ride the Deuce or the SDX downtown. They are cheap, convenient ways to get around town. Try it!

My hunger was picking up on my way back to the strip and I hit up one of my favorite Italian spots in Mirage, Portofino. Now I’ve had lamb chops before but nothing comes close to these bad boys. These were the best I’ve ever had.

Lamb Chops at Portofino Mirage Las Vegas Nevada

I know the lighting isn’t great but these were amazing. I cut those lamb chops with a butter knife. This is a nice restaurant and I felt weird using my hands to get all the meat off the bone but I just couldn’t help myself. You just have to try these once in order to understand how good lamb can be. So good!

Then it was off to the tables for the beautiful swings of poker. There wasn’t really any hands that stick out too much from the trip besides getting hit with a few set over sets. That’s always fun. It’s been weird just breaking even over the past few trips but I suppose that happens when you’re going for value. Sometimes after I bust, I just need to get up and go for a walk.

The Bellagio had some cool displays up for the Chinese New Year that are worth a look.

Chinese New Year Display in Bellagio Las Vegas Nevada

They filled one of their foyers with a huge Chinese New Year display. It was pretty amazing seeing what they came up with. There were a lot of people taking pictures and I think they captured the essence of the holiday in a festive and honorable way.

Year of Rooster at Bellagio Las Vegas Nevada

It was definitely the Year of the Rooster up in there.

Bellagio also had a cool sculpture gallery near the “O” Theatre. When I look at art, I don’t really know what I’m looking for but I can tell you that these take an immense amount of work and skill.

Sculpture Gallery in the Bellagio Las Vegas Nevada

I think Bellagio does a great job creating a high-end, opulent environment that I believe their clientele appreciate. Take a walk through and enjoy everything they offer. I tend not to go to the Bellagio since it is a little further off the strip and I’m just a little lazy. If you’ve never been, take the time to experience this amazing place and take it all in.

Fountains at Bellagio Las Vegas Nevada

Oh yeah, they have a free fountain show that happens everyday right outside.

Fast forward a couple weeks and I was back in Vegas for the Super bowl. I figured this was a great time to hit the tables and get in the action.

Beers and Poker During the Super Bowl Las Vegas Nevada

Started with a small stack at the beginning of the game and this kind gentleman decided to double me up with my jacks. Thank you sir!

That was a great game by the way. That 4th quarter action was insane. The room was alive and there was so much yelling and cheering. It was intense, plus Excalibur was giving away a bunch of money for every field goal, touchdown, and safety. Great promotions, action, and beer!

Later, I made my way over to MGM Grand and noticed they totally renovated the Rain Forest Cafe. That whole area became a artsy, retro-gaming area. It looked awesome and I was able to get a few pictures.

Remodeled Area in MGM Grand Las Vegas Nevada

They moved the horse racing quarter game! I love how everything in the area isn’t about gambling but giving people a good time with each other.

Remodeled Area in MGM Grand Las Vegas Nevada

Off to the side they had some video games, pool tables, and shuffleboard. Great renovation MGM!

Turns out the game at MGM wasn’t popping and I didn’t want to wait for a seat so I ran back to Excalibur. It was a good move too.

Poker Chips at Excalibur Las Vegas Nevada

There was a lot needed run good and I was just gettin’ the money in good. You ever have those games where all of your draws complete and the other player has a 2-pair or a set? Yeah, that’s how this game was running. The game went deep into the night and I got hit with a few hard hands. I put someone all in for about $135 when I had pocket kings and he had pocket queens. I hit my set… but the board is a flush and he has the queen. Just my luck. Can’t complain though, the game was still good. On a side note, never a bad way to end a trip than with a straight flush.

The Nuts at Excalibur Las Vegas Nevada

I did get there on the river with a pretty ugly hand, but sometimes you need to have a few of those in your range. Should have priced me out.

It’s been a busy few weeks and I’m sure things won’t slow down anytime soon. Stick around and see what happens on the felt in the future. If you happen to catch me out and about, say hi and we’ll grab a drink! Cheers!

 

-Diligent Wolf

    And We’re Off! And We’re Off! And We’re Off! And We’re Off! And We’re Off! And We’re Off!

So the new year is in full effect and I’ve hit the ground runnin’.

The California Swing started over at Thunder Valley and I tried their Action 8. It was a $100,000 guarantee with 8 people max on each table. I was able to grind down to the last 3 tables in the first flight.

Chip Stack First Shot at Action 8 in the California Swing Thunder Valley Lincoln California

I made a few hands and got paid off on them. I flopped a full house with pocket 8’s on a 8-4-4 flop and was able to induce pocket aces to shove on the turn for a full double. After the bubble broke, I was really short stacked and found pocket 6’s which ran into pocket jacks. No help, and I busted for a min cash. It was a good experience but you really have to be ready to be grinding for 8+ hours.

I drove back home with a little more than my buy-in and figured I’d take another shot at it in another flight the next day. So I came back and jumped right back in.

Second Bullet in Action 8 in the California Swing Thunder Valley Lincoln California

It’s weird because I played the second bullet much different than my first one. I played a lot more aggressive and had bigger swings in my stack. I got coolered and flopped a set of 8’s (three of a kind) and the villain turned a straight. That cost me half my stack but I was optimistic. I eventually picked up pocket queens and raised, only to get a bunch of callers. The flop was A-4-J and the players in early position check to me. I bet out and get one caller in later position from me. The turn is another A which I figure is a great card for me and I jam. The last player tanks for a while and calls with KJ. And wouldn’t you know it, the river is a K, giving him a bigger two pair than mine. Bust.

I fired two bullets and figured I’d take a couple days off and watch the rain. It’s been raining a lot up in Northern California. I decided to get outta the rain and hop on down to Las Vegas. Before I knew it…

Planet Hollywood on Las Vegas Strip Nevada

A few free nights over at Flamingo and hittin’ the games during CES convention. The games were juicy and there was definitely money on the tables to be had.

The next day I made my way downtown for a few in-flight offers I saw and took advantage of those.

Fremont Street Experience Downtown Las Vegas Nevada

That Fremont Street always takes me back to those Vegas glory days. There is just so much history down there. The Downtown Grand was giving me some free food and a little freeplay, so I made my way over there for some food at Freedom Beat.

Jambalaya from Freedom Beat at Downtown Grand in Las Vegas Nevada

For some reason, the cold and rain was making me want some jambalaya. Perfect amount of spice with succulent shrimp and sausage. The texture was a little drier than I’d like but you can’t have it all. If you get a chance to get downtown, definitely hit up the Downtown Grand.

Downtown Grand in Las Vegas Nevada

Always nice to find the smaller places around town and see what else Vegas has to offer.

On the way back, I took a short little break at one of Vegas’s new spots, the Lucky Dragon. This is a Chinese casino that has just opened and I didn’t want to call it Chinese themed because they were going for an authentic Chinese experience here. Most of the staff speak Cantonese and Mandarin and the signage is all Chinese with English as secondary. The interior was beautiful but the casino floor seemed a little small.

Glass Dragon at The Lucky Dragon Las Vegas Nevada

They have a giant glass dragon hanging from the ceiling as their centerpiece. I only played a little keno at the bar to get a Baileys and coffee.

Bailey's and Coffee at the Lucky Dragon Las Vegas Nevada

Nothing like a hot drink on a chilly Vegas night. The casino was quite a trek and I wouldn’t recommend checking it out unless you’re native Chinese or really into Asian casinos. Most of the offerings are pretty standard.

Then it was back to the strip for some more poker action. I played for a while at the MGM Grand and the games were pretty good. I got hit with two pair over two pair early on and was short stacked. It was pretty crazy though because I was down to $18 at this table. I know most people just rebuy in case they get a big hand so they can get paid but I always like to nurse the little stack and see what I can do. I ran it up with a few hands.

Poker Chips at MGM Grand Las Vegas Nevada

I had a suited ace that I shoved with preflop and hit a flush. Then I had aces that turned a set against a lady’s two pair. Finally I flopped a boat with pocket tens against a lady’s AQ on a A-A-T flop. Always need some run good to make that money. I ended the session up and heard the floor managers talking about this thing called the Cupcake ATM. I didn’t know this was a thing. It was connected to the Linq which is right next door to Flamingo. On my way back I had to see it.

Cupcake ATM at Sprinkles at the Linq Las Vegas Nevada

There it was in all of it’s glory. You can get cupcakes anytime you please. It’s at a place called Sprinkles in the alley. It was a good cupcake too. Moist and rich without being unbearably sweet.

This was a great little trip out the Vegas and I’m sure it will be the first of many for this year. I hope all of you are having some run good in 2017 and have the best of luck. Good luck and until next time!

 

-Eager Wolf

    Year End Holiday Wrap Up Year End Holiday Wrap Up Year End Holiday Wrap Up Year End Holiday Wrap Up Year End Holiday Wrap Up

It’s that time of year to wrap things up again. The year is coming to a close and the holidays have been pretty easy going.

Thanksgiving took me back to Tennessee to see the family and there is nothin’ like having your flight delayed by Delta.

Delta Airlines Waiting to Take Off

It was insane. My first flight was going to be delayed and they told me I would miss my connection. I had to come back to the airport in 8 hours to fly through the night. So I ran back home, did some work, and came back for the evening flight. When I showed up in the evening, it turned out that the flight was overbooked. They asked a if anyone would stay behind and take a flight in the morning for a $500 travel voucher. You know I’m not one to pass up some value and would rather sleep in my own bed one more night, so I took it.

I came back the next day and was ready to see the family. The flight was long but pretty easy. I know it’s always a hassle gettin’ around during the holidays. Delta doesn’t make it any easier either.

Home for the Holidays at Nashville Airport

I landed in the music city with my momma waitin’ to pick me up. Once we got back home, I was welcomed by my mom and brother’s 5 dogs. It was intense but I was prepared for the week.

No matter where you go, nothing will ever compare to mom’s cooking. People always ask me about good Korean food and I just tell them that my mom’s is the best. My momma was ready to make all of my favorites and cooked up a storm.

Mom's Home Cooking

Time to pack on those holiday pounds.

My brother and his wife wanted to hit up a local casino, Harrah’s Metropolis, and I can’t turn down a chance to see new places. We made the short drive out there and it wasn’t too impressive.

Harrah's Metropolis in Illinois

The outside looked drab and dead. I guess the cold, rainy weather didn’t help much either. We got in, checked in, and had a few drinks before hitting the casino floor.

Hotel Room at Harrah's Metropolis, Illinois

The room was a little nicer than I had expected. The tub was actually pretty big and I could stretch out in it. I’m pretty tall and enjoyed the over-sized tub. Comfortable bed but the rest of the furniture looked a little worn with a few stains. I figured I wouldn’t spend much time up there and made my way to the floor.

Harrah's Metropolis Casino Floor Illinois

The floor was pretty small and had most games with pretty low minimums. The low limit blackjack tables only paid 6 to 5 on blackjacks. The keno and video poker payouts were alright but not great. I was looking forward to hitting the poker room but was informed by the dealers on the floor that the poker room was closed. The place was nothing to go out of your way for.

Late Night Cheeseburger at Harrah's Metropolis, Illinois

I ended the short night with a cheeseburger that wasn’t too bad, especially if you had some drinks. I decided to call it and get some sleep.

Before heading back home, we had to go see the giant Superman in his hometown.

Giant Superman at Metropolis, Illinois

It looked like he could use the company and I figured I’d give him a shout out. There wasn’t much else in the town and made our way back home.

Thanksgiving was good and we ate plenty of good food. Played some Uno and Pictionary with some movies on the TV and it felt just like holidays. The week always flies by and I was back in Cali just playing out the rest of the year.

I was out in Reno quite a bit enjoying the poker run good and free drinks.

Knob Creek on the Rocks at Atlantis Reno, Nevada

No one pours Knob Creek like the bartenders at Atlantis. Having a few drinks and enjoying the live music during the cold nights.

Back at home, the holiday season was creeping up. I went with a small Rosemary tree and some Wild Turkey for the Christmas season.

Wild Turkey with Rosemary Christmas Tree

Cheers and I hope the holiday season brings you and your loved ones joy and happiness. Share this time with those you love and spread the goodwill! I hope you all get everything you wish for!

Baby Wolf Gettin' Some Legos for Christmas

Yes, that’s me with the Legos and my big brother getting a globe for Christmas.

Merry Christmas and happy holidays! Good luck ringing in the New Year and I hope to see more of your faces in the future! Let’s make it a great one.

 

-Merry Wolf