Station Casinos has been sending a monthly offer recently for 3 nights plus some free play at any of their casinos so I took them up on one night at Green Valley Ranch. I haven't stayed there in a couple of years but have played there a little bit and always liked the place. I moved over there after 2 nights at THEHotel and it was a little culture shock. The hotel at GVR is about as sedate as any in Vegas with not only no wait at either the Valet or Front Desk but virtually no one else around on a Monday afternoon! I was told at check-in that they had closed their smoking floor but could offer me a "balcony suite" but could only smoke on the balcony. Fine. As long as I don't have to walk a mile for a smoke but its seems rather unwise to close all of your smoking rooms at once at a hotel/CASINO!
The balcony "suite" was really just a slightly larger regular room with a patio as opposed to a balcony. The room was very similar to the one I had a few years ago though it has been recently "refreshed" with new carpet, linens and a flat-screen TV. In addition to the king bed, there was a large chair and ottoman, small writing desk and armiore that served at the TV stand. The bed was pretty comfortable but nothing to write home about. The patio was less than inviting as a place to hang out. It overlooked bare rooftop and walls with the stench of roofing asphalt permeating the air. Great to smoke on and not much else. The room was also equiped with a Bose Wave radio, wired and wireless Internet, robes and slippers and iron/board. The bathroom was almost an exact replica of the bathroom I had the previous 2 night at Mandalay Bay and the same as just about every bathroom built in Las Vegas over the past decade. It was so similar that even the little contained for Q-Tips was the same at both places! There is a large bath tub and shower stall on one side, twin sink vanity in the middle and a seperate water room to the other side with a ton of marble tossed in for good measure. It was stocked with just about everything you would expect from a 4-star hotel.
The casino at GVR is definitely one of the nicer off-strip properties and has some decent games to boot. I have played here occasionally over the years and usually had decent luck and this trip was no different. There are quite a few of the video poker machine I enjoy (5-play 8/5 BP) and after a rough start, I came back and held my own over the rest of my stay and ended up with a ton of play when it was said and done. The drink service in my location was only adaquate but I also was pretty far from any of the bars.
I ate a few meals in-house during my stay and GVR is another place suffering from the cost cutting plague that is killing the Vegas casino coffee shop and late night dining in general. They recently closed their coffee shop, moved the Original Pancake House into it's space which is now open something like 6AM - 8PM, if even that late. If you need something to eat at midnight, you choices are room service and FatbUrger. Pretty disappointing. My room service meal was decent enough but the menu was somewhat limited. I opted for a club sandwich which was pretty good and delivered quick but still would prefer to have some options. I also had a breakfast sandwich on my way out the door at the Turf Grill near the Sportsbook that was excellent.
Staying at GVR is quite a different experience from a Strip mega-resort. If you never stayed at GVR, it is unlike any hotel/casino in Vegas. The hotel is about as detached from the casino as possible while still being connected. The walk from your room to the casino leads down a hallway past more hotel rooms to a non-descript door out to the public area. No elevator opening into a bustling casino here. While the hotel is definitely shooting for a more upscale environment, the casino is very much a locals joint with loads of video poker and the obligatory movie theater and food court. Overall, I enjoyed my stay as it was a nice change of pace to the bigger, more choatic places on the Strip. And while it is a few miles off the Strip, easy access to the Beltway makes it no more than a 10 minute trip most times of day. If they keep sending free nights, no doubt I will definitely be staying here again in the future.
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