After waiting to the last minute to book this trip, it was surprisingly difficult to get rooms near the Strip for my last 2 nights. The first night, I got lucky at Hard Rock and ended up with a comped room. For the second night, I decided to book online at Sunset Station. I have never stayed out there before so seemed like a good time to cross it off the list. Station Casinos now offers an interesting feature when booking a room, you can offer to take an upgrade at a discounted price at the time of the booking if it's available at check-in. It was $20 for a junior suite, normally $50 more than a regular room or a full suite for $50, which is $200 more. It's almost like doing the front desk "$20 trick" upfront! Since the room was comped, I said "What the hell!" and offered to take either one. When I arrived at Sunset, I had totally forgotten about this until I was about to walk up to the desk. We start the process and he mentions that my room is comped. He then says that he can upgrade me to a suite for free. I ask if its a Junior Suite and say no, a full suite. Nice! It's a cool feature but its even better for free.
The suite was on the 4th floor at the end of the hallway and is gigantic. Considerably larger than the 1BR suite at South Point that we have become used to. As you enter the room, there is a large, marble-covered bar which leads to the dining area. Next to that is the a seating area with 2 couches, a large coffee table fronted by a big flat-screen TV. There is a half bath off the seating area as well. The master bath was also enormous with dual sinks seperated by a makeup area, a large jacuzzi tub and stand alone shower stall. The bedroom, which was small compared to the rest of the room, was the least impressive part of the suite but did have a very comfortable bed. While the suite clearly was a bit on the older side, everything was in very good shape and nicely decorated if not a bit tacky for my tastes. I ended up hanging out quite a bit in the room and really enjoyed it. The seating area made a great place to do a little computer work while watching the big TV.
Downstairs, Sunset Station is the quintessential Station property with the standard line-up of restaurants; Italian, Mexican, Steak, Buffet and Food Court and locals amenities like movie theater and bowling alley. One of the few differences from other Station places is a Hooters restaurant. The pool area is one of the larger ones for a locals casino with plenty of space to layout with not a lot of company. One of the changes for the better around town recently was the decision to dump the Coco's Restaurants and go back to in-house coffee shops at the Station hotels. I applaude this decision and had a great late-night breakfast at the Grand Cafe. I also enjoyed a quick bit at the bowling alley snack, which was very tasty. Im not a bowler but love their snack bars! As for the casino... Ugghh! I had the worse run of the trip at Sunset and had one of the worst sessions ever. I literally walked away from the machine at one point shaking my head, wondering how I could have lost so much so fast. Fortunately, I had done fairly well up to that point so that cushioned the blow a little. When multi-play video poker goes bad, it goes BAD! Aside from the distaste from getting my ass handed to me, Sunset Station is actually a pretty nice place to play. The drink service definitely could have been better though.
By far, the largest issue I had with Sunset Station happened at 6:15AM when I was awakened by a guy with gas-powered grass blower directly under my window. I dealt with it for a few minutes before going downstairs and absolutely exploding on this poor landscaper. I followed it up with a trip to the front desk where the clerk said that she couldnt really do anything about it. Really? The vendor YOU ARE PAYING is waking your guests at 6AM. I think you can have a little chat with them! Aside from the horrible wake up call, I enjoyed the stay at Sunset for the most part. The free upgrade was very nice and the room was great. The casino and hotel has just about anything you would expect from a Strip hotel except for the Strip. I wouldn't hesitate to stay there again for a night but anything longer than that would probably be a bit of a bore. If you need to stay in Henderson, you won't be disappointed but you certainly also aren't going to get the "Vegas Feel" like you would out on the Strip.
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