MGM Grand is in the midst of a long overdue renovation and the first batch of newly remodeled rooms can now be booked. Since I am actually a fan of MGM, I had to give the new digs a try. The remodel is being widely promoted with press releases and big ads on the side of the building. There is even a mock-up of a new room in the lobby which is pretty interesting. With such hype, I was eager to see the improvements they made over the original room which are well past tired.
I arrived to a near empty lobby at 4PM and was quickly helped at the Front Desk. It took a little while to hunt down a smoking room for me but they ended up coming through and in just a few minutes I was in my room on the 14th floor overlooking the valet, Hooters and the airport. The first impression of the room was that it vaguely reminded me of the rooms at Aria with a lot of brown with a decent amount of chrome thrown in. There is also one wall that is about 50% mirror and 2 large, colorful (some would say ugly) pictures on the other walls. There is an armiore/TV stand that also contains a mini-bar with a decent sized flat screen atop of it. Also built-in is a media connection panel with virtually every kind of port you could ever need. The desk is on the slightly small side but adaquate enough for working and the desk chair was the most comfortable in the room. A couple of cool features... When the motorized blinds are fully retracted, there is no visible drapes at all, just window. Also, each light fixture had a power receptacle in the base, making it easy to keep multiple devices charged - a huge bonus for any road warrior.
Being quite happy with what I saw in the bedroom, I moved on to the bathroom to see the changes in there and in a continuation a recent trend, the bathroom was left largely untouched. This is the 3rd "remodeled" room I have had in the past few months and all 3 failed to redo the bathroom. The only changes from the original MGM rooms are new faucets and showerhead and a half remodeled room is a disappointment no matter how nice the other half is.
Downstairs, renovations are taking place as well. The casino, like the old rooms, was pretty tired. It is now filled with a new look and all of the latest and greatest games, even video Greyhound Racing! I found a few machines to my liking and had a pretty good run that night and the following morning. The drink service was horrendous, however. I am still waiting for a bottle of water. The restaurant roster has been pretty stable over the past few years with something from virtually every cuisine and budget. I didn't indulge much, only having a late night pastrami sandwich at the Stage Deli. It was merely mediocre with a much better sandwich at either Canter's at TI or Carnegie at Mirage.
As disappointed as I was seeing that the bathroom was untouched, I really do like what they did with the bedroom. The space is well-thought out, nicely decorated and comfortable to hang out in. It is definitely a huge upgrade from the original room but they could have knocked it out of the park if they did the bath as well. With that said; with the great line up of restaurants, one of the best pools in town, giant casino and good location - MGM is still one of my favorite Strip casinos.
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