Vegas in 36 Hours: Take a Nap, Then Party! (Las Vegas & Los Angeles Recap, Part 1)

Daniil Vnoutchkov

Hi everyone!

Tonight, I’ll be talking about my time in Las Vegas, which ended up boiling down to one jam-packed day of doing “everything”. We were way too jet-lagged on the first day, so we spent a lot of it napping…oops. But, allow me to elaborate.

This trip was one that I took with my boyfriend, since neither of us had been to Las Vegas (as an ~adult~) or Los Angeles. He’s from Romania, and Los Angeles has been on his bucket list for a long time, so this was the perfect opportunity for both of us. Of course, I was a bit nervous since it was my first time traveling with a significant other. But, we had a fantastic time and already can’t wait for our next trip! So if you’re debating whether or not to travel with your own significant other, I recommend it. You can learn so much when you travel with that person: what makes them tick, their approach to problem-solving, and how they like to spend their time in a new city!

Now without further ado, let’s get into the recap:

Day 1: Recovery and Lots of Food

Getting to Las Vegas was pretty smooth sailing, since we had a direct flight at 8am that got us into Vegas around 10am local time! By the time we got to our hotel (The Venetian) around noon – with an early check-in, lucky us! – we were quite ready for lunch. Our plan was to find something relatively quick and filling, because we were also extremely tired and ready for a midday nap. After nixing the few restaurants that we passed in the Venetian on our way out of the hotel, and not realizing that they had an indoor food court (the property is huge, and we were sick of walking so much), we wandered out onto the Las Vegas Strip without a clue of where to go. By this point, we were still in our airplane clothes, the sun was out in full-force, I didn’t have any sunscreen on, and I had a black cardigan on that I didn’t want to remove due to the lack of sunscreen. So, as you may be guessing, I wasn’t too happy! You could even say I was getting hangry…I won’t say it, but you can. After vetoing a few options, we decided to just duck into the Denny’s that was less than a block down from the hotel. It helped that a worker was handing out 20% coupons outside. Well played, Denny’s.

Once our bellies were full and we were well on our way to being in respective food comas, we made our way back to the Venetian for what was supposed to be an hour-long nap. It ended up being a 3 hour nap, with us not getting back up until around 5pm! Now keep in mind, I had envisioned our first day as one of lounging at the pool with drinks all day. Too bad I hadn’t factored in the jet lag! At this point, I was in a slight panic that we’d wasted our first day in Vegas. Luckily, Adrian is definitely more of a “Type B” (at least, in our relationship) and calmed me down, reminding me that we were on vacation – so, we deserved to relax and take it easy if necessary! With that in mind, we decided to make the most of whatever sun we could get…which was not much, due to the pool being on a rooftop and the sun beginning its descent at that point. Still, we relaxed for about an hour before the pool closed, and then went back to figure out where to go for dinner. We both were craving Italian food, and luckily there were quite a few restaurants to choose from inside the Venetian! The one we decided on was Trattoria Reggiano, mostly for the unlimited garlic knots that came with our meal. It was a carbs kind of night.

We ended our evening with a wee bit of gambling in the Venetian casino, mostly for my boyfriend’s sake. That’s not to say that he’s a big gambler, but he certainly likes it more than I do! Call me risk-averse, but I prefer to use my money for more certain outcomes. He also has more luck than I do at casinos since he plays roulette while I stick to the slot machines, so that helps! After gambling, it was time for another “power nap”…I should have known better. Every time I tried to wake up in the interest of going out and experiencing Vegas on our first night, my body kept begging for sleep. And so, I didn’t truly awaken until around 11:30pm! I felt terrible and had that “wasted time” guilt again, before Adrian reassured me (again) that it was really no problem – we would go out the next night to make up for it. And with that, I fell into a heavenly full night of sleep. Which brings us to:

Day 2: Sightseeing, Pool Party, and Clubbing

I woke up the next morning feeling more refreshed than the previous day, although my sleep schedule was very messed up – which caused me to get up at least an hour before I really wanted to. It doesn’t help that I’m a light sleeper (which you may know if you’re familiar with my other travel posts) and the sunlight was streaming through our window. Nevertheless, it was already our last full day in Vegas and I was ready to do as much as possible!

We started the day off with breakfast, Adrian choosing to get a muffin while I waited forever for a smoothie bowl. What can I say? They’re one of my weaknesses. After eating breakfast, we hit the Strip, determined to walk farther down than we had the day before and truly appreciate all of the sights and sounds of Las Vegas’ main attractions. Everything is so big there! It’s a bit surreal to imagine how much time and equipment it must have taken to transport all of the necessary materials to this little oasis in the middle of a desert, let alone the work that countless people put into building up the city with this incredible heat. I found it quite fascinating.

As we walked along the Strip, we decided to make a brief stop in the Bellagio to explore and gamble for a bit. I am proud to say I made a whopping $22 on the slot machines! And after losing 3 of those dollars, I called it quits…but hey, you can’t win them all. After gambling, it was late afternoon and I was worried that we would miss out on another day of sunbathing. So, we each grabbed a quick lunch (him: Panda Express, me: tacos from the Venetian’s CaƱonita) tried to hit the pool again. More specifically, we were heading to Tao Beach, which is known for some wicked pool parties. Alas, this was not to be our day for a rambunctious darty (day-party). For whatever reason, the winds were blowing extra-strong in Las Vegas that afternoon, and so the main pool was closed and Tao Beach was relatively empty. This wasn’t a huge issue for us, as we at least got to go and check it out. Rather, the issue arose in the form of Tao Beach closing less than an hour after we arrived, due to the same “inclement weather” (wind) that closed the main pool. I guess sunbathing by the pool was simply not meant to be on this trip! Slightly defeated, we went back to the hotel room to figure out what to have for dinner that night. Bet you can’t guess what kind of food we decided on…

That’s right, it was Italian food again! I swear, we never get tired of it. This time we ate at Mercato della Pescheria, which was lovely since it was in the Venetian’s replica of Piazza San Marco, and we got to see a violinist perform as well as take in the soothing light of the Venetian “sky” (ceiling).

After dinner, it was time for us to hit the town. I got us onto guestlists for both Omnia and Hakkasan, but unfortunately Omnia’s main room was closed due to it being a quiet Thursday. And of course, with our luck, Calvin Harris was playing the following night – when we would already be in L.A. Argh! Since we had really wanted to see Omnia’s main room versus its patio, we decided to head out shortly after arriving and go to Hakkasan to see Borgeous later that night. Now, this would have been completely fine and relatively painless…had I not worn high, thin heels. I knew what I was in for while walking to Caesar’s Palace and standing up all night at Hakkasan. What I did not account for, however, was the labyrinth that the of Caesar’s Palace mall turned out to be in trying to make it to the casino (and Omnia); and how far the various hotels would make us walk in order to catch a Lyft (you usually have to walk to a remote part of each hotel’s garage). By the time we got to Omnia, my feet were starting to hurt a bit. And by the time we found a Lyft to Hakkasan and were there for a few hours, my feet were borderline numb. Couple this with the fact that I was a bit spoiled from going to college in Miami, where my friends and I would usually get on a guestlist to be at (and sit down at) a promoter’s table, and I was not in the best of moods! Regardless, it was great to be enjoying a fun atmosphere with someone I care about, so all in all it was a great night. My feet may have been screaming at me when I finally took my heels off at the end of the night…but it was well worth it.

Overall, I liked Vegas. But next time, I would definitely pick a weekend (off-season) to visit – and spend a few more days there! However, even with the two days that we had, it was a great experience and a good start to our vacation!

Check back here soon for Part 2 of this trip’s recap. In the meantime, I’d love to know: what’s your favorite thing to do in Vegas?

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