We stayed in Vdara as a part of our Grand Canyon trip, to fulfill my partner's one of the dream bucket lists. Then, we thought we would give LV a try.
We are no gamblers, don't drink much, but we are interested in the whole artificial setting in a city scale, in the desert, and we are also interested in how the tourists sustain its existence, through ups and downs.
The City Center was formerly the site of Boardwalk hotel and a Bellagio staff parking lot before the whole area is redeveloped in 2005, initiated by MGM with Dubai money. The development include Cosmopolitan. Aria, Vdara(Condo hotel) and Mandarin Oriental and its residence towers.
The location is undoutedly the best. But, remember that, in Las Vegas, you just walk at least 20-30 min. just to get through a hotel on the strip without getting distracted. This is an ideal location for a casual tourist, like us, who doesn't spend time in Casinos and who just have 2-3 days to get around.
Particularly, Aria appeared to be the better sister to Vdara, and has a nice modern casino and posh restaurants, tall ceilings in public levels, but better and more luxurious interior decoration didn't mean much, once we spotted prostitutes and female pimps arranged by the casino staff.
(difficult to access from the strip)
Strangely, both Aria and Vdara, sharing its arrival/valet area on the second level from the strip, the access is more easy with the car than walking pedestrians.
The signs were hard to find or follow to get to Vdara from the street. And, the lobby and elevator hall, situated on the second level, was hard to get to, and it really takes 15 min to get back from the strip on foot.
(No extra features)
For Vdara, other than the hotel front desk, and the compulsory valet parking service policy, there is no real contact with the staff as they do not have any feature! Someone below mentioned, lacking Soul, and I totally agree with his perception.
The canteen is the only food and drink source in the building. Operated as self-service but very slow, and they close early! In the morning, we feel forced to compromise a lot, in limited seating area, and the breakfast menu option was not great. Coffee and Snack kinds. But their pasty and coffee, smoothies are expensive, but very good.
The gym, included in your extra service fee, was inside the spa and doesn't look inviting, also limited numbers of weight training sets.
I already accepted the water bottles, gym, internet, Valet parking as the extra compulsory charge at a set price. But, the management probably knew the guests don't use much of these features. We still tip a lot to the valet parking guys each time, or they keep you in the lobby for a very long while. But, including the extra fee, it still is a good bargain compared to others with shabby rooms in a distant location.
(issues with front desk)
The front desk receptionists can be really nice or nasty, depending on who to talk to. We, initially ran into some really nasty Chinese staff who refused to confirm and hold our room when we called from Grand Canyon, to notify our midnight arrival in the same night. -but, the room was already paid through their website! And, other than the apologetic manager who sort out this matter, we had to give tips to other receptionists only to re-confirm the room type when we arrived for additional night check-in (facing higher floor, the Bellagio fountain facing at already set prices). Then the room was not ready still at 4pm as promised. Although tipped, she did nothing until I called the hotel at 4:15pm. After another hour and half, we were allocated to the slightly disappointing lower level location.
There is a cocktail bar, in the lobby, but I have seen only one guy using it for one afternoon, otherwise, it was inactive. Another Lounge type room was closed, next to the foot bridge to The Bellagio.
Closely located to the Strip is a plus, but, poor wayfinding from the ground level to return to the lobby was tough each night, and walking through the parking entrance of the Cosmopolitan, climbing on to the windy and isolated staircase next to the fire station are rather humiliating and very inconsiderate.
For the rating, I would still give 4.5 out of 5, IF this was in NYC or Chicago in a boutique hotel category. But, I am giving 3.5-4, considering Other hotels' exceedingly high standard and Vdara's accomodation-only ANNEX approach to Aria, lacking the quality services. Vdara's poor reception experience and stiff-faced valet parking staff need big improvement.
However, although I point out some flaws and disappointment, compared to Hilton, MGM signature, and dingy northern strip hotels, or even Planet Hollywood hotel rooms, this is far superior option for many travelers for its location and the great room fittings. You will still keep your dignity and find a tranquility for several hours each night after experiencing the double-faced Sin city with excess of everything.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Do Vegas differently and escape to Vdara Hotel & Spa at ARIA Las Vegas. This breathtaking eco-friendly, non-gaming, smoke-free, all-suite retreat by MGM Resorts International is unlike any other hotel on The Strip. Vdara Hotel & Spa is steps away from ARIA Resort & Casino and connected to Bellagio. Vdara is also a half-mile from the Roller Coaster at New York New York, and 1 mile from the Forum Shops. Amenities in suite kitchens/kitchenettes include refrigerators, stove-tops, microwaves, and cookware/dishes/utensils (upon request). The resort fee is added to all room reservations upon check-in. Hotel resort fee includes: high-speed Internet access (in-suite), local & toll-free calls, Fitness Center access, newspaper available daily, two bottles of water per day, and turndown service upon request. Vdara is also dog-friendly (not pet-friendly) and welcomes dogs up to 70lbs, or two dogs with a combined weight of 70lbs. There is an additional $50 per night fee per V Dog reservation along with $75 per stay non-refundable cleaning fee. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Vdara Hotel And Spa
- Vdara Hotel Las Vegas