Okay, that’s not true. Steve McQueen didn’t sleep at Planet Hollywood. The Planet Hollywood has only been open a few years and poor Steve has been dead for quite some time. But I slept here in a room (#1602) with lots of Steve McQueen memorabilia.That’s kind of close, right?
In December, I got to stay at Planet Hollywood for the first time since it opened in 2007, replacing the former Aladdin casino resort. I managed to score a pretty sweet price ($59/night times 3 nights) through my Harrahs (oops, Caesars) Total Rewards account. I was very much looking forward to my stay here, since I’ve enjoyed the public facilities of the property since it opened. Here’s my quickie review.
- Planet Hollywood used to feel a bit too remote to me. It seemed like an awfully long walk from anywhere except Paris. Now there is a pedestrian walkway over the Strip connecting it to the Cosmopolitan and just a short walk or tram ride from Bellagio, CityCenter, or the Monte Carlo. Suddenly, Planet Hollywood has a great location on the Strip.
- The bed was comfy, the room stylish, and the bathroom was very large, with two sinks. As a solo traveler, I didn’t really need two sinks, but I certainly enjoyed all the counter space.
- I loved looking at all the Steve McQueen movie memorabilia throughout the room. Even though I haven’t actually seen any of those movies.
- I love that there are so many good, inexpensive dining choices here, either in the resort proper or a short walk away in the Miracle Mile shops. PF Changs is always a solid choice where I can dine at the bar. This time, I got to chat with some guys from Toronto there. There’s also the Spice Market Buffet and Pinks Hot Dogs (although to be honest, I found Pinks a bit of an overpriced disappointment). I enjoyed breakfast one morning at Ocean One Bar and Grill (Downtown prices with a Strip atmosphere), located in the Miracle Mile. That was a much better choice than La Salsa Cantina, also located in the shops, which offers a breakfast deal.
- There’s a good video poker bar at the Extra Lounge. Too bad more people aren’t actually playing video poker there. Most people just grabbed a drink and left.
- I love the vibe of the casino here. It’s always lively and has good background music.
- It was awfully dark at this hotel. The lobby is very dimly lit. My room was so dark that even when I went around and turned every light in the room on, it was still too dark for me. I’m sure some people love the “romantic mood” of dim lighting, but I like to be able to see what I”m doing.
- The hallways to the rooms are charcoal grey, at least on the floor I stayed on. I found it very dismal.
- No free wifi. I had to pay $13.95 per day for Internet access. Boo. But hey, at least it wasn’t added onto my room charges automatically as a “resort fee”. I’ll give them that. Still? Pony up for the free wifi, you cheapskates.
- The room safe was placed very high up in the closet. I’m 5’5″ and I couldn’t see into it even standing on my tiptoes. So naturally, I couldn’t use it. #FAIL, Planet Hollywood.
- I hate to put this under “bad,” because it really wasn’t bad. I happened to notice that the room was starting to show its age. It was still nice enough, though.
- I couldn’t find any Lord of the Rings slot machines here. Sad.
- Caesars “all you can eat” buffet deal is a PITA. The line for the Spice Market Buffet snaked through the casino several times and out into the Miracle Mile Shops. It was like the queue for Spaceship Earth at Disney World! What a ridiculous waste of time and money. I bypassed it, walked up the street, got right in to Mon Ami Gabi, where I also was able to snag an immediate table on the patio with a view of the Bellagio fountain show. Who do you think had a better meal, me or those poor schmucks waiting for over an hour to get into a buffet? Yeah, it’s a good buffet, but it’s not that good.
There is no ugly. Overall, I enjoyed my stay here and would gladly stay again.