Sunday, January 27, 2013

Eating Your Way Through The Las Vegas Buffet

Buffets in Las Vegas have gone upscale - and so have their prices.  The day of the $5.99 buffet is long gone, replaced with gourmet dining in an all you can eat format. Here is a rundown of the most popular buffets in Vegas along with the pricing (current as of Feb. 1, 2013). Meals as described are dinner, unless otherwise stated.

Aria Resort and Casino - The Buffet. This buffet is known for it's quality, variety and comfort for patrons. Extensive renovations were recently completed and the buffet reopened with the hip vibe of the hotel that still allows patrons to dine in comfortable and fairly quiet surroundings. There is a Tandori oven and fish market with cooking done right at the station. Breakfast is $17.99 weekdays, lunch is $20.99 weekdays, dinner is  $31.99 on weekdays, $39.99 on weekends. Brunch available on weekends.

Bellagio - The Buffet.  The Buffet at Bellagio was one of the first to feature gourmet food when it opened in 1998. Offerings include perfect rare beef sirloins, rack of lamb and the best of Italian, Japanese, Chinese, seafood and American cuisines. Breakfast is $17.99 weekdays, lunch is $20.99, dinner $31.99 Monday - Thursday and $37.99 on weekends. A gourmet brunch is available weekends.

Paris Las Vegas - Le Buffet.  Crave French food? Then this buffet won't disappoint.  In a faux village setting, enjoy authentic beef Bourguinon, roast duck or coq au vain.  The made to order crepe station is the highlight of this nightly buffet. There are five food stations, each themed for a particular province of France. Dinner is $30.99 weekdays, $33.99 on weekends.

M Resort and Spa - Studio B Buffet. This off strip buffet was voted the Best Buffet in Las Vegas by the Las Vegas Review Journal in 2010 and has a noteworthy extra - unlimited wine and beer with lunch and dinner. The weekend seafood items go on and on - snow crab legs, oysters, steamed clams and mussels. In addition, a live action cooking studio shows chefs preparing meals on large screens while you dine. This buffet is a bargain! Breakfast weekdays - $10.99. Lunch weekdays - $15.99. Dinner weekdays - $23.99. Weekend Seafood Brunch - $39.99.  Weekend Dinner (Fri., Sat. Sun.) $39.99.  Children's pricing also offered.

Cosmopolitan - Wicked Spoon. Cosmopolitan's Wicked Spoon offers daily and weekend brunch as well as daily and weekend dinners. Small plate meals are the main selections and the beautiful presentations beat many of the other buffets on the strip. Individual portioning allows for more sampling of the many different types of food on the menu such as pork belly banh mi sandwiches, veal sweetbreads, dirty rice and more. Weeknight dinner is $36. $38 on weekends.

Wynn Las Vegas - The Buffet. Voted Best Buffet in Las Vegas by USA Today, guests can indulge in 16 food stations at this buffet.  You'll be spellbound walking through the entryway. Enjoy flavors from around the world, such as Italian porchetta and braised veal short ribs. There is a huge selection of desserts and a dried fruit and cheese station.  Dinner is $36.99 weekdays, $39.99 weekends.

Caesers Palace - Bacchanal Buffet.  No where is the idea of excess more visible than at Caesers new Bacchanal Buffet, a huge $17 million undertaking. There are nine kitchens that prepare more than 580 food items over breakfast, lunch and dinner daily.  The 25,000 square foot dining space offers views of the Garden of the Gods pool complex. The carvery can offer up to nine meats, the Chinese station has excellent dim sum and roast duck.  Don't forget dessert, including made-to-order souffles and chocolate and cheesecake lollipops.  Dinner is $44.99 weekdays, $49.99 weekends.

 Bally's Las Vegas - Sterling Brunch. This brunch is available on Sunday's only and as one of the last vestiges of Old Las Vegas, this buffet features lobster and caviar with unlimited champagne. Held in Bally's Steakhouse, the service is superb, with an $85 per person price that is double the cost of any other buffet on the strip. It is held in Bally's Steakhouse.

Rio - Carnival World Buffet. The Rio is considered the best buffet to take kids, who will find all favorites here like mac and cheese, hamburgers and hot dogs, barbecue sandwiches and make-your-own milkshakes.Adults  can choose from a dim sum station, a noodle bar with a variety of Vietnamese, Thai and Chinese specialties, and a Brazilian churrascaria where meat and veggies are grilled up right in front of you. Other food stations focus on Mexican, American and Italian cuisines, Leave room for dessert -  the  buffet has more than 70 varieties of pies and pastries, cakes, cookies and - best of all - a gelato bar. Prices range from $25 - $40.

Call us to book any of these fine hotels for your visit to Vegas. 516-608-0568.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Disney's New Art of Animation Resort

Say hello to the newest hotel at Disneyworld Florida - the Art of Animation Resort.  This resort, situated near Disney's Pop Century resort, features value priced family suites that can hold up to six guests in four themed areas.  Choose from Finding Nemo Suites, Cars, The Lion King or Little Mermaid themes rooms. In addition, there are 864 standard rooms as well. 

The Family Suites feature three separate sleeping areas, including a Master Bedroom with queen sized bed, a sleeper sofa that converts to a double bed, and a unique "Inovabed" that will have the kids fighting over who gets to sleep in it - the bed converts from a table for four to a double bed!  There are two bathrooms and a kitchenette, which will save plenty of money over having to eat three meals a day in the parks.

There are two dining areas - Landscape of Flavors, Disney's quick serve dining choice offering breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks, and the Drop Off, a poolside snack bar and pizza delivery service. There is bus service to other Disney World Resort locations.

For the Finding Nemo suites, the courtyard has The Big Blue Pool, the largest of the pools at the resort, the Drop off, The Schoolyard, a water play area fr the kids, Squirts Righteous Reef Playground and huge icons that help tell the story of the film featuring Mr. Ray, Crush, Marlin and Nemo. There is also Movies Under the Stars here!

At Cars, there is fun and relaxation for the whole family. There's the Cozy Cone Pool,  the Leaning Tower of Tires and visit with Lightning McQueen and Sally outside the Wheel Well Motel. Mater, Fillmore, Sara and Doc are on hand as well.

The essence of Africa is found in the design and motif of the Lion King Suites.  Mufasa will greet the kids at one end while Scar can be found a few steps away. There is a Bone in the Yard Playground for the little ones as well. The Lion King Courtyard is steps away from the  Big Blue Pool.

And finally, the Little Mermaid is the area that has standard rooms. There are icons of King Neptune, Ariel and Sebastian while Ursula adds drama to the scene. The Flippin' Fins Pool is in this area. Just a note that these rooms are furthest away from the Restaurants shops and lobby.

Having priced this for several families,  we can tell you that you can save up to $2,000 for 7 nights over the cost of family suites in the other Disney resorts. 

Disney has also refurbished Fantasyland in Orlando to make it even more magical.  Adding Enchanted Forest and Storybook Circus nearly double the original size of this are of the Magic Kingdom.

The Enchanted Forest is an interactive area that features Belle's French countryside. You'll be able to visit "Under the Sea- Journey of the Little Mermaid. The Beasts Castle houses the "Be Our Guest" Restaurant. Belle's Village has Maurice's Cottage where a magical mirror is the doorway to a new kind of story telling that will take you  into the Beast's library to meet Belle and Lumiere.

At the Storybook Circus, Dumbo The Flying Elephant is now twice the size with a second ride added.
Cool off at Casey Jr. Splash and Soak Station, a circus themed water play area.

And there is more coming! Opening in 2013, Princess Fairytale Hall will welcome guests to meet Aurora, Cinderella and other Disney Princesses. In  2014, the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train will feature a first of it's kind train of vehicles that swing back and forth.

Ready to book? Call us, we are Disney College of Knowledge Graduates who can help make your Disney vacation all you want it to be. 516-608-0568.