If you arrive by car, be prepared to either drive to the valet or park it in the self-parking garage. They won’t allow you to stop in front of the hotel to check in and get your luggage unloaded. Most Las Vegas Hotels & Casinos are charging you now for parking. MGM properties implemented the parking fees in June 2016. However, if you have any status with M Life Rewards, the rewards program of MGM, you can self-park for free. M life Rewards members level Gold and higher get valet parking for free as well and can decide rather to self-park or use valet.
Use your M Life Rewards card to access and leave the parking garage. As a registered hotel guest, you have in and out privileges. These privileges are good across all MGM properties in Las Vegas. Again, if you have any status with M Life Rewards you can park for free without being a hotel guest. Make use of them. Check this link or the website of your MGM Resort property.
I believe, I never talked that much about parking. This info is to help you save some dollars during your visit to Vegas. Parking used to be free and now these Resorts come up with more ways to get your money. Be also warned about the resort fee you will encounter during your stay. It’s mandatory and it gives you free internet access, pool access, and other amenities, which are usually included in a regular hotel. It’s just another way to take your money. They game the system and that’s why you should too.
During my arrival, I didn’t know I could use valet for free. I decided to head to the parking garage and to check-in. If you don’t have your M Life Rewards card yet, just take a ticket and tell the front desk agent that you have tier status with M Life (if you do) and they will take care of the rest. Check-in was quick, only one couple was in front of me. I chose the designated check-in line for Gold or higher. The agent told me about the $32 resort fee, how to get my M Life Rewards card, and the location of the elevators. I had Platinum Status with the status match from Hyatt. Now they match you to the Gold level. During the check-in, I received a letter with my list of choices to get two free tickets to special Platinum Experiences.
You might also notice the gigantic aquarium right behind the check-in counters. In the morning you can see divers cleaning it.
I grabbed my bag and headed over to the M Life desk where I got my rewards card printed. Because I had my status matched from Hyatt, they needed to see my Hyatt membership card. The whole process was quick and took only a few moments. Since this service desk was on my way to the elevators, I continued there and headed to my room.
Resort King Room
The Resort King room was the cheapest one available during my booking. Thanks to my status, I got a room with “strip-view” assigned. I was also able to see the volcano show from my room pretty well.
Once opened the door, I was surprised how spacious this room actually is. I wasn’t expecting that much space. The bed was on the left and a nice office/work desk with the minibar and TV on the right side of the room. The space between the bed and minibar counter was decent. The floor after the door and to the bathroom had tiles while the rest had carpet. The bathroom had a decent size, not too small or too big – just right.
The room, bed, bathroom, and all were clean and well kept. In some areas, you were able to see the age but nothing drastic. The hotel even notified their guest about the daylight savings time change and put a little letter in all rooms. This is a great service, especially since Las Vegas being an international tourist destination and not everyone is familiar with the time change.
Be careful with the minibar. According to the front desk, the inside of the refrigerator is weight sensitive and you get charged immediately if you take something out, even if you put something in. So don’t cool your own drinks in there, because there is not even room and if you make room you will get charged for whatever you take out even tho you are not using it.
The casino/hotel has so many public areas. Starting with the casino downstairs. If you stay here, there will be no way around the casino. You have to get through it to get to your elevator. Yes I know it’s tempting when you walk by all these machines and tables. Try your luck, maybe you will win the jackpot, but remember: The bank always wins!
There is a nice indoor waterfall and short “river” right at the front entrance. Above it is a glass dome which brings a lot of light in the otherwise usual dark casino grounds. This is a great place for photo ops.
Right outside at the front door are the taxi stand and valet parking drop off and pick up. Go a few steps to the left and you can see the Mirage – Treasure Island tram. It commutes between this two casinos back and forth. Riding it is for free and saves you some walking. The times are posted on the sign outside.
At the very opposite side of the front entrance is a good spot to see the lake and watch the volcano show. The volcano erupts Sunday through Thursday at 7 p.m. and 8 p.m. and on Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m., 8 p.m. and 9 p.m. Another great viewpoint is from the sidewalk along Las Vegas Blvd. Be there early to get a good spot with a view of the show. There is usually a big crowd here.
Now we have covered the front side of the hotel, let’s go out to the back. After you walk all the way through the casino area and pass through the little shopping mall you get outside to the pool area. Just a reminder if you don’t know. The shops here are way overpriced but you get the all-inclusive service and don’t have to leave the hotel to go shopping. Show your room key to access the pool. There are private cabanas available for reservation as well and an adult pool area. The poolside waitresses wear bikinis and take your orders. The pool is heated and opened all year round and has waterfalls and lagoons.
Next to the pool is Siegfried and Roy’s Secret Garden and Dolphin Habitat. Yes, you are right, there are dolphins here at the Mirage and the hotel even offers a package to train with the dolphins.
As I mentioned earlier, I got two free tickets for a Platinum Experience and I chose the secret garden. Even tho the garden is marked on the signs inside the casino, I didn’t know that there is something like this behind the Mirage. Since I got two tickets, I gave one away for free to a couple waiting in line to buy tickets. They just started the dolphin show when I entered the dolphin habitat. The show is fantastic and worth seeing. From there you head through a photo booth, to get a souvenir picture of your visit. Behind this booth is the real secret garden with exotic animals like Tigers and Leopards. You can see these majestic creatures now up close and don’t need to go on a safari to Africa. This was definitely one of the best experiences at the hotel here and it’s worth a visit even tho a regular ticket is $22.
If you still don’t have enough yet visit the 1 OAK nightclub located at the north entrance of the hotel. 16,000-square-feet of party space awaits you inside. In case you want to take it a bit slower visit one of the many restaurants or bars spread out all over the casino/hotel. Check this link for some available options.
As mentioned there are many great options for dining here. From the Paradise Cafe at the pool to the steak house or Japanese cousin. So many options to choose from and again you don’t need to leave the hotel to get great food. Some of the places are even open 24 hours a day like the Pantry. This is a great spot for breakfast all day long. As an M Life Gold or higher tier, you get a dedicated lane to the different restaurants and preferred seating. I made use of this in the morning at the pantry. The line here was quite long every day. Service here was always great and once the waiter forgot to put our order in and felt so sorry about it that he gave us free desserts.
Visit the Mirage website to get a list of the available dining options and hours of operation.
Peter has a passion for Traveling, Photography, and Geocaching. These are the best ingredients for amazing adventures all over the globe. “Traveling is fun, no matter if you stay in a luxury hotel or travel like a backpacker.” Peter shares his experiences on his Blog www.gatetoadventures.com
Some of Peter’s photos are published on corporate websites, in-flight magazines, travel guides, and much more.