Friday, March 20, 2015

Las Vegas Recap

Hello!  Hello!  I'm back from four days in Vegas feeling rejuvenated, happy and a little tired of course with the time change (three hours) and long travel day.  I had a great time away, ate far too much and managed to pack everything into a carry-on using this guide.

I'd love to share some photos with you, if you'd like to see...

Denim jacket // Dynamite tank (similar) // Billabong skirt (similar) // Hair Tutorial

As I mentioned previously, Marco was in Vegas for work and I tagged along.  Since we couldn't get the same flight down, I arrived around 11am, settled in and changed into some warm weather clothes (what a treat!).
We spent our first night at the Luxor (tower) which is a bit of an older hotel, also known as the pyramid you might have seen in photos.  There is a tram that runs between Mandalay Bay, the Luxor and Excaliber which I took to get a bit closer to get to the hub of the strip.

I spent the afternoon shopping at Marshalls (haul video coming!) after grabbing lunch at an outdoor bar patio.
Joe Fresh dress worn backwards (similar) // The Bay jewelry

Marco got in early evening and he had made a reservation previously for my birthday for dinner, which was so thoughtful.  We went to Tender in the Luxor which was a really nice, French cuisine, restaurant.  You can see a few more photos here.

Photo heavy after the jump...
I wanted to quickly touch on the shoes I packed because I find that one of the most challenging things for a place like Vegas where you want to glam up at night but also will be doing a ton of walking and exploring.  Gym shoes go in first because I know I'll be working out, and, if you're into the athletic-chic look, they can double as day-wear (although for me, mine don't, as I'd prefer them to be black for that case).
Next up is some fresh whites, a tennis or skate shoe of sorts which I wore on the plane, looks cute with pants, skirts and dresses, and also offers comfort for walking the strip hours on end.
A cool looking gladiator flat is my third staple for daytime.  These are small and easy to pack, but also comfortable enough to walk around in and still look chic.  The added bonus is when your tennis shoes start giving you blisters, these offer a nice alternative for daytime without rubbing in the same spots.
Lastly a heel for night time.  It kind of pains me to pack only one pair of heels (last time I packed two), but if you're trying to fit it all into a carry-on, and only going for a few days like me, choose a neutral shoe (black or nude) that works with all your evening outfits.  I would have loved to pack my yellow wedges too, but they weren't as versatile as these single-sole heels. 

The next morning we got up early and hit the gym.
We quickly stepped outside to explore the pool area, and then onto breakfast at the Luxor Cafe which was a huge disappointment.  On top of that, we had a couple disappointing experiences with the staff at the hotel and decided to leave after just one night.
We ended up going to Aria, which is where I stayed last June, which is such a beautiful spot.  Last time I was on the 42nd floor with a strip view, which was just stunning.  This time it was the 14th floor, which while not nearly as a beautiful a view, the hotel itself more than makes up for it.  

If I can offer a piece of advice to anyone travelling to Vegas, while checking in, ask for a complimentary room upgrade to a higher floor.  Normally they will do it for you, if you ask nicely.  They didn't have anything available for us this time, but it never hurts to ask.
While we waited for our room, Marco did some work and I had lunch at Javier's, which is a chic Mexican restaurant at Aria, and a personal fave!  I ate there twice during my last trip, I loved it that much.  Also, their chips and salsa they bring to snack on while you wait are insanely good.
Later that afternoon I took the bus down to the Ceasar Forum Shops, which is a huge mall in Casars Palace (with tons of designer stores, sprinkled with regular spots too).  The mall has this massive fountain in the middle of it and two women approached me to take their photo, which I love to do for people (and they returned the favour!). 

I often offer to take people's photos when I see them trying to take one, or struggling to take a couple selfie or even having to leave one family member out of the photo.  I really appreciate when others return the favour because photos help keep memories alive and I love having them to look back on.  It's nice to have not all selfies, especially when 'traveling alone'.
Speaking of selfies, this adorable two-piece is from H&M but just the top came home with me.  I loved the shorts and the look of it overall, but decided to save a bit of money and just purchase one.
I made my way back to the bus stop at dusk and admired the strip that was starting to glow in the sunset.

A few pieces I purchased from Sephora.
Max Studio thin-knit sweater (similar) // Bench shorts // Aeropostale bralette (similar) // Gladiator sandals

There are hundreds of origami-like birds that float in the lobby of Aria--it's really stunning and visually appealing.  
Since Marco didn't have to work that night, we went to the buffet at Aria for a late dinner.  The buffet there is my absolute favourite spot for breakfast, and dinner is great too.  The selection is amazing, the atmosphere is bright, clean, and modern and the service is quite good.  Also, they have a huge dessert bar with a gelato wheel!
This month I'm participating in a Plank Challenge my bestie and I came up with.  She was questioning if I'd still participate in Vegas and I said, 'Hells yes'.  We are now past the two-minute mark and it's getting damn hard, but we are still planking and increasing our time daily; you should join us!
MPG Tank (similar) // Shorts // Shoes (similar) // Headphones

After a workout, it was back to the buffet for breakfast.  I tried to keep it clean with turkey, turkey bacon, egg whites and a small serving of hash browns.  That said, I don't normally drink juice as I'd prefer to keep those calories for dessert but was feeling the OJ that day.  The muesli and berries to the left is my favourite thing at the buffet--it's unreal good and I'm seriously sad I won't get to have that again!
DKNY tee (similar) // Bikini top // Billabong skirt (similar) // Headphones

Since I always feel so go-go-go, I decided to spend a couple hours just relaxing by the pool.  I took my phone, headphones and grabbed a chair at the back by myself and caught up on some of my favourite YouTube subscriptions. 
After a bit of sun, I changed and headed out to roam around.  This lit up tree is in the Crystals Shops which is the mall attached to Aria and I would pass this tree overtime I went out.  So beautiful and there would always be someone standing there having their photo snapped. 
I took the bus to the Fashion Show Mall and poked around Neiman Marcus, Macy's, TopShop and Forever 21.  This bag is from F21 and super cute (looked at this one too; this one is nice swell), but I didn't purchase it.  I'm trying to save up for a higher end bag (which is so hard, I find, when you can get a 'fix' on something cheaper, much quicker).
I decided to walk back, which was about 2.5km (1.6 miles) and snapped a few pictures along the way.    I also stopped to watch a be-boy street show and was chosen to be part of the show, among others!  That was kind of neat.
H&M top // Urban Planet DIY'ed pants (similar) // Zara heels (similar; still love these )

This was my third time in Vegas (trip one & two) and I have never seen a show before, but have always wanted to so finally just did it!  I went and saw Ka which is at MGM and it did not disappoint!  What a production!  

I sat in the front row, which was a first and totally different perspective to other Cirque shows I have seen.  Of course there are no photos but below is a picture of the theatre when you first walk in.  I'd highly recommend the show (I managed to score my ticket for $75).
The next morning I filmed a quick haul of the clothing and beauty items I purchased in Vegas...
...indulged at the buffet again, for one last time...
...and then it was onto the airport around noon to come home.  I spent a couple hours editing some videos on the plane before my laptop died and got in around midnight.

Thanks so much for reading!



Kristy said...

where did you get your cheap Cirque tickets? I'm heading there in a month!

Unknown said...

That beauty blender is amazing!!! I just got one and I will never go back to using a brush.

Amanda @ Life with A.Co said...

@Kristy: I googled and ended up buying them through MGM Grand in association with Ticketmaster! No need to print, simply show the tickets from your smart phone. Try this link:

If that doesn't work, try this link:

I shopped around a bit and couldn't find a better deal. You can also check out for discount codes, although I was unable to use the $10 off code on the MGM/Ticketmaster site myself (but not a terrible loss/still worth it :)

@Katie: I agree! It's my second one and nothing compares :D

Unknown said...

We were actually in Vegas at the same time! I just can't wait to see your haul of what you bought there! Did you get that beautiful two-piece short set that you posted on Instagram? (Love you posts!)

Amanda @ Life with A.Co said...

@Cheryl: I saw you said that on YT! So cool! Where did you stay? And more importantly, WHAT did you buy? :D
I only purchased the blue peplum top and decided not to get the shorts (although they were super cute).

Unknown said...

Hi Amanda, we stayed at a Holiday Inn just off the strip. (Chris has numerous points their from business trips.) BTW, I found these boots in the Vegas Nordstrom. Any ideas as to how to style them?

Amanda @ Life with A.Co said...

@Cheryl: Nice boots! I'd wear with dark or distressed denim and a flowy (floral or silk style) top. Also would be great with white skinnies or denim shorts!

Unknown said...

Thanks Amanda! My husband fell in love with them! The floral top and distressed denim sound perfect for these, sort of a festival look. Keep posting your haul videos. I love them and get so many ideas from you! :)

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