New York-New York still makes me giggle - well, at least the exterior of it does. The sheer audacity of the place, in a town famous for its sheer audacity, is both a wonder and a perfect testament to the Las Vegas sensibility that has made this town great in the last decade or so.
The hotel opened in 1997 and immediately raised the bar for hotel theatrics. Start with the exterior - it has a recreation of the New York City skyline with 1/3 scale replicas (as high as 45 stories) of the Empire State Building, the Chrysler Building, the New York Public Library, and Ellis Island to name a few. There's also a Statue of Liberty complete with faux rust stains and the Brooklyn Bridge and miniature scale fireboats that spray water.
It is quite an accomplishment both visually and artistically but apparently the designers didn't think the place looked quite busy enough so they threw in a roller coaster that winds in and around the buildings.
The front of the hotel is getting a big facelift throughout 2014 with a new outdoor, Strip-side dining, retail, and park area between it and neighboring Monte Carlo that includes, among other things, a Hershey's Chocolate World and a 20,000 seat arena behind the two hotels. You can read more about that here.
The inside used to be just as fun with several blocks of Greenwich Village streets complete with graffiti covered mailboxes and steam coming out of the manhole covers in the cobblestones and a big casino made to look like Central Park with treez, gazebos, foot bridges, and babbling brooks.
Note the key words in that sentence: used to be.
Just like they have de-Egyptified (it's a word!) Luxor, likewise they have de-Gothamized New York-New York, stripping the interior of some of its wacky Big Apple detail and replacing it with a more modern look and feel. The Greenwich Village area is still there but the bulk of the casino has been completely redone. Don't get me wrong, it's pretty and all that, with sleek lines, cool colors, eye-catching patterns and textures... but it used to be the most distinctive casino in town and now it's just another place to gamble.
Rooms are attractive with more of that art deco decor in a bunch of different floor plans. Since the rooms are inside the city skyline replica, they are, for the most part, very unique in terms of layout - something I consider to be a bonus when compared to the cookie-cutter hotel rooms in the rest of this city. Most are average size but some are restricted by the architecture and are on the small side.
Note that there are several different "levels" of rooms and with them come different levels of amenities and décor. The nicest of the bunch is probably the Park Avenue Deluxe rooms, which are in the middle of the pack in terms of size but probably have the newest and nicest furnishings. The older Skyline rooms are perfectly fine, but haven't been udated in awhile so don't expect a luxurious, modern experience.
All are very well equipped with comfy furniture, lighted armoires for the TV with pay-per-view movie options, high-speed Internet, irons and boards, in-room safes, hair dryers, and various bath amenities.
The pool is out back and in addition to not being terribly well landscaped or decorated it is adjacent to the main drive and the parking garage. As if that weren't enough, the roller coaster screams by directly overhead. Peaceful poolside respites are probably not an option here.
Until places like Bellagio and Mandalay Bay opened and raised the price bar, NYNY was considered to be one of the more expensive places in town. It still can be, with weekend rates in the mid to upper $100 range. However, during slow times you can often get some good bargains here with off-season weekday rates advertised as low as $45 per night. Note this is before a $33.60 per night resort fee is applied.
And don't forget about the fees for parking that were instituted in 2016. It costs $10 per day for self parking and $18 per day for valet for hotel guests and non-guests alike. The only way to get out of it is if you have a players' club card at the Pearl or above level, which gets you free self-parking and the Gold or above level, which gets you free valet.
I still like New York-New York, but it just doesn't amuse me the way it used to.