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ORLEANS

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Just Off The Strip

4500 W. Tropicana Ave.

Las Vegas, NV 89103

800-ORLEANS

website

Check Rates

1,840 Rooms

$39 and up double

$100-$150 per night

$17.99 per night plus tax

80

AT A GLANCE

Highs

Nice big rooms, lots of dining, cheaper room rates.

Lows

Location means you'll have to drive.

Location: 4

Near the South Strip but not within walking distance.

Price: 8

Almost always cheaper than hotels on The Strip.

Value: 9

You get a lot for your money here.

Rooms: 9

Large, nice decor, clean, comfortable.

Casino: 9

Huge, plenty of options, good payouts.

Amenities: 9

Rooms are very well-equipped.

Facilities: 9

Restaurants, movies, shows, pool, day care, and much more.

Service: 7

Good.

Fun: 8

Lots of options mean lots of fun.

Bonus: 8

A good alternative.

Total: 80

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FULL REVIEW

The Orleans is primarily aimed at the local Las Vegas market but they have built a good following among Vegas visitors for their excellent accommodations, relatively low prices, and vast entertainment offerings. Since it is located about two miles west of New York-New York it really isn't within walking distance or even within view when you're standing on The Strip so it is often overlooked. That's too bad because the hotel does have a lot to offer.

As you may have guessed from the name, New Orleans is the theme with faux Bourbon Street detail work like wrought iron railings and plantation shutters. They really didn't go for authenticity since most of it looks like a street scene at Disneyland but if it is authenticity you are looking for, go to Louisiana.

The large, bright casino lets in lots of natural light - a rarity in Las Vegas where they'd prefer you don't know what time it is. A very high ceiling adds to the overall feeling of spaciousness. Being a local oriented place, video poker dominates much of the floor space but there are all of the latest slots and table games, a high-limit salon for slot machines (no table games) a race and sports book, a poker room, and plenty of room to stretch out in. Although not significantly bigger than most of The Strip casinos, it feels bigger because of its rambling, spacious layout.

If you're hungry you have roughly nine bazillion options to choose from. Okay, that's an exagerration but there are seven major restaurants including a 24-hour cafe, a sushi bar, an oyster bar, a steakhouse, a prime-rib joint, a Mexican joint, and a TGI Friday's. A food court adds several more quick serve options including Fuddruckers and Subway and a big buffet serves big portions for significantly smaller prices than what you'll pay for buffets on The Strip.

There are also several bars and lounges including one near the front that has roughly nine bazillion televisions for showing the big game and a stage for frequent live entertainment. (again, please note the bazillion exagerration)

The hotel has over 1,800 rooms, and the standard variety are larger than average with one king or two queen beds, a writing desk, a sitting area with a couch and chair, and an armoire with a TV (some rooms have flat screens). Extras include a high-speed Internet (for a fee), hair dryer, iron and board, coffee service, clock radio, and much more. Furnishings are simple but well kept and crisp looking with the sparkly white duvets and simply floral patterns elsewhere.

There are lots of extras to the property such as a 70-lane bowling alley (open 24 hours a day), an 18-screen movie theater complex with stadium seating and THX sound, a showroom, a large video arcade for the kids or really bored adults, a nice pool area, a spa, and an events center often hosting sports, concerts, or trade shows. Parents traveling with their kids should definitely consider this property because of all the family friendly options for keeping the wee ones entertained.

I've seen rates as low as $29 during the week and $89 on the weekend for one of the rooms described above, however normal rates are in the $50 and up range weekdays and $100 and up weekends (plus a $17.99 per night resort fee). A few years ago those would've been really amazing prices for any Vegas hotel but with the economic downturn, you can find rates similar to these at hotels closer to, or even on, The Strip.

Service has improved dramatically over the years as some corporate level changes brought in more attention to the concept. I used to run into some cold shoulders here but now got nothing but smiles.

Back in the days when everything on The Strip was priced to the stratosphere (the metaphorical one, not the hotel), The Orleans was often a great package at a great price. It still is both of those things but there's a lot more competition at this price point now and whether The Orleans wins that competition is up to you.

Primarily recommended for: Families, people with their own transportation, the budget conscious, those who want to be a part of the action but not right in the middle of it.

Not recommended for: Young singles looking for a party, people who will be relying on cabs or public transportation, those who want to be in the middle of all the Vegas craziness.

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