Golf, gaming, girls: Drumming up the ideal golf mancation in Las Vegas
LAS VEGAS -- This is the place for a mancation.
The classic comedy "The Hangover" showed how to party hard in Vegas. And while drugs, kidnappings and ill-advised marriages might be pushing it for your group, rest assured, you can still have a good, ol' fashioned boys weekend in Las Vegas.
Every mancation should include a couple rounds of golf, so as to ensure you see the light of day for at least four hours.
We're here to offer mancation-friendly options, from golf to off-the-course action in Las Vegas.
Top mancation golf courses in Las Vegas
Mancationers want to spend as little time as possible away from the Las Vegas Strip. And there's golfing nearby -- both on Las Vegas Boulevard and close enough to allow for a cheap cab fare, sparing the rental-car expense.
Want to splurge? Look no further than Bali Hai Golf Club, next to Mandalay Bay on the Strip. Bali Hai G.C., spectacularly conditioned and beautified with a few thousand palm trees, features and a signature island green. That's not to mention the wide fairways that even your group's duffer -- and there's always one -- might hit every few swings. If your group is flush, consider playing a round with one or more of the sexy Bali Hai Parmates.
If you're staying on the north end of the Strip, downtown Las Vegas options are close. Desert Pines Golf Club boasts a wonderfully crafted and scenic, Carolina sandhills-style design with tight, rolling fairways lined with pine trees. And Desert Pines features a mountainous backdrop.
If you can't keep your driver in the fairway, though, or lack the self control to hit a few irons off the tee, head elsewhere. You can go old school and visit Las Vegas National Golf Club, a classic PGA Tour stop that hosted Tiger Woods' first PGA-Tour win in 1996. And Las Vegas National is a great value, especially if you book an afternoon or evening tee time.
If your group includes a mancationer who can't handle 18 holes of regulation golf and you don't trust him alone at the casino for four hours, play some par-3 golf. The Callaway Golf Center, just south of the casinos on the Strip, offers nine holes of par-3 golf. It stays lighted until 11 p.m. in the summer, in case you sleep through that 4 p.m. wake-up call.
Top Las Vegas Strip steakhouses
Every mancation needs one great meal with a red-meat centerpiece, and steakhouses abound up and down the Strip. One of the newest on the scene, Brand at Monte Carlo, provides a bustling, open atmosphere, so you can keep an eye on the real meat market.
Michael Mina's Stripsteak at Mandalay Bay serves a variety of steak styles, from Kobe beef to butter-poached, bone-in top loin. So order a good bottle of red and kick off your night with some class.
Mancation-friendly casinos in Las Vegas
Some casinos keep mancationers seated at the tables with gorgeous, young, cleavage-heavy dealers.
One of the newest additions to the center of the Strip, Planet Hollywood employs some of the sexiest dealers. With go-go dancer pits that add to a mingling, high-energy atmosphere, you might not even feel the need to go to the club. And if you've already made an ass of yourself at the craps table and want to do it again, there's a karaoke bar right next to the Planet Hollywood casino.
The Hard Rock Casino Hotel has stayed hot enough to lure plenty of partygoers from the strip. The casino floor is hardly traditional by design. It's shaped more like a circular party pit with a bar in the center and a live stage just off the floor, so you barely feel like you're gambling. Go-go girls and sexy dealers help entice you back into the pits and shake it to pumping, hard-rock tunes.
Just about every casino has a poker room, but they vary. Downtown, the World Series of Poker began in Binion's enormous, 70-table room gave. It offers $2/$4 limit hold 'em.
On the strip, the poker room at the MGM Grand sits right at the front of the casino, luring fish, as the sharks call them, for the taking.
If you're looking to play where the pros play or to put up some serious coin yourself, head to the Bellagio. The limits range from $4/$8 to as high as you want in Bobby's Room, where the stars often play.
Las Vegas golf mancation: After hours
It's inevitable. At some point on your Vegas visit, one mancationer will proclaim: "That's it. Time to see some chicks!"
For gentlemen's club entertainment, the options are dizzying. It's best to ask around for an idea of the best talent or specials. And don't necessarily take the word of cab drivers, who often get a cut for directing business to certain clubs.
Spearmint Rhinos consistently rates as one of Vegas' top clubs. Its word-of-mouth reputation is equally strong for good reason. For bargain-hunters, they've even got a free limo service for large groups that wipes out the usual $20 cover.
You'll find more group specials at Treasures, which offers a package that includes VIP shuttle service, a table and a bottle with two mixers for $250. Or get there early and enjoy happy-hour specials as low as $1 for domestic beers and well drinks. The club also includes a steakhouse and buffet.
April 19, 2011