Travel Fanboy

Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino Review

I hate that I love Mandalay Bay so much. Not because I’m embarrassed about its quality, but because I’m always compelled to visit despite its awful south Strip location. Its place on Las Vegas Blvd isn’t as bad as some of the northern properties like Stratosphere or SLS, but it can be quite a pain to get to if you’re anywhere north of Monte Carlo. Maybe I’m just incredibly lazy, but this is a big factor in its re-stayability, for me. Also, I made that word up, but I think its useful.

I had the pleasure of staying at MB during my February 2015 solo trip. I was able to reserve my room via a myVegas reward. The redemption process was easy; check-in was the same. I didn’t have to produce a redemption code or auxiliary paperwork, just the standard ID and credit card. I did have to pay the $30 nightly “resort fee”, but it’s a small price to pay to stay in a room as nice as this:


Look at that. It’s spacious. It’s clean. It has a great view. Unfortunately, I probably won’t be staying there again anytime soon because I just can’t stand the expedition required to get north of Tropicana. It does have quick access to Luxor and Excalibur by way of a free Tram. And, there is quite a bit to do at these three properties alone. However, I need more than these three MGM casinos to make a proper Vegas trip.

Ok, let’s get back to the room. It’s a really comfortable space. The only thing that felt out of place is this little odd, sectional seating on the other side of the work table. It’s runs about half the length of the window, with the seating area connected to a little end table-like piece. It’s not a very practical arrangement. That’s really the only odd quirk in the room. The TV was seemingly nice (unused by me). It’s a 42 inch Plasma, if that matters. The dresser was pleasant and free of scuffs (also unused by me).


I made $30 worth of local calls to make up for the resort fee.
I made $30 worth of local calls to make up for the resort fee.

The bathrooms in their standard rooms are equally as pleasant. Dual sinks are a nice touch, great for when I travel with my wife. There was a soaking tub, of in which I did no soaking. But, if you’re one who likes having a good soak, I’m sure you would find it enjoyable. The glass-enclosed shower had good water pressure. There’s also a separate toilet area with a phone- emergencies happen, people. The bathrooms are much like the sleeping areas- clean, elegant, and spacious.

Great view from the room.
Great view from the room.



The casino? You guessed it, spacious and comfortable. MB makes great use of the space. The sightlines are clear, which helps when you try to navigate through the property. This makes a big difference in a large resort. Some casinos, like Caesars or MGM Grand, are notoriously hard to traverse- people continually get lost or turned around, even after multiple visits.

You’ll find plenty of table games and slots to meet your needs. It’s an upscale property, so you’re not going to find many low roller options. I did find a few $5 carnival games early in the day. But the popular options like craps and blackjack were at a $10 minimum into the afternoon, but jumped up in the evening hours. Video poker rules are standard for a major Strip hotel. The best option is a $5 triple-double bonus at 99.58%. I spent most of my time playing the shoot-to-win craps machine at a $2 minimum.

Again, this one of my favorite properties on the Strip. It’s nice, lively, and tasteful. The room rates are usually a little above what I like to pay, and the table minimums not low enough for me to enjoy into the evening. But if you don’t mind the location and a few bucks to spend, you’re not likely to be disappointed.

For more information, check out a great rundown of the property by Vegas Tripping.

Upscale Comfort
  • room
  • casino
  • service
  • location
  • Low roller friendly

VFB Takeaway

-A great, upscale property
-Some of the nicest standard rooms on the Strip
-Every facet of the property is spacious and comfortable
-The pool wasn’t open at the time, but it is one of the best in Vegas
-Not great for low roller gambling, but worth a visit nonetheless


Host of the Vegas Fanboy podcast. A reluctant Millennial. An amateur human.

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