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Making a Pilgrimage to the Macau Clone of Vegas' Wynn Hotel

Go To The Hotel's Web 
  Site Where: Rua Cidade de Sintra, Nape, Macau
February 9, 2009 at 12:58 PM | by | Comments (0)

We are totally still in Hong Kong, and if there's one huge benefit to staying longer than a week in a new city, it's the opportunity for side trips. Tempted by the possibility of more passport stamps and a ride on a jet catamaran ferry, we hightailed it out to Macau, a former Portuguese property which now turns out both gambling addicts and heavenly egg tarts.

After about $15 USD and a comfortable 40-minute ride out in the South China sea from Hong Kong's downtown port, we headed ashore to what has become the Las Vegas of the East; The Sands Casino towers is a behemoth sitting right off the main drag, and further down the main street you'll find the newcomers MGM Grand and the Wynn along with the old Hotel Lisboa. At one moment you'll be strolling down a cobblestone alley and licking gelato, and the next you're throwing dice a few hundred feet away from a Chanel boutique.

Hoping to watch the weekend gamblers at their best, we checked out the Saturday scene at The Sands, the Hotel Lisboa, and of course, at the Wynn. Modeled closely on the Vegas property, the Wynn Macau sits pretty on a roundabout looking toward the harbor and the Macau Tower. There's the ubiquitous Vegas performing fountains, except that this is the only one in Macau and therefore attracts tourists and their flashbulbs all throughout the day.

Although we didn't visit a room, we did wander around enough of the property to say that the name of the game is uber-luxury; with nightly room rates clocking in at between $230-$350 for a standard room with none of the stellar views, it better be ballin. It seems that, despite the economy, people are still biting; saturday night stays for the next few months are completely booked up, as are the window tables in the hotel's fancy restaurant, Il Teatro.

Speaking of said fancy restaurant, we traded the pachinko for prawns and settled in for a second-row booth at Il Teatro, overlooking the fountains. The "early dining" special is highly recommended, as we got three courses for the price of one regular dish (with cocktails, coffee, the service charge, and bottled water added, the total for two was just over $100). It may have been our most indulgent meal of the entire trip, but it afforded us access to the empty outdoor balcony for a VIP view of the fountains, which is where we shot the above video.

Should you wish to escape the usual Vegas scene and are game to experience a true fusion vacation, do aim for those extra passport stamps with a Macau daytrip. Getting there is simple: Purchase your tickets and board the Turbojet ferry at the HK-Macau ferry terminal at the Sheung Wan subway stop on Hong Kong Island. Next thing you know, you're in Macau and in a free transfer van from the port to the hotel. Or walk it like we did, which is the only way to snack on Portuguese goodies and get a literal taste of the old, versus the new, Macau.

For more photos of our visit to the Wynn Macau, check out the Flickr set.

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