Hotel room and gym review: Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas

After booking a flight on JetSuiteX for a mere $9 each way to Las Vegas, I decided to use the Chase Luxury Hotel Collection booking portal to find a hotel on the strip.  The Chase LHC is an excellent platform as you can often find <$100 nightly rates that come with guaranteed benefits: free breakfast for 2, room upgrade, late checkout, and up to $100 credit, which essentially negates the cost of the stay all together.  Needless to say, I was able to book the Mandalay Bay for just $69 per night and receive all the Chase LHC benefits.

Though its location at the southern end of the strip is considered out of the way for many travelers, the hotel was a <1 mile walk away from the JetSuiteX terminal, so I didn't even have to find transport from the terminal to the hotel as it was a leisurely walk.

The room

As one of the Chase LHC benefits, I was upgraded to a suite.  In addition, I earned bonus points as a Hyatt Explorist elite member, which matches over to MLife Gold elite status.

The suite had an additional window-view partition that included a lounge area.  The bathroom was definitely oversized in a good way.

Unfortunately, I wouldn't be spending that much time in the room even with 2 pm late checkout, mostly because I wanted to hit the gym and I had $100 in food credit to burn as well as free breakfast, which actually converted over to another $50 in credit at specific restaurants.

The gym

Since it's located at the basement level, the gym has no views and no fancy decor whatsoever.  The gym definitely didn't shy away from cardio machines, though the weight training equipment is a different story.

 A token spin bike with a touchscreen virtual class setup for your HIIT needs

The dumbbells went up to 75 lb and the weighted barbells went up to 100 lbs, which is good enough for shoulders and arms but doesn't quite cut it for heavy back and chest workouts.  If anything, I was disappointed that there wasn't a squat rack, bench press, power rack, and not even a smith machine (aka. barbell training wheels). 

I decided to stick with an arm workout followed by HIIT on the spin bike.  After hitting the gym, I burned through every last penny of my food credit.  Since I definitely couldn't eat that much food in one setting, I did take out for the majority of the meals.

Bottom line

The Mandalay Bay was the perfect hotel for my occasion as it was cheap and within walking distance to the private JetSuiteX terminal.  The Chase LHC food credits made the room essentially free, and it was great to get a nice upgrade to a suite.  However, for a 5-star property on the strip, the fitness center was a disappointment.  You'd think that a nearly $1 billion property would invest just a little more into its gym, which would be but a rounding error in the overall cost of the property.


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