Affordable Vegas Hotels: the Orleans and Gold Coast: they can be a great Vegas options for the budget-minded who don’t want to compromise too much and who want frequent free shuttles to mid Strip – on our last trip the stop was moved to the Linq, namely at the very bottom of the High-Roller Wheel, which can admittedly be an inconvenient location unless you only want to go to the High-Roller (it is quite a walk to the Strip, especially if it’s very hot or you’re in a hurry).
Gold Coast and the Orleans resorts, part of the same company Boyd Gaming), are affordable Vegas hotels ideal for those wanting a nice room at a low rate without having to compromise too much: Gold Coast, for example, still offers a modest but decent pool, a jacuzzi (near the pool, open until late) and a modest gym (which stays open until 10pm); its casino is friendly and relatively relaxed; for this reasons it attracts many locals.
The atmosphere at Gold Coast is very nice, ‘homey’ & cheerful overall (NOT luxurious by any means), though if you want a ‘crazy party’ Vegas atmosphere maybe this small resort is not for you. However, budget-minded Vegas visitors should consider it: first of all, both Gold Coast and the Orleans offer frequent free shuttles to mid Strip, which is a real rarity and makes going to the Strip an easy, friendly trip among other resorts visitors. Secondly, its rooms are all very nice, whether deluxe or premium; the differences are barely noticeable since they now all have brand new bath tubs, albeit not huge (but perfectly suitable for one person). Check our real Vegas videos page for reviews of these (and other) affordable Vegas hotels. If you can choose (and sometimes it’s not possible because it’s a small hotel), always ask for higher rooms, otherwise you may end up staring at a white wall (although it’s not as bad as in some other Vegas hotels), unless you ask for a room overlooking outside rather than at their pool walkway. But, as I mentioned, its’ a small hotel and choosing the best room location is not always possible, though our advice is that you concentrate on the value aspect of this hotel.
The Gold Coast resort also offers a bowling center, which we personally don’t frequent but many locals seem to enjoy.
The Orleans resort and casino is actually a themed resort (a nice, New Orleans theme inside and out) and it’s significantly larger than Gold Coast, though still nowhere near as huge as some of the Strip resorts; it’s larger than Gold Coast, with theoretically equally nice rooms (larger than at Gold Coast); however, every time we go we find that the rooms are simply not cleaned well enough: the cleaning is superficial at best. We have a few videos highlighting this on our Vegas Videos page. The potential lack of room cleanliness (at least to our ‘fussy’ standards) is the only reason why we tend to prefer to book at Gold Coast; otherwise, you have a few more restaurants choices and a better (though still mediocre) buffet. Both offer a 24-hour Subway as well as late-hour restaurants, things which truly make you feel you are in a cheerful, friendly, efficient place.
The Orleans also offers a movie theater (as well as a bowling center) which are not only a nice attraction for locals but a nice diversion for visitors seeking a break from ‘all-Vegas’. Furthermore, the Orleans often offers highly popular stand-up comedy acts such as Bill Maher and the late Joan Rivers.
Finally, the gym at the Orleans is much better (larger and with a large variety of good quality equipment) than at Gold Coast; though it’s open until 9pm rather than 10pm (as at Gold Coast), it’s still one or 2 hours later than most Vegas resorts, especially those on the Strip.
In terms of buffets, if you stay at Gold Coast you are probably better off going to the affordable-yet-very-nice Palms buffet across the street or, if you don’t mind paying a bit more, at the much-improved Rio Buffet; if you stay at Orleans. which at least offers a better buffet than Gold Coast, your choices are limited unless you want to hop on the shuttle and eat elsewhere (neither Orleans nor Gold Coast offer a good enough buffet, in our opinion, though the very low price (if you have a players card) tempts some.
These 2 affordable Vegas hotels are popular with locals: I have asked many locals and they all seem to say that they liked the friendly, non-chaotic, relatively relaxed atmosphere of these buffets (aside from weekends, of course, when both resorts are sieged by families on a budget).
Customer service here is overall good; I particularly enjoy their VIP casino marketing area, they are very nice to us all the time, in the same way as Plaza’s are. Many Strip casino marketing offices/kiosks seem to look down on visitors who don’t gamble/squander less than 1000 dollars a night (they don’t offer much for your gambling, with a few exceptions such as the very generous Mirage resort)… On the other hand, these two resorts are a little more generous and they will often comp you buffet entries and (at least in part) the room cost (Plaza is even more generous, by the way, and they comped us our whole, long stay, after one night of gambling (we did not mortgage our house, we played only slightly above average amounts).
Resort Fee at Gold Coast and the Orleans
It used to be a very pleasant 3 dollars per night; however, it’s now 11 dollars per night. Nowadays it includes wi-fi (which was not included in the past): although it’s only for ‘light’ usage of Internet (up to 1 Mbps) up to 3 devices can be connected, which is much better than the usual limit of one device (many Strip resorts limit guests to one or 2 devices per room). For better, faster wi-fi, you’ll have to pay more.
Booking: the best way to book these resorts is usually through their own websites; if you are a BConnected player, log in to bconnectedonline.com and see what offers you have from these resorts; I find them very generous with their room offers.
There are other affordable Vegas hotels, which are still good: we have a page on cheap Vegas hotels during weekends, where we discuss other good options.