Las Vegas hotels: MGM Grand vs Paris vs Planet Hollywood

Las Vegas is every bit as exciting as you imagine – a non-stop party town where the stakes are high and a fortune is won and lost every minute.

But even in the City of Sin a man has to eventually find a place to lay his head when all the gambling and the drinking gets to be too much. During my week there, I stayed at three of the best resorts and casinos in Las Vegas: Paris Las Vegas, Planet Hollywood and the legendary MGM Grand.

In true Las Vegas fashion, let’s put all the cards on the table and see which resort has the better hand.

The Las Vegas Strip at night

Location, location, location

All three of these resorts are located along the famous Vegas strip – the 6.8km (4.2 mile) stretch of Las Vegas Boulevard where you’ll find most of the action. If you’re a tourist and this is your first time in Vegas, this is where you’re definitely going to want to stay.

Of the three I stayed at, Planet Hollywood was probably in the best position – a short walk from Paris Las Vegas, opposite the Bellagio and its famous water-fountain show, and near some of the better restaurants.

Of course, Mrs Man vs World was pleased to discover that it also shares the same location as the Miracle Mile Shops shopping mall.

Paris Las Vegas is also handily located, but even when we were staying there we found ourselves spending more time at other Las Vegas casinos and resorts.

The MGM Grand, while one of Vegas’ most famous resorts, is located only on the edge of what I’d argue is the best bit of The Strip. It’s opposite New York New York, which is pretty cool – you can see that hotel’s famous rollercoaster from your bedroom – but, once again, we tended to migrate towards the part of The Strip where Planet Hollywood is located.

View over the Las Vegas Strip

Rooms and entertainment

Our rooms at Paris Las Vegas, the MGM Grand and Planet Hollywood were supremely comfortable – as you would expect. However, our best view was probably at the latter, where we snapped the photograph above.

As for entertainment, well, Paris Las Vegas’ Parisian charm and Planet Hollywood’s Miracle Mile Shops are all very cool indeed – but they can’t quite compete with the MGM Grand’s sheer range of entertainment offerings (even when Britney Spears takes up her two-year residency at Planet Hollywood).

It boasts nightclubs, restaurants, a comedy club and a revolving schedule of top singers and entertainers. It even hosted an NBA pre-season basketball game not long after we left.

However, there’s nothing to stop you staying at one Las Vegas hotel and casino but enjoying a show at another – like we did when we went to see The Beatles Cirque du Soleil show at The Mirage (I highly recommend it, by the way).

Swimming pool at the MGM Grand in Vegas

The pools

Of the three Las Vegas resorts I stayed at, the MGM Grand’s pool – or pools, because it has several – are easily the best. Easily.

I mean, who doesn’t love a lazy river? Even without a tube to go around on – we preferred to spend our money on drinks than to hire one – it was loads of fun swimming around it. And there are plenty of other, smaller pools to lounge around, too.

Paris Las Vegas’ pool just didn’t quite do it for us – although it’s surreal swimming and lounging about with the Eiffel Tower towering above. Neither did Planet Hollywood’s two pools. They both lacked the scale of the MGM Grand’s swimming pool facilities.

The MGM Grand lion in Vegas (and me)

So, which is the best hotel to stay at in Vegas? I think I’d have to lean towards the MGM Grand – but I’m glad I stayed at all three. It gave us an opportunity to experience something different every other night.

We would have liked to have stayed one night at New York New York, too, but the construction work taking place out front put us off.

Have you been to Las Vegas and where did you stay? Which Vegas hotel would you recommend? Check out these amazing Las Vegas travel tips.

About Simon Petersen 320 Articles

Travel blogger, journalist, sports and movie fiend. Chronicling the life and times of a Kiwi at home and abroad.

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