We all need a break. Heck, I dream about vacationing and taking trips to Japan and Iceland all the time (FYI, I’ve already been to both, and I’m dying to go again), but we all know life gets in the way. We don’t have enough PTO, money, time, or we have crazy responsibilities that causes us to stay home. Well, don’t let those things hold you back because you can totally do a staycation!
What is a staycation? You basically just go away for a night or a weekend to a hotel, resort, or some type of nice relaxation space (even a room in your home that looks like paradise to you will work)… in your own hometown (or a city/town near you). The idea is to get away and relax but still be close to home. For someone like me who is always on the go and hardly takes a break (full-time job, part-time job on weekends, blogging, content creating for other restaurants’ instagrams, photoshoots, marketing businesses, event plan-PLEASE SEND HALP THANKS), the Live! Casino & Hotel staycation was the getaway I needed.
the bathroom comes with two robes!
If you haven’t been to Live! Casino & Hotel yet, it’s this huge building located next to Arundel Mills Mall. The casino not only has slots, table games, and poker rooms (duh), but a selection of restaurants you can choose from–The Prime Rib, Bobby’s Burger Palace, Luk Fu, etc. If you make your way to the hotel area, there’s a coffee/gelato place called Luckies (also, they serve bubble tea *gasp*) and a fantastic restaurant called David’s, which serves breakfast food and non-breakfast food all day (they aren’t 24 hours anymore, but they’re open pretty late)!
seating at David’s
The hotel also has an event venue called the Event Center (duh). If you’re interested in seeing a show or a concert, you can check out Live’s website and view the event calendar here. So sad no one was performing while I stayed over, but I did see Joe Theismann and Live! Casino owner David Cordish throw some footballs competitively for a spontaneous athletic event at Live! Center Stage, which is in the casino (apparently the owner has done events like these before with Shaq and John Daley).
Anyways, onto the staycation story!
I checked-in at the front desk around 4pm and was given my room number, room key, and my Live! Rewards card. You need this card to play at the casino. You can also use this card for other transactions related to Live! such as dining in restaurants, buying drinks, etc. I honestly thought this card was amazing. I didn’t have to worry about carrying my wallet around. Although I was given this card, on a normal basis, you would need to sign up for one. You can just get the classic membership… and it’s free to sign up! WOW!
classic Live! Rewards card
ONTO THE HOTEL ROOM!
I was greeted with a tote bag full of goodies from Arundel Mills Mall. I ended up getting this gel sleeping mask and a super warm blanket. As for the tablet, I will talk about it later (that wasn’t given to me as a present hahah).
Next up are the bathroom pics! These pictures don’t do the bathroom justice. It was huge and luxurious!
So, this was the first time I’ve stayed in a hotel room where you can utilize a tablet to do anything you want. No more calling room service (I mean, they still have the phone there if you need it)! You can just request what you want from room service through the tablet. What? You want to order food? Just click through the food menu on the tablet, and you’ll get your food delivered to your room. Want to check how much money you have left over on your Live! Rewards card? Have no fear–the tablet is here!
After ooo-ing and ahh-ing at the hotel room and the tablet, I made my way to Luk Fu for my dinner reservation. I was super excited because along the way, Dave met up with me (#davebabe)!
We got to Luk Fu and had the option of choosing food off their main menu or happy hour menu. We decided to order off the main menu and got the Lemongrass Pork Chop, the Mongolian Beef, the Lo Mein, and the Seafood Pan Fried Noodles.
lemongrass pork chops
seafood pan fried noodles
If you want to see Luk Fu’s menu, click here!
Unfortunately, we couldn’t really savor the food because we were rushing to our next appointment at the spa!
We had a reservation for a couples full body massage. Before turning into a puddle of relaxing goo, we had to split off into our changing rooms.
lounge area in ladies room
After getting ready for the full body massage, Dave and I met up at the lounge/relaxation area where we waited for our masseuses. There was a snack and beverage station that offered teas and dried fruit.
After we sipped on some tea, we were introduced to our masseuses and they led us to one of the massage rooms.
No pics of the massage room we were in, but I can tell you that they do offer add-on packages while you’re in there. For example, if you’re experiencing a ridiculous amount of tension in your shoulders, you can add a package where the masseuse will focus more on your shoulders and add products to help massage out the knots.
After successfully turning into a blob of relaxation, we got ready for the Joe Theismann and Live! Casino owner David Cordish football competition. It was super casual, and–like I said at the start of this blog post–all they did was throw some footballs to see who would win hahha. Before the event, they rode around in a glamorous cart and waved to all the guests around the casino.
Soon the event was over, but the night was still young! Dave and I decided to do some drinking and try the slots!
First, we nursed some old fashioneds (not sure if I correctly pluraled old fashioned but whatever) at The Prime Rib, talked about our childhood and our goals (lol), and then headed over to the slot machines. We started off with $20.00, but ended up with $15.00 in the end. Guess who won most of the money back? Yeah… it was Dave… ;D
Afterwards, we went to Luckies for some gelato. I was feeling fruity so I got the strawberry. The flavor wasn’t as tangy as I wanted it to be, but Dave and I still ate the whole thing, ha!
cake batter gelato
cute mopeds at Luckies
By this point, it was 11pm. If you don’t know me, I am terrible at partying past 10pm. I do try to stay up though! So since I was tired, Dave and I decided to head back to the hotel room, watch some TV, and order food from room service. By the way, room service is clutch at 2am in the morning because I honestly thought I wasn’t going to be able to order food… and I did! Dave got the Baltimore Cookie Cheesecake and I got the chicken tenders. The chicken tenders were so good that Dave kept trying to steal mine. So sneaky….
Baltimore cookie cheesecake
i know. my chicken tenders look meh but THEY WERE SO GOOD
ONTO DAY TWO!
We checked out at 10am and made our way to David’s–in the lobby of the hotel–for our next reservation. Since it was basically brunch time and we waited until 10:30am ish to eat, we were starving. After extensively perusing the menu, I ordered the Crab Hash with a side of bacon (my favorite food in the world) and Dave ordered the Steak & Eggs.
We also ordered the following:
espresso caramel martini
FYI, David’s does not have steak knives so please be wary when you order the steak! Also another FYI, this little detail did not stop Dave from demolishing his entree.
If you want to see David’s menu, click here!
And that ends our staycation over at Live! Casino & Hotel! The hotel and casino staff were all super nice and helpful. I honestly forgot I was near Baltimore because I was having lots of fun galavanting and relaxing. In my books, I would have to say this was a successful staycation!
Here are some tips if you plan on doing your own staycation at Live! Casino & Hotel:
- Parking: Park in the casino garage. It’s free.
- Get a Live! Casino Rewards card. Like I said earlier in the post, just sign up for it. It’s free and fast to sign up, and you don’t have to worry about carrying around your wallet or purse. You can sign up for a membership on the casino floor. There are also tons of benefits if you become a member of the Live! Rewards Club. Click here to see the benefits.
- Fun activities. Because I did my staycation on a weekday night, there wasn’t a concert I could attend on the calendar at the Event Center inside the hotel. I suggest doing your staycation on a Friday or Saturday night if you want to see a concert. Check out the event calendar here to see who’s performing at the Event Center. If you decide to still do a weekday, there is entertainment happening every day of the week at Live! Center Stage in the casino–karaoke, salsa, funk & soul, tribute bands, etc, oh my!
- Showering. THE WATER IS COLD FOR LIKE 5 MINUTES WHEN YOU TURN IT ON. Just leave the shower running and it will get warm. While you wait, brush your teeth, have a beer, watch some TV, etc. You’ll thank me later.
- Happy Hour. Research the menus of all the restaurants and see which happy hour gets you excited. Attend that happy hour. BTW, David’s does live music on some nights at their bar area.
Hopefully my experience will give you ideas of planning your own staycation regardless if it’s at Live! or somewhere else.
Huge shout out to Stanton Communications, Inc for arranging all this and Live! Casino & Hotel for inviting me to stay over and explore all its wonders. When it comes down to it, I’m truly grateful because I really needed a vacation even if it was a short one 🙂
Have you done a staycation before? If yes, where have you’ve gone? Would love to research and possibly check it out!