The Sands Expo Center in Las Vegas, Nevada is home to countless expos every year. Frequently, because of the many different expo halls it offers, multiple conventions are put on in this show place at the same time. For those who don’t know, The Sands connects directly to The Venetian Hotel on the Las Vegas “Strip”.
For convenience, but also sometimes because of lack of knowledge, many exhibitors and attendees that come to the shows, book their lodging at The Venetian. People can keep everything in one place, don’t have to pay for cabs or walk long city blocks in the windy cold or draining heat (depending on what time of year you attend). Not to mention, the rooms are very nice and the hotel has pretty much everything you need built into it–from restaurants to gift shops to entertainment. You basically never have to leave.
I used to come to town twice a year for conventions at The Sands. I came with a partner and brought a team. I’m not gonna lie, if money wasn’t a factor, I would have stayed at the Venetian every time I came. I really like the hotel. Unfortunately, when considering costs for me and staff members, it made no sense when there was another option that cut costs almost in half, and was in walking distance from The Sands.
Treasure Island, or as it’s called in it’s new and improved, trendy title, “ti”.
When you walk out the front door of ti, you walk a short distance to a foot bridge that goes over the Las Vegas strip and into The Venetian. Once inside, you follow the casino carpet around a bit until you enter The Sands Convention Center. Even if you’re carrying heavy bags of merchandising, lap tops or walking in high heels, it’s a very do-able adventure that saves your company money.
It also gives you a place away from all the action if you feel like you want to escape once in a while. Obviously, we attend these events to network, mingle and make new connections. But when you’re staying in the hotel where the show is and the place that most of the attendees are staying, you can never escape if you do decide you want a breather. Treasure Island doesn’t offer as many bells and whistles as The Venetian, but it’s clean, it has a couple great restaurants and as I mentioned, very affordable.
Unlike most hotels and resorts who change their rates based on seasons and prime calendar dates, Las Vegas changes their rates daily based on events. You can stay at almost any top shelf hotel and casino on the strip for $99-$149 on a night when there is nothing special going on during the week. However, if that same hotel books Celine Dion to sing in their theater the very next night, those same rooms could cost you $299-$499. I believe that a similar pricing structure is put in place at hotels during big conventions that come to town.
Getting back to Venetian vs. Treasure Island, let’s look at the current rate structure that they are both advertising right now on their websites:
- Advertised Weekday Rates, standard room, 1 king, The Venetian: $149 to $599
- Advertised Weekday Rates, standard room, 1 king, Treasure Island: $59 to $279
- Advertised Weekend Rates, standard room, 1 king, The Venetian: $309 to $339
- Advertised Weekend Rates, standard room, 1 king, Treasure Island: $247 to $292
I find it interesting that the weekend rates at the Venetian never get higher than $339 a night. However, there are scattered days throughout the next month where their weekday rates soar to $599 a night. Regardless, as you can see, there is a considerable difference in price and Treasure Island frequently has specials that make longer stays more attractive.
Finally, once you arrive to whichever hotel you choose, never be too embarrassed to ask for a free upgrade. Hotel clerks have a lot more power than they may admit and the worse they can say is, “no”. My wife and I always have a pleasant conversation with front desk clerks when we travel and we always ask for a free upgrade. More then HALF of the time we ask, we get ’em! Try it.