Oyster Hotel Photos
Oyster Hotel Review
Quiet, laid back, and away from the action, this is not your typical Vegas experience. Most guests are time-share owners, and the majority are families. The Las Vegas Convention Center is a 10-minute walk away.
This quiet, unassuming hotel isn't on the radar for most Vegas travelers. As a time-share property, its guests tend to be members of a time-share organization like RCI Exchange, or they're HHonors members racking up or redeeming points. This is a non-gaming hotel that's a 10-minute walk away from the Strip. No casino, no arcade, not even a slot machine. No live entertainment or fine dining. In fact, nothing about this hotel screams Vegas -- and that's exactly why guests choose it.
Rhoda, a time-share owner from Ohio that we interviewed, says that she likes the hotel because "you don't have to walk through a casino to get to your room." She admitted though that this wasn't her first choice. The Hilton Grand Vacations Club at the Flamingo has a much better location, right behind the Strip.
If you're not invested in a membership program, this hotel is good insofar as it's a retreat from anything loud or busy. It offers a nice size pool with a relaxing lounge area, and a small but decent fitness center. When it gets too quiet, you can take a five-minute stroll over to the neighboring Las Vegas Hilton, which has bars, restaurants, a nightclub, live entertainment, and a sizable casino.
Prices fluctuate, but if you can get a one-bedroom suite for $150 or less, this is a good deal for travelers who want a relaxing hotel. The entire property completed a renovation in 2010, updating room decor and the pool area with a much fresher look. If you're looking for a party scene, though, you're better off finding a similar price for a standard, modern room at large Strip properties like the Wynn.
The Las Vegas Convention Center is only a 10-minute walk from the hotel, but conventiongoers can find similar accommodations even closer, such as the Marriott Suites, just a three-minute walk away.
The staff is very nice and accommodating, though a little slow with requests.
The service is friendly and helpful. The front desk staff wear name plates that say "Creator of First Impressions." The staff members I interacted with had a laid-back charm -- a contrast with busier resorts like Bally's where service can be downright rude. When the concierge had left for the day, a guest services attendant answered my questions about getting show tickets. (She advised me to check out half-price ticket booths located along the Strip, adding tips on which shows were likely to be sold out.)
Check-in was fast and easy. My room was ready at noon, though the official check-in time is 4 p.m. Requesting a late checkout was not a problem. Express checkout is available by just dropping your room key in a box in the lobby.
If you're visiting during a slow period, as I was, the staff has more flexibility to grant requests. As a Hilton Honors member, I asked if I would receive two free bottles of water, as is the policy in the New York City Hilton. The receptionist apologetically told me that wasn't the case in Vegas, but she arranged for two bottles to be sent to my room anyway. When I asked if I was allowed to use the pool in the larger, neighboring Las Vegas Hilton, another receptionist said it wasn't standard practice, but he encouraged me to try anyway, since it wasn't a busy time for hotels.
It might not be the fastest service, but the vibe here is slow and casual. A few of my requests, such as having my breakfast tray picked up, came later than I expected (close to 30 minutes), but the staff are always nice and even apologetic.
Cut off from the action, the hotel is a 10-minute, $12 cab ride from the center of the Strip, or three stops on the monorail ($5 one way). The Las Vegas Convention Center is a 10-minute walk away.
Located off the Strip, the Hilton is a long way from the all-night action. Getting to the nexus of the Strip -- the Mirage, Treasure Island, or Bellagio hotels -- is a 10-minute cab ride. There's also the monorail system, which stops at the Hilton, as well as the MGM Grand, Bally's/Paris, Flamingo/Caesars Palace, Harrah's/Imperial Palace, the Las Vegas Convention Center, and the Sahara. A single-ride ticket is $5; a one-day pass is $13.
Immediately around the hotel, you'll find nothing worth going to except for the Las Vegas Hilton, which is connected by a walkway. This Hilton has a casino, spa, live entertainment, buffet, and a number of restaurants ranging from fast food to a fine-dining steakhouse.
The other surrounding properties are large residential compounds spread out along Paradise Road, which is very wide. The Las Vegas Convention Center is located on Paradise Road, and it's a 10-minute walk from the hotel.
The hotel has studios and one- or two-bedroom suites, all of which have pull-sofas and king-size beds. The studio room has a small seating area, and a pantry with a microwave, a coffeemaker with Starbucks packets, and a mini-fridge, but no minibar. It's nothing great, and at a little less than 400 square feet, it might feel cramped with more than two people.
For about $50-$100 more, the huge, 772-square-foot one-bedroom suite comes with over double the space, plus an Aquatic whirlpool tub, a living room, and a full kitchen that includes a stove-top, an oven, a dishwasher, blender, pots, pans, and a full set of utensils and plates. A washer and dryer is even hidden inside a closet. Two-bedroom suites come in at 1080 square feet and has two bathrooms. For families or large groups, suites are an excellent option.
The look is sensible, with the whirlpool tub tucked between the bedroom and the bathroom. The hot tub is part of the bedroom because there's no door separating the two spaces. The king-size bed is plush and comfortable with a down comforter and pillows on a Serta pillow-top mattress.
The flat-screen TVs -- one in each bedroom, one in the living room -- come with pay-per-view movies and 75 cable channels. There's also a DVD player, where you can watch DVDs rented from the machine in the Active Lounge. The rooms have free Wi-Fi, though the connection is pretty weak.
It's worth asking for a room facing the pool. In the morning, you'll get a gorgeous sun-lit view of the pool below and the mountains in the distance. Smoking rooms are also available.
Rooms and Rates
A good-size, heated pool, a small fitness center with modern equipment, a business center with two PCs and a printer, and lounges for guests to watch TV on a large screen or play billiards. But no casino.
The heated outdoor pool is a good size and quite relaxing. Since the hotel is cut off from the highway and a long walk from other hotels, the pool deck here is far quieter than at most Vegas resorts. The pool is long enough to swim laps in, and there's a small Jacuzzi to the side. Unfortunately for me, the Jacuzzi and pool bar were closed for renovations during my stay in April '09, but they have re-opened since.
Facing the pool is a fitness center. With three StarTrac treadmills, an exercise bike, a step machine and a strength training machine, it's not a bad place to break a sweat. Only the stepper has an individual TV screen. Other exercisers are stuck with two old box sets with cable hanging on the north corners of the gym.
The business center inside the Quiet Lounge has two PCs and a printer. It costs 50 cents/minute to use the computers, and they can be accessed only with a credit/debit card (you can't just bill the time to your room). There's a free kiosk in the lobby to print boarding passes. The meeting rooms in the basement occasionally host conferences. If you bring your own laptop, you can use free Wi-Fi around the hotel.
Guests can visit two lounges, one called "Quiet," the other called the "Active." Both have large TVs, but only the latter has a billiards table. The former hosts the business center, and every Tuesday and Thursday, it's the venue for the free "Ladies Pampering Session," hosted by a Mary Kay representative (here's a photo of the exuberant Teri-Lynn). Exfoliating, moisturizing, and chitchat are on the agenda. It's a fun time, sampling cosmetics and meeting other guests, with no pressure to buy anything at the end.
Good for families who want a nice apartment and a nice pool away from the action. To get anywhere though, you'll need a car.
This hotel was made for families. With no casino or any form of sexy entertainment, it's a straight-up hotel with big rooms, a pleasant pool, and lounges that feel like living rooms. If you and your family want a retreat in a sunny place that doesn't have anything to do with what Las Vegas is famous for, this is the place for you. It's so cut off from the cliches, it might as well be in any other sunshine-y state like Florida or California.
The rooms have no double beds or rollaways, so kids will have to sleep on the pullout sofa in the living room. Studios also have a pullout sofa, but using it would make the limited space feel pretty cramped. The full kitchens in the one-bedroom villas are a godsend for families who would rather cook meals than eat deli sandwiches and salads every day. The Las Vegas Hilton, which is a five-minute walk, has kid-friendly restaurants such as Pizza Hut, the Ice Cream Shoppe, and the buffet. The Hilton also has an arcade, so kids can entertain themselves there. Baby-sitting service can be arranged through guest services.
Very clean all-around, and the pool is cleaned every day.
As with other HGVC properties, the standard of cleanliness is excellent. Nothing to complain about. Rooms and hallways are well-kept, and the pool is thoroughly cleaned every day.
No on-site restaurant, just a deli that serves salads, sandwiches, and Starbucks coffee. Trek to the neighboring Las Vegas Hilton for a better choice of eateries.
Paradise Garden Deli, which serves a selection of sandwiches and salads ($6 to $8), is the only dining option on the grounds. For breakfast and quick bites, the fruit, breakfast sandwiches, and snacks like Doritos are more than sufficient. For other meals, take the five-minute walk to the Las Vegas Hilton. There guests can pick from a solid array of dining options, though the hotel lacks the top-of-the-line culinary experiences that other major Vegas resorts deliver. And while none of the Hilton's restaurants are out-and-out cheap, many offer decent values for the price.
The buffet at the Las Vegas Hilton serves a wide mix of cuisines, from salads and steaks to Chinese stir-fry to tacos and burritos. Vegas diners can find better buffets in town (try the Spice Market buffet at Planet Hollywood), but they'll pay twice as much for them. Only $15, the Hilton buffet dishes out above-average food at a low price.
The row of restaurants just past the casino includes a low-lit Zen garden complex with three dining options. The fanciest is Benihana, located on the second level. The hibachi tables look out onto a waterfall and wooden bridge, the hibachi chef puts on a good show, and the food is as savory and delicious as you'd expect butter-laden meats to be. For $50, it's not cheap, but it's a much better value than the fancy teppanyaki over at the Flamingo, Hamada of Japan, a 20-year-old Vegas institution and hot spot for business dinners.
|Things to Do||
Gameroom / Arcade
Separate Bedroom / Living Room Space
Smoking Rooms Available
|Address||455 Karen Avenue, Las Vegas, Nevada 89109, United States|
|Also Known As||