Tina McConnell, a concierge at the Westin Las Vegas, a job she started in 2018. One of her favorite stories from her time as a concierge at New York-New York involves helping a guest’s mother plan her daughter’s special trip to the Big Apple.
"She was diagnosed with stage four cancer and her one wish was to visit New York. Due to her condition, she wasn’t able to travel far but they were a close drive to Las Vegas and wanted to make her daughter feel like she was in New York. She had reached out to our concierge team and I was lucky enough to be the one to help plan the trip. We made her Mayor for the day, presenting her with a New York-New York key to the city. I gave her a personal tour of our suites and property and made their experience with us as memorable as possible. This is why I am a concierge because I can be part of guests’ special moments and memories and why I love being in this industry."
Here, McConnell shares some of her top tips for tourists when they visit Las Vegas.
Tell me about one of your favorite places to send first-time Vegas visitors.
I always suggest walking the Strip and checking out some of the hotel architecture. I love the Bellagio Conservatory, The High Roller at The Linq Promenade and I love recommending Fremont Street Experience. It’s always a hit for any guests, of all ages!
I want to update my Facebook photo. What should I have in the background of my selfie?
Probably the beach at Mandalay Bay because I love the beach.
Tell me about your favorite hidden gem in Las Vegas.
The Neon Museum. It’s not really hidden but I definitely think it’s underrated. This is perfect for anyone because the pictures are great and who doesn’t want a good Instagram photo to post about your vacation. You get to see all the classic Vegas hotel signs and get great photo ops while you’re there!
Where should I eat if I want to celebrate a special occasion? How hard is it to get a reservation while I’m in Las Vegas?
I am going to be basic but I would recommend either the Eiffel Tower because you get the view of the Bellagio Fountains or Top of the World at Stratosphere because what’s more romantic than a nice city view. Reservations aren’t too bad to get, normally pretty easy if you make them in advance.
What’s the most unusual request you’ve had as a concierge? What about the craziest request?
To be honest, I can’t think of any unusual or crazy request because being in this industry in Las Vegas you get it all, so it’s all second nature. So nothing truly stands out to me as being too crazy or unusual.
Who is your favorite Las Vegas celebrity chef?
I love Giada De Laurentiis because not only do I love Italian food, but she seems like such a sweetheart too!
I want to experience classic Las Vegas. Where do you recommend that I go?
Where do you like to do some people-watching in Las Vegas?
My favorite place to people watch would probably be either Fremont Street because you not only get street performers but you can watch how people react to some of the street performers.
What’s the must-see show in Las Vegas right now?
"Zumanity" is still one of my favorites and a good classic. If you haven’t seen it, it is still a must-see. I love the humor, I love the love, I love the Cirque du Soleil performances. It’s always a guaranteed fun time.
What tips do you give first-timers?
A great tip for anyone visiting Las Vegas is suggesting our great Strip transportation service, the RTC Bus. It’s inexpensive and the best, in my opinion, way to get around Las Vegas. It’s also very easy to navigate and guests love when I suggest this because they feel like I am saving them tons of money.
I also typically suggest doing the hop on-hop off bus tour with Big Bus, if they are wanting more of a tour experience plus you get the bonus of it being a transportation service.
Describe your perfect evening out in Las Vegas.
Personally, I love being dressed down, eating ramen and going to the movies. Perfect date night for me.