Las Vegas sportsbook review: Mandalay Bay
An expansive, elegant, full-service gaming resort, Mandalay Bay is located at the southern end of the Las Vegas Strip on Las Vegas Boulevard at West Hacienda Ave. In fact, Mandalay Bay is generally considered to mark the southern terminus of the Strip resort corridor. Featuring more than 3,300 hotel rooms and suites and a voluminous casino covering 135,000 square feet, Mandalay Bay draws excitement-seeking gamblers, convention attendees and tourists from around the world.
Sportsbook relevance: 8.5 on a scale of 1-10
The visually striking Mandalay Bay sportsbook (the area also includes the race book) has a prime location just off the main casino floor on the west side of the property, not far from the parking garage entrance. During a big sports day, there’s a palpable buzz in the air as a standing-room-only audience packs the book and the energy spills over into the adjacent 10-table poker room and bar/lounge area. On an average sports day when not much is going on, however, it can be like a Mojave Desert ghost town with a couple of bored-looking clerks behind the counter staring into space.
The Mandalay Bay sportsbook staff members are efficient, helpful and capable with consistently professional demeanors. Cocktail servers in the book and throughout the property are attentive and pleasant, befitting the upscale nature of the resort. Service is also fine at the Sports Book Grill located in the racebook area, which serves up satisfactory deli fare. Concierge services are offered from 7 a.m. through 9 p.m. daily, assisting with gift baskets, spa appointments, tee times, show tickets, pool cabanas, transportation requests and dining reservations for large parties.
The Mandalay Bay sportsbook has an airy, ultramodern, high-energy atmosphere that surges with adrenaline during major sporting events or big horse races. It can feel a bit sterile and cavernous during slower periods on the sports calendar, though. Electronic odds boards, displaying the latest lines in a variety of sports, are easy to read thanks to favorable sight lines from most vantage points in the book. Sixteen big screens and one huge screen that can be subdivided into four smaller but still jumbo-sized monitors are more than enough to ensure an enjoyable experience for visitors. Many smaller screens are scattered throughout the sportsbook and surrounding area.
The sportsbook side of the room has seating for about 120 customers depending on how the chairs are configured. The seats are designed as classroom-style mini-desks and therefore are not the most comfortable you will encounter in Las Vegas. The racebook side has seating for about 70 more guests, with individual viewing monitors attached to many of those seats.
Fairly long lines can develop at the betting stations during the busiest periods, though they tend to move fairly quickly. The crowd appears extremely diverse, but generally skews toward young, well-heeled Vegas vacationers. Restrooms are located across a hallway just outside the book’s north entrance.
Betting options 8.5
A comprehensive range of betting options is available at Mandalay Bay, including sides and totals on baseball, pro and college football, pro and college basketball, hockey, auto racing, golf, tennis and more. Future books are offered on major sports as well as big golf and tennis tournaments as well as events such as the Sprint Cup title. You’ll find a decent selection of props on major events such as the Super Bowl. Mandalay Bay is a particularly good spot for fight bettors thanks to its deep menu of odds on boxing and mixed martial events, which is far more extensive than the average Las Vegas sportsbook. When the Mandalay Bay Events Center is hosting a fight card it typically attracts a wide range of fight fans, gamblers and others associated with the promotion. Limits vary by sport, ranging well into the five figures on football sides.
Boys weekend 9
Not only is Mandalay Bay a strong option for a Vegas weekend with your homies, but it is consistently one of the most popular choices in the city for an outing with the boys. This is especially noticeable when there is a big fight or other sporting event scheduled at the Mandalay Bay Events Center, or a major concert at the onsite House of Blues. The resort’s spectacular 11-acre pool complex, known as Mandalay Beach, is perhaps the best in Las Vegas. It features a 1.6-million-gallon wave pool, a real-sand beach and a lazy river. Top music acts perform in the pool area as part of the ongoing Beach Concert Series. You’ll definitely want to hit the Eyecandy Sound Lounge, located in the heart of the action on the casino floor, for drinking and socializing. Red Square Bar and the House of Blues Foundation Room are also worthwhile stops.
Girlfriend/wife weekend 8.5
You won’t go wrong planning a romantic getaway at Mandalay Bay. There are plenty of shopping opportunities onsite, most notably the dozens of specialty stores and eateries in The Shoppes at Mandalay Place complex. There you’ll find apparel shops including Frederick’s of Hollywood; acclaimed restaurants including Rick Moonen’s RM Seafood and Burger Bar; jewelry boutiques; and galleries focusing on art and collectibles. The gourmet-dining scene at the resort is highlighted by Mix, Aureole and Fleur by Hubert Keller, among other fine destinations. The award-winning Spa Mandalay, covering 30,000 square feet, offers a full range of spa services including massages, body treatments and facials. Pricing is not inexpensive, but in line with the upscale resort atmosphere. The Moorea Beach Club is promoted as “Toptional” and features private dipping pools, poolside cabanas, day beds and other luxuries. The quality of the hotel rooms is excellent, with many offering superb views of Las Vegas.