A Lake Tahoe retreat. Better defining the “Customer Experience”. PART – 4

I think one of the better highlights of our journey came when my eldest and new-bride . . . and new-brides brother appeared the Thursday morning. They came in at 3:30am. The gaming captain (wife) drug me across the border to hopefully stay awake for the night until they kids got in, but we immediately knew they weren’t gonna be in for a while, so we chilled at The Hard Rock Hotel and Casino. I hung at the bar and re-learned to play video poker while she ran amok. I’m going to give Hard Rock the vote for best atmospheric sound (sonically speaking); though I’m only giving it just for the bar area alone. The dynamic sound kept me droppin’ the coins while I drank some sort of large-distributer beer.

Although having the entertaining sounds to keep me betting while in the bar, that same expectation of sound was not heard throughout the remainder of the casino. Same old shitty sound as any other. When on the casino floor, while I watched others bet away, and there not being a band playing somewhere in the casino ((another less, but understandable glitch . . . hmmm, wait a minute . . . hmmm, Base Camp (Part-2)). I regress. While on the casino floor, I was anticipating hearing a very nice sound system that is barely audible. The kind of sound system you realize is driving your emotions but you have no answer as to “why” . . . then within yourself, you find it. But, I never found it. So, back to the bar.

15-Heavenly-Observation-Deck-Venue-VixensThursday took us up the Heavenly Gondola once again. The previous trip (Tuesday) was the first day my youngest wanted to ski whatever was remaining of the winter’s slope. That day, we headed up the >$50/person Gondola ride up the hill to the first view-point stop. Wow! Our last trip we never went to see the views from that point. Glad we did this time. I guess they have weddings up there. Give ‘er a quick stop, you won’t be dissatisfied. The ticket price includes all-day riding on the Gondola, so once you’re there, take a look, then keep going up to the Heavenly Resort Ski area . . . and find those bacon Marys.

Thursday was family ski day . . . yay! I skied with the wife. Yes, I did some snowboarding before in my younger days, but figured at my age the single edge is not worth the comfortable Uggs.

That morning of snow was of the last three ski days on Heavenly for the season, as we found out once in the Village. Heavenly offered Spring time skiing at its very best. Compared to Big Bear area resorts in Sothern California, waaaaaay better. I told my son, “This snow is better than the worse day of a good snowfall in Big Bear”. The snow is much lighter, barely any ice, and slush is only found waiting for the chairs and the area as we got off the Gondola.

So we did the morning, family thing on the slopes. I realized muscles, or lack there of, in places I forgot I had. We met for lunch after about seven runs that morning and, wait for it, . . . COCKTAILS!!! Yes, we were there for lunch with the family after the morning on the slope, but we stopped to refresh and recollect. Now, what I recall is my wife busting her ass three times that morning and I, ZERO. After lunch those fools went back up, and I ordered another Mary, they are very, very good. With a thick piece of Praline-Candied bacon, and some vegetable stick never seen in San Diego. At least I’ve never seen it. I sat and spoke with the locals that were there to work or board, and a few vacationers while I drank that second double . . . probably spilled more of it than drank. Trust me I was quite amused for another couple of hours or so.

What I did notice, while under the influence of that  second double-(Goose) Bloody Mary, was the lack of good “everyday sound” atop the lodge area. Perhaps they like to underplay their entertainment value associated with some of the bands featured up there (looks like the remnants of a stage remained) or the arrival of the DJ Cat. Heavenly offers this word about the DJ Cat, “the ski world’s best après ski party closer to the slopes.

A retired grooming machine was given new life and overhauled with a state-of-the-art sound system fit for a nightclub. The machine became our one of a kind DJ CAT. You’ll find some of Tahoe’s best DJs performing on the DJ CAT outside Tamarack Lodge before Unbuckle or making guest appearances around the mountain. We went all in with 52 speakers and 12000 watts of amps. When you come across the DJ CAT, you’ll know it.” Perhaps they are too cheap to upgrade to a better outdoor system. Mine at home sounds better.

Another night at the Casino’s, this time with the kids, except the one who had Spring Break homework. Then finally another night back home (relax, home is where my wallet is).



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