Named after King Arthur's legendary sword, Excalibur is a hotel at the south end of the Strip that mixes medieval style with modern conveniences.
Fun-for-all-ages atmosphere, no frills accommodations, faux castle theme
There's an obvious reason why people choose to stay at Exalibur: it's cheap (well, cheaper than almost anything else you'll find on the Strip). On nonpeak nights you might see rates as low as $29 -- and even with the resort fee, you'll still save a bundle.
Although this gigantic white castle with spires of bright red, blue and gold doesn't quite hearken back to the Middle Ages, you'll love tweeting out from the drawbridge or the Fun Dungeon (just rein in your "50 Shades of Grey" fantasies because this is an arcade and carnival-style midway for families).
The show "Tournament of Kings" is an inexpensive option for food and entertainment. It includes a three-course meal that you eat with your fingers (finally, a chance to set your inner peasant free). You'll also love cheering for the knights on horseback while pounding on the table and waving your fists.
Don't expect the rooms at Excalibur to have medieval décor. The furnishings are traditional -- no garderobes here (and thank god because if you know what a garderobe is you don't want one). The standard tower rooms are older and cheaper than the contemporary tower rooms, which were remodeled in 2009 and a little more modern. Also, if you smoke in a non-smoking room, there will be a $300 fine at checkout. Save yourself the trouble and light up in designated smoking areas like the casino.
There are no coffeemakers in the rooms. So if you're jonesing for a java, you'll have to hoof it over to Starbucks or the Castle Walk Food Court.
Beware of the people in suits standing near the main entrance, at the elevator banks and in the passage to Luxor. They are not hotel staff. They are selling timeshares and will offer you things like a welcome gift or free show tickets. If you want to sit through a four-hour presentation, go ahead...or be like the rest of us and just walk on by. You're in Vegas. You've got better things to do.
Excalibur is connected to Luxor (which in turn is connected to Mandalay Bay) by an enclosed passage. This is great on summer days when -- trust us -- you don't want to walk out in the sweltering heat. There's also a free tram that will take you to Mandalay Bay and return you from Mandalay Bay via Luxor.
The Buffet at Excalibur has been retooled. It's not only brighter and more modern, but the food is good too -- especially for the price (about half of what you'd pay at the elite buffets in Vegas). The Buffet at Excalibur features made-to-order crepes and hand-rolled ice cream pops.
Craving a little pampering but don't want to shell out loads of extra money? The Spa at Excalibur will treat you like a queen (or king) for a day for much less than what you'd pay at other spas on the Strip.
If you've got a car, you should access Excalibur from Frank Sinatra Drive and not directly from the Strip. This will take you behind the resort to its three-story self-parking garage. You'll then walk across the road (Luxor Drive) and enter through the rear entrance.