I didn’t think it was possible to use the words “fun” and “airplane flight” in the same sentence but it is when traveling on a Vision Airlines flight.
Vision, the new charter airline partner with the Beau Rivage Resort in Biloxi, Miss., is part of the reason for new air/hotel packages that come wrapped with fun and laughter. (And those deals are quite impressive, but I’ll get to that shortly.)
Back to the fun. After boarding the 737 Boeing aircraft that left Atlanta on a Friday night, the flight attendants went over the standard safety measures, then announced it was time for the money bag.
“The what?” I said to my husband.
Those who wanted to participate were told to write their seat number on a one dollar bill and drop it into the plastic bag the attendant was walking with down the aisle. Before the flight left the tarmac, the attendant pulled one bill from the bag and awarded the contents to the woman whose seat number was on it. The cabin erupted into cheers. This was repeated with an upped ante—the $5 money bag.
And when it was time for beverage service, the flight attendants served drinks—adult drinks—from a beverage cart loaded with gin, rum and Jack Daniels along with the Coke and Sprite. The best part, no charge.
By the time the games and the cocktails were done, we were making our descent to the Gulfport-Biloxi International Airport. Ground transportation to the resort—only 15 miles away.
Now, about those packages. For August, Beau Rivage is offering travelers flying out of Georgia a $99 per person package that includes airfare, transportation from the airport to the resort and two-nights stay at the resort. This offer is good Wednesday through Friday through Aug. 31. (The Sunday through Wednesday rate is $149.) At this price, it would be hard to stay in DeKalb County and entertain oneself for a few days for less.
While the resort is home to a 85,000-square-foot casino with 94 table games, more than 2,000 slot machines and a poker room, there’s plenty more than gambling to do.
I’m certainly no gambler–$30 to $40 at the penny and nickel slots for an entire weekend is as “high roller” as I get—but I’ve been to the Beau Rivage about four times and always had a great stay. Last weekend my husband and I made it our weekend getaway spot with the O’Jays concert in the resort’s 1,550-seat theater the highlight of our trip. Major acts are booked just about every weekend (Cyndi Lauper on Aug. 7, Michael Bolton on Sept. 3-4, Smokey Robinson on Sept. 11, Merle Haggard on Sept. 24 and Blues Traveler on Nov. 12). Those who want to get their groove on can party at three nightclubs and bars.
We experienced one great meal after another at four of the onsite restaurants and eateries where we dined—Jia (Asian), BR Prime (upscale steakhouse—my personal favorite), The Buffet (all-you-can-eat) and Coast (a sports bar style eatery with pizza, burgers and appetizers). There are a total of 10 places to dine or snack in all.
Beau Rivage is designed such that it’s possible to stay on property during one’s visit and not feel captive. There are also 12 retail venues, many located in a lovely shopping promenade and an expansive outdoor pool. Golfers only have to travel 20 minutes to play the links at the Tom Fazio-designed Fallen Oak golf course.
And the 1,740 rooms and suites on 32 floors are well appointed and luxurious.
And my final day was made even more relaxing thanks to a 50-minute body treatment at the spa. The moisturizing body cocoon involves a full body polishing scrub followed by a shower, then being slathered in shea butter, wrapped in hot damp towels and a foil-like material and left to marinade for 20 minutes. The result: nirvana and smooth, supple skin.
For more information on the Beau Rivage, visit www.beaurivage.com.