For the right price, almost anyone can go to the Super Bowl. It just depends how much you're willing to spend. For most of us, that's too much, so most of us make a run to the supermarket to buy chips, dip and beer, and gather in someone's home or apartment to watch the big game.
If we're lucky, it's a good game. And if we're even luckier, we actually care about the game. But move this viewing party to Las Vegas, and you've got an amplified experience. More people, bigger screens, a chance to put down a wager or two and an opportunity to let loose.
Oh, and let's not forget to take your golf clubs. If you live in one of those wintry states, that sounds pretty enticing right around February when everything's in a deep freeze.
Not convinced? Well, here are 10 reasons you should consider going to Las Vegas for the Super Bowl:
1. It's a lot cheaper than going to the actual game
Going to the Super Bowl -- when you factor in airfare, rooms and tickets -- can easily cost $10,000 or more for two people. Vegas won't cost you anywhere near that amount, unless, of course, you've got a gambling problem. (Heck, you could conceivably come out ahead.)
But make your plans now if you haven't already. Even without the Super Bowl, things start heating up in Las Vegas in February, and rooms start to fill fast.
2. Super Bowl parties are super duper
There are the Super Bowl parties people have at their homes, and Super Bowl parties they have in Las Vegas. There's no comparison. Practically every club and every casino, on and off the Strip, will be having special events and viewing parties for the Super Bowl.
It's almost impossible to go wrong. But if you're looking for one where you can combine golf and football, you might want to check out the Big Game Party at Bali Hai Golf Club, which begins with a 9 a.m. shotgun on the golf course followed by gourmet, all-you-can-eat buffet, open bar, raffles and other fun events.
3. Plenty of golf options in and around Sin City
From premium golf courses such as Bali Hai on the Strip, to value-golf experiences like you find at Angel Park Golf Club and Stallion Mountain Country Club, Las Vegas has a lot to offer on the links. Other worthy contenders for your golf dollar include Chimera Golf Club at Tuscany, a Ted Robinson design that boasts one of the toughest finishing holes in Sin City; the Lexington Course and Concord Course at Revere Golf Club; and the 27 holes of Robert Trent Jones, Jr.-designed golf at Spanish Trail Country Club.
And your golf options don't end in Las Vegas or even Henderson; Mesquite and St. George, Utah, aren't far away, and you can get some great deals at terrific courses such as Coyote Springs Golf Club, Wolf Creek Golf Club and Sand Hollow, the last of which I finally played in 2015 and highly recommend.
4. A little cool maybe, but expect sunny weather
By February, Las Vegas temperatures are on the rise, though it's still cool. The average high in February is 63, so with a little bit of outerwear, golf should be quite comfortable. You'll want to play in the middle of the day, of course, which isn't the case if you're in Vegas in the summer.
And since it's on the chillier side, this might be the best time of year to play a course such as Royal Links Golf Club, which pays homage to all the great courses of the British Open. A little wind will really make it feel like links golf.
5. Golf courses are in great shape
By the time February rolls around, nearly every golf course in Las Vegas are basically golf courses with cool-season grasses. The high-end courses are in especially great shape this time of year because they're heavily overseeded. If you like great course conditions, this is a pretty good time to play golf in Las Vegas.
6: Sports books are spectacular
If you're looking to put a little wager on the big game, then why not go to a place where it's legal -- the sports books of Las Vegas. They're also a great place to watch the games, as these sports books keep outdoing themselves with big screens, comfortable seating and great food. There's a good one at Mandalay Bay next to Bali Hai G.C., for example.
One of my favorites remains the the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook, one of the largest race and sports books in town. It's 30,000 square feet and offers more than 300 seats with 60 viewing monitors, including 28 large screens and one that's 15 feet by 30 feet. And you don't have to limit it to which team is going to win the Super Bowl. You can bet on other sports as well as prop bets on the game, like who scores first, which quarterback has the most yards, which team will rack up the most penalty yards, etc.
7: Fantastic dining in Las Vegas
There are so many great restaurants in Las Vegas that it really depends on your budget and your taste. Of course, if volume is what you're looking for, there's no shortage of great buffets, some as little as $10 or so.
Most folks who go to Las Vegas are there for at least a weekend, so there's plenty of opportunity to sample Las Vegas' best. Some of the top restaurants include the very cool N9NE Steakhouse on West Flamingo Road, the Vegas version of Il Mulino New York for incredible Italian, and Top of the World, perched high above the city at the top of the Stratosphere.
8. Great place to people watch
Hey, you never know who you're going to see in Vegas. Maybe you'll get the next camera video of Johnny Football letting off a little steam. I've seen several pro golfers hanging out at casinos over the years, and there will most surely be plenty of celebrities during Super Bowl week.
9. Catch the Super Bowl and a show
Since you're in Las Vegas, it would be a shame to leave without seeing a show, and there's something for everyone. Go see standards such as Penn & Teller at the Rio, V, the Ultimate Variety Show at Planet Hollywood, or if you're really daring, the very adult Zumanity Cirque Du Soleil at New York, New York. They're all playing in early February, just not on Super Bowl Sunday.
10. Airfares are usually reasonable
A quick check on the travel sites reveals you can get a round-trip ticket to Las Vegas on Super Bowl weekend for around $200-$300, depending on where you live. For example, on Spirit Airlines, I could fly from Houston to Las Vegas round-trip for less than $200. From New York, it's around $240 on American and $284 on Southwest, which would include two free bags (important for travelers taking golf clubs). And from Chicago, I found tickets on Frontier for less than $240, and it's just slightly higher than that on United.