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Rio Hotel in Las Vegas - Seafood Buffet for Seafood Lovers

Located at the Rio Hotel in Las Vegas, the Village Seafood buffet is the resort's marine alternative to its famous World Carnival buffet. Seafood lovers regard it as the 'must-go' buffet in Vegas...

The Village Seafood Buffet at Rio Las Vegas: A Seafood Paradise?

By Jules Monty

The Village Seafood is Rio's answer to all those seeking more seafood and fish-based dishes, in terms of quantity and variety, from a Vegas buffet; the idea is to offer not only the 'traditional' snow crab legs, shrimps, New England clam chowder and fresh oysters (the latter are actually a rarity in 'regular' Vegas buffets), but also to add a seafood slant to many popular dishes, thus offering seafood sauce pastas, savoury dishes with seafood fillings, and so on. If you want something else or a 'break' from seafood, you will find meat and other 'regular' dishes too, so if you desire variety you will not be disappointed here.

You will find the quintessential American, Mexican, Italian and Asian (which includes Sushi) sections, some with a seafood slant wherever possible. In the American station you will enjoy lobster tails, steamed clams, seafood salads, snow-crab legs, oysters, shrimps, broiled swordfish, seafood gumbo and grilled salmon.

The verdict on whether this buffet will absolutely blow you away is mixed. We have met a huge number of 'fans' of this buffet, especially because they can eat all their favourite seafood dishes, which are admittedly expensive anywhere you may want to sample them, for a relatively low (but not cheap!) price. However, many have also said that it used to be really good but lately it's let them down somewhat: occasionally too salty overall or just not 'good enough' in general as dish preparation is concerned; some 'picky' visitors were slightly disappointed because they could not the very sought-after Maine lobsters and were served a smaller version instead. The problem lies, in my opinion, in the fact that, if one pays about 40 dollars to get into a seafood buffet, one's expectations are generally higher than what they - perhaps - should be. Personally, I find it excessive to pay more than about 20 to 28 dollars per buffet entrance (and we rarely do since we always use coupons or similar special offers); however, Vegas is Vegas and many understandably want to experience extravagant gastronomic meals and, for that, are prepared to pay more (but of course, expecting more).

The dessert section is average with some good dishes, such as the mini soufflés, the chocolate fondue and the Crème brulées. The gelato (low-fat, healthier ice-cream) is a hit for many but not all, depending on personal taste.

During busy periods you should probably expect a line up which can last as long as 30 minutes. I have willing waited this long only at the Bellagio buffet but, usually, long line ups are off-putting to me and often a sign of bad organisation (the Bellagio is the only exception, in my opinion, in that so many people want to sample their fantastic buffet which has, admittedly, limited space for all those 'fans'). In Vegas they have this annoying habit of closing sections and rotating sections to excessive, unreasonable extremes; the Rio, Paris and PH buffets are especially renowned for this: you will see huge sections completely closed whilst eager customers wait in line forever. Some say it's to avoid line-ups at the food stations, which is a reasonable explanation; however, sometimes no station looks busy enough or not at all, so we are still perplexed about it.

In any case, after you go through the line-up, which some people don't mind since they can watch the bar tenders do 'tricks' in front of them, you will enter what feels like a large, busy cafeteria: if you expect to be pampered in 'style' you may be a little disappointed. Although part of the Caesar's Entertainment Group, this seafood buffet does not participate in the 24-hour buffet pass.

The 24-HOUR BUFFET PASS will let you enjoy all the buffets you want within 24 hours. We have analysed the pros and cons of this option and whether it's the best deal for buffet lovers.

For other seafood and general buffet options, go to TOP VEGAS BUFFETS.

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