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The Five-Point Weekend Escape Plan

Skip the Casinos in Reno

Forget casinos and retro kitsch—the Biggest Little City in the World's low hotel prices, revitalized Riverwalk District, and burgeoning restaurant scene should appeal to any non-gambling traveler.


1. Where to Stay

Rooms at Peppermill Reno are subdued compared to the property's Vegas-style flamboyance.  

Escape neon-lit downtown for a quiet retreat at Wildflower Village (from $30), an art-centric, overgrown complex in a residential neighborhood by the Truckee River. Home to several galleries and studios, a wedding chapel, a café, and a pub, the property also offers three types of nightly accommodations: hostel, studio apartment, and bed and breakfast, the latter being the nicest of the three. During your stay, you can sign up for painting classes led by working artists or rent a bike ($36/day) to pedal on the pleasant riverside path.

Opt for a central downtown location at the Eldorado (from $69), just a few blocks away from the revamped Riverwalk District. Though the neon-decked exterior and two-level fountain decorated with life-size mermen may seem gaudy, rooms are adorned in neutral palettes and many offer luxuries like Jacuzzis for a surprisingly low price. The food program here is excellent, with everything from butchering to baking to pasta-making to coffee-roasting done on-site to service Eldorado’s nine restaurants.

Get a taste of Vegas-style excess at Peppermill Reno (from $89), a sprawling resort with 1,000 rooms, a few 5,000-square-foot suites, two faux-Tuscan swimming pools with fountains, countless dining options, half a dozen casinos, and more. The rooms, spread across three buildings, come in nearly twenty different styles and many look out at the surrounding mountains. Its location near the convention center may not be as central as you’d like, but the property is newer than many of the older casino hotels downtown, and Enterprise offers rental cars on-site.

Published on Sep 20, 2013 as a web exclusive.

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