While not as small as it used to be, the city of Reno, Nevada still touts itself as "The Biggest Little City in the World." The desert resort certainly does pack a lot of excitement into its 100 square miles and is a bustling holiday destination known for both live entertainment and casinos.
Between 1931 and the mid-1950s, Reno was regarded as the gambling capital of the United States. The town's proximity to the California border made Reno a natural holiday destination for residents of the San Francisco Bay Area. Today, legal Indian casinos have taken some business away from Reno, but its Old West charm remains, and the city continues to impress visitors with the high standard of service in its hotels.
Reno is an ideal destination for road trippers. Situated near the intersection of Interstate 80 and Interstate 580, it's fairly easy to get to from northern California. If you're going to make the drive, be prepared for steep grades going up and coming down from the High Sierras. Bear in mind that the temperatures in the Nevada desert can be harsh and long journeys require adequate planning.
Folks who prefer to fly into the Reno-Tahoe International Airport (RNO) and haven't arranged for a car rental will find a host of taxicabs and for-hire limousines ready and willing to take them into town. Some Reno hotels offer a shuttle service, so be sure to ask the concierge when you make your room reservations. Public buses pick up and drop off airline passengers at the center curb just outside the Baggage Claim area.
What do you want to do? Chances are good that you will find a place to do it somewhere in Washoe County. Of course, gaming and gambling are famously popular pastimes. If you're looking for a lucky spin at the roulette wheel without all the glitz and inflated prices of Las Vegas, a Reno getaway may be exactly the right trip for you.
Some of the older properties in town are no longer in operation, but business hasn't slowed, and there are still a myriad of lively casinos where locals and visitors can have a blast. The Boomtown Hotel and Casino is a popular place to stay and also boasts excellent restaurants and lounges, including a lobster buffet.
When you think of Reno, you probably think of poker games and neon signs, but there's a lot more going on here than you might imagine. During winter months, there are nearly 20 active ski and snowboard resorts in and around the Reno-Tahoe area. Time it right, and you can enjoy things like skiing, sledding, snowboarding and ice skating after trying your luck in the casinos.
If you can, approach Reno after dark. Whereas Las Vegas is now awash in television screens, the classic neon lights are still aglow in the Biggest Little City of Reno, Nevada.
Remember how you used to be able to dine deliciously in Las Vegas for almost no money at all? It's still that way in Reno. These days, many casinos are vying for visitor attention by offering sensational deals on food and drinks. Ask the concierge if they have any special offers, and you may be happily surprised by their answer. Other popular Reno restaurants include the King Buffet and Wong's Genghis Khan Kitchen