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Desert Oasis: Slim City

Maryann Hammers

Health, fitness, and sophistication are concepts not commonly associated with Las Vegas. But at the Ritz-Carlton Lake Las Vegas, just 17 miles from the Strip, the Sin City stereotype succumbs to a wholesome, salutary, and refined state of mind. 

 

Set in the heart of MonteLago Village, on the sandy shores of the country’s largest man-made private lake, the Tuscan-inspired golf and spa resort offers a welcome alternative to the circus atmosphere of the Strip. The resort includes everything one would expect from a Ritz-Carlton—fine dining, well-appointed accommodations, attentive service—but its Spa Vita di Lago, with its emphasis on health and rejuvenation, is what sets Lake Las Vegas apart from its Nevada-desert peers. 

 

The focus at Spa Vita di Lago is on holistic mind/body remedies. Staffed by herbologists, nutritionists, physiologists, and personal trainers, the spa offers treatments ranging from a Fiore Blu hydrating-flower body wrap to its signature La Culla—Dalla Testa al Piede (from head to toe), a multisensory, two-hour extravaganza. Private meditation gardens transport you worlds away from the Strip, while a generously sized fitness center features individual TV screens, consultation with personal trainers, and a full roster of classes—from Pilates and yoga to water aerobics and spinning.

 

The Ritz-Carlton also strays from Vegas standards with its emphasis on the outdoors. Lake Las Vegas, which was 15 years in the making and took a full five years to fill, offers ample outdoor opportunities—both in its waters and around its shores. You can kayak, mountain bike, take guided desert hikes (some of which include private yoga sessions), or set off on your own to the Rattlesnake, Ridge, or Bighorn trails, the latter of which runs high above the desert lake and is home to a family of its namesake sheep.

 

Despite all the emphasis on a healthful experience, the Ritz-Carlton is not unaffected by its environs. Once refreshed and rejuvenated from the exercise and spa, you may be inclined to indulge in life’s less beneficial pursuits. This is, after all, Las Vegas, and the Strip beckons just minutes away.

 

Ritz-Carlton Lake Las Vegas

Location: Adjacent to the Lake Mead National Recreation Area, 17 miles east of the Las Vegas Strip, and a short drive from Hoover Dam.
Accommodations: 349 rooms and suites, including club-level guest rooms that span the lake in a three-story bridge.

Spa: The 30,000-square-foot Spa Vita di Lago features 24 treatment rooms and a full-service salon with a staggering array of facials, wraps, massages, and more. 

Fitness Center: State-of-the-art fitness equipment, classes, counseling, and outdoor activities.

Recreation: The resort pool features private cabanas, and a private swimming lagoon has a sandy beach. The property also offers golfing at two championship courses (the Falls Golf Club and Reflection Bay Golf Club) and can arrange a number of outdoor activities—from kayaking to desert hiking—in and around Lake Las Vegas.

Restaurant and Bar: The Medici Café is open for breakfast, weekend brunch, lunch, and dinner; the Firenze Lobby Lounge features lake views and daily Florentine Tea; and the Galileo Bar offers hors d’oeuvres, desserts, and cocktails. 

Rates: $229 to $5,000 per night.

Contact: 800.241.3333, www.ritzcarlton.com

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