Lake Tahoe has always had a split
personality, partly because of its location overlapping California
and Nevada, and partly because of its dual identity as both a
gaming and outdoor destination.
Casino & Spa, a new entrant into the resort scene on the Nevada
side, makes the most of both by offering guests a new take on the
concept of destination skiing.
as the Caesars Tahoe, the 440-room property is situated in South
Lake Tahoe, within steps of the Heavenly Mountain Resort
the public rooms kicked off in late 2005, beginning with the lobby,
casino floor and HQ Bar. All of those upgrades were completed in
The decor, like
the property's name, is an homage to the crystal blue lake for
which the Tahoe area is famous and which is situated within clear
view of the hotel.
A natural progression
Instead of the
former glitzy, Las Vegas, casino-style ambience, the resort's
design now features plenty of natural elements as well as the
predominant color blue.
40,000-square-foot casino offers the usual slot machines and table
games, and the Zone area features a sports-themed poker
dining facilities include Ciera for steaks and chops; Del Soul, a
Mexican grill; and 20-Four, a 24-hour diner.
There also is
plenty of nightlife for visitors looking for apres ski. The Blu
nightclub features high-energy dancing and, in a blast from the
past, go-go dancers, while Opal Ultra Lounge has bar chefs and an
assortment of DJs.
accommodations at MontBleu are a departure from the usual South
Lake Tahoe fare, ranging in size from 424 to 1,250 square feet and
offering upscale amenities by Aveda and trademark Bleu Cloud
The Onsen Spa, an
Aveda Lifestyle Salon & Spa, which opened at the end of
December, offers plenty of luxury touches of its own with 14
treatment rooms and a couples room, unique to the area, for dual
massages and facials.
Catering to the
increasingly overlapping spa and ski markets, the spa also has a
salon, sauna and eucalyptus steam room.
"Winter time in
Lake Tahoe means sore muscles and skin that is exposed to the
elements from days spent on the slopes," said MontBleu spa director
Tanya Mason, who is overseeing the project.
include Fusion Stone Therapy, using Native American plants and warm
and cool stones; Ashiatsu Oriental Bar Therapy, which applies
pressure by foot; and Beyond the Sea Body Wrap for exfoliation and
Guests also can
take advantage of the fitness center and a heated, indoor pool with
waterfall and rock islands.
On the slopes
While guests who
don't ski will find plenty to do in the area to amuse them,
including shopping and off-slope winter activities like snowshoeing
and snowtubing, the real draw for many is the variety of snow
sports available nearby.
The most obvious
choice is Heavenly Mountain Resort, accessible via a gondola that
links the town to the slopes above. The ski area is known for
superlatives, thanks to its size. At 4,800 acres, it's California's
biggest, the highest summit rising 10,067 feet and the longest
vertical drop measuring 3,500 feet.
There are 91
trails served by 29 lifts, nine of which are high-speed.
snowboarders can choose from several other high-profile resorts in
the area -- including Sierra-at-Tahoe, Kirkwood, Squaw Valley USA
and Northstar-at-Tahoe -- all within striking distance.
A Winter Escape
Package, good through March 29, includes accommodations and a $20
food-and-beverage credit. It is priced from $109 per night Sundays
through Thursdays. A BonBleu Ski/Snowboard package upgrades
accommodations to a deluxe or spa room and adds two lift tickets at
a choice of ski areas. The package, good through April 14, starts
at $207 per night.
information on MontBleu, call (800) 648-3353 or visit www.montbleuresort.com. For more on Ski Lake Tahoe,
visit www. www.skilaketahoe.com.
To contact reporter Felicity Long, send e-mail to [email protected].