89011 Travel Guide
As we showed you last week, we got all excited when we stepped into the new Ravella hotel at Lake Las Vegas and saw a lobby/lounge area designed to appeal to the dominant geek in us. We fell for that lobby instantly. But how about the rest?
Well, despite what we said about it inheriting a poisoned chalice, there’s a lot going for Ravella. But then again, there’s a lot going against it.
In its favor: first impressions.
Winding down towards the hotel, you see the Vegas Strip from afar, then the Ponte Vecchio-style bridge straddling the lake, then roll up to a huge Italianate palazzo. There are olive trees guiding you up the lane, palm trees as you pull up, a huge fountain – it feels more like a stately version of Palm Springs than Sin City. It's pretty smashing.
Then you walk inside, hit the hi tech lobby, and think, wow, this place has really managed to combine a grand entrance with a foxy interior. You check out the iPads, you watch the TV, grab one of the stack of free newspapers and mull over the happenings in North Africa with a fistful of free sweeties from the jars by check in. You look out of the huge lounge windows over the Italianate gardens below (the lobby is on the third floor) and over to the lake. And you think, wow, this is the perfect marriage of city-savvy and rural retreat.
And then you walk out of the lobby and suddenly you’re in a
Hotel Snapshot / Hotel Technology / iPad Hotels / Hotel Amenities / Free WiFi / Viva Vegas / Dolce Hotels / → All Tags
Eagle eyed and not so eagle eyed readers of HotelChatter will have noticed that we’re tech fans when it comes to hotels. We’re fans of free WiFi, we always like electrical outlets near the bed, and extras like iPads make us more than a little excited.
Hence we were overjoyed when we arrived at the brand new Ravella hotel at Lake Las Vegas, 40 minutes from the Strip, yesterday, to find not only was there free WiFi throughout the hotel (although, to be fair, if you’re staying there, it’s classed as a perk of the resort fee), but also, that they’d actively set up a space in the lobby for people to sit and browse the net.
”Connectivity” is one of the three central tenets of the philosophy of Dolce Resorts, which owns the hotel, and one third of the lobby/lounge area is devoted to that theme. As such, there are two flatscreen TVs on the wall (they’re a decent size now, but they’re going to be replaced with something bigger, apparently) showing CNN and MSNBC with a sofa, several small tables around it, and this, the crowning glory: a table that seats eight with two iPads to share.
Ravella wants to make Vegas bella
It seems like it was only yesterday that the world was predicting the demise of Vegas, but – holla for the ciudad of sin – today marks its second hotel opening in as many months.
Today is the turn of Ravella at Lake Las Vegas, which may not be as fancy or wannabe kinky as the Cosmopolitan, but seems to be going for the families/kids/locals market (presumably because they’re not so welcome at the Cosmo - or, for that matter, anywhere on the Strip).
The omens aren’t good – it’s housed in what was the failed Ritz-Carlton out at Lake Las Vegas. We say failed, but that’s not to say the location isn’t stunning – a pretty manmade (of course) lake about half an hour from the Strip, beyond Henderson and en route to Lake Mead. The building itself is Italian-style, and even has a cute Ponte Vecchio-style bridge walking out onto the lake itself.
The odds may be against it Ravella has been going hell bent to attract people, offering locals discounts of $89, offering rewards if you pimp it via social media, and gunning for the pet-loving crowd with doggy yoga. There’s just one thing we’re not so jazzed about: kids in the spa (to add insult to injury, they get free breakfast, too).
This week, most of the Vegas action is on the Strip, what with CES and AVN in town. Then there's that fancy new hotel that just opened.
We thought that The Cosmopolitan would be the last hotel opening we got to see in these parts for a long, long time--but wait! There are still hotel doors opening--out in Henderson, where Dolce's Ravella at Lake Las Vegas debuts on February 11.
A quick refresher on this property: it used to be the Ritz-Carlton at Lake Las Vegas, but it closed last May. Enter Dolce Hotels, who have rebranded the property, promising "a much more contemporary experience" than the Ritz.
Hotel Rebranding / Viva Vegas / Dolce Hotels / Lake Las Vegas Hotels / Ritz-Carlton Hotels / Hotel News / → All Tags
When the old Ritz-Carlton Lake Las Vegas closed back in May, we didn't know if the property would remain closed or if another brand will come in and manage it. Well, five months later, we have our answer--Dolce Hotels and Resorts has been selected by the hotel's owners to reopen the joint in the early 2011.
And judging from a press release sent out by Dolce this morning, there doesn't seem to be too much work to be done on the hotel:
The property showcases 32,000 square feet of meeting and banquet space and a 30,000-square-foot spa and fitness center, with multiple dining and lounge experiences. An idyllic setting for weddings, it offers Las Vegas’ largest and only over-water chapel, as well as beautiful gardens and courtyards that can be used for private affairs. Located next to the resort’s spa, a heated pool provides guests a sophisticated retreat to relax year-round. The property adjoins MonteLago Village, offering scenic walking streets of boutiques and restaurants.
Semi-shocking news for Las Vegas. The Ritz-Carlton Lake Las Vegas is reportedly closing down on May 2nd. According to KTNV, the 304 employees at the hotel were given notice yesterday that the resort would be closing. Hotel officials have said that, predictably, the tourist slump in Vegas and the poor economy is to blame. USA Today also reports that the owner of the property, Village Hospitality, has decided to stop funding the place.
The reason why this closure is not so shocking is that with so many new rooms open on the Strip that are keeping prices down, it's hard to justify a trip far off the Strip for the same price as a room near all the action. That said, this is Vegas. Never admit defeat right? So it's a little surprising that the place would close down entirely.
07/07/07 is a long ways away but you know how the hotel folk like to get ready for these kinds of freaky dates in advance and the Ritz-Carlton Lake Las Vegas is no different.
The hotel is offering two packages that all center around the number 7. The first and pricier of the two is the "Seven Ways of Wonderment" package which costs $7,707 and gets you a two-night stay on the hotel's 7th floor, along with the following:
· a tour of the Hoover Dam with a private driver and picnic
· seven hours of treatments in the hotel spa for two people
· seven course dinners with wine pairings
· a 7am tee time at a nearby golf course
· $777 shopping spree at Neiman Marcus
· $777 line of credit at MonteLago Casino
· Seven Sisters Constellation Stargazing with night-time picnic and resort's signature s'mores
· And lastly, a 7-themed breakfast for two.
Yikes! Perhaps, Liz Taylor will return again in July for this type of package.
The more affordable "Savory Sensations of Seven" begins at $777 and include a one-night stay on the 7th floor, the 7-course dinner, the 7-themed breakfast for two and 70-minute spa treatment for two.
· Liz Taylor Parties Like It's 1949 [Jaunted]
Dear God, no.
Now, we choose to look on the brighter side of things and say that Seacrest was just entertaining the execs with his hilarious behind-the-scenes stories of American Idol and showing off his latest T-shirt designs.
But the dark and sullen mind behind Movable Buffet says this incident adds to the ongoing rumors that the Edge Group wants Seacrest to take on an entertainment director role.
Come on, people! Did we not learn a very hard lesson from "On-Air with Ryan Seacrest"?
Is playing craps on ice skates your impossible dream?
Look no further. Well, actually look approximately 17 miles from the Strip at Montelago Village, a resort on the manmade Lake Las Vegas.
An ice skating rink was specifically made by dumping 110 five-gallon buckets of water in and installing a 12,000-pound freezer.
The hotel is offering two nights in one of their luxury studio condominiums, along with skating and skate rentals for $164 per person.
Aside from manmade-lake water activities, like any Vegas resort the Montelago has a casino, wine and cigar bars, boutique shops, and restaurants.
But one reviewer on TripAdvisor was a little disappointed in the maids' cleaning habits.
What a disappointment! The room seemed more like country style, and although it was new, there was dust everywhere! Even worse, our room overlooked the parking lot! There was no entertainment, no european ambiance, no music. We were sooooo disappointed, we checked out and stayed at the JW Marriott - now that's Luxury!
Remember, this deal is blacked out for MLK Weekend and only lasts through Feb. 14.
[Editor's Note: When you walk into your brand new hotel room only to see OPL (other people's luggage) it is virtually impossible to keep your suspension of disbelief in check for the duration of your stay. We all like to subconsciously think we are the only guests to ever occupy a room, thus it is no wonder Brett72767 recounts a mediocre experience at the Ritz Carlton Lake Las Vegas that started out with OPL. Enjoy Brett72767's story.]
Our family recently stayed at the Ritz Carlton Lake Las Vegas and we wanted to warn you. As with other new Ritz Carlton properties, there was quite a bit of confusion right from check-in. We went to our room only to find someone elses luggage, and a welcome amenity for another guest who were their to attend a wedding that weekend. We went back to the front desk, and after many apologies, a new room was found.
[Publisher's Note: Hotel Maven Kevin S is back. This time he tries out the Ritz out by Lake Las Vegas. Enjoy]
The Ritz-Carlton in Las Vegas? It might as well be in Des Moines, Iowa. Deceptively labeled as the Ritz at Lake Las Vegas, the hotel is, according to their website, "just 17 miles from the Las Vegas Strip". Which translates as "good luck finding a cab that will drive you all the way back here at 3am!!".
It seems that Lake Las Vegas, majestically located next to the hotel grounds, may also moonlight as a sewer treatment plant given the olfactory goodness that wafted in our room each morning upon opening the windows.
The Florence inspired hotel is nice to look at, complete with a replica of the Ponte Vecchio bridge. But it's more reminiscent of Venice in summer given the mild stench.
If you're looking to rub elbows with some celebs, it's not gonna happen here. The obligatory casino in the hotel was mildly depressing and a non-event. My advice, make friends with the concierge and hope they can provide a car for you to deliver you home after partying with Paris Hilton & Co. at the Palms.
· Ritz Carlton Las Vegas [TripAdvisor]
The MonteLago Village Resort is offering free Movies Al Fresco. The first film to be shown is 50 First Dates. No word on whether MonteLago will follow up 50 First Dates with Charlies Angels 2 or The Waterboy, but we are sure this intractable dilemma will come down to a coin flip. Come on MonteLago...show Spiderman 2!
Where is this Lake in relation to the strip?
A drive to Lake Las Vegas, where the Ritz-Carlton and Hyatt Regency wow guests, is only forty to fifty minutes from the city. The lake has a calming, serene effect on visitors. It's a refreshing alternative to the desert heat and crowds of the city.
In addition, the championship golf course is really really nice.