I may live in Las Vegas, but that doesn’t mean that I spend the night on the Strip. In fact, except for a few nights at the Stratosphere when we rushed to the city to find an apartment, I have never stayed in a casino hotel in Sin City.
When I found out that I would be staying at the Atlantis Casino, Resort and Spa in Reno, Nevada, I honestly wasn’t sure what to expect. I’ve been through casinos before, but what, exactly, would it be like to actually check in at one? Would I be wowed when I opened the door to my room? If gaming was the key component to the experience, would the fitness center meet my expectations? How loud would it be? Is the food as good when you’re a guest as when you’re just visiting for a meal?
As the shuttle driver made the trip from the airport to the Atlantis, he played a short film about the property, which spouted out information about the casino floor, rooms, spa, entertainment options, restaurants and how Atlantis fits in with the bigger Reno picture. The city is a mini Vegas of sorts, though it leans more toward Old School Vegas rather than the glitz and glam of the Strip, so it didn’t surprise me that the lobby of the Atlantis was tucked next to the casino floor where old men smoked cigarettes while their wives chatted with each other over pulls on the slot machine. The line leading to the desk was roped off to keep us all in order, and the women working the reception area were efficient and friendly.
My room was simple with two basic beds and general amenities. It wasn’t particularly special, but then again, the point of the property is to get people out of their rooms and onto the casino floor. The room was neither smoky nor kitschy, both of which I feared, and as I threw open the curtains to reveal the rest of Reno as it began to light up with neon lights, I came to the conclusion that the Atlantis was just as I would expect a casino property to be: Simple and standard in room but convenient and abundant in activities in entertainment.
The Atlantis has about ten restaurants. I ate at a couple of them and particularly enjoyed the food at Bistro Napa. My favorite part was dessert, which looked like a hamburger meal complete with French fries, but the whole thing was made for those with a sweet tooth like myself: A brownie for the hamburger, donuts for the hamburger buns, kiwi for the pickle and shaved mango for the fries. It was almost too cute to eat.
Breakfast was at Toucan Charlie’s, which wasn’t anything to write home about: Pastries and fresh fruit and very possibly the worst orange juice I’ve ever had to drink. But as the restaurant was located off of the casino floor (unlike the Bistro Napa, which was set aside as an attraction in and of itself on the second floor), I wasn’t surprised that breakfast was mediocre.
It’s worth noting that the Atlantis has an awesome spa though I wasn’t able to squeeze in time to get a treatment there. It features really fascinating experiences I’ve never seen anywhere else such as light therapy, a brine relaxation room, rasul ceremonies and honey cocoons. There are two pools at the hotel that guests are welcome to use, but unfortunately the fitness room requires a daily fee of $7.50, which I didn’t want to pay, so I forgo my workout.
Overall, what I’d consider to be my first casino hotel stay was pretty much what I expected: Stellar in some aspects, sub-par in others and worth staying at if you need a basic room but appreciate convenience.
Atlantis Casino, Resort and Spa | 3800 South Virginia Street, Reno, Nevada | Company website
My stay at the Atlantis was paid for by the Nevada Commission on Tourism, but all opinions are my own.