If Obama went to the Westin Lake Las Vegas for seclusion, I suspect he found it!

On my way to CES 2013 I arrived a day early and decided to stay at the Westin Lake Las Vegas.  I wanted to spend a night away from the crowds and the hustle and bustle of the strip, which tends to get on my nerves after about 15 minutes.  Well, if quiet solitude was what I was looking for, I found it!

My first clue should have been when I told my taxi driver where I was going he said, “I thought they went bankrupt”.  It wasn’t until I assured him that I had a confirmation email from the hotel that he agreed to take me.  The second clue was as we pulled into the area known as Lake Las Vegas to be greeted by old, deserted golf courses brown as the desert.

I’ve never found Las Vegas to be an authentic place but I never imagined that the inauthenticity would spill off of the strip into the city’s neighborhoods.  Lake Las Vegas appears to have been built as an homage to the Romanesque era, complete with canals and gondola rides.  Unfortunately, it was so authentic that it too fell.  If I had been in snow capped mountains instead of the desert I would have felt like I was in The Shining.  The Westin Lake Las Vegas has had a specially bumpy history. In fact, it’s been a Westin for less than one year.  It was originally built as a Hyatt Regency and transitioned to the Loew’s chain before Starwood picked it up.

The staff is very warm and earnest, doing their best to make you feel welcome.  I was given a room upgrade and late checkout.  But none of the restaurants were open for lunch, the spa was closed, much to the surprise of even the hotel staff and I found myself eating dinner by myself.  Literally, I was the only person in the restaurant.

The upside of the emptiness was the concierge sent me over the Ravella Spa. The Ravella exhibited similar fall of the Roman Empire qualities but I was able to get lunch at the bar/cafe (and there were even two other guests sitting at the bar) and the spa was fabulous.  The Ravella was built as a Ritz-Carlton and you can tell. The spa was like any other Ritz-Carlton spa I’ve ever been in, but that’s not a bad thing.  I had a fantastic massage with Petra who listened to where my trouble spots were and dug right in (literally!).  I only wish I could visit her every week.  The best part was my massage/manicure treatments came to only $130 including tip!

Now, in all fairness, I’m here in January.  Certainly not high season for Las Vegas.  I will say, the hotel is nice, it’s clean, the staff is very friendly and helpful.  There is an adult only pool with beautiful secluded cabanas you can rent.  There is a casino in the village so if you want to visit Las Vegas without the craziness of the strip,  I imagine when the hotel is bustling it is lovely.

I’m not sure if I’m supposed to feel like I’m in a Monet painting or in Hawaii.

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