Laughlin, Nevada, Casino Hotels

by Johnny Kampis

Perched on the bank of the Colorado River, Laughlin provides a relaxing respite from the hustle and bustle of Las Vegas, 100 miles to the north. The city contains nine casinos on the river, just on the other side of the border from Arizona. These properties offer many of the same gambling opportunities and amenities as Sin City.

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Transportation

You can reach Laughlin from Las Vegas by car if you take Highway 95 south almost to the California line and then travel Highway 163 east. The local airport is across the river in Bullhead City, Arizona, and serves mostly smaller commercial airlines and private jets. Several rental car companies have offices in the Laughlin/Bullhead City International Airport. Water taxis run up and down the river to provide transportation between casinos in Laughlin.

Food and Drink

The casinos in Laughlin each offer a variety of restaurants in all price ranges. The ubiquitous casino buffet is available at just about any property, so chow down for all you can eat. Fast-food choices such as Burger King and McDonald's can be found at Aquarius and Edgewater, respectively. The Colorado Belle features a microbrewery offering an eclectic selection of beers, while Pioneer offers a well-stocked liquor and cigarette store.

Gambling

The common games of chance such as slots, video poker, blackjack, roulette and craps can be found at all of the local casinos. Almost all properties also offer poker rooms and race and sports books. Keno, Let It Ride, Three-Card Poker and Pai-Gow Poker can also be found at most Laughlin casinos. Sign up at the players club to receive a card and use it when you play. You earn comps for free food or hotel rooms if you wager enough.

Recreation

Many of the Laughlin casinos have built sandy beaches on the river, allowing patrons to enjoy the cool water. A handful of the resorts, such as Aquarius and Harrah's, host major shows and concerts in amphitheaters. Don Laughlin's Riverside Resort features a 34-lane bowling center and six-screen movie theater. Tropicana Express has a small train offering free rides on certain days. Many water sports are available on the river and at nearby Lake Mojave. Visit Laughlin's tourism website at visitlaughlin.com for more information.

Hotel Rates

Most Laughlin casino hotels offer rates in the $25 to $80 range as of 2010, comparable to similar hotels in Las Vegas. Harrah's, at the south end of the Laughlin casino strip, sometimes charges in the triple digits on weekends for its rooms, which are among the nicest in town with comfortable mattresses and slightly larger living quarters.

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About the Author

A veteran of the newspaper industry, Johnny Kampis has worked as a freelance writer since 2005. His articles have appeared in various publications including "The New York Times," "Atlanta-Journal Constitution" and the "San Francisco Chronicle." He currently serves as an editor of poker-based "Rounder" magazine and writer for the Alabama football publication "Crimson" magazine.