Casino croupier shuffling cards
Stuart Bak

The Best Casino Hotels in Las Vegas

There are over 100 casinos in Las Vegas, from Downtown to the Sin City limits, with the majority (nearly 50 of ‘em) congregated in and around the mega-resorts that line Las Vegas Boulevard, aka the all-singing, all-dancing, all-neon Strip. Most visitors to Vegas will want to experience at least one of these glitzy gambling dens, with their cavernous interiors and enticing range of games that runs the gamut from 20c slots to significantly higher stakes at the blackjack, roulette and poker tables. But which are the best casino hotels in Las Vegas, and what sets them apart from the rest? We took a deep dive to find out…

Best Las Vegas Casino Hotels for Beginners

Woman playing the slots in Las Vegas

Never played blackjack before? Fear not: many casinos in Las Vegas have tables for beginners, where the minimum stakes are lower (generally around $5) and staff are on hand to help you understand the rules of each game and provide tips and guidance on potentially winning strategies.

Medieval meets modern at Excalibur, located near Harry Reid Airport at the Strip’s southern end. Like many Sin City hotels, Excalibur is not without its gimmicks, in this case eye-catching technicolor turrets and an epic dinner show complete with knights, kings, horses and a medieval banquet. As well as having some of the most beginner-friendly casino tables in town (including free lessons), there are also – deep breath – four pools, a spa, several shows, and more bars and restaurants than you can shake a very large jousting lance at.

Honorable mention: Further into the heart of the Strip, the Bellagio mega-resort is a rather more glamorous and upscale cousin to Excalibur, and offers free lessons as well as other discounts and bonuses for novice players.

Best Las Vegas Casino Hotels for Old-School Charm

Statue at Caesars Palace, Las Vegas

Opened in the swinging sixties, Caesars Palace has been a Rat Pack haunt, a blockbuster boxing venue and a movie set in its time. In other words, you can expect some real old-school vibes here. And we mean really old-school: as the name suggests the theme is seriously Roman, all flamboyant Corinthian columns, winged cherubs and – yup – a 20-foot statue of Augustus Caesar. The Garden of the Gods pool complex is fit for an emperor; likewise the Qua Baths & Spa (24-karat gold collagen facial massage, anyone?). Guests can have a flutter at the Fortuna pool’s swim-up tables or make for the glitzy casino proper, where well over a thousand slot machines and nearly 200 tables await.

This is a resort that has hosted names including Sinatra, Liberace and Madonna down the years, so you just know the caliber of entertainment is going to be high. Dine in decadent restos including Gordon Ramsay and Nobu and decimate your blackjack winnings at the Forum shops, where over 200 luxury boutiques sport the kind of price tags that might make Caligula himself blush.

Honorable mention: The oldest continuously operating resort on the Strip, the Flamingo promises old-school charm by the bucketload, plus plenty of pink neon and real-live flamingoes.

Best Las Vegas Casino Hotels for Glamming it Up

Cocktail glass with red dice in it

Bellagio is where it's at if you want to go full Bond and sashay onto the floor in your finest designer three-piece suits and cocktail dresses. Steel your nerves over a classic martini in the plush Lily Lounge, with views of the gaming floor, then head down to hit the tables or – for seasoned high rollers only – make for the exclusive high-limit poker lounge.

Of course, the Bellagio is known as much for its spectacular fountain display as its poker tables. Get ringside seats for this epic show at Wolfgang Puck’s flagship Spago restaurant or head over to upscale PRIME for a perfectly seared wagyu filet.

And that’s not all. Of course it isn’t! Bellagio also counts a gallery of fine art, a botanical garden, five swimming pools, a Cirque du Soleil show and boutiques from the likes of Bulgari, Cartier and Dior among its many attractions. Glam or what?

Honorable mention: Mandalay Bay ain’t no slouch in the glamor stakes either, boasting 20+ ritzy restaurants and cocktail lounges, a nightclub, an 11-acre pool complex and – natch – a sprawling casino.

Best Las Vegas Casino Hotels for the Pool Scene

Friends partying at the pool

Should you happen to be in Vegas during party season (March to October) – and, frankly, why wouldn’t you be? – you’ll likely want to spend at least some of your time lounging by the pool, pina colada in hand. Glitzy Mandalay Bay is the daddy when it comes to the Sin City pool scene. We’re talking a whopping 11-acre complex that includes a man-made beach, an absolutely enormous wave pool, the laziest of lazy rivers and oodles of private cabanas and gazebos to rent for your day out. A beach bar and grill and several cocktail bars mean you’ll never be far from your next burger or margarita, and the people-watching opportunities here are pretty much second-to-none.

Honorable mention: the legendary Golden Nugget. Sure, there are bigger and better pool complexes all over Vegas, but do any of them have a water slide that goes right through the middle of a 200,000-gallon shark tank? No, dear reader, they do not.

Best Las Vegas Casino Hotels for Entertainment

Gondolier at the Venetian in Las Vegas

Entertainment in Las Vegas often seems to be a supersized game of one-upmanship. Dancing fountains not spectacular enough for ya? Fear not: there’s an exploding volcano out front of the Mirage, a replica of the Eiffel Tower at Paris, and a recreation of Venice’s Grand Canal – complete with singing gondoliers at The Venetian. It’s the last of these sprawling mega-resorts that nabs our entertainment crown, largely thanks to the 2023 addition of Sphere, an eye-popping globe-shaped venue that, with the ever-changing motion graphics that ripple across its facade, is a show all by itself. Sphere’s immersive experiences coupled with A-list names at Voltaire (Willie Nelson, Diana Ross, Steely Dan and Kylie, to name just a few) make for quite the roster of top-flight entertainment.

Honorable mention: Wynn Encore. Superb theatrical performances, legendary musicians, celebrity DJs, and direct access to the Las Vegas High Roller for the win/Wynn.

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