Best hotel options both on & off the strip for families
Las Vegas offers the unique opportunity to stay at world-class properties at budget-friendly prices. Because of the city’s gaming income, hotels are able to set their room rates enticingly low. So whether you’re in town to play the tables or just enjoy the sunshine and a show, you’ll find something to please your family.
Photo courtesy: Red Rock Resort
1/Red Rock Resort, Casino & Spa
11011 W. Charleston Blvd.
Named for the beautiful mountains that surround it, the Red Rock Resort, Casino & Spa has more to offer than the typical Las Vegas destination. Rooms are upscale, and guests have their choice of mountain or Strip views. There’s a variety of family-friendly activities including a movie theater, video arcade, and bowling alley. And that’s just what’s available on property. Visit the resort’s “adventure spa” to arrange activities including hiking, horseback riding, mountain biking, and river rafting. The property is located a full 30-minutes from The Strip, but you’d never know it to look at its casino and restaurants. Best of all, it has a state-of-the-art child care facility called Kids Quest that charges just $10/hour. My three-year-old actually asked to go back! If you do decide to hit The Strip, hop on one of the six daily free shuttles. Starts at $98/night.
2/Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino
3950 S Las Vegas Blvd.
Located almost right on top of McCarran Airport at the southern most tip of The Strip, Mandalay Bay is actually three hotels in one: Mandalay Bay, Four Seasons, and Delano (formerly THE Hotel). All three have access to the property’s one-of-a-kind wave pool and lazy river. Rooms are upscale, and the prices reflect it, but the pool is worth it! Starts at $115/night.
Kidtripster Tip: Check the resort’s summer beach concert schedule to see big name acts, while you sit under the stars or stand in the surf.
3/Paris Las Vegas
3655 S Las Vegas Blvd.
If a trip to Paris isn’t in your family’s (near) future, then a trip to Paris Las Vegas is an alternative to consider. The property is newer, and the rooms feel luxurious, plus they come equipped with a refrigerator for storing leftovers. The real draw is the half-scale replica of the Eiffel Tower that makes it one of the most recognizable properties on The Strip. For $14/person, you can make the trip to the top with the hotel’s “Eiffel Tower Experience.” Complete your faux Paris vacation with a visit to the hotel’s French-themed shops and restaurants. Then relax in the two-acre roof top pool, where you can enjoys views of the dancing fountain at the Bellagio across the street. Starts at $158/night.
KidTripster Tip: Nevada law states that children are allowed to pass through casinos but not linger. And the Paris is serious about enforcing it. My girls and I were visited by security, when we stopped to throw a penny in one of the casino fountains. Fortunately, the guard was friendly. A good rule of thumb: stay on the tile walkways and off the carpet that covers the casino areas, as much as possible, when visiting a Las Vegas hotel with children.
4/Treasure Island Las Vegas
3300 S Las Vegas Blvd.
Treasure Island is located at the north end of The Strip and is just steps away from locals’ favorite shopping destination, Fashion Show Mall. After a day of shopping, take the kiddos to Señor Frogs for an early dinner and enjoy one of the best outdoor patios on The Strip. Also check out the open Cirque du Soleil rehearsals for free! Strollers are welcomed. The hotel has its own tram that runs back and forth to The Mirage and offers easy access to the monorail across the street. Rooms are upscale and modern with floor to ceiling windows, many with views of The Strip. Starts at $160/night.
KidTripster Tip: Visit the pool early in the day. Kids are always welcome, but a live DJ plays party music from noon to 7 p.m., and the hotel suggests parental discretion.
3400 S Las Vegas Blvd.
Welcome to the jungle! Pulling up to The Mirage feels like a visit to an island, complete with palm trees and an erupting volcano. Inside, enjoy Siegfried & Roy’s Secret Garden & Dolphin Habitat for $22/person; kids under 4 get in free. The property is large and caters to a somewhat older convention crowd. While the facilities aren't new, they are definitely clean and comfortable. The pool is heated and open year round, and features elaborate lagoons and waterfalls. Take the free tram to Treasure Island or the monorail to anywhere on The Strip. Starts at $137/night.
6/Bellagio Las Vegas Resort and Casino
3600 S Las Vegas Blvd.
The Bellagio markets itself as a luxury property which doesn’t necessarily translate to being kid-friendly, but if you have the budget, it can be a wonderful family destination. Two of it’s biggest attractions are free and open to the public. Bellagio’s dancing fountains, an elaborately choreographed light and water display set to music, are a treat for kids of all ages. Inside the hotel lobby, you’ll find a conservatory and botanical garden that feature parade-worthy flower displays that change with the season. The hotel’s pool is open to all hotel guests, but children (14 & under) must be accompanied by an adult. For around $300, you can treat your family to a fully-stocked cabana. Starts at $198/night.
7/Excalibur Hotel & Casino
3850 S Las Vegas Blvd.
Whether you stay at Excalibur Hotel & Casino or not, chances are someone in your family will see it and exclaim, “Mom, look - a castle!” This Camelot-themed resort is literally shaped like a fairy tale palace. Rooms are clean but basic, and carpets are far from new. But you can’t beat the prices. Located on the south end of The Strip, you can walk to neighboring properties using the overhead pedestrian bridges or ride the free tram. Or simply stay on the property and enjoy it’s pool and arcade. Don’t miss the Tournament of Kings medieval jousting dinner show. Rooms start at $45/night.
Kidtripster Tip: Use public transportation. Schlepping car seats around to use in taxis is no fun. Instead take advantage of the Las Vegas monorail system. Unlimited passes for the main line are just $12/person, and kids (5 & under) ride free. Even better, the shorter trams between some of the larger hotels are free to one and all! Excalibur has one that runs between the Luxor and Mandalay Bay hotels. Just be sure to keep an eye on the clock; the last run is at 10:30 p.m.
8/Green Valley Ranch
2300 Paseo Verde Pkwy., Henderson
The name is somewhat ironic given its desert surroundings, but Green Valley Ranch is an off-The-Strip oasis for parents vacationing with young children. With amenities like a sand-bottom swimming pool that caters to kids, but still offers cabanas and cocktail service to adults, and supervised on-site child care at Kids Quest, the resort is pretty much a dream come true for Mom and Dad. The hotel offers standard rooms but also some enticing upgrades like Swiss and Italian-themed options, featuring whirlpool tubs, pool tables, and even a baby grand piano. Whether you allow your 10-year-old to practice her scales in the room is up to you. Located roughly 30 minutes from the Strip, a free shuttle runs four times a day. Starts at $134/night.
9/Tahiti Village Resort & Spa
7200 S Las Vegas Blvd.
Located off The Strip, Tahiti Village is a sanctuary for families looking to enjoy the Vegas weather. There's no casino on property, but it does offer a free shuttle to The Strip. The pool is the property's main attraction, featuring a lazy river and a small toddler beach, complete with sand toys. Primarily a timeshare property, it’s also open to the public. Rooms are clean and are equipped with small kitchenettes. Walk to nearby grocery stores to stock up on everything you need. Starts at $215/night.
Kidtripster Tip: Get a “free” room by booking a hotel and flight package through one of the travel websites. If you plan to fly anyway, the cost of the flight is roughly the same, whether you book a room at Tahiti Village or not.
10/Golden Nugget Las Vegas
129 Fremont Street Experience, Old Town
Named for the fist-sized hunk of genuine gold displayed in the lobby, the Golden Nugget is the height of old school glamour. Opened in 1946, the rooms have marble tubs and are decorated with lots of gilt edging. Prices are reasonable, and there's no added resort fee to use the WiFi or swimming pool. Featuring a water slide that takes you through a (secured) shark tank, the pool is a huge bonus. The hotel is located off The Strip in an area of Old Town called “The Fremont Street Experience.” It’s a destination in itself with live music, walk-up bars, and plenty of opportunities to buy souvenirs. The lower room prices in this area reflect the less spendy vibe of the neighborhood, where many of the surrounding properties advertise $3 shots of tequila. Starts at $52/night.
KidTripster Tip: Las Vegas now has Uber! The strong unions kept the car service at bay longer than in most cities, but it’s now up and running. The estimated fare from The Fremont Experience to The Strip is about $10, as opposed to a $40 cab ride.
KidTripster Tip: Lounge chairs at the Nugget pool fill up quickly, so plan to have someone in your family head down early to reserve yours.