To start a driving holiday in November can be tricky. Especially if you live in Saskatchewan. Weather determines your fate. It can be a three day drive to ease yourself from snow and mountain passes into a warmer climate. Interstate 15 in the US is an awesome corridor that gently turns into Nevada passing fields of solar panels and wind generation stations.
L wants to golf in a urgent way. His love of this game spans years of effort and competition and finally, now fun. “Let’s stop in Vegas” he says. I am not as excited. We have stopped there on other trips, this time I ask for something different, something unique and still on our way to the western golf mecca, California.
“I think I found it.” Twenty miles outside of Vegas we turn onto Lake Mead Parkway and finally enter the stones gates to Lake Las Vegas. This is a surprise, a gem just outside of Henderson NV with a history back to 1967 starting with a dream, leading to financial destruction and then 5 billion dollar restoration.. again. It all started with a 320 acre man made lake. A vision of the grandest luxury hotels and resorts that would expand Las Vegas. Today the lake is shadowed with two great hotels, million dollar homes and two award winning golf courses. A resort village has been built offering coffee shops, artist galleries, restaurants and water sports. Today the land developers are again in lease disputes, some buildings stand empty and the hotels have changed ownership. This is good news for a traveler that wants a first class Westin Hotel experience ( they are currently undergoing 30 million dollar renovation) or a classic Hilton Hotel for a fraction of the price in other parts of the country. default
The first public resort course designed by Jack Nicklaus in Nevada is Reflection Bay. This is a top 100 golf course by Golf Digest. ( reflectionbaygolf.com/lake-las-vegas-public-golf-course)This par 72 signature course is picturesque, running alongside the man made lake and weaving around the two area resorts. This course is a great test of skill for all golfers, choose the right tee box to fully enjoy the experience. It has great flow leading to the 561 yds par 5 finishing hole. L hit his tee shot to center of the generous fairway and smartly up on the hill. The lake runs completely down the right side. His second shot approached the green in great position to attempt an eagle. The scorecard highlights a very satisfying birdie. We enjoyed the course conditions and plan to return on our next trip.
Vegas area has lots to offer any traveler. When the city lights fill the horizon, we made our way to the Las Vegas strip. This was an easy 20 min drive from our hotel and if you don’t have a vehicle, limousines and hotel shuttles are available. After walking to see such famous sites as the fountain show at Belagio Hotel, dinner at Paris and dropping cash at the casino L and I were glad to return to a retreat at the lake with the lights of Vegas in our rear view mirror.
In the late evening we drove through the stone gates again. The path is edge with palm trees and lanterns and welcomes us back. What a beautiful stay, a surprise and a lesson that dreams are not easy – the most daring take time. I believe that it is time for Lake Las Vegas to fulfill the dream from a past generation.