Travelers and locals can find Lake Las Vegas just 30 minutes east of the Vegas Strip. Centered around the man-made reservoir, this oasis in the desert is a popular destination for celebrities — most recently, players from the San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs stayed in the Henderson area in the run-up to the Super Bowl, and local icons like Celine Dion have homes here. If it’s good enough for Celine, then it’s definitely good enough for the Las Vegas local to skip town for a weekend and head lakeside for a day or two of leisurely dining, lake town strolling, and lazing by the water.

9 a.m. — Greet the Day With Coffee and Whimsy at Mrs. Coco Cafe

Mrs. Coco Cafe, a midday restaurant encased in pale pink and accented by pastel flowers, hanging teddy bears, and monochrome parasols, is as ripe for photos as it is for breakfast and lunch. Settle in for chicken and waffles with seasonal fruit, toasts layered with burrata and prosciutto, and sweet crepes. Depending on the vibe of your weekend, order it alongside a cotton candy champagne cocktail or a rose petal cappuccino. For a breakfast better suited to Ron Swanson than Barbie, head instead to Da Remo, an Italian restaurant with a killer menu of three-egg omelets, croissant breakfast sandwiches, and Belgian waffles served with crispy bacon and griddled potatoes.

11 a.m. — Stroll Around the Lake

Las Vegas locals know that bodies of water are a rare novelty in these parts. So once you’re at Lake Las Vegas, acquaint yourself with the reservoir by touring the waterfront, where you can listen to boat-disturbed wakes lap up against the shoreline. First-timers can find a handful of paved and designated walking trails around Lake Las Vegas: the North Shore Paver Loop is less than three miles and will take them along the shore of the lake, then around the residential area of the Lake Las Vegas community. That means strolling by the mansions located here, some of which sell for more than $10 million.

With an outdoor dining area that looks out over the water, it’s hard not to request patio seating at the locally loved lakeside restaurant Mimi and Coco Bistro. The menu leans Mediterranean with a French wine list; the dining room’s timber-framed ceiling and stone archways are equally transportive. Diners can keep things light with a seared salmon salad or opt for something more suitable for a luxe weekend vacation — think escargot in an herb butter sauce, grilled shrimp with roasted potatoes and a verdant chimichurri, and steamed mussels in white wine.

3 p.m. — Dive in

There is no shortage of things to do at Lake Las Vegas, especially when it comes to water sports. Thrill-seekers can try out a flyboard or jet pack experience. Families with kids — or kids at heart — can check out the Water Sports park, a contiguous archipelago of inflatables on which high-energy staycationers can run, bound, slide, and bounce above and into the water. Of course, there’s also the safe, reliable option of renting a kayak or paddle board and launching into the lake for a languid lap along the shoreside.

If your speed is more than links than the lakes, the area is home to two award-winning golf courses. Reserve a tee time at either Reflection Bay Golf Club or SouthShore Country Club — both prestigious Jack Nicklaus-designed courses.

A reservoir and golf course in the middle of a desert, as seen from above.

Lake Las Vegas as seen from above.
Lake Las Vegas

6 p.m. — Dinner at Luna Rossa

At this Italian restaurant, located right on the shore of Lake Las Vegas, diners can take a seat outdoors on the string-light-covered patio or head inside for a white tablecloth dinner. Find bowls of tortellacci filled with braised short rib in Alfredo sauce, breaded and pan-fried veal scallopini, and wood-fired pizzas baked on thin crust and topped with Italian sausage and baby artichokes. Always save room for a bomba of mango, passion fruit, and raspberry sorbetto, served quartered and drizzled with chocolate.

For a more casual experience, dig into California-style Mexican food at Sonrisa Grill. Keep things casual with bright and citrusy ceviche, crunchy avocado rolls, and hard shell tacos that go just right with an ice-cold margarita.

A plate of spaghetti layered with lobster tail.

Lobster spaghetti at Luna Rossa
Luna Rossa

8 p.m. — Walk to the Wine Bar

Work off dinner by wandering through the lakeside shopping area until you arrive at Vino Del Lago. A wine bar with a twist, you’ll use a provided card to swipe ATM-style machines that dispense pours of white, red, and rose wines. On Friday and Saturday evenings, a live guitarist often takes up residency, serenading visitors as they mill around, sampling the bar’s varietals. Two-ounce pours start at around $7, making it easy to build out your own flight.

10 p.m. — End the Night With Music and Dancing

The music gets going at 8 p.m. inside this second-story ‘20s-themed lounge overlooking the lake. Many of the Speakeasy’s furnishings are enthusiastically on-theme, with plush seating arranged into cozy nooks, walls lined with bookcases flanking a baby grand piano, and musicians costumed in sequined garments for their performances of music primarily of the ‘70s and ‘80s. Between spins on the dance floor, order period-specific cocktails, like the Bee’s Knees with gin and honey syrup or Hemingway daiquiris with grapefruit juice. Or enjoy a cigar from the bar’s humidor.

Finally, Where to Stay

When the Kansas City Chiefs and San Francisco 49ers touched down in Las Vegas for Super Bowl LVIII, they first spent Friday night at Lake Las Vegas. The 49ers called the Hilton Lake Las Vegas Resort and Spa home, while the Chiefs stayed at the Westin Lake Las Vegas Resort & Spa. If you’re staycationing like a Super Bowl champion, expect waterside views, spa amenities, and a concierge who will arrange a tee time at either of the two championship golf courses.

A golf course flanked by the lake and private residences.

Lake Las Vegas golf course.
Lake Las Vegas

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