Melinda Sheckells, Las Vegas lifestyle and entertainment expert, shares recommendations on local and regional travel deals, extraordinary experiences and even some amazingly “Wanderful” dream trips to faraway destinations.
If you are itching to get away for the holiday weekend or eager to start planning for a fall trip, here are some suggestions on where to consider locally, domestically and internationally.
Montana is the hottest travel destination in the U.S. right now thanks to the television show Yellowstone. Last year, I had the chance to visit a resort in Big Sky, Montana, called Lone Mountain Ranch, owned by petite hotelier Auric Road. This is a stunning time of year to visit Montana and escape the heat and it is an ideal socially distanced vacation spot thanks to the wide-open spaces. In autumn, Lone Mountain Ranch is running a special where you can choose your own adventure for an unprecedented rate beginning at $249 per cabin per night. This includes accommodations, daily breakfast and unlimited use of their hiking trails. Guided activities of horseback riding, bicycle rentals and fly fishing are available for additional fees. The ranch is usually an all-inclusive resort so this a la carte package is a great way to experience its beauty and majesty for a fantastic deal.
Internationally, Mexico is open and welcoming guests and Los Cabos is one of the most popular destinations to visit south of the border. At the beautiful Cape Hotel, there is a luxury wellness experience that brings the spa in-room—Mind, Body & Soul at The Cape. This five-day retreat grounds you in Cabo San Lucas’ sweeping ocean and desert views, while tucked away in a spacious private villa. There are daily fitness classes led by a personal trainer, guided meditation sessions, massages or facials treatments in-villa, and meals custom-designed by resort chef Victor Garrido. Rates begin at $1,550 per night based on double occupancy and excluding tax and resort fees; minimum 4 nights.
The Cape is situated on a stretch of white sand known as Monuments Beach and features a saltwater pool carved into a natural rock formation, as well as a sixth-story rooftop lounge and garden. The boutique luxury hotel has 161 guestrooms, all with unobstructed views of the Sea of Cortez and El Arco—a natural phenomenon of granite carved into an arch by centuries of wind and sea exposure. Room rates start at $499 per night.
Chef Enrique Olvera, who is also behind Elio at Wynn Las Vegas, created Manta at The Cape, an innovative restaurant blending Mexican flavors and traditional ingredients from the Pacific Rim. The dining room at Manta is stunning with large hand-carved wooden doors that open into a seductively lit corridor and wine wall; a mix of natural elements throughout such as wood, leather, and dark stone; and an exhibition-style kitchen. Highlights include octopus anticucho with spicy mayo, soft shell crab tacos and sashimi with aji amarillo.
To ensure everyone’s safety, The Cape disinfects airport transfer vehicles between use (including luggage), provides complimentary personal safety kits (surgical mask, hand sanitizer, antibacterial wipes), assigns guestrooms for maximum distancing, provides QR codes for in-restaurant ordering and spacing tables to allow for social distancing, uses the latest technology (such as electrostatic sprayers with disinfecting mist and ultraviolet light) to sanitize surfaces and objects and conducts daily team member wellness checks.
Locally, Station Casinos is waiving all resort fees for the month of September. Green Valley Ranch starts at $79 per night and Red Rock Resort at $89 per night. Book at www.stationcasinosoffers.com.
Wanderful Wednesday is filmed inside the Jackie Gaughan suite at the El Cortez Hotel and Casino https://elcortezhotelcasino.com in Downtown Las Vegas
For more travel, dining, entertainment and shopping news, visit @melindasheckells and KTNV’s @wereopenlv