John Ascuaga’s Nugget Casino Resort

1100 Nugget Avenue
Sparks, NV

As I disclose whenever compensated while reviewing a location, my family did enjoy a complementary stay at John Ascuaga’s Nugget. We did, however, pay full price for all food and extras. This compensation came with no expectations or agreements for a positive review.

John Ascuaga's Nugget Casino Resort

John Ascuaga’s Nugget Casino Resort

Due to its night life and casino industry, it’s easy to overlook Reno, Nevada as a family destination. However, the city and its surrounding areas have a lot to offer in all seasons (Mt. Rose, the Sierra Nevada Mountains, and Lake Tahoe are all short drives away), and as my family and I recently experienced for ourselves, there are kid-friendly hotel options (besides well-known Circus Circus). John Ascuaga’s Nugget Casino Resort is a clearly defined part of the Reno skyline with its two 29-story towers (and 1,600 rooms), located just three miles from downtown.

We arrived at 2pm. Half an hour later, we were checked in (exceptional front desk service), parked, and checking out the view from our 25th floor tower room.

Toby looks out over downtown Reno and the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range

Toby looks out over downtown Reno and the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range

Standard queen bed tower room at the Nugget Resort

Standard queen bed tower room

But we didn’t linger, because what the kids were really itching to get to was the Atrium Pool. Located on the second floor, this year-round, indoor pool is aptly named; its spacious solarium setting allows for light, views, and a feel of the outdoors while swimming in a covered, heated space. With an Olympic-sized main pool and connected ‘soaking pools’ (or massaging pools, as my four-year-old called them), there was plenty of room to let loose some pent up energy stored from our long drive. An oversized adult-only hot tub is located at the far end of the pool deck, poolside food service is available, and a pool attendant is always on duty (although life guards are not). A full-service salon and health club are located adjacent to the pool (although I didn’t have time to check either out, unfortunately).

Nugget's Atrium Pool

Nugget’s Atrium Pool

Pool scene mid-day

Pool scene mid-day

After dinner, we tried out the Skywalk Arcade. At the time of this posting, on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday nights, the Nugget will double your school-aged kids’ token purchase. (You’re asked to show school ID; since our kids’ elementary school doesn’t have IDs, they took us at our word, which was nice.) $20 total got each of our three kids (and my husband) $10’s worth of tokens. We were there over an hour, and everyone came away with typical arcade prizes after cashing in their prize tickets…rubber snakes, bouncy balls, parachute men, and the like.

Toby challenges his great-grandmother in the Nugget arcade

Toby challenges his great-grandmother in the Nugget arcade

We asked for a roll-away bed for our preschooler, and it was brought to our room immediately. The beds were comfy, and best of all, the swimming wore the kids out: they were all asleep within minutes of bedtime.

Date last visited: November 25, 2009

Distance off the interstate: one minute

Room Rates: Approximately $50-$70 plus tax and resort fee for a standard room with two beds at the time of this review.

Food Services: Eight within the hotel, including a buffet (closed the night of our stay), Starbucks, steakhouse, and a family café (adequate food with prices in the mid-range of $7-10 a plate, but slow service on the night we dined there).

Website: http://www.janugget.com/

Directions: From I-80, take Exit 17 for Rock Blvd/Nugget Ave. Go 0.1 mile then keep right at the fork, following signs for Nuggget Ave/Victorian Square. Merge onto Nugget Ave.

 

About the author

Pit Stops for Kids AUTHOR: Amy Whitley is the founding editor of Pit Stops for Kids and content editor of Trekaroo. She writes on staff monthly at a number of travel publications, and contributes to OutdoorsNW magazine as an outdoor adventure traveler. Find Amy at Google.

Comments

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Comments

  1. I am so glad to see this. I am a Reno-ite and I often think that our “biggest little city” gets a bad rap. There is so much more than the casinos here. If we have friends or family coming into town that want to stay at a hotel the Nugget is first on our list, simply because of the great pool and the fun center!
    I also have a few local friends who have booked their family’s ‘vacation’ for a long weekend at the Nugget. It is a local favorite as well.

    Cheers!

  2. I have been to Reno many, many times and have never stayed at the Nugget. That pool sounds perfect for families. I will certainly keep it in mind next time we are in town.

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