The Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas is home to the world’s largest Star Trek Convention, an annual event I’ve been flying in to attend since 2011. Over those 4 days every August, the Rio transforms into the closest thing you’ll find to Starfleet Academy where more than 10,000 Trekkies descend on the hotel, many of them in Star Trek costumes of one form or another.
I’ve talked with a many people around the Star Trek Convention over the years and most of them not staying at the Rio admit to regretting the decision afterward. The Rio is off the strip, only about an 8 minute taxi ride, but physically separated by a freeway so you end up wasting money (not to mention time) going to and from the Rio to wherever you’re staying. (There are also complimentary 24 hour shuttles to the main Las Vegas strip.) Even if you’re not in Las Vegas for the Star Trek Convention, CES, Blackhat, or one of the many conventions held at the Rio, the spacious, reasonably-priced rooms, make it a great hotel and casino to look into. Most rooms like the Rio’s new Samba Suite have two sinks, speeding up the time it takes a few friends to get ready in the morning – and you’ll need it – as it’s not easy to get out of their soft memory-foam mattresses.
The Spots To Stop
Don’t get me wrong, there are a lot of places to gamble, drink, and have fun in the Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino but some grab your wallet and liver stealthily. The first is Masquerade Bar, right along the path from the rooms in the Masquerade Tower to the casino center, where, if you’re like me, you’ll get a warmup drink, and finish off the night with a few cool-down cocktails. Whether you have a few too many at Masquerade, iBar, or the Voodoo Rooftop Nightclub, a late morning at the Carnival World Buffet will do your stomach good. The amount of food is staggering, with stations specializing in Italian, Chinese, Tex-Mex, and a million more – open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner from 8am to 10pm daily.
Chips To Chippendale’s
I can’t vouch for Chippendale’s firsthand but based on the posters outside of the show, if you like large hunky men dancing all around you, well, then you won’t be disappointed. There’s also the new MJ Live Show that’s at the top of my list of Rio shows to check out next time I’m in Las Vegas, if I can pull myself away from the blackjack tables at the Rio. Speaking of, the casino could use a few more of those – it’s heavier on roulette and poker – but has countless slot machines if that’s your gambling preference.
- Attending the Star Trek Convention at the Rio? Here’s my Insider’s Guide To Saving Money, Meeting Celebrities, And Otherwise Hacking The Las Vegas Star Trek Convention.
Despite being off the strip, the Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino feels a part of it or rather, a microcosm of the Las Vegas experience – on Deep Space Nine.
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- Category: Average Price; Moderate Budget During Non-Convention Times
- Dorms Available? No
- Private Rooms? Yes
- Breakfast? Several buffets and restaurants in the casino; not included
- Free Wireless? No; $13.95 per day
- Quality of Wireless: Good
- Airport Pickup: Yes; shuttle $8.50
Compare Prices And Book: Rio All-Suite Hotel And Casino
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