Saturday, November 9, 2013

The Aquarius: Laughlin, Nevada

We spent the final two days of our trip at the Aquarius in Laughlin, Nevada.

It was really good to get to Laughlin. We feel very comfortable there. After the hubbub and traffic of massive Las Vegas, I welcomed the slower pace and small town feel of Laughlin. And I can't tell you how nice it was to get out along the river and enjoy the "natural" feel of the place.

The Aquarius is our "go to" place in Laughlin. It is located near the north end of Casino Drive along the Colorado River. The rooms are nice, the eateries are very decent, and the video poker offerings are the best overall in Laughlin. By this time, though, I was becoming tired of gambling, so I really did not spend much time at the machines. In fact, I was really ready to hit the road and get home.

But we had a couple of nice meals while in Laughlin. The first was the Friday night seafood buffet at the Aquarius. I'm not a buffet guy. To me, a buffet is just an excuse to overeat, an excuse I really don't need. In most buffets, I find the food to be poorly prepared and rather bland. But I've always liked the buffet at the Aquarius, for a number of reasons. First, it has a great view overlooking the Colorado River. I just love looking out east over the river and at the stark mountains rising over in Arizona. Second, the buffet at the Aquarius is usually not that busy. In many buffets, you seem to have to jostle for your food, but not at the Aquarius. Finally, I always find some dishes at the Aquarius buffet that are new or different, and the food is generally well-prepared. For example, at the seafood buffet, I tried the Oysters Rockefeller, a dish I had never tasted before.

Our second good meal came at Daniel's Restaurant on the River at the tiny Regency Casino next-door to the Aquarius. Normally we wait until Wednesday to eat at the Regency, where they serve 2-for-1 hamburgers. But since we weren't going to be there on Wednesday, we went over on Saturday. We really like their cheeseburgers. They cook the meat to order (Donna likes medium rare, I like well done), and the cheese is properly melted. There is a good char-grilled flavor to the meat. I had fries with my order while Donna tried the sweet potato fries. Wow, these were good; I wish I had ordered them. Service is good and friendly at Daniel's, and we always look forward to returning. They offer several dining specials throughout the week that are worth checking out.

After a 2 night stay at the Aquarius, we checked out at 4:15 AM Nevada time and headed for home. I was eager to get home, so I wanted to make the trip in a single day. Google Maps indicates our route was 1,006 miles and would require 14 hours and 59 minutes. We made it in 16 hours. I don't know how we could have made it any faster. We kept stops to a minimum (coffee at Kingman McDonald's; gas and restroom at Holbrook, AZ; gas, snacks, and restroom at Edgewood, NM; snacks at Muleshoe McDonald's; gas at Levelland; coffee at Big Spring), and we drove the posted speed limit with the exception of times when we were driving in the dark, when we reduced our speed some. It was a long drive, but we were glad to spend the next night in our own beds.

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