The Forbes Travel Guide awards for Las Vegas are useful for those looking for the finest dining, most luxurious hotels, and best spas. The annual list is the only independent rating system for these venues around the world.
Specifically, the Forbes Travel Guide is helpful for those looking to enjoy the finer things in life when planning a vacation to Las Vegas. It’s particularly helpful in Las Vegas where marketing executives use words like “luxury” much too freely.
Some venues in Las Vegas are marketed a little more aggressively than they should be. It’s frustrating to spend extra money on a “luxury” product or service that ends up being more mediocre than special.
This guide focuses on the best of the best. Many on the list for Las Vegas have won an award from Forbes in the past.
Las Vegas is a great place for vacation because there’s something for every mood and budget.
Many visitors travel to Las Vegas because they see how the high rollers live. Unfortunately, this isn’t always within reach and that’s fine since there are still great experiences available on a budget.
It can take years to be able to afford some of those high-roller niceties. That search can be amazing. It was for me and it’s still the way many friends and I enjoy Las Vegas.
Adding luxury to a Vegas vacation
When I first started visiting Las Vegas at 21, I was a low roller all day and night. Cheap gambling, complimentary drinks, and inexpensive meals were a way to get the most out of my smallish Vegas vacation budget.
After working for a few years I was able to afford one special meal per visit to Las Vegas. I’d have to skimp on everything else and that was fine.
My annual visit to Las Vegas now included a night of living above my normal means back home. This step into the world of luxury might be when my passion for Las Vegas grew the most.
As the years passed my friends and I could afford more luxury during a Vegas vacation.
While I was always looking for the best new fine-dining restaurant, friends wanted a few hours at a spa. Eventually, we were able to afford luxury hotel rooms and suites.
Instead of scouring message boards and blogs, something like the Forbes Travel Guide would have made planning the fancier parts of a Vegas vacation easier. I didn’t realize there were experienced travel folks doing the research for me.
To this day, I find mixing budget-friendly experiences with more extravagant activities is the way to unlock the best that Vegas offers. Having said that, there’s nothing more depressing than spending hard-earned money on something that is less than spectacular.
That’s where luxury travel guides with detailed information on luxury goods and services come in handy.
Forbes Travel Guide Las Vegas recommendations
Forbes’ staff visits nearly 2,000 hotels, restaurants, and spas in more than 80 countries. There are undercover inspectors who visit each of these properties and create recommendations and award winners based on up to 900 standards.
After a year of searching high and low for the best in the world, the 65th annual list from Forbes features:
- Hotels: 360 Five-Star, 585 Four-Star, and 433 Recommended
- Restaurants: 79 Five-Star, 113 Four-Star, and 67 Recommended
- Spas: 119 Five-Star and 195 Four-Star
It may appear that there are a lot of Forbes Travel Guide award winners. This is a worldwide list and no one city or country completely dominates the list.
There are 51 Las Vegas Forbes Travel Guide award winners. Many of these locations are on the Vegas Strip.
This year, MGM Resorts Las Vegas properties account for 15 venues in the Forbes Travel Guide. Wynn Las Vegas venues take home seven awards. The Venetian accounts for another seven venues on this list.
You don’t have to stay on the Vegas Strip to have a luxurious visit to Las Vegas. There are also Forbes Travel Guide award winners away from the main tourist corridor at M Resort and Red Rock Casino.
Las Vegas Forbes award winners
There aren’t many surprises in the Forbes Travel Guide award winners in Las Vegas. The best of the best appear on this list annually.
Bellagio, The Cosmopolitan, Wynn, and The Venetian are typically the hotels with the most expensive rooms. These properties have restaurants and spas to match.
There are always a few off-strip hotels and spas on the Forbes list as well. Unfortunately, there are no downtown Las Vegas casinos represented on this list.
Award-winning Las Vegas hotels
It’s interesting to note that some of the best hotels are different brands under the same roof. Aria, Wynn, Resorts World, and The Venetian have multiple luxury hotel towers that offer different hotel rooms and services. Only Wynn’s hotels are all rated with five stars.
Here’s the full list of Las Vegas hotel award winners from the 2023 Forbes Travel Guide:
- Aria Sky Suites – 5 Stars
- Wynn Las Vegas – 5 Stars
- Wynn Tower Suites – 5 Stars
- Encore at Wynn – 5 Stars
- Encore Tower Suites – 5 Stars
- Skylofts at MGM Grand – 5 Stars
- Aria – 4 Stars
- The Venetian – 4 Stars
- Crockfords at Resorts World – 4 Stars
- Four Seasons at Mandalay Bay – 4 Stars
- The Palazzo at The Venetian – 4 Stars
- Vdara – 4 Stars
- Conrad at Resorts World – Recommended
- The Cosmopolitan – Recommended
- Waldorf Astoria – Recommended
- M Resort – Recommended
- Trump International – Recommended
Award-winning Las Vegas restaurants
There is no shortage of fine dining in Las Vegas. Most of the best restaurants are located inside many of the award-winning hotels.
The 5 Star restaurants are among the most expensive and exclusive restaurants in Las Vegas. Tables are booked months in advance. Dinner at these restaurants can cost a paycheck for some people.
Thankfully, the 4-star and recommended restaurants are comparatively affordable for those looking to try some of the best and most popular restaurants in Las Vegas.
- Joël Robuchon at MGM Grand – 5 Stars
- Le Cirque at Bellagio – 5 Stars
- Picasso at Bellagio – 5 Stars
- Restaurant Guy Savoy at Caesars Palace – 5 Stars
- Wing Lei at Wynn – 5 Stars
- Blossom at Aria – 4 Stars
- Cut at The Venetian – 4 Stars
- Genting Palace at Resorts World – 4 Stars
- Kusa Nori at Resorts World – 4 Stars
- L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon – 4 Stars
- Michael Mina at Bellagio – 4 Stars
- Mizumi at Wynn – 4 Stars
- Mott 32 at The Venetian – 4 Stars
- Sinatra at Encore – 4 Stars
- SW Steakhouse at Wynn – 4 Stars
- Aureole at Mandalay Bay (just closed) – Recommended
- Bouchon at The Venetian – Recommended
- Craftsteak at MGM Grand – Recommended
- Hakkasan at MGM Grand – Recommended
- Jean Georges Steakhouse at Aria – Recommended
- Julian Serrano Tapas at Aria – Recommended
- Lakeside at Wynn – Recommended
Award-winning Las Vegas spas
According to the Forbes Travel Guide, the locations of best spas in Las Vegas are located on both ends of the Vegas Strip as well as 15-20 minutes north and west of the main tourist corridor.
Locals’ casinos, Red Rock and M Resort both offer 4 Star spa experiences without the hustle and bustle of being on the Vegas Strip. The guide also recommends accommodations at M Resort.
While the Vegas Strip appropriately gets the shine for offering the best of Las Vegas, there are a few properties elsewhere that offer a luxe experience. These Vegas casinos are growing in popularity as prices continue to climb on the Vegas Strip.
- The Spa & Salon at Aria – 5 Stars
- The Spa at Encore – 5 Stars
- Spa at Four Seasons Hotel – 5 Stars
- The Spa at Vdara – 5 Stara
- The Spa at Wynn – 5 Stars
- Awana Spa at Resorts World – 4 Stars
- Canyon Ranch Spa & Fitness at The Venetian – 4 Stars
- The Red Rock Spa by Well & Being – 4 Stars
- Sahra Spa & Hammam at The Cosmopolitan – 4 Stars
- Spa Bellagio – 4 Stars
- Spa Mio at M Resort – 4 Stars