Getting Here: 3 hours 20 minutes from Poughkeepsie
Rates: Starting at $309/night for the Water Club
Vibe & Crowd: While Atlantic City gets a bad rap, the Water Club at Borgata is all about luxury with ornate glass chandeliers illuminating (just barely) the casino floor, flanked by a phalanx of glowing slot machines, merrily buzzing, beeping, chirping, and whirring.
Place Your Bets: The gaming floor features more than 3,000 slots and 180 table games, including baccarat, roulette, craps, Texas Hold ’Em, and Pai Gow.
Beyond Gaming: They don’t call it the Water Club for nothing: Just off the lobby two pool areas — one an indoor tropical oasis with a 42-foot glass canopy and palm trees — draw guests away from the tables. Even if you don’t book a treatment at the 36,000 sq ft Immersion Spa, pay the $15 fee to have access to everything else: a 25-yard infinity lap pool, whirlpool baths, steam room, cold-plunge pool, and rain-head showers. There’s no lack of dining either. Try the exceptional lobster and bacon omelette and sip mimosas and Bloody Marys in the Sunroom Lounge at the Water Club, grab lunch at the casual food court, then cash in your winnings for dinner at the modern Japanese spot Izakaya or one of the restaurants from celebrity chefs Wolfgang Puck (New American) and Bobby Flay (steakhouse). For those full on food and relaxation, there are concerts, comedy and burlesque shows, and nightclubs.
Ace the Experience: For the ultimate in luxury, book a seat on Fly Borgata (www.flyborgata.com), the resort’s private-jet service, with several flights per week from Westchester County Airport. No security lines, roomy leather seats, and liftoff to wheels-down in less than 30 minutes? Talk about sweetening the pot!