Where you’re staying:
The newly renovated and renamed Harrah’s Resort Southern California is a one-hour drive northeast of San Diego city limits. Comedienne Joan Rivers played one of the first shows in the resort’s brand-new Events Center—although the Queen of Mean couldn’t have spent as much as the property recently did on looking young and fresh. The former Harrah’s Rincon Resort & Casino shelled out $160 million for its 23,000-square-foot Events Center, restaurants, hip pool facility, and new guest suite tower. In the top-of-the-tower suites, soak in a sunken bathtub next to a window with a view of sunbathers 20 stories below.
What you’re doing:
The pool area includes a heated lazy river and hosts DJ-infused parties that draw thousands of bikini-clad revelers. Go for a treatment at the spa, play a round of golf, and of course, try your luck at poker, blackjack, craps, and more. Because the resort has Vegas-style gambling and requires less driving time than Palm Springs, Harrah’s exec Darrell Pilant says the resort offers a one-stop-shop potpourri he calls “Palm Vegas.” Rooms start at $100. 777 Harrah’s Resort Southern California Way, Valley Center