Update: In August 2019, SLS was renamed back to The Sahara. They realized that name had a lot more value in Las Vegas than SLS.
This post is from when it was still SLS.
I’m always a little sad when a piece of Las Vegas History disappears. I was able to experience the Sahara a few times and even stayed in one of their suites. It had been on a long downward spiral before closing, though, and was a dubious low-roller choice near the end. The SLS has changed that. The basic structure (including the room footprint) is still the same, but everything else is new. The rooms are completely remodeled. The dining options are great and all of the stores are upscale.
The layout is a little confusing at first. The front desk is near the Paradise Road entrance. The Strip entrance (which looks like a main entrance) and parking take you right into the casino and the restaurants lined along the edges of the casino.
The dining options are great (and worth the trip even if you aren’t staying at SLS). It has 800 Degrees pizza, Umami Burger, Bazaar Meat, Ku Noodle, Katsuya, Cleo, and the Northside Cafe. I highly suggest stopping by Bazaar Meat for their Cotton Candy Foie Gras (Available at the bar as well as in the dining room). If you don’t feel like leaving your room, most of the restaurants’ menus are available for room service.
The rooms are very neat. They are small, since they still have the same footprint that the original Sahara rooms did, but they have been redesigned with an excellent sense of whimsy. The Story Tower rooms are only 325 square feet, but the space is well designed and features beds and couches with light up frames. If you need a little more space, you can get a 360 square foot World Tower Superior room which doesn’t have the neat furniture, but is usually a few dollars cheaper than the Story Tower rooms.
Each hotel tower only has a few elevators, but since there are only about 20 rooms per floor, that isn’t a problem. They also have security stationed by the elevators to check room keys.
SLS charges a nightly resort fee of $25 ($28 with tax) which covers fitness center access, local and long distance phone calls, access to the pools and in-room Wi-Fi Internet access. The SLS has a credit card hold of $150 per night when you check in.
Room rates aren’t that bad for a new boutique hotel. A random check for a midweek stay showed rates ranging from $81.75/nt for a World Superior King to $344.25 for a Lux King Suite on a high floor. Expect to pay twice as much on the weekend though, when the hotel is filled with crowds going to LIFE, Foxtail and the Sayers Club as well as their daylife counterparts BeachLIFE and Foxtail Pool Club.
SLS is currently running a “Be Legendary” promotion with 25% off rooms. The offer is good for stays through December 31, 2015. There are about a dozen blackout dates. The promo code is SBELGND. You can find more promotions on their Exclusives page.
There is a Monorail station behind the SLS, so even though the hotel is in a little bit of a no man’s land, you can still get to the Strip attractions easily.