Don't bother with Vegas -- fine dining, luxury hotels and incredible gambling can be had just 45 minutes away from Denver. Next time baby needs a new pair of shoes, try your luck at one of these hot local hotel/casinos in Central City and Black Hawk.
Fortune Valley at Central City: One of the gems of Central City, Fortune Valley has affordable rooms but often just give them away if you spend some serious time gambling downstairs. The non-smoking casino is refreshing and filled with the classics: Slots, craps, blackjack and routlette.
321 Gregory St., Central City; 303-582-0800
The Famous Bonanza Casino at Central City: A throwback to Central City's prime gambling past -- located in the heart of the city with a classic old west Victorian décor. It's home to one of the oldest saloon's in the state -- The Gold Coin Saloon, which first opened its doors in the 1890s. Plenty of slots, fun atmosphere and a little bit of Colorado history all rolled into one. No lodging here, just gaming.
107 Main St., Central City; 303-582-5914
AmeriStar at Black Hawk: Not just a casino with all the gaming you expect, but also a high-end resort and spa with five restaurants inside the hotel -- all built right into the side of a mountain (pictured) -- this is the most Vegas-like experience you can get in Colorado. Rooms are luxurious and large, the slots are loose, and the crap tables are lively.
111 Richman St., Black Hawk; 720-946-4000
The Lodge Casino at Black Hawk: Filled with poker, blackjack, craps and roulette tables and slots, this one's also got video poker machines.
240 Main St., Black Hawk; 303-582-1771
The Isle Casino Hotel at Black Hawk: Formerly the Isle of Capri, this hotel/casino has cheap rooms, so you can save your money for the all-you-can-eat buffets and poker (video or table style), slots, blackjack, craps and roulette.
401 Main St., Black Hawk; 1-800-THE-ISLE